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News from the Center on the Developing Child

December issue of the Center on the Developing Child newsletter includes; Working paper: The Science of Neglect: The Persistent Absence of Responsive Care Disrupts the Developing Brain; A study on the effects of global adversity, two generations at a time, and  a special journal supplement Journal Features Center Affiliates' Work on Biology of Early Adversity.

NEW working paper

Working Paper 12Young children who experience severe neglect bear the burdens of a range of adverse consequences, including cognitive delays, impairments in executive functioning, and disruptions of the body’s stress response, says a new Working Paper from the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child. “The Science of Neglect: The Persistent Absence of Responsive Care Disrupts the Developing Brain,” explains why severe neglect can cause more harm to a young child’s development than overt physical abuse, why neglect is so harmful in the earliest years of life, and why preventive efforts and effective interventions are so crucial in helping to ensure better long-term outcomes in learning, health, and parenting of the next generation.
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Betancourt Faculty Spotlight

faculty spotlight: theresa betancourt

Studying the Effects of Global Adversity, Two Generations at a Time

As part of an ongoing series of research profiles of Center-affiliated faculty members, a new feature on the Center's web site focuses on the work of Theresa Betancourt, M.A., Sc.D., an associate professor of child health and human rights in the department of global health and population at the Harvard School of Public Health, and director of the Research Program on Children and Global Adversity at the François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights. Through her work with former child soldiers in Sierra Leone and Rwandan children whose parents have HIV/AIDS, Betancourt hopes to demonstrate that, even in crisis situations, combining attention to children’s developmental needs with short-term survival efforts only magnifies the long-range benefits for individuals, families, and societies.

special journal supplement

Journal Features Center Affiliates' Work on Biology of Early Adversity

The developmental and biological consequences of early social adversity are explored in a special supplement of the peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS) published in print on Oct. 16, 2012. “Biological Embedding of Early Social Adversity: From Fruit Flies to Kindergartners” features articles by Center Director Jack P. Shonkoff and Center-affiliated Harvard faculty members Takao Hensch and Charles A. Nelson III. The supplement also contains articles by members of the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child, including: W. Thomas Boyce of the University of British Columbia; Greg J. Duncan of the University of California, Irvine; Nathan A. Fox of the University of Maryland College Park; Megan R. Gunnar of the University of Minnesota; and Bruce McEwen of The Rockefeller University. Articles are available free to the public at the PNAS web site.

Closed captioning

accessibility update

Closed Captioning Added to Center Videos

Nine of the Center's major videos, including the Three Core Concepts in Early Development series, the InBrief series, and Brain Hero, now feature closed captioning. To enable this feature, hit the play button and then click on the "CC" icon in the right-hand menu at the bottom of the video. The icon will appear in red once enabled.

View videos on the Center's site >>

On the Center's YouTube channel, these videos also feature interactive transcripts. To access this feature, click the "YouTube" icon in the right-hand menu at the bottom of the video to view it on the Center's YouTube page. Once there, click on the icon below the video for "Interactive Transcript" (to the right of the "Share" and "Flag" icons).

View videos on the Center's YouTube channel >>

opportunities for harvard undergraduates

Conte Center Offers Wintersession Activities 

The Conte Center at Harvard University, in collaboration with the Center on the Developing Child, is sponsoring a Wintersession workshop for Harvard undergraduates titled, “Perspectives on Mental Illness,” from Monday, January 21, to Friday, January 25, 2013. This weeklong session will feature visits to McLean Hospital, personal stories from speakers from the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and an introduction to policy issues in child mental health.

In addition, the Lichtman Laboratory, part of the Molecular and Cellular Biology Department and the Conte Center, will be offering an introduction to the field of connectomics with a brief hands-on course called, “Mapping Brain Circuits with Electron Microscopy.” Students will have the opportunity to directly participate in the process of reconstructing mouse brain circuits, generating authentic new data and documenting key steps in the process.

Read more and register >>


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Published Dec. 18, 2012 3:04 PM - Last modified Apr. 17, 2013 3:19 PM