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Sylvia Gattas

Postdoctoral Researcher

I'm interested in early cognitive development, specifically the interplay between affective regulation, executive functions, and early numeracy. How children develop their affective regulation is at the forefront of my research, along with how they develop their number sense and motivations to learn and continue learning about numbers. I hope to use innovative approaches to guide my research and eventually apply findings to improving education and how we consider children's mental health during their educational development. It's my long-term goal to ensure that the bridge between research and education has a strong foundation through collaborations between researchers, innovators, policymakers and educators.

After building a foundational understanding on the interplay between affect, the executive and mathematical abilities at the performance level, my postdoctoral work aims to expand on this by examining affective and attentional mechanisms during learning symbolic systems.

Under the supervision of Professor Gaia Scerif and Dr. Alexandra Hendry and in collaboration with the Attention, Brain and Cognitive Development group, I aim to research these topics using behavioural, cognitive and neurophysiological methodologies. We also conduct our research within the home, school and lab environments to provide a truly fair opportunity for as many families as possible to take part and produce ecologically valid research. 

Prior to joining the ABCD lab I had the opportunity to study under Dr. Ian Lyons at the Math Brain Lab, researching numerical cognition and maths anxiety in child and adult populations. In my undergraduate years I was mentored by Dr. Harriger and Dr. Trammell studying body image development and cognition, respectively.

Outside of research, you can find me doing some kind of sport, including rowing with the Oxford University Women's Lightweight Rowing Club, the Wolfson College Boat Club, or just going for a walk with my lovely Cleo.