Meet the Scientists

Each week scientists will be online to bring the relevant research to help answer questions you may have on any aspect of school or learning.
On top of this, we have roaming scientists across the four weeks who will be online to answer questions and take part in live chats. Let’s meet them:


Topic 1: Learning and Remembering

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Jessie Ricketts

Senior Lecturer
Royal Holloway, University of London

“I am keen to find out more about how language impacts on literacy learning and how once you can read, this feeds back into language learning.”
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Jo Taylor

Lecturer
Aston University

“I am a lecturer in Psychology at Aston University and my research investigates how we learn to read.”
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Elizabeth Toomarian

PhD Candidate
University of Wisconsin-Madison

“I’m currently finishing up my dissertation research about the ways in which people associate numbers and space.”
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Lucy Cragg

Lecturer
University of Nottingham

“My research investigates the development of executive functions (e.g. manipulating information in memory, flexible thinking, ignoring distractions) and their role in academic achievement, particularly maths.” I'm a Scientist Learning Zone Scientist

Paul Matusz

Junior Group Leader/ Lecturer
University of Applied Sciences
Western Switzerland

“My research focuses on how to best combine experimental psychology, cognitive neuroscience & technology to improve classroom learning and the treatment of sensory and learning disorders.” I'm a Scientist Learning Zone Scientist

Yana Weinstein

Assistant Professor
University of Massachusetts

“I apply cognitive psychology to education; the goal of my research is to help students make the most of their academic experience.”



Topic 2: Attention, Reward and Motivation

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Geneviève Allaire-Duquette

PhD student and lecturer
Université du Québec à Montréal

“Training cognitive control could help low competence students to succeed in science. Yet, little is known about how instructional guidance can enhance cognitive control mechanisms.”
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Emma Blakey

Lecturer
University of Sheffield

“I study how young children develop the ability to control and regulate their behaviour.”
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Mike Hobbiss

Affiliates Demonstrator and PhD Student
University College London

“I am interested in the types of cognitive control required for educational success, especially during the period of adolescence.”
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Gaia Scerif

Professor
University of Oxford

“Attentional control and difficulties.”
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Matt Dunn

PhD Student & Hub Leader
Keele University

“I am building a brain circuit in the lab in order to better understand and study diseases such as Parkinson’s and Huntington’s.”


Topic 3: Early development (Primary)

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Katie Gilligan

PhD Student
Institue of Education

Spatial skills in maths learning
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Mark Mon-Williams

Professor of Cognitive Psychology
University of Leeds

“I am particularly interested in motor control so a lot of my work is about identifying children with handwriting problems and then providing interventions to help them improve this (critical) skill.”
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Emily Farran

Professor
Institute of Education

“Visuospatial cognition, neurodevelopmental disorders.”
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Rebecca Merkley

Postdoctoral Researcher
Western University

“I am interested in how young children learn early numeracy skills and how cognitive factors such as attention play a role in this learning process.”
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Sarah McGeown

Senior Lecturer
University of Edinburgh

“Early reading acquisition (phonics), reading motivation and engagement, sex differences in reading.”


Topic 4: Adolescence

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Kelly Trezise

Postdoctoral Fellow
Melbourne CSHE

Kelly is primarily interested in identifying individual differences in patterns of learning. She researches how cognition, emotion, and educational contexts, and their effect on learning processes and educational outcomes.
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Lucía Magis Weinberg

Postdoc
USA

During her PhD, Lucía studied how cognitive control (the ability to regulate behaviour and achieve goals) develops in adolescence. Now, in her postdoc, she has started to look more closely at how cognitive control is impacted by puberty
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Nicola Botting

Professor
City University of London

“Developmental Language Disorder, Autism, Longterm outcomes of communication disorders, Atypical language development, Memory and language, Language for thinking. Although developmental language disorders and autism start in early childhood, most of my research has been with 7years + and into adulthood.”
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Kinga Morsanyi

Lecturer
Queen’s University Belfast

“I am interested in cognitive development and learning (especially with regard to mathematics and reasoning skills) in both typical and atypical populations (autism and dyscalculia).”
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Iroise Dumontheil

Lecturer
Birkbeck, University of London

“I am mostly interested in the prefrontal cortex, which supports aspects of higher cognition, in particular cognitive control, (the control of thoughts and behaviours to achieve goals), and social cognition, in particular our ability to think about our own thoughts and other people’s thoughts.”
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Rebecca Gotlieb

PhD Candidate
University of Southern California

“My research focuses on social-emotional development during adolescence. Specifically, I am interested in how empathic and perspective-taking abilities develop behaviorally and neurophysiologically and their role in students’ learning.”


Topic 5: Evidence In The Classroom

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Brian Butterworth

Emeritus Professor
UCL

Dyscalculia
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Sara Baker

Lecturer
Cambridge

Cognitive flexibility in young chidren, in relation to science and social world.
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Carolina Kuepper-Tetzel

Lecturer in Psychology
University of Dundee

Human Learning and Memory
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Paula Clarke

Associate Professor
Leeds

Using psychological theory to inform comprehensive assessment and intervention to improve pupils reading and oral language skills.
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Alex Hodgkiss

PhD student
Institute of Education

Spatial skills in science learning
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Courtney Pollack

Postdoctoral Researcher
Vanderbilt, USA

“My current research focuses on understanding and working with number symbols, like digits or letters from algebra (e.g., x), and how this relates to mathematics competence.”


Topic 6: Individual Differences

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Brian Butterworth

Emeritus Professor
UCL

Dyscalculia


Roaming Scientists

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Janet Dubinsky

Professor, Dept. of Neuroscience
University of Minnesota, USA

“Metabolic compromise in Huntington’s Disease, Impact of Neuroscience Knowledge on Teaching”
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Matt Slocombe

PhD student
Birkbeck, University of London

Analogical reasoning in primary school
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Delia Fuhrmann

Postdoctoral Researcher
Cambridge

Cognitive training in adolescence