• Source: Scopus
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20102019

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Personal profile

Personal profile

I’m a Lecturer in the Division of Psychology, specialising in Developmental, Evolutionary, Comparative and Social Psychology.

Before joining the University of Abertay in 2016, I held a three-year Senior Research Fellowship at the University of St Andrews, based at Edinburgh Zoo, which involved working with capuchin and squirrel monkeys.

I completed my undergraduate Psychology degree at the University of Sussex and my masters and PhD at Durham University which focused on social learning mechanisms and strategies in children and chimpanzees.

My research is focused on social cognition in primate species - including humans. I take a developmental and comparative approach to try and understand the evolution of social cognition, and uniquely human forms of social cognition.

I peer review manuscripts for international and national journals including the Journal of Experimental Child Psychology and the British Journal of Developmental Psychology. I am a member of the Scottish Primate Research Group and the Primate Society of Great Britain.

I am the University's Lead Voice for the protected characterisitc of pregnancy. Please feel free to conact me regarding this. 

Personal Website: https://larawood.wordpress.com/

Teaching

I teach on the following modules:

PSY104: Comparative Psychology (Module Leader)

PSY205: Cognitive and Social Psychology 

PSY311: Human Evolution: Sex, Cognition and Culture 

PSY410: Psychology Honours Project (supervisor)

I am a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Research interests

My research is focused on social cogntion in a number of primate species, including humans. I take a developmental and comparative approach to try and understand the evolution of social cognition, and uniquely human forms of social cognition. 

Particular areas of interest include:

  • Investigating social traditions in primate species
  • Understanding the mechanisms of social learning and species' differences
  • Social learning strategies, their development and their flexibility 
  • Pro-social behaviour, altruism and cooperation in primates
  • Primate captive welfare

Funding

2018 Abertay Teaching & Learning Enhancement Fund: "Who's holding the baby/ An exploration of support for students who (or whose partner) are pregnant or on maternity" 

Esteem

I peer review manuscripts for international and national journals including Journal of Experimental Child Pscyhology, PLOS ONE and the British Journal of Developmental Psychology. 

I am a member of the Scottish Primate Research Group and the Primate Society of Great Britain. 

Invited Speaker: Behaviour & Evolution Research Group (Stirling University); Rotary Club Dundee; Cafe Scientifique Dundee. 

Winner: Best Student Talk Human Behavior and Evolution Society Conference (Durham, 2012)

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