Sandra TrehubProfessor Emeritus Psychology
The principal focus of my research is on the development of listening skills in infants and young children. At the simplest level, this involves their ability to detect a wide variety of sounds in quiet and in noisy backgrounds. At a more complex level, this involves documenting infants' and young children's skill in discriminating and remembering realistic sound patterns such as melodies. In addition to the research on auditory perception, I conduct other research on singing to infants in the course of care-giving, an activity that seems to be universal. This research has a field component as well as a laboratory component, the field work involving the collection of samples of singing from various national and ethnic groups locally and abroad. One goal of this work is to document the similarities and differences in the nature of singing to infants across different languages and cultures. Another is to determine the effect of such singing on infant listeners.