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This app is a research tool developed by the Oxford University BabyLab to conduct our research of language development in infancy with minimal need for face-to-face testing in the laboratory.

BabyLab app for mobile devices

The Oxford BabyLab has been researching cognitive development in infancy using eye-tracking and electrophysiology measures. We now want to evaluate the feasibility of using tablet and mobile technology from inside your home to derive reliable measures of infant cognitive  development. This first version of our app aims to validate tablet-based data collection against previous research into infant vocabulary development conducted in the lab using eye-tracking technology. 

Attribution listing for the audio and visual materials can be found here.

Privacy Policy 

This Privacy Policy pertains to the Oxford Babylab mobile app available from both the App Store and Google Play Store.  

The Oxford Babylab app is used as part of research aiming to investigate the mental processes that enable young children to link speech to familiar or novel objects. The app presents pictures of objects alongside spoken instructions to find a particular object. The child’s interest in the objects is measured in terms of their engagement with the touchscreen activity and their tapping or pointing at the screen. During the study session, the app collects anonymised data about this interaction. During the practice session of the app no data is collected. Following completion of the study session, the app enters a play mode where parents/guardians may continue using the app without any data being collected. At no point during the use of the app, whether in study, practice or play mode, any identifiable user or device data is collected. 

Prior to using the Oxford Babylab app, parents/guardians are sent detailed information about the research in the Participant Information Sheet and Consent Form. In addition to using the app, parents/guardians participating with their children in this research would also complete an online survey about the child’s vocabulary and relevant demographic information. They might also visit our laboratory to take part in lab-based studies. This research has been reviewed by, and received ethics clearance from, the University of Oxford Central University Research Ethics Committee (see approved procedure). 

Before proceeding with participation in research using the Oxford Babylab app, the parents/guardians are prompted within the app to agree with the following:

“BY PROCEEDING, I certify that I have read and understand the information sheet version 1.1, dated 17/06/2020. I agree for my child to participate in the study described. I have made this decision based also on the information I have read in the consent form version 1.1, dated 17/06/2020. I have had the opportunity to receive any additional details I wanted about the study and understand that I may ask questions in the future. I understand that I may withdraw this consent at any time.”

The functionality of the Oxford Babylab app is unlocked with personal one-time tokens which will be provided to each parent/guardian by a member of the BabyLab team. The token enables the linkage between the anonymised data collected by the Oxford Babylab app, data from the parental survey and any other data collected during a potential laboratory visit. 

Data collected in this research by the Oxford Babylab app are stored on secure cloud storage and local encrypted computers, and access is restricted to trained BabyLab researchers who have underwent an enhanced British Disclosure and Barring Service background check, showing no criminal record.  

The University of Oxford is the data controller with respect to the parent/guardian’s and child’s data as collected, and as such will determine how this is used in this research. The University of Oxford will process any collected data only for the purpose of the research outlined above. Research is a task that the University of Oxford performs in the public interest.

Further information about individuals’ rights with respect to their personal data is available here

If you have any questions or comments about the app, please get in touch with us at babylab@psy.ox.ac.uk. We would be very keen to hear your feedback.