Rachel Robbins

Life-span development: Face processing in young children and older adults

Rachel Robbins studies face and object recognition in young children and compares this with results for adults to answer questions like whether worse recognition in children is based on face-specific changes with development or general aspects such as memory. She is also interested in other aspects of person perception such as attractiveness and expression for faces and bodies.

Learning and Cognition: Experience in face recognition

We are quite good at recognising people whom we are familiar with, but quite poor at recognising people we are unfamiliar with. This applies to individuals but also groups – for example we are worse at recognising members of a race other than our own. Rachel Robbins is interested in how experience affects face recognition, including whether we are worse at other-race face recognition because of experience or because of more social factors. She is also interested in how short-term experience can change our perception of what makes a face normal or attractive (face adaptation), and whether experience needs to be gained at certain times to be useful. The latter involves testing people who have either had problems with their eyes (e.g., those born with cataracts) or have problems with face recognition.

Please see the Publications page for a list of Dr Robbins' work

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