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Cognitive development in its broad form concerns how thinking changes during the course of life. It includes both how simple systems develop to more complex ones and how complex system deteriorates. My contribution to this area concerns early language acquisition with special focus on the assessment on children´s emergent vocabulary. Assessments have mainly been undertaken with a version of the McArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventories adapted to Swedish. Swedish norms as well as possibilities to cross-linguistic comparisons are available at the CLEX website developed by our colleagues at the Center for Child Language, University of Southern Denmark (Dorthe Bleses, Rune Nørgaard Jørgensen).
Because the size of children´s early vocabulary often is proposed as a basis for screening for language delay, specific language impairment, neuropsychiatric functioning, or reading difficulties, I have also done some work on the potentials and limits of early language screening in collaboration with Monica Westerlund (Uppsala University) and Carmela Miniscalco (University of Gothenburg).
Estimates of peoples age, height and weight are important in many applied situations such as to control drug abuse and to deny minors access to areas and services our society has restricted to adults. It is also among the most frequent information given in witness testimonies and among the most valuable information in such descriptions are less susceptible to change as for example hair color or style. Estimates of other people´s age also govern our behavior in everyday interactions. The area can be approached by many psychological theories including psychophysics, social cognition and person descriptions. This research is developed in collaboration with (former) students at the University of Gävle (Linda Langeborg, Patrik Sörqvist, Jenny Vestlund and Sara Waller Skoog).