Information for Interested Parents
What type of research is conducted at the University of California, Davis Developmental Research Labs?
We study a variety of topics including cognitive, social, emotional, and perceptual development in infants, children, and adults. How do babies under one year of age learn about the world around them? For example, how do they know what sights and sounds belong together and which do not? How and when do they remember people and places in their environment? How do children think and feel about themselves, and about those with whom they interact?
What is involved?
Most studies require one or two visits to the lab at which you or your child’s specific study is being conducted. The testing procedure can vary in time from 20 minutes to one or two hours. The specific length of your study will be discussed with you when you are called to participate. In most cases, the parent is with the child, or observing the child throughout the experiment. A more detailed description of the study is given by phone when the parent is initially contacted by one of our research assistants.
Who can participate?
Anyone can sign up! We will contact you when appropriate studies are available for your child or for you. Please be sure to keep your contact information up to date by logging into your record and making any appropriate changes. You may remove yourself from our records at any time by emailing Dr. Goodman at
What do parents and their children gain from participating?
For decades, parents have told us how much they enjoyed the chance to participate in our studies, knowing that they are helping researchers understand what young babies and children are able to do in comparison with adults. Upon your request, we are happy to provide you with copies of sample studies that we have published over the years. You can also request a copy of the results of the studies in which your child participated at our Department. All data are coded with anonymous numbers, and your names will not be indicated in any publications or presentations of any research findings. Often, we can provide a small toy or small payment to families.
What do we do with our research findings?
This information is presented at national and international conventions, publised in scientific journals, and made available to parents so that they can also learn about normal child development. Our work influences social policy, is relied upon by medical, educational, and legal professionals, and is often cited by the media.
How to contact us:
Parents who are interested in participating should please sign up here.
Also, you can send an email of this website to any of your friends who might be interested in signing their families up to participate in our research.