Department of Developmental Psychology: Welcome!


Developmental Psychology investigates age-related changes in behavior and experience that occur across the lifespan of an individual. Research examines different areas of development, e.g., cognitive, emotional, or social capabilities, and asks questions such as: At which age and how exactly do the changes occur? Which factors (e.g., in the individual or the environment) are the causes of developmental changes?

Recent research foci of our department include empirical studies on

  • (social-)cognitive development in early infancy (mainly understanding of other people’s actions, imitative learning, control of intentional action),
  • Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience (neural correlates of cognitive development)
  • relations between cognitive abilities (mainly executive functions, theory of mind) and developmental problems in middle childhood,
  • development in adolescence and in emerging adulthood,
  • relations of learning and development.

Research methods include eye-tracking, EEG, and video-based behavioral analyses.


Crossing-Projekt (DFG FOR 2253)

Crossing the borders: The interplay of language, cognition, and the brain in early human development

PIER-Project (DFG GRK 1668)

Intrapersonal developmental risk factors in childhood and adolescence: A longitudinal perspective



Investigates the cognitive development of children from the age of 4 month onwards


Production of video based footage for psychological behavior analysis and stimulus presentation in experimental settings

Recent publications

Meyer, M., Lamers, D., Kayhan, E., Hunnius, S, & Oostenveld, R. (2021). Enhancing reproducibility in developmental EEG research: BIDS, cluster-based permutation tests, and effect sizes. Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience, 52, 101036. doi: 10.1016/j.dcn.2021.101036

Musculus, L., Tünte, M. R., Raab, M., & Kayhan, E. (2021). An embodied cognition perspective on the role of interoception in the development of the minimal self. Frontiers in Psychology, 12, 716950. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.716950.

Adam, M., Gumbsch, C., Butz, M. V., & Elsner, B. (2021). The Impact of Action Effects on Infants’ Predictive Gaze Shifts for a Non-Human Grasping Action at 7, 11, and 18 Months. Frontiers in Psychology, 12, Article 695550, 1-10. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.695550

Gumbsch, C., Adam, M., Elsner, B., & Butz, M. V. (2021). Emergent Goal-Anticipatory Gaze in Infants via Event-Predictive Learning and Inference. Cognitive Science, 45: e13016. doi: 10.1111/cogs.13016

Boyadzhieva, A., & Kayhan, E. (2021). Keeping the Breath in Mind: Respiration, Neural Oscillations, and the Free Energy Principle. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 15, 647579. doi: 10.3389/fnins.2021.647579.