We are very pleased to announce that Dr. Drew Weatherhead has received a two-year Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), a prestigious scholarship that recognizes “the most promising Canadian new scholars”. Her research proposal on the foundations of language-group preferences in early childhood was ranked #1 in the national competition — please join us in congratulating Drew on this outstanding achievement!
Drew received her Bachelor’s of Computer Science from Queen’s University and her PhD in Developmental Psychology from the University of Waterloo; she joined the Infant Studies Centre as a postdoctoral fellow in September 2017. Drew is currently running a study at the Centre that investigates whether social information plays a role in how monolingual and bilingual 18-month-olds learn new words. Her graduate research at the University of Waterloo focused on how social information about speakers (e.g., race) affects infants’ and toddlers’ word processing. She found that infants interpreted the same words differently depending on whether the speaker was from a racial group that was familiar or unfamiliar to them. She also demonstrated that more abstract cues, like with whom a speaker has previously interacted, can influence toddlers’ interpretation of words.