Academic Profile

Academic Profile

Asst Prof Victoria Leong Vik Ee

Assistant Professor, School of Social Sciences

Asst Prof Victoria Leong Vik Ee

Dr Victoria Leong (Vicky) is a developmental cognitive neuroscientist who is interested in the neuro-social processes that support learning during early life, such as the synchrony that naturally occurs between mothers and infants. She currently heads the Baby-LINC (Learning through Interpersonal Neural Communication) Lab at the Department of Psychology at the University of Cambridge where she uses concurrent electroencephalgraphy (EEG) with mothers and infants to study how mother-infant neural activity can become naturally synchronised during social interactions, and how this synchronisation could help babies to learn from their mothers.

Vicky received her undergraduate degree in Medical Science from the University of Cambridge in 2001. After working as a special education teacher and in special education policy in Singapore, she returned to Cambridge for a Masters in Psychology & Education and she obtained her PhD in Psychology from Cambridge in 2013. Vicky's PhD thesis was awarded the 2014 Robert J. Glushko Prize by the Cognitive Science Society, in recognition of outstanding cross-disciplinary work integrating neuroscience, psychology, linguistics and computational modelling. Shortly after completing her PhD in 2013, Vicky was awarded a Junior Research Fellowship for early-career independent research at the University of Cambridge, followed by a Parke Davis Exchange Fellowship to Harvard University in 2015. Vicky has been awarded several research grants from the UK Economic & Social Research Council (ESRC), the British Academy and the Rosetrees Medical Trust to study language learning and neural development in infants and young children. The ESRC is funding her most recent work on mother-infant brain synchrony through its Transformative Research scheme, which recognises pioneering and potentially transformative scientific research.
Research Interests
- Neuro-social processes that support learning
- Language acquisition during infancy
- Developmental language difficulties
Current Projects
  • Embodied Acts of Witnessing Trauma in ContemporaryPerformance Sites and Museum Cultures
  • Impact of Bilingualism and Socioeconomic Status on Basic Learning Skills in the Early Years
  • Interpersonal neural synchrony as a social learning mechanism: Does neural synchrony during eye contact promote infants’ language learning from adults?
  • Using "naturalistic dual-EEG" to measure mother-infant brain-to-brain (b2b) synchrony in socially-mediated learning
Selected Publications
  • Leong, V. (2019). “Tuning in” to your child during play and learning: the science of interpersonal neural synchrony. Bookbug Conference (Scottish Book Trust)Edinburgh, UK.
  • Leong, V. (2019). Parent-infant neural connectedness and early learning. ChildBrain Conference (EU consortium)Leuven, Belgium.
  • Wass, S.V., Noreika, V., Georgieva,S., Clackson, K., Brightman, L., Nutbrown, R., Santamaria, L., & Leong, V. (2019). Parental neural responsivity to infants’ visual attention: how mature brains influence immature brains during social interaction. PLos Biology, .
  • Goswami, U., Barnes, L., Mead, N., Power, A., & Leong, V. (2019). Prosodic similarity effects in short-term memory in children with developmental dyslexia. Dyslexia, 22(4), 287-304.
  • Wass, S.V., Clackson, K., Georgieva,S.D., Brightman, L., Nutbrown, R., & Leong, V. (2019). Increases in arousal are more long-lasting than decreases in arousal: On homeostatic failures during emotion regulation in infancy. Infancy, , 1-22.

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