You have found the website for the Infant Studies Lab (ISL). For almost forty years, ISL has been studying human development during infancy, under the direction of Joseph J. Campos, PhD. For the last 15 years, the lab has been affiliated with the Institute of Human Development at the University of California, Berkeley.
This lab is perhaps best known for its work on emotional development. It pioneered in studies of the development of fear, anger, happiness, emotional communication, and social referencing. Some of its best-known work has used the well-known "Visual Cliff," an apparatus that gives infants the illusion of approaching a drop-off. Using tests on the Visual Cliff, the lab has demonstrated that human beings are not born with an innate fear of heights, but rather acquire this fear during pivotal stages in infancy. The lab is also known for using the Visual Cliff to demonstrate the phenomenon of Social Referencing, by showing that infants will sometimes venture into the illusory drop-off, and other times avoid the cliff completely depending upon the emotion being displayed by their mothers.
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