Renee L Baillargeon
Alumni Distinguished Professor of Psychology
Address: 613 Psychology Bldg.
603 E. Daniel Street
Champaign, IL 61820
- Telephone: (217)333-5557
Dr. Baillargeon's research focuses on early conceptual development in three core domains: physical reasoning, psychological reasoning, and biological reasoning. She assumes that each domain corresponds to an abstract computational system, constrained by core causal knowledge, which makes possible infants' reasoning and learning within the domain. In her research on physical reasoning, Dr. Baillargeon examines infants' ability to predict and interpret the outcomes of physical events. Primary questions include what expectations do infants possess at different ages about various physical events (e.g., occlusion, containment, support, and collision events), and what mechanisms are responsible for these developments. In her research on psychological reasoning, Dr. Baillargeon has been exploring infants' ability to predict and interpret the actions of agents. Primary questions include under what conditions do infants consider the goals, dispositions, emotions, communications, perceptions, and beliefs of agents to predict their actions. Of particular interest here is whether infants can attribute to others misperceptions and false beliefs, and the implications of such attributions for theory and research on the development of infants' "theory of mind". Finally, in her research on biological reasoning, Dr. Baillargeon examines infants' ability to reason about the displacements and changes that biological bodies can undergo. Primary questions include at what ages do infants begin to recognize that biological bodies can initiate, alter, and interrupt their own motions, rearrange their parts, and resist others' efforts to move them; and when and how do infants begin to recognize that different biological kinds move in different ways (e.g., that birds fly but humans do not).
For more information, please visit www.psych.uiuc.edu/infantlab/
- Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania