Dr Barbara Pomiechowska MSc, PhD

Dr Barbara Pomiechowska

School of Psychology
Assistant Professor

Dr Barbara Pomiechowska is a developmental cognitive neuroscientist with expertise in infancy and early childhood. Her work aims to understand how we learn (things that seem simple and effortless such as our native languages, and things that seem more intimidating and effortful such as maths), create new knowledge and use what we know in innovative ways. She serves as the lead for the Birmingham Babylab, a research facility dedicated to the study of newborns, infants and young children.


PhD (Birkbeck, University of London)

MSc (Ecole Normale Superieure)


Before joining the School of Psychology, Barbara was a postdoctoral scientist at the Cognitive Development Center at the Central European University, in Vienna, Austria, and Budapest, Hungary. She held postdoctoral appointments on ERC funded projects with Prof. Gergely Csibra (#742231 PARTNERS) and Dr Agnes Melinda Kovacs (#284236 REPCOLLAB).

She completed her PhD at the Centre for Brain and Cognitive Development, Birkbeck, University of London, with Dr Teodora Gliga. Her dissertation a looked at how language learning affects infants’ cognitive function (e.g., categorization, working memory).

Barbara did her MSc in Cognitive Science at Ecole Normale Supérieure, Paris, France. She investigated how children’s phonological knowledge affects word learning under the mentorship of Dr Thierry Nazzi, CNRS.


Barbara leads a year two module: Social and Cognitive Development. She also teaches in a final year optional module looking at cognition from comparative and developmental perspectives: Higher Cognitive Functions.

Postgraduate supervision

Barbara is keen to hear from interested early career researchers. Please send her an email with your CV and a brief overview of your research interests.

Postdoctoral researchers: Barbara is looking for postdoctoral researchers interested in interdisciplinary research (cognitive development, neuroscience, computational modeling, AI) and developing new research methods. She can advise and assist with obtaining funding. Please contact her to discuss further.

PhD students: Barbara is currently accepting new PhD students. She is keen to discuss research potential research topics and funding opportunities. For further information regarding the PhD application process see the 'how to apply' section of the Psychology PhD programme. Please contact her to discuss further.


Barbara is fascinated by powerful learning abilities of infants and young children. To understand the building blocks of human learning, she studies how infants and young children acquire new concepts and develop new skills, and how these processes are implemented in the developing brain. 

She uses infant- and child-friendly neuroimaging techniques (e.g., EEG, OPM-MEG, fNIRS), eye tracking, and behavioral experiments.

Her long-term goal is to contribute to improving education by translating the insights from experimental work into policy and educational practice. 

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Recent publications


Haman, E, Łuniewska, M & Pomiechowska, B 2015, Designing cross-linguistic lexical tasks (CLTs) for bilingual preschool children. Assessing Multilingual Children: Disentangling Bilingualism From Language Impairment.


Tatone, D, Schlingloff-Nemecz, L & Pomiechowska, B 2023, 'Infants do not use payoff information to infer individual goals in joint-action events', Cognitive Development, vol. 66, 101329. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cogdev.2023.101329

Pomiechowska, B & Csibra, G 2022, 'Nonverbal Action Interpretation Guides Novel Word Disambiguation in 12-Month-Olds', Open Mind, vol. 6, pp. 51–76. https://doi.org/10.1162/opmi_a_00055

Pomiechowska, B & Gliga, T 2021, 'Nonverbal category knowledge limits the amount of information encoded in object representations: EEG evidence from 12-month-old infants', Royal Society Open Science, vol. 8, no. 3, 200782. https://doi.org/10.1098/rsos.200782

Pomiechowska, B, Brody, G, Csibra, G & Gliga, T 2021, 'Twelve-month-olds disambiguate new words using mutual-exclusivity inferences', Cognition, vol. 213, 104691. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cognition.2021.104691

Pomiechowska, B & Gliga, T 2019, 'Lexical Acquisition Through Category Matching: 12-Month-Old Infants Associate Words to Visual Categories', Psychological Science. https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797618817506

Torok, G, Csibra, G, Sebanz, N & Pomiechowska, B 2019, 'Rationality in Joint Action: Maximizing Coefficiency in Coordination', Psychological Science. https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797619842550

Pomiechowska, B & Csibra, G 2017, 'Motor activation during action perception depends on action interpretation', Neuropsychologia. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2017.01.032

Łuniewska, M, Haman, E, Armon-Lotem, S, Etenkowski, B, Southwood, F, Anđelković, D, Blom, E, Boerma, T, Chiat, S, de Abreu, PE, Gagarina, N, Gavarró, A, Håkansson, G, Hickey, T, de López, KJ, Marinis, T, Popović, M, Thordardottir, E, Blažienė, A, Sánchez, MC, Dabašinskienė, I, Ege, P, Ehret, I-A, Fritsche, N-A, Gatt, D, Janssen, B, Kambanaros, M, Kapalková, S, Kronqvist, B, Kunnari, S, Levorato, C, Nenonen, O, Fhlannchadha, SN, O’Toole, C, Polišenská, K, Pomiechowska, B, Ringblom, N, Rinker, T, Roch, M, Savić, M, Slančová, D, Tsimpli, IM & Ünal-Logacev, Ö 2016, 'Ratings of age of acquisition of 299 words across 25 languages: Is there a cross-linguistic order of words?', Behavior Research Methods. https://doi.org/10.3758/s13428-015-0636-6

Conference article

Pomiechowska, B, Tatone, D, Mészégető, D, Revencu, B & Csibra, G 2022, 'Children, but not adults, prioritize relational over dispositional interpretations of dominance interactions', Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society, vol. 44, pp. 3296-3302. <https://escholarship.org/uc/item/8128m2vg>

Pomiechowska, B & Csibra, G 2022, 'Infants infer motor competence from differences in agent-specific relative action costs', Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society, vol. 44, pp. 3339-3345. <https://escholarship.org/uc/item/78d7b57d>

Conference contribution

Schlingloff-Nemecz, L, Tatone, D, Pomiechowska, B & Csibra, G 2020, Do infants think that agents choose what’s best? in Proceedings of the 42nd Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.

Pomiechowska, B & Csibra, G 2020, Ten-month-olds infer relative costs of different goal-directed actions. in Proceedings of the 42nd Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.

View all publications in research portal