Infant Lab

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babylab methoden optical imagingThe faculty of social and behavioral sciences (FSW) hosts several infant labs. These facilities allow for experimental studies on babies, infants, and children together with their parents. Computer systems and screens are adapted to allow for stimulus presentation to young participants, the monitoring of eye and head movements, and the measurement of manual or foot responses. Multiple video cameras are installed to record and store the behavior of the participant and their parents, and to integrate these recordings with the stimuli presented at the same time. This way, behavioral reactions can be directly associated with stimulus presentation. Currently, the labs are fully equipped to carry out psychological, educational, and linguistic studies in young children. 


The babylab of Leiden University is the first in the Netherlands who has purchased a so called NIRS-scanner. This scanner can measure the brain activity of babies and young children safely. NIRS is a non-invasive spectroscopic method for measuring oxygenated and deoxygenated hemoglobin concentrations in cortical regions of the brain. NIRS measurements of blood flow serve as an indication for the direct signal - neural activity.

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