Our child development laboratory (“Theory of Mind Kinderlabor” or simply ToM-LAB) is a child-oriented facility at the faculty of natural sciences for investigating the development of theory of mind, the ability to ascribe mental states to ourselves and other people.
We welcome parents and their children aged between 9 months and 7 years, who are interested in participating in one of our studies. The tasks are always embedded in a playful situation so that the child can engage with the experimenter in a natural way, e.g. in short stories, scenarios played out with toys. We create a comfortable, every-day situation in order to observe the child’s natural behaviour.
Beside behavioural data we use a Tobii eye tracker to measure children’s eye-movements while they are looking at pictures or watching a short video sequence on a screen. As there is no additional affixed equipment required this method can even be used with infants.
Eye-tracking data give us important and interesting insights into how infants and children perceive the world around them.
In addition to the child research laboratory at the university we visit cooperating childcare facilities and recreational facilities (e.g. the Spielzeugmuseum) in Salzburg and surrounding areas.