Developmental & Computational Affective Cognition Lab

University of Toronto Scarborough

Dr. Yang Wu

Lab Director

Yang is interested in how humans reason about emotion or affect, an interdisciplinary domain called Affective Cognition. Yang studies affective cognition in humans from infancy to adulthood and uses a variety of approaches, including behavioral experiments, exploratory play,  eye tracking, and computational modeling.

Yang is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of Toronto Scarborough. She obtained her Ph.D. in Cognitive Science at MIT in 2018 and received her postdoctoral training at Stanford University from 2018 to 2022. 

Dr. Tiffany Doan

Post Doc

Tiffany’s research focuses on cognitive development in early childhood, specifically social cognitive development. She is interested in how children and adults use probability to infer other people's emotions and the relationship between close counterfactual reasoning and emotion inferences. She’s also interested in children's desire-based reasoning, self-directed learning, and exploration.

Tiffany received her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from the University of Waterloo.

Hanqi Chen

Lab Manager

Hanqi completed her BSc degree in Psychology at UTSC. She is interested in investigating infant-directed emotion, how children perceive emotions, and how it would influence their behaviour. Outside of the lab, Hanqi enjoys cooking and travelling.

Sahej Gulati

Research Assistant

Sahej completed her BSc degree in Psychology at UTSC. She is interested in exploring how children learn from and interpret emotions displayed by others and how it affects their understanding of the social world. She is also interested in learning how emotional cues influence the formation of children's social bonds. In her free time, she likes spending time with her friends and exploring new neighbourhoods and restaurants!

Grace Sun

Research Assistant

I am an undergraduate student completing a Research Specialist program in Psychology. I am interested in how children use emotion as a source of information to guide their learning and reasoning about the world and how this influences their exploration, motivation, persistence, etc. In my free time, I love baking, reading, and playing with my cat!

Firdous Kareemuddin

Research Assistant

Firdous is completing her HBSc in Psychology and Human Biology from UTSC. She is generally interested in bilingualism and how this trait impacts the development of affective cognition milestones. In her free time, Firdous likes to spend time with her friends and family, horse ride, do crafts and travel.

Julie (Duofei) Liu

Research Assistant

I am an undergraduate student pursuing a double major in psychology and anthropology. I am interested in how social learning and emotion, including empathy, influence children’s development in affective cognition. In addition, I am keen to explore whether children use emotional expression as an inference through intuition or error trials. Outside of academics, I love playing the piano, reading, and snowboarding!

Emilie Broomfield

Summer Research Opportunity  Program (SROP) Student 

Emilie completed her BSc degree in Psychology at Memorial University of Newfoundland. She is interested in children’s perception of adult emotions and behavior and their influence on children's cognitive development. Emilie is originally from the Inuit homelands of Nunatsiavut in Northern Labrador and hopes to pursue a career in psychology while working with Indigenous communities. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, baking, exploring vintage shops, and watching movies. 

Rabia Nasri

Research Assistant

Rabia is an undergraduate student pursuing a double major in Psychology and Neuroscience at UTSC. She is interested in how infant-directed speech affects the attachment style between children and their parents, along with how cultural differences, and gender norms can change the way that parents speak to their children. In her free time, Rabia likes to read, bake and go to the movies!


Kelly Ma, Research Assistant 2022-2024

Georgina Mariyadas, Research Assistant 2022-2024

Tzu-Ling Wang, Research Assistant 2023-2024

Aicha Belghiti, Research Assistant 2023-2024

Valery Sit, Research Assistant 2023-2024

Nora Boghossian, Research Assistant 2023

Hayah Siddiqui, Research Assistant 2023

Hanqi Zhang, Supervised Study Student  2022-2023

The lab went to Activate together!
(April 2024)

October 2023

The lab had a blast tackling an escape room together!
(March 2023)

The lab was born!!

(September 2022)