I am a cognitive scientist working in developmental science and comparative cognition. My main interests lie in the origins of human and nonhuman animal cognitive architecture. I have done work on the origins of numerical knowledge, and the origins of rudiments of social understandings in infancy. In addition, I have dipped my toes in evolutionary considerations on the origins of mind, in particular, language. My background includes psychlinguistics, and language processing, as well as sound processing and music. My early research focussed on children's establishment of reference (anaphora) in oral narratives, and I have done work on the origins of sound perception in infancy. My research in comparative cognition draws on ideas of evolution of cognitive traits, and has provided insights into whether how we think is common or different from how other species do. This work has attracted considerable media attention, for ex., an article published in 2003 got her work featured in Nature and New Scientist. I have held grants from the British Academy and the Royal Society, as well as been invited to give workshops internationally.
I worked in the USA (Rutgers University, University of Louisiana) for a number of years before I took a post at the University of Essex. I then took a post at Cambridge University, before being hired by Kingston University as Head of the Department of Psychology. I am presently PhD Research Director, and Masters research dissertation module director for the Dept.