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Professor of Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience, University of Oxford

My research focuses on the development of attentional control and those underlying attentional difficulties, from their neural correlates to their outcomes on emerging cognitive abilities. It is important because attention influences how we learn and behave in everyday situations, and it is particularly relevant in the classroom. Many developmental syndromes are characterised by attention difficulties, and I aim to understand how they are similar, how they differ, and how difficulties matter to learning.

Understanding these questions involves combining the study of typical attentional control with research on neurodevelopmental conditions that affect molecular pathways and neural circuits involved in attentional control development: 1) groups with a well-defined genetic aetiology (e.g., fragile X syndrome, Williams syndrome, Down syndrome, sex chromosomal trisomies); and 2) complex behavioural syndromes of mixed aetiology (e.g., AD/HD). Ultimately, this work is of interest both to basic neuroscience and, most importantly, to the families and individuals who are affected by these conditions.


  • 2014–present
    Chair professor, University of Oxford
  • 2006–2014
    Associate professor, University of Oxford
  • 2003–2006
    Assistant lecturer, University of Nottingham


  • 2004 
    PhD, University College London
  • 2000 
    BSc, St. Andrews University