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Kelsey Lucca

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Asst Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 1104
Biography: 

Kelsey Lucca is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology and Director of the Emerging Minds Lab (emergingmindslab.org). Her research investigates cognitive development during infancy and early childhood, with a focus on the development of curiosity, social cognition, communication, and problem solving. She is a lead investigator on the international "ManyBabies" project (manybabies.github.io/) and co-director of the Early Childhood Cognition Research Group (childcognition.org). 

Kelsey's research on early cognitive development and curiosity has been recognized by the Early Career Award from the Society of Research in Child Development, as well as the National Science Foundation's CAREER Award (FP 2047194), “Cultivating Curiosity to Promote Learning and Discovery”.

Education: 
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate. Department of Psychology, University of Washington 2017-2019
  • Ph.D. Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, Duke University 2012-2017
  • B.S. Cognitive Science, University of Delaware 2008-2012
Research Interests: 

Please visit the Emerging Minds Lab's website to learn more about ongoing research projects: https://www.emergingmindslab.org/

Research Group: 

Kelsey Lucca is the co-director of the Early Childhood Cognition Research Group: https://www.childcognition.org/

Publications: 

A full list of publications can be found on our lab's website: https://www.emergingmindslab.org/publications

Lucca, K., Horton, R., & Sommerville, J. (2020) Infants rationally decide when and how to deploy effort. Nature Human Behavior. Vol 4: 372-379

Lucca, K., Gire, D., Horton, R., & Sommerville, J. (2020). Automated measures of force and motion can improve our understanding of infants’ motor persistence. Journal of Motor Development and Learning.

Lucca, K. The development of information-requesting gestures in infancy and their role in shaping learning outcomes. (2020). The Questioning Child: Insights from Psychology and Education. Butler, L., Ronfard., S., & Corriveau, K. (Eds.). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Lucca, K., Hamlin, K., & Sommerville, J. (2019) Early moral cognition and behavior: Editorial. Frontiers in Psychology.

Lucca, K., Horton, R., & Sommerville, J. (2019) Keep Trying!: Parental language predicts infants’ persistence. Cognition.

Lucca, K., & Wilbourn, M.P. (2018). The what and the how: Information-seeking pointing gestures facilitate learning object labels and functions in 18-month-olds. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology

Lucca, K. & Sommerville, J. (2018) The little engine that can: Infants’ persistence matters. Trends in Cognitive Science.

Sommerville, J., Enright, E.*, Horton, R*., Lucca, K.*, Sitch, M., & Kirchner-Adelhardt, S. (2018) Infants’ prosocial behavior is governed by cost-benefit analyses. Cognition.
(*=equal contribution)

Lucca, K.,  Popisil, J, & Sommerville, J. (2018). Fairness informs social decision making in infancy. PLOS ONE.

Lucca, K., MacLean, E., & Hare, B. (2017) The development and flexibility of gaze alternations in bonobos and chimpanzees. Developmental Science. doi: 10.1111/desc.12598 *featured on journal cover

Lucca, K., & Wilbourn, M.P. (2016). Communicating to learn: Infants’ pointing gestures reflect an optimal state for learning. Child Development. doi: 10.1111/cdev.12707

Verdine, B.N., Lucca, K., Chang, A., Golinkoff, R. M., Newcombe, N.S., & Hirsh-Pasek, K. (2015). The shape of things: The origin of young children’s knowledge of the names and properties of geometric forms. Journal of Cognition and Development. 17(1): 142-161. doi: 10.1080/15248372.2015.1016610

Spring 2022
Course NumberCourse Title
PSY 399Supervised Research
PSY 441Cognitive Development
PSY 499Individualized Instruction
PSY 792Research
Fall 2021
Course NumberCourse Title
PSY 399Supervised Research
PSY 441Cognitive Development
PSY 499Individualized Instruction
PSY 592Research
Spring 2021
Course NumberCourse Title
PSY 399Supervised Research
PSY 441Cognitive Development
PSY 499Individualized Instruction
Fall 2020
Course NumberCourse Title
PSY 399Supervised Research
PSY 499Individualized Instruction
PSY 591Seminar
Spring 2020
Course NumberCourse Title
PSY 399Supervised Research
PSY 499Individualized Instruction
PSY 591Seminar
Fall 2019
Course NumberCourse Title
PSY 399Supervised Research
PSY 441Cognitive Development
PSY 499Individualized Instruction