Cognitive and Developmental Sections Annual Conference 2023

12 September 2023 - 14 September 2023South West
  • Cognition and perception
  • Developmental
Registration from £58
woman smiling in meeting
In person
Cognitive Psychology Section
Developmental Psychology Section

The Joint Cognitive and Developmental Sections Annual Conference 2023 will provide a forum for dissemination, discussion, and debate of a range of cutting-edge issues attracting attention from academics and practitioners both in the fields of Cognitive and Developmental Psychology, and their intersection.

The conference will be held in Bristol from the 12th-14th September 2023. The Conference will consist of keynote addresses and prize talks, symposia, oral and poster presentations, workshops, and networking opportunities.

If you have any questions, email [email protected].

Key Submissions Dates

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February 2023 Online submissions system open
19 May 2023 The deadline for all Symposia, Oral Presentations, Poster Presentation, Lightning Talks and Masterclass submissions 
Early June 2023 Notification of submission outcomes for all submissions
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How to Submit

Please ensure you read the submission guidelines before submitting, including the reviewer guidelines. These allow you to see how your submissions will be reviewed.

Please make your submissions via the online application portals below. You will need to create an account if this is your first time submitting. 

If you any queries about submissions please contact us at [email protected]

All Submissions except Symposia


Tamar Kushnir, Duke University

Tamar Kushnir is a Professor at Department of Psychology & Neuroscience, Affiliate Professor at Department of Philosophy
PI, Early Childhoood Cognition Lab.  She received her M.A. in Statistics and Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology from the University of California, Berkeley, and was a Post-Doctoral fellow at the University of Michigan.       

Kushnir's research examines learning and conceptual change in young children with a focus on social learning and social cognition.  Kushnir's work is motivated by a long-standing curiosity about the developing mind, and in particular by how children learn about themselves and others from actively exploring the world around them.  Research topics include: mechanisms of causal learning, the developmental origins of our beliefs in free will and agency, cultural influences on early social and moral beliefs, normative reasoning, and epistemic trust, and the role of imagination in social cognition, motivation and decision making. 

Kushnir has served as an associate editor at Child Development and Cognitive Science, and currently serves on the boards of the Society of Philosophy and Psychology and the Cognitive Development Society.

Professor Julie Dockrell

Julie Dockrell (FRCSLT, FAcSS) is Professor of Psychology and Special Needs at the UCL, Institute of Education and qualified as both a clinical and educational psychologist. Her research interests are in patterns of language development and the ways in which oral language skills impact on children's learning, interaction, and attainments. A central theme in her research has been the application of evidence-based research to support children's learning through interventions, enhanced language learning environments and professional development.

She has published in a wide range of journals and written books and book chapters on language development and language difficulties. She was the previous editor of the British Journal of Educational Psychology, associate editor for JSLHR and Learning and Instruction. She was a co-director of the Better Communication Research Programme, UK. She is currently PI on a Nuffield funded research programme examining universal language support for nursery aged children in areas of social disadvantage and Co-I for the Education and Cognition stream for UKRI- GCRF Action against stunting hub. She has served on two RAE panels and government committees. Previously she was deputy chair of the BPS research board, treasurer and chair of the BPS developmental psychology section.

Title: Why understanding the development of oral language matters.

Oral language is foundational for learning and attainment.  Understanding the relationships between language and learning requires an awareness of the the key components of the language system and how these impact across development. By corollary language development depends on children's language learning environments: without effective language learning environments development is compromised.  Two studies from our work are described which demonstrate the challenges in modelling language development at school entry and capturing its impact on written language. These developmental challenges are considered in the context of two further studies which examine the ways in which the language learning environment and language learning interactions can serve as barriers to learning and development. Methodological and conceptual challenges for future research are considered to further our ability to effectively impact on policy and practice. 


Dr. Kaichi Yanaoka 

Kaichi Yanaoka is a tenure-tracked lecture at Osaka Kyoiku University, Japan. He completed his PhD in 2019 under the supervision of Prof. Satoru Saito. His dissertation concerns how young children acquire and control routines or habits (e.g., ordering, eating, and paying for food in a restaurant) through repeated daily experiences. He then held a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Tokyo and carried out research primarily into the role of long-term knowledge such as habits and cognitive control strategies on the development of executive functions.

He has addressed these topics using multiple approaches, such as experiment, behavioral observation, eye-tracking, measuring brain activation, and cultural comparison. Many of his original studies have been published in leading international journals on psychology and developmental psychology.

Title: Rethinking executive function development from a contextual framework

A fundamental question in developmental psychology is how children regulate one's thought and action to meet current goals in a constantly changing environment. To tackle the question, a lot of work have examined developmental mechanisms behind executive functions mainly through lab-based assessments. However, until recently researchers have paid little attention to the factors that are important for linking executive function to children's everyday behavior. It is precisely the context in which the executive function is engaged and accumulated knowledge associated with that context. 

I have clarified the role of context, cultural customs, and task knowledge on the lab-based assessments of executive functions. In this presentation, I will first introduce our study showing delaying gratification in young children is supported by a habit accumulated in an everyday context. Second, I will show the role of context in learning task knowledge during the engagement of lab-based executive functions tasks. 

Integrating the results of previous studies with our latest findings, this presentation will propose a new theoretical framework that rethinks the development of executive functions in terms of context and knowledge.

Dr. Jayne Spiller

Jayne Spiller is a lecturer at the University of Leicester. Her primary research interests are sleep in children with neurodevelopmental conditions or risk factors, to include sleep and the associations with behaviour and mental health in children with rare genetic syndromes and sleep in children born extremely preterm. Prior to starting her lectureship, she completed postdoctoral positions at the University of Leicester and Loughborough University. She completed her PhD at the University of Birmingham. 

