Course Title: Plenary B: Development of Emotion Regulation Neurobiology and the Role of Early Caregiving Experiences (Tottenham)


Credit Hours: 1


Instructor(s) Nim Tottenham


Nim Tottenham, PhD
Professor of Psychology
Director of the Developmental Affective Neuroscience Laboratory
Columbia University, New York

Plenary B:

Development of Emotion Regulation Neurobiology and the Role of Early Caregiving Experiences

Abstract & Learning Objectives:
Signals in the early environment are potent effectors of brain development. Variations in early species-typical experiences, such as parental caregiving, reveal the profound effects on the development of neurocircuitry involved in affective learning and regulation (e.g., amygdala, hippocampus, medial prefrontal cortex). This talk will focus on both typical development as well as development following caregiving adversity showing that early life early environments may influence development through learning as well as altering developmental pacing of this circuitry. These age-related changes will be discussed in terms of potential developmental sensitive periods for environmental influence. Upon conclusion of this course, learners will be able to:
  • Identify how early social environments shape brain development
  • Explain the neurobiology of emotional processes across development
  • Describe how developmental timing of events matter for outcomes

Speaker Biography:
Nim Tottenham, PhD is a Professor of Psychology at Columbia University and Director of the Developmental Affective Neuroscience Laboratory. Her research examines brain development underlying emotional behavior in humans. Her research has highlighted fundamental changes in brain circuitry across development and the powerful role that early experiences, such as caregiving and stress, have on the construction of these circuits. She has authored over 90 journal articles and book chapters. She is a frequent lecturer both nationally and internationally on human brain and emotional development. She is a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science, and her scientific contributions have been recognized by the National Institute of Mental Health Biobehavioral Research Awards for Innovative New Scientists (BRAINS) Award, the American Psychological Association’s Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contribution to Psychology, and the Developmental Science Early Career Researcher Prize.