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Program for the Study of Infancy

Department of Psychology

For Parents

Volunteering your child to participate in an experiment is an opportunity that many parents are both excited and anxious about. To help answer questions and reduce anxiety, we have listed answers to some of the questions parents often ask. If you still have questions, please contact us.

What will happen during our visit?

When you and your child visit our playroom, you will see many different things. Most will be toys that you will recognize and may have in your own home, but some will be household objects. We may ask your child to learn some silly, made-up names for some objects. Sometimes distracting things will happen, for example, a person will suddenly come into the room, or a toy will start dancing.

What if my child gets fussy or upset?

Most children have a wonderful time visiting, but of course everyone has a rough day now and then. If for some reason your child becomes particularly upset or you decide for any reason you do not want to continue with the study, you are completely free to take a break or end the playtime.

Who can come with us?

Anyone that you would like to visit with you is welcome. Grandparents and friends, and even other siblings are invited to watch what is happening from a nearby room set up especially for them. For most studies, only one person, usually a parent, will be in the room with the child during the study.

What about my other children?

We understand how difficult it may be to find alternative care for little brothers and sisters. One of our college students will be available to supervise any siblings that come along, if necessary.

Will I have to leave my child?

No. You will be with your child the entire time.

How long will it take?

During most of our studies we play for approximately one hour.

Will I get the results of the study?

Yes. You are always welcome to contact us to learn the results of our studies. Many of our studies take from several months to several years to complete, however.

I want to participate. What now?

Most of our studies involve children from conception (when you first get pregnant) through about two years old. If you are interested in having your child participate in research, contact us. There are two ways you can contact us. You may call and leave your name and telephone number in our lab. The telephone number is (423)439-4034. You can email us at .

Sibling Couch

Siblings can see you from an adjacent room on a closed-circuit television while playing with a member of our study staff.

Sibling Toys

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