The Duchess of Cambridge spoke to team of UCL’s world-leading development neuroscientists about how early experience shapes brain function.
On Wednesday, at midday, the Duchess of Cambridge arrived at the Developmental Risk and Resilience Unit in the Psychology & Language Sciences Division, Bedford Way. She was shown around the division’s MRI facilities and given an insight into how UCL’s research on how experiences in childhood affect the development of brain functions.
The unit is co-directed by Professor Eamon McCrory who was the lead academic for the visit. The project’s research explores the impact of maltreatment on children’s emotional evolution and future mental health. They have used techniques such as brain imaging and a variety of psychological approaches to investigate the mechanisms associated with developmental adversity and resilience.
Professor Michael Arthur, UCL President & Provost, welcomed the Duchess’s visit and gave an official statement: “We’re delighted that Her Royal Highness is hearing from UCL’s developmental neuroscience researchers, as UCL takes great pride in its neuroscience and psychology work. We hope that this can help leverage the work of our neuroscientists as they seek to improve the lives of people affected by mental health disorders and ensure that every child has the best possible start to life.”
Psychology student Dominika Leitane was in the common room when Kate walked past – “When she saw us behind the door she smiled and waved to us. She then apparently went into one of the seminar rooms.”
During her visit, Kate also met students enrolled on UCL’s MSc programmes in child development.