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Group Leader
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Professor Joni Holmes

Joni is a Professor of Psychology in the School of Psychology at the University of East Anglia, and a Senior Affiliated Scientist at the MRC Cognition & Brain Sciences Unit. She is interested in understanding the cognitive and behavioural factors that predispose children to learning and mental health problems.

Post Docs

Dr Jo Cotton

I use longitudinal cohort data and data science methods to study relationships between psychosocial variables across the life course. The aim of my research is to identify changes to educational practice that will promote better adult mental health and socioeconomic outcomes for children with ADHD symptoms.  

PhD Students

Silvana Mareva

I am using cutting-edge network science methods to understand interrelationships between different symptoms of cognition, behaviour, mental health and learning in children with and without learning-related problems. Alongside my work in Dr Holmes’s group, I work closely with people in the Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge.

Sinead O'Brien

My research focuses on the development of problem solving skills in young children. I am also interested in the relationship between reasoning abilities, working memory and executive functions. I have a keen interest in public engagement.


Maria Vedechkina

I am interested in understanding the relationship between cognitive function and internalizing problems in childhood and adolescence. The aim of my research is to identify modifiable risk factors in early life that will inform prevention and targeted treatment for mental health. 

Sofia Carozza

I explore the effects of various forms of childhood adversity, especially abuse and neglect, on neurodevelopment. I hope to direct my work toward building resilience after trauma.

David Ruttenberg

My research (the SensorAble Project) harvests inclusionary and co-designed wearables that provide relief, assistance and autonomy for autistic individuals who have sensory, attention and anxiety issues at school and at work.


Cornelia (Yufei) Cai

I am interested in understanding the emotional symptoms and specific behavioral symptoms in children with ADHD and compare them with children without an ADHD diagnosis but with similar behavioral symptoms, children with multiple diagnosis, and typically developing children using network analysis. I am also interested in understanding whether the relationship between behavior, cognition and mental health in children with ADHD changes across the childhood years. 


Alexa Mousley

I am interested in understanding how brain development in infancy and early childhood relates to behavioural, cognitive, and learning outcomes later in life. My hope is that with a better understanding of the beginnings of atypical development, those who later struggle to learn can be identified and supported earlier in life.

Master's students

Heulwen Bonsels

I am interested in gender differences of atypical development. I am hoping that soon there will be more awareness of the symptoms in female atypical individuals so that they can get diagnosis earlier and receive the help that they need.


Jenna Parker

I am a final-year trainee clinical psychologist with an interest in mental health.

Past Members

Dr Jacalyn Guy, Postdoc (2018-2021)


Dr Annie Bryant, Research Assistant (2017-2018), then DClin student (2018-2021) 

Dr Marc Bennett, Postdoc, (2018-2021) 

Tina Emery, Research Associate (2017-2021)

Grace Franckel, Research Assistant (2019-2021)

Denise Kohlhepp, MEd (2019-2021)

Kira Williams, MPhil, (2019-2020)

Fanchea Daly, Research Assistant (2016-2019)


Dr Elizabeth Byrne, PhD student (2014-2018)

Sally Butterfield, Research Assistant (2012-2018)

Dr Agnieszka Jaroslawska, PhD student (2013-2016) 

Dr Francesca Woolgar, Research Assistant (2014-2016)


We collaborate with the following people on various projects, like the Centre for Attention Learning and Memory.

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