Info for Parents
Info for Students
CCL in the News!
Since 2000, families from the Boston area have been helping us answer questions about children's development. We love meeting new families and those who visit our lab have a great time participating in our studies because they are designed as fun games. Appointments are scheduled throughout the week so that you and your child can participate at a time that is convenient for you. We provide free parking in
the garage across from the Psychology Department and your child receives a small gift for helping with our project.
Are you interested in our research? Would you like your child to participate?
Fill out the information form. We will contact you soon to schedule a visit!
What to expect during your child's visit:
A member of the lab will meet you in the parking garage across the street from the Psychology building. Parking is free!
When you arrive at the lab we will warm up with your child in our playroom to get him or her used to the surroundings and lab members. This is also when we tell you more about the specific study your child will participate in and answer any questions you may have.
Your child will then go into the study room with the research assistant running the study. You have the option to sit in the room with your child or watch on a computer monitor from the next room, whatever makes you and your child most comfortable. Depending on the project your child will watch a video, read a story, explore new unfamiliar objects, or look at pictures of unfamiliar animals. In our toddler studies, we look to see what choices your child makes about the objects in their environment. In our 5- to 8-year-old studies we will ask your child his or her opinion about the objects, stories and pictures we demonstrate. Our studies take between 20-60 minutes and some require a short second visit.
When your child is finished participating he or she will get a small gift as a thank you, then there is more time to play!
Click HERE to sign up!
Still have more questions? See our FAQs!
What are the ages of the children that you study?
Our studies are generally for children between 1 and 10 years of age.
What do the studies involve?
Our studies vary depending on the age of the children participating. In general, we show children unfamiliar animals, natural objects, or human-made objects and ask questions about them (e.g., why they look as they do, where they come from, what they do). We tend to use materials that are unfamiliar because we want to understand how children reason about things that they have never encountered before or discussed with anyone. We are often also interested in how they react to the person who is showing them the new items.
How long do the studies take?
Studies with 1- to 4-year-old children are only about 20 minutes long.
Studies with school-aged children take about 40-60 minutes.
When are appointments scheduled?
We are here whenever it is convenient for you during the week. Mostly our visits take place Monday to Friday between 9:00am and 5:00pm, but we can work around your schedule. Please ask about our weekend availability.
Will I receive the results of my child's performance?
In general, we do not explore the differences between individual children and our studies do not inform us about the “intelligence” or abilities of any particular child. Instead, we study larger samples of children in order to learn about behaviors across all children of a given age. In consequence, you will receive a letter describing the general findings of the study in which your child participated rather than the specific results of your child’s visit to the lab.
Will I be with my child during the study?
Yes! You can stay with your child the entire time. However, because we often study children's reactions to subtle aspects of other people’s behavior (our researchers’ behavior follows a script), we ask that parents refrain from interacting with their child. If your child is comfortable without you in the room, you can watch the study from our computer monitor in the next room.
Can I bring my other children with me to the appointment?
Yes! Siblings can play in a separate room with you or our research assistants.
Where is the Child Cognition Lab?
We are located in the Boston University Psychology Department off of Commonwealth Avenue.
Room 157, 64 Cummington Mall,
Boston, MA 02215
Click for Directions!
The lab is part of the Child Development Labs at Boston University, which is part of the Developmental Science Program in Psychology.