Cognition, Genes and Developmental Variability Lab

Our primary research interests relate to cognitive development in both typical development and neurodevelopmental disordered groups, with a specific emphasis on spatial cognition. 

Our aim

The broad aim of the Cognition, Genes and Developmental Variability (CoGDev) Lab is to characterise both typical and atypical development of cognitive functions within a neuroconstructivist framework (i.e. functions are explored within the context of the developing brain).

This involves analytical investigation of spatial performance in both small-scale (e.g. spatial ability, perception, mental imagery, drawing and construction abilities) and large-scale space (navigation and route learning abilities). We are also interested in the intersection between spatial ability and other abilities, such as motor function. Our most recent research interest relates to the relationship between spatial thinking and science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) in primary school age children. 

We have published work on the performance of typically developing children, typical adults, individuals with autism, Down syndrome, Williams syndrome and cerebral palsy.

Stay connected


Twitter profile image for cog_dev_lab
Come and join our lab!
Twitter profile image for cog_dev_lab
New blog up on our website now! An insightful overview of this year’s virtual Down Syndrome Research Forum:

Latest blog posts


Teaching mathematics to young people with Down syndrome: A unique perspective

This February, Dr Su Morris and Dr Katie Gilligan-Lee interviewed Jane Butler to hear her insights on...


Online Down Syndrome Research Forum 2021

This year the Down Syndrome Research Forum was held online for the first time – breaking geographical...

Contact us

Find us


School of Psychology
Elizabeth Fry Building (AD)
University of Surrey