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Amy Needham

Professor of Psychology and Human Development, Department of Psychology and Human Development

Professor Amy Needham studies how infants and young children learn with their hands. What children do with their hands has long been a focus of study for developmental psychologists, but using new methods of developmental science has allowed researchers to make new discoveries about infant learning skills. She is also working to understand atypical pathways of development, such as those experienced by children with Down syndrome, because comparisons between typical and atypical pathways of development can help us understand underlying mechanisms. Current projects are investigating (a) relations between early perceptual-motor experiences and later tool use in typical development, (b) how young children with Down syndrome use the feedback they receive from their exploration of objects, and (c) the development of fine motor skills in young people with and without Down syndrome.

Previous Position

  • Associate Professor, Duke University