Current Studies


Growing up in the Information Age, children have constant access to numerous sources of input. These sources often provide conflicting information, leaving us to determine which to believe and which to disregard. In this study, children will get to weigh statistical and anecdotal evidence to help children in vignettes make important decisions. Ultimately, we hope to shed light on how children draw conclusions from different forms of evidence.


This study explores how children rate their own skills in various domains and how they compare their abilities relative to other children their own age. We are interested in shedding light on the developmental trajectory of over and under-estimation of abilities, and what factors might encourage children to adopt an inflated or deflated conception of their own abilities in certain areas. 


This study explores how children reason about the causes of life events, and why different types of explanations appeal to different children. What might make a child more likely to explain an event through superstition, versus an act of god, or some natural, scientific cause? In this study, we read children a series of illustrated stories about things that happen to fictional children (e.g., a sick boy gets better just in time to go on a fun field trip) and ask them to offer explanations. We are interested in how explanation preferences change across development, and whether other factors, like a child’s perception of control, might predict children’s preferences for different explanations.


Superstitious thinking has been shown to play a role in children’s developmental and decision-making behaviors. In addition, it is clear that invoking luck and positive superstitions lead to self-efficacy, confidence, and perseverance on a task in adults. However, it is unclear whether this actually leads to improved performance and accuracy on a task. This study investigates how children think about luck and the use of lucky charms.¬†

Interested in participating?

Due to COVID-19, all of our studies are being run online, using zoom. If you would like to participate in one of our studies or if you would like to be added to our database for future recruitment, please REQUEST APPOINTMENT via Calendly, or CONTACT US.