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Foundations of the Educated Brain: Infancy and Early Childhood, Part of the Educated Brain ESRC Seminar Seminar Series

When Apr 18, 2016
from 09:00 AM to 06:00 PM
Where Lucia Windsor Room, Newnham College
Contact Name Dr Dervila Glynn
Attendees Researchers interested in links between educational and neuroscience research and public policy associated with these links
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This is the first in a series of ESRC-funded seminars focusing on ‘The Educated Brain’ through the life span. This series is unique in that it is supported and coordinated by three University of Cambridge Strategic Research Initiatives (SRIs): Cambridge NeuroscienceCambridge Public Policy and Cambridge Language Sciences.


Keynote lecture: Professor Michael Thomas, Birkbeck, University of London

Dr Jenny Gibson, Faculty of Education, Cambridge

Professor Claire Hughes, Psychology, University of Cambridge

Dr Vicky Leong, Psychology, University of Cambridge

Dr Sam Was,  University of East London

Public lecture (5-6pm): Professor Kathy Hirsch-Pasek, Temple University


This seminar will explore how foundations of cognition and learning are supported by the combination of brain development and environmental input.

We will explore key questions such as:

  1. How effective are early education programs like Sure Start in promoting positive outcomes for children from disadvantaged backgrounds?
  2. Are play-based approaches to early education more likely to promote positive outcomes than other approaches?
  3. Can early detection of developmental difficulties lead to more effective early intervention in some or all areas?

Provisional schedule:

9.00-9.30: Registration and coffee

9.30-10.30: Professor Michael Thomas

10.30-11.00 Dr Jenny Gibson

11.00-11.30 Break

11.30-12.00 Professor Claire Hughes

12.00-12.30 Dr Vicky Leong

12.30-13.00 Dr Sam Wass

14.00-17.00 Afternoon workshop (by invitation/application only)

17.00-18.00 Public lecture, Professor Kathy Hirsch-Pasek (open registration)

The Educated Brain’ seminar series will include a series of 8 seminars/workshops designed to share recent findings from neuroscience that are important for education as well as engage policy-makers with the emerging field of educational neuroscience in ways that are effective and meaningful. We will be working alongside younger investigators who will be writing policy documents to accompany the series.


Registration is FREE but essential as places are limited.

Please enter N/A when prompted to enter grant code information.

Please note that registration is open for the morning session and the public lecture but attendance to the afternoon policy workshop is on an invitation/application basis. Please tick the box if you wish to be considered for this part of the seminar.

Click here to register for this event.


This seminar is supported by the ESRC, Cambridge Neuroscience, Cambridge Language Sciences and Cambridge Public Policy.

ESRC poster

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We aim to support public policy research across Cambridge University, working with colleagues in science, social science, the arts and humanities, to apply new thinking to public policy problems and promote research and analysis into the public policy process. We hope to connect and raise the profile of existing public policy related work across the University and support collaborative research that includes policy development in a range of subject areas. 

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