"Babeș-Bolyai" University, Cluj-Napoca

DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHOLOGY

 
The Developmental Psychology Laboratory from the Department of Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Science, Babes-Bolyai University, is a research group interested in the domain of developmental science.
Our group investigates different aspects of children’s and adolescents’ cognitive, social and emotional development. We study typical as well as atypical developmental trajectories. On one hand, our studies have focused on children from birth to 6-7 years of age, because many of the fundamental abilities for optimal cognitive and emotional functioning develop rapidly in this period (early childhood). On the other hand, our studies also target how these abilities continue to develop in middle childhood and adolescence.

In the area of typical developmental, our research focuses on:
  • cognitive and emotional self-regulation
  • the development of executive functions (e.g., updating, inhibition and shifting)
  • the development of categorization
  • memory development (working memory, short term memory, autobiographical memory, prospective and retrospective memory)
  • the development of cognitive flexibility
  • executive functions in connection to early deceptive skills
  • the development from the perspective of embodied cognition
  • giftedness
Regarding the area of atypical development, our research investigates:
  • executive functioning in children and adolescents with high levels of internalizing symptoms (anxiety and depression)
  • the neural correlates of atypical development
  • executive (dys)functions in neurodevelopmental disorders (e.g., epilepsy, Down syndrome)
  • attentional biases as cognitive vulnerability factors in anxiety
Our main goal is to understand the mechanisms of development which can further help us to optimize development by preventing the onset of various disorders and by intervening in atypical cases.
In addition to fundamental research, our group was involved in organizing different scientific events (summer schools, conferences, workshops, discussion groups) and in the popularization of science (e.g., Brain Awareness Week). The purpose of these activities is to build connections with other research centers and with professionals who work with children in different fields (education, health, family).
Students (BA, MA, PhD) interested in this domain have been constantly engaged by our group in all the above mentioned activities.
For further details regarding our group members and lab activities please visit www.devpsychology.ro