Pamela Banta Lavenex, Associate Professor

Pamela Banta Lavenex has been an Associate Professor in Psychology at the Swiss Distance University Institute since 2020.

Pamela Banta Lavenex has an extensive and varied academic background. She has a PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Arizona in the United States, where her research focused on investigating the neurobiological bases of cognitive abilities in budgerigars, utilizing cognitive neuroscience and comparative psychology techniques. She completed post-doctoral research at the MIND Institute (Medical Investigation of Neurodevelopmental Disorders) at the University of California in Davis, where she studied the development of memory and the hippocampus in monkeys.

Since coming to Switzerland, she has been pursuing a line of research supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation (which supports scientific research) on the functional development of memory throughout life, in particular in typically-developing children and in individuals with atypical development, such as Down syndrome (Trisomy 21) or Williams syndrome. She works closely together with Professor Pierre Lavenex and the members of the Laboratory of Brain and Cognitive Development (LABCD) at the Institute of Psychology of the University of Lausanne (UNIL).

Key research topics

  • The development and functioning of different memory systems throughout life
  • Memory systems in individuals with Down or Williams syndrome
  • The relation between cerebral activity (EEG) and cognitive abilities
  • The impact of intermodal training on cognition in people with learning disabilities
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