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Matt is a postdoc of the DFG research group 2253 „Crossing the Borders“. His research examines the perceptual cues that support segmentation of single actions from action sequences. Working alongside colleagues in the Neurocognition of Language Group at Potsdam, Matt runs studies with children and adults that examine whether the behaviors we know to be critical in the segmentation of language are also demonstrated when segmenting action sequences. Alongside this, Matt is also co-ordinator of the Research Group, and supports members of the group from all collaborating institutions in the set-up and running of shared experimental designs.
Matt was awarded a first-class degree in Psychology at the University of Sussex before taking up a PhD position at Lancaster University (funded by the Lancaster University Faculty of Science and Technology). Under the supervision of Prof. Gert Westermann and Dr. Katie Twomey, his doctoral research examined the effect of temperament (specifically shyness) on early word learning. Using both behavioral and eye-tracking methodologies, Matt found that shyness reduced children’s formation and retention of word meanings from one (or very few) exposures to the word and its referent. After a short time as a visiting researcher in Prof. Nivedita Mani’s lab at the University of Göttingen (supported by the ESRC International Centre for Language and Communicative Development), Matt joined the Department of Psychology here at the University of Potsdam.
HILTON, M., & WESTERMANN, G. (2017). The effect of shyness on children's formation and retention of novel word–object mappings. Journal of Child Language, 44(6), 1394-1412. doi:10.1017/S030500091600057X