Bulletin of the Centre for
Research in Human Development


Volume 5, Issue 3, Fall 2012 PDF Download Download this issue

The multi-disciplinary focus of the CRDH

Resolving our differences: Qualitative and quantitative research methods
By Christopher Cardoso and Matthew T. Keough

Crossing Borders - die Überfahrt von Grenzen
By Shireen Abuhatoum

Highlights of Interdisciplinary and Transdisciplinary Workshop
By Kierla Ireland

CRDH welcomes new Post-doctoral fellow
By Jackie Legacy

The trainee poster session reflects CRDH's diversity
By Melanie Mulligan-Pittarelli

Spotlight on Success
By Rami Nijjar

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The trainee poster session reflects CRDH’s diversity

By Melanie Mulligan-Pittarelli

CRDH’s diversity was well reflected by the annual student poster session held on October 26th, 2012 at Concordia University.  As usual, the annual lunch-time poster session provided a great opportunity for CRDH trainees to share their recent work.  More than 20 posters were presented by inter-institutional CRDH labs, covering diverse themes across the life span.  Here we present some of the highlights.


Melanie Mulligan-Pittarelli

Health psychology (Health Axis): Melanie Mulligan-Pittarelli, supervised by Dr. Karen Li, presented work relating to psychological well-being and compassion in cancer survivors volunteering at the Jewish General Hospital’s Hope and Cope program.  The aim of the study was to investigate whether compassion towards others translates to compassion towards self.

         Child and social development (Relationship Axis):  Melina Molina-Babin supervised by Dr. Holly Recchia presented results from a study that investigated children and adolescents’ decisions to retaliate or forgive during hurtful events. In a sample of young and older children, the authors found that upon recalling hurtful events, older children were more likely to have retaliated than young children. In addition, young children were more likely than older children to have retaliated against someone they ultimately forgave.  The decision to retaliate or forgive was influenced by morals in young children, and by relationship status in older children.

         Neuropsychology (Skills Axis): Jessica Skoryea, supervisied by Dr. Natalie Phillips, presented a poster on reduced response inhibition in participants with Alzheimer's Disease (AD) and Mild Cognitive Impairments (MCI).  Using event-related potentials (ERP) on a response inhibition task, the authors found that healthy older adults showed greater inhibition compared to the MCI and AD groups.  Furthermore, the inhibitory efficiency was related to higher pattern of activation in the posterior regions of the brain.          

Motor learning and Neuroplasticity (Skills Axis): Dilini Sumanapala, supervised Dr. Virginia Penhune, presented a poster on how specific components such as accuracy, synchronization, and consolidation are involved while learning a motor task. Interestingly, despite participants reported that they had not learned, their accuracy improved over trials.  Synchronization declined on the second day of trials, and consolidation improved on both learning and random trials.  This study contributes to the evidence base for specific components of the motor learning process.

         Infant development (Relationship Axis): Irene Mantis, supervised by Dr. Dale Stack, presented a poster on the nature of mother-infant communication in at-risk populations.  The authors examined the differences in mutual touch between mothers of normal weight infants and mothers of very low birth weight (VLBW) infants. The results from this study indicate that after a short period of induced emotional distress, VLBW infants engaged in less mutual touch with their mothers than normal weight infants.  This study sheds light on the importance of understanding the nature of mother-infant communication.


Rami Nijjar

Applied psychopathology (Health Axis): Rami Nijjar, supervised by Dr. Mark Ellenbogen presented her work on psychosocial risk markers in the offspring of parents with bipolar disorder (OBD).  In this study, she found, while the OBD, did not differ from controls on measures of personality, they were more likely to use maladaptive coping strategies and engage in sexual risky behaviour This study suggests stress coping and impulsive behavior as important developmental risk markers in the OBD.

         Overall, the poster session was a big success, highlighting the center’s interdisciplinary approach to life span development and encouraging inter-institutional dialogue. 




CRDH is funded by the Programme des regroupements stratégiques


Kiran Vadaga

Associate Editors
Rami Nijjar
Shireen Abuhatoum


Christopher Cardoso
Jackie Legacy
Kierla Ireland
Matthew T. Keough
Melanie Mulligan-Pittarelli


Graphic Design
KAI Design & Communication

French Translation

Concordia, UQAM, McGill, U de Laval, UQTR, U de Montreal

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