Title: Neil O'Connor Prize Talk

Children with diagnosed neurodevelopmental conditions are at high risk for experiencing sleep problems relative to children without neurodevelopmental conditions. Our research has identified that this extends to children with risk factors for neurodevelopmental conditions, such as children born extremely preterm at <27 weeks of gestation. This talk will discuss the commonalities and differences between the types of sleep problems experienced by children with different neurodevelopmental conditions using data from both questionnaire and actigraphy studies. The second part of this talk explores whether sleep disturbance exacerbates inattention, hyperactivity-impulsivity and emotional problem symptoms in children born extremely preterm using data from the national EPICure2 cohort at age 11 years.  

Award talk: BPS Developmental Section Dr Charlotte Tye 

Dr Charlotte Tye is a Senior Lecturer at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London. Her research focuses on the neurocognitive development of children diagnosed with epilepsy and rare neurogenetic syndromes. She uses neurocognitive and behavioural measures within longitudinal studies to identify predictors of neurodevelopmental conditions, mental health difficulties and family wellbeing.

Prior to this, Charlotte completed her PhD in Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry at King's College London. She was subsequently awarded a Tuberous Sclerosis Association Junior Fellowship and an Epilepsy Research UK and Autistica Fellowship, with visiting scholarships at the University of California Los Angeles and the University of Melbourne.

Talk title: What can genetic syndromes tell us about the emergence of neurodevelopmental conditions?

Abstract: Several genetic syndromes are associated with elevated likelihood of neurodevelopmental conditions. Being diagnosed with a neurodevelopmental condition is a major determinant of quality of life for individuals with genetic syndromes and their families.

In this talk, I will focus on tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) to exemplify the theoretical and clinical utility of mapping pathways to neurodevelopmental outcomes in genetic syndromes. The first part of this talk will describe similarities and differences across individuals living with TSC and those diagnosed with neurodevelopmental conditions, using behavioural and EEG measures.

Second, I will present research aiming to identify pathways to different developmental outcomes in TSC, drawing upon data from two established prospective longitudinal studies which have followed individuals with TSC from early in life. We will explore the utility of in-home and remote assessment of rare conditions and discuss the importance of community involvement in research design and dissemination. Taken together, this work demonstrates the importance of longitudinal studies of genetic syndromes to understand multi-level and dynamic developmental processes underlying emergence of neurodevelopmental conditions, with the ultimate goal to inform support strategies and improve longer-term quality of life.

Award talk: BPS Developmental Section Impact and Engagement Award - Dr Josie Booth

Dr Josie Booth is a Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) in Developmental Psychology at Moray House School of Education and Sport, University of Edinburgh. Josie is a Chartered Psychologist with the British Psychological Society (BPS) and leads the Developmental Psychology in Education Research Group (

Josie's research seeks to understand and support how children learn and the relationship with their movement behaviour (e.g. physical activity, sedentary behaviour). Much of Josie's research involves school based programmes which are often co-created with teachers and pupils, and involves neurodiverse populations. Josie uses a range of methodology in her research, such as Randomised Controlled Trials, Secondary data analysis of longitudinal data sets, and systematic reviews and meta-analyses. For example, Josie has led research into The Daily Mile, which is a school based physical activity programme now undertaken by more than 4 million children globally.

Talk title: Impact and Engagement Award talk - Movement and the mind: why cognitive developmental psychologists should be interested in running. 

Globally, large numbers of children and young people are not meeting recommendations for physical activity, and other movement behaviours. Physical activity has an acknowledged positive impact on physical health, but is also beneficial psychologically. There is increasing evidence that physical activity is positively related with cognitive development across the lifespan, including a relationship with brain structure and function, and also academic attainment. This is especially important knowledge for teachers, who may be under pressure to prioritise other curricular areas. Furthermore, it can support parents and policy makers to help young people to lead healthy active lives. 

This talk will discuss evidence from studies investigating the immediate impact of physical activity on cognition and school attainment, as well as longitudinal studies, and recent evidence from school based intervention work. The impact of this research will also be discussed including input to the National Obesity Action Plan, citations on television and international press, and the relationship with the increase in pupils undertaking the Daily Mile globally.

To view the Cognitive and Developmental Sections Annual Conference 2023 programme please see the link below.


The Early Bird rate ends on 4 August 2023. Registration is available online only. The deadline to regsiter for this event is 18 August 2023

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Delegate category Early Bird 1 Day Attendance Early Bird Full Conference Standard Rate 1 Day Attendance Standard Rate Full conference
BPS Member £108 £325 £142 £425
Concession £58 £175 £92 £275
COG/DEV Member £78 £235 £112 £335
Non-BPS Member £140 £420 £173 £520
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Conference Social

Conference social can be selected for an additional £35.

Join us for drinks and a BBQ at Racks Bar and Kitchen (St Paul's Rd, Clifton, Bristol BS8 1LX). This is a short walk from the conference venue and we will have a dedicated inside and outside space to use.

All dietary requirements can be catered for. A selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic welcome drinks will be served, followed by a BBQ with a selection of side dishes, and some more drinks! In addition there will be an open bar.

Returning Customers (members and non-members)

In order to register for the event you will need to sign in using your BPS website log in details.

We have implemented a new Membership Database and if you haven't received your pre-registration email you will need to request your unique registration link.

Once you have the link, you can complete your registration on our portal.

Once you have registered on the portal please use your username and password to log in and register for the event.

If you have forgotten your log-in details, you can reset your username or password here.

Non-returning customers (members and non-members)

If you are not a returning customer, you will need to create your BPS account on the portal. The process is straightforward and takes just a few minutes.

Once you have registered on the portal please use your username and password to log in and register for the event.


Humanities Complex

Bristol University

11 Woodland Road



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