Graduate Students

Maddy Oswald

PhD Student

moswald@uchicago.edu

I am interested in how children learn their first number words. I’m currently exploring how syntactic cues facilitate the mapping of quantity words onto number concepts and how further language experience strengthens these concepts.

Nancy Pantoja

PhD Student

npantoja@uchicago.edu

I am interested in how interactions with parents and teachers affect children’s math attitudes and math performance. Currently, I am exploring how parents’ early number talk and math attitudes affect children’s math performance, and how these effects differ in contexts of socioeconomic status.

Mia Velazquez

PhD Student

miavelazquez@uchicago.edu

I am broadly interested in the underlying cognitive mechanisms of mathematical learning, and, more specifically, the relationship between spatial and numerical cognitive development. I am currently exploring how children and adults mentally represent sets of objects, and how spatial cues support numerical estimation.

Jacob Butts

PhD Student

jakeb@uchicago.edu

My research explores conceptual development with a focus on mathematical symbols and notations. Specifically, I am interested in how linguistic input and spatial representations impact children’s understanding of mathematical concepts. Through this research, I hope to better understand the basic cognitive processes that drive learning and identify mechanisms to close achievement gaps in mathematics.

Jessica Waltmon

PhD Student

jessicawaltmon@uchicago.edu 

I am a Ph.D. student in the University of Chicago’s Developmental Psychology Program and an Institute of Education Sciences (IES) Fellow. I am co-advised by Dr. Katherine Kinzler and Dr. Susan Levine. I graduated in 2021 with a B.A. in Psychology from the University of California, Davis with Highest Honors. Broadly, my interests include 1) understanding what shapes our conception of our cognitive abilities and how this influences our behaviors; 2) investigating how this knowledge can bolster interventions in education, industry, policy, and medical fields.

Karina Kling

PhD Student

kakling@uchicago.edu

My main research interests involve the intersection of mathematics, cognitive development, and education, with specific focuses on learning and instruction of crucial early mathematics concepts like fractions and probability within the scopes of individual learners, classrooms, and educational interventions.