IU study finds infant attention span suffers when parents’ eyes wander during playtime

IU Communications was contacted in late March about on a study in the IU Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences investigating the relationship between attention in infants and parents.

Chen Yu

Chen Yu

The research, by IU psychologists Chen Yu and Linda Smith, found that infants’ attention remained on an object nearly four times longer after their parents stopped looking at the same object compared to parents whose attention did not linger as long on the same object. Attention has been linked to other developmental milestones in children, such as language acquisition and cognitive development. A news release on the research was posted to EurekAlert on April 22 and distributed from IU on April 28, the date of the paper’s publication in the journal Current Biology.

Television coverage included a segment on Good Morning America and an on-site report from FOX59 in Indianapolis. Some of the first print coverage included articles in the Smithsonian Magazine and CBS News.

The research also reported in the following news outlets:

The study was also reported in Süddeutsche Zeitung, a German national newspaper. On the blogosphere, the story appeared in POPSUGAR and Fit Pregnancy. The GMA video also appeared on Yahoo News.


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