The Child Study Center is a laboratory nursery school for the Psychology Department of Wellesley College. Its major mission is to serve as an observation and research site for undergraduates in Psychology and other departments. In fulfilling that mission, the Child Study Center works to improve the lives of all children.
Some recent research findings from the Child Study Center have been especially significant for their relevance to larger cultural and social issues. Work by Tracy Gleason and her students has contributed to our understanding of young children’s friendships and their understanding of relationships generally, as well as the functional significance of imaginary companions in young children’s social lives. Work by Jennie Pyers has addressed the relation between thinking and language, including how children understand other people’s thoughts and reason about spatial relationships.
Undergraduate research conducted at the Child Study Center also contributes to our general understanding of young children. For instance, research papers dealing with topics as disparate as language, gender differences, non-verbal communication, and the development of pretense understanding have been selected for presentation at highly selective conferences such as the Society for Research in Child Development.