As a Developmental Psychologist , I specialize in the area of Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience. My expertise is memory processes and sleep in the developing child, including those diagnosed with neurodevelopmental disorders, including Down Syndrome and autism.
In the early 2000s, my work was instrumental in characterizing the specific learning/memory profiles (i.e., the individual strengths and weaknesses) of individuals with Down syndrome and autism. For these efforts, I received the 2008/2009 Charles Epstein award from the National Down Syndrome Society and the 2015 David Cox “Rising Star” Award from the LuMind Foundation.
My most recent work has shown links between sleep problems, memory, and language in Down syndrome and is the first empirical evidence to suggest that poor sleep might limit how well these individuals can learn to communicate. Future work will assess trajectories of sleep and neural development in populations at risk for neurodevelopmental delay, including children born premature and at risk for autism.