Child Brain and Behavior Lab

Our Research: 

Our lab studies brain and cognitive development in typical children and children with learning disabilities. A major focus of our current research is to understand how speech exposure during infancy shapes brain connectivity for later language learning.  Our team also performs studies to test therapies and interventions for promoting brain and language development in children at-risk for learning disabilities. An example of this work includes a clinical trial funded by the National Institutes of Health called “Listening to Mom in the NICU”. This trial will test whether playing a preterm infants speech recording of her mother is beneficial to brain and language development within the first year after birth.  Additional studies include a longitudinal study that will track brain and language development during the first two years of life in English- and Spanish- speaking infants born preterm. 

About us: 

The Stanford Child Brain and Behavior Lab is a research group in the Division of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics in the Department of Pediatrics at the Stanford School of Medicine. We are a multi-disciplinary team of developmental cognitive neuroscientists, developmental behavioral pediatricians, neonatologists, and developmental psychologists. 


Lab Director

Dr. Katherine Travis

Dr. Katherine Travis is the Principal Investigator and lab director of the Stanford Child Brain and Behavior Lab. She is an assistant professor in the Division of Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics at Stanford University, and obtained her Ph.D. in Neuroscience from the University of California San Diego.

Listening to Mom in the NICU

To minimize and prevent future language problems in children born preterm, we have designed a clinical trial to test whether a language intervention, which involves playing recordings of a mother’s voice to her baby in the hospital nursery, can help promote healthy brain and language development in babies born preterm.