Prospective Grad Students

The Centre for Infant Cognition IS accepting a new graduate student for the 2023-2024 academic year. I typically accept applications through the developmental psychology area. I occasionally co-supervise students with faculty in other areas (e.g., social, cognitive).

  1. Here is a link to all the information regarding admissions to the psychology department and a link to the application:
  2. Here is a link to frequently asked questions about UBC Psychology’s admissions and application process:

Lab Mission
The Centre for Infant Cognition (CIC) is a research laboratory in the Developmental Area of the Psychology Department at UBC. Our work explores broad questions about the origin of human knowledge by taking a developmental perspective in order to characterize (1) the “initial state” of knowledge within key domains of reasoning, and (2) how that knowledge changes over time based on maturational and experiential processes. The lab primarily focuses on the origins of moral knowledge (e.g., how/when do we know what good/bad actions and interactions are, how/when do we evaluate others for their morally relevant behaviours) as well as social knowledge more broadly (e.g., how/when do we know what agents are, how/when do we understand that agents are – unlike objects – guided by unobservable mental states). We primarily study young, preverbal infants, but currently have studies on children ranging in age from ~birth to ~4 years.

What I look for in a prospective graduate student:

  • A strong match between my research program and your research interests. I only supervise students who are interested in the origins of sociomoral thought and action. Read my current and ongoing projects and publications here:
  • Competitive applicants to our program have accrued independent research experience, such as an honours thesis (or equivalent). They also have experience presenting their research at academic conferences and/or have peer-reviewed publications.
  • Past research experience related to developmental psychology or who have experience with methodologies used in the lab (e.g., infancy methods, eye-tracking, psychophysiology, EEG/ERP).
  • Strong letters of recommendation. A strong letter typically will be written by someone who knows you well, who can speak to your experience, skills, and abilities, as well as your academic potential for success in graduate school.
  • Evidence of strong communication, both written and oral.
  • Ability to work well collaboratively and independently.
  • Computational/statistical skills or a keen interest in learning these skills and evidence of potential to do so.
  • External funding from government agencies. This fundng can substantially boost the competitiveness of an application. Eligible students are strongly encouraged to apply for Canadian Tri-Council Graduate Scholarships if they are Canadian or permanent residents of Canada the same year you apply to graduate school. Click here for information about external fellowship opportunities:
  • A strong fit with our lab’s core values (see below). As evidenced by past experience/activities and/or commitment to developing these values during graduate school.

Lab Values

  • We at the Centre for Infant Cognition are committed to producing research that is both reproducible and replicable and that has the best chance of accurately informing our understanding of how the mind develops. Wherever possible, we engage in Open Science practices including preregistration, data sharing, etc. In addition, we are heavily involved in the ManyBabies Consortium (, a collaborative project for large-scale replication and best practices in developmental psychology. Lab members should demonstrate past experience in these areas and/or interest in committing to these values/practices during graduate school. Past contributions might include:
    • Experience writing/implementing pre-registrations
    • Experience with Databrary or other data sharing platforms
    • Experience with reproducible workflows like RMarkdown, Github, etc.
    • Experience with large-scale collaborative research projects
  • We at the Centre for Infant Cognition are committed to diversity and inclusion in our recruitment, hiring, and research practices. We support our LGBTQIA+ lab members and peers, our BIPOC lab members and peers, and people of all other identities. We continue to work towards creating an accountable and safe space in our lab. We do so by our commitment to continuing to learn about racism, sexism, and other forms of discrimination and by mindfully conducting our research through an anti-oppressive lens. We know that this commitment is part of an ongoing learning and unlearning process. We welcome applications from people of all backgrounds who share these values and are committed to improving equity, diversity, and inclusion in psychology.Lab members should demonstrate a strong commitment to advancing equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI), with evidence of this commitment in their research, volunteerism, or other areas and/or a plan for how they will contribute to EDI in my laboratory and our department. Contributions might include one or more of the following:
    • lived experience as a member of a disadvantaged or underrepresented group (e.g., racial/ethnic minority, LGBTQ, first-generation university student)
    • past activities in programs to promote EDI (please include reference to these in your application, SOI, and CV)
    • commitment to mentoring students from diverse backgrounds
    • future plans for incorporating EDI principles into teaching or community outreach activities
    • interest in promoting EDI in professional service, such as when serving on student committees or as part of student leadership in professional organizations
    • conducting research related to under-represented populations

For additional information regarding graduate school applications, please see the Graduate Student FAQ document: Graduate Student FAQs