People

All the wonderful people that make this lab possible.

Principal Investigator

Jessica Sommerville

Jessica Sommerville is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology and the Associate Director for the Foundations for Social, Emotional, and Cognitive Competence at the Center for Child and Family Well-Being, both at the University of Washington. She received her Ph.D. at the University of Chicago in 2002 and completed a post-doc at the University of Washington in 2003. Her research is funded by NICHD, the John Templeton Foundation, and via intra-mural funding at the University of Washington.

Jessica Sommerville

Postdoctoral Researchers

Jing Xu

Jing is a postdoctoral research associate. She received her Ph.D. in Anthropology from Washington University in St. Louis in August 2014. Her research interests lie at the intersection between cultural anthropology and developmental psychology, more specifically understanding the roots of human morality and cooperation in childhood. She is interested in the relationship between cognition and culture.

Jing Xu
Talee Ziv

Talee received her Ph.D. from Harvard University in 2012. She is broadly interested in understanding how social preferences develop: What characteristics are young infants attuned to when evaluating new people or when deciding with whom to interact? What mechanisms produce this selectivity and is it malleable? She has examined some of these questions in relation to racial categories, and more recently in the context of infants' reactions to others' fair/unfair behavior.

Talee Ziv

Graduate Students

Arianne Eason

Ari is a 4th year PhD student in the Social/Personality & Developmental areas. Her research interests lie at the intersection of social and developmental psychology. In her first line of research, she is interested in understanding how children and adults process subtle environmental information related to race and interracial interactions. In her second line of work, she interested in understanding the information that infants use to evaluate others during social interactions. She is also working with Dr. Cheryl Kaiser in the Social/Personality area and Dr. Kristina Olson in the Developmental area.

Airianne Eason
Elizabeth Ake

Elizabeth is a second year graduate student who is interested in the development of prosocial behavior and fairness understanding. Specifically, she is interested in why we help others, what factors increase our helping behaviors, and under what conditions we expect equality. Elizabeth studies the developmental origins of these questions in Jessica Sommerville's lab with infants and in Kristina Olson's lab with young children. In her free time, Elizabeth loves to play tennis and go hiking.

Elizabeth Ake
Jacqueline Pospisil

Jacqueline graduated from UC Davis with a B.A. in Psychology and Anthropology, where she studied the development of language and memory. After graduation she pursued her interest in cognitive development as a Junior Specialist in UC Davis' Memory and Development Laboratory, investigating the developmental trajectory of episodic memory in childhood. Her current work as a graduate student in the Early Childhood Cognition Laboratory focuses on cognitive and social development, specifically the neural correlates of fairness understanding in infancy.

Jacquiline Pospisil
Kayla Upshaw

Kayla is a 6th year graduate student who is working on her dissertation study. She aims to graduate in Spring 2016. Kayla is passionate about her dissertation topic: investigating the link between infants' early experiences and their emerging understanding of the world. Her favorite part of the research process is working with the infants in our lab and getting to tell the families about her study after they participate! In her free time, she enjoys cooking, watching comedies, and playing with her dog.

Kayla Upshaw
Lucretia Fairchild

Lucretia comes to UW with a B.S. in Biology from the University of Michigan, and a M.A. in Psychology from the University of Chicago. She strives to understand altruism and prosocial behavior, and is fascinated that some forms can be found so early in infancy! She also thinks that parents, children, and society at large could greatly benefit from techniques to promote prosocial behavior. She is thrilled to be working at the ECCL and to work with such fun, amazing subjects.

Lucretia Fairchild

Research Staff

Lucie Saether

Lucie is a graduate from the University of Washington with a B.S. in psychology. One of her main research interests is the human understanding of morality, and she is happy to be at the Early Childhood Cognition Lab where she can investigate this in a very cute population. Right now she is working on carrying out a study she outlined in a research proposal in June, which won the UW Guthrie Prize for psychology writing. In her spare time, she rehearses and performs with a tap dance company.

Lucie Saether
Miranda Sitch

Miranda Sitch is a lab manager at the ECCL. She graduated from the University of Washington with a B.S. in Psychology in June 2013 and plans to attend graduate school in developmental psychology. Miranda is interested in the development of social cognition. She is particularly interested in the development of prosocial behavior, moral cognition, and empathy, as well infant's and children's understanding of others mental states. When she is not at the ECCL, Miranda enjoys spending time with her loved ones, watching a good movie, and snuggling her cat, Olive.

Miranda Sitch
Rachel Horton

Rachel is a staff member at the ECCL. She recently graduated from the University of Washington with a B.S in psychology. In the future she hopes to attend graduate school in either clinical or developmental psychology.

Rachel Horton
Roya Baharloo

Roya has been a undergraduate research assistant at the ECCL for over two years. She is a 4th year Psychology and Spanish double major at the UW and plans on pursuing Psychology in graduate school. Her passions lie in working with young children and she hopes to continue working with them in the future.

Roya Baharloo
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