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Teodora Gliga

Programme Leader, Infant Siblings Study

Centre for Brain and Cognitive Development
School of Psychology, Birkbeck College
Malet Street, London WC1E 7HX
Phone: +44 (0)20 7631 6322
Email: t.gliga at bbk dot ac dot uk


Research interests

  • How general learning mechanisms have been adapted for social interaction and social learning, and why this sometimes fails. My work on the developmental origin of Autism and ADHD is part of BASIS
    NEW: The 2nd Neurocuriosity workshop was great fun, see talks and presentations here
  • Skin contact and caressing improve infant's well-being and later academic achievement. The mechanisms are largely unknown. We investigate the effects "social touch" has on attention and learning (with Sarah Lloyd-Fox).
  • NEW: Special Issue on Social Touch: A new vista for developmental cognitive neuroscience? in Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience, deadline for submissions 30th of january 2016
  • How acquiring language affects the way we perceive and remember the world (with Barbara Pomiechowska)


Curriculum vitae

Editor, Medecine & Enfance, Paris, 2008-2013

Intern, British Psychological Society Parliamentary Office, 2009 pdf

PhD Cognitive Sciences, Cognitive Neuroimaging Unit, Paris, 2006

BA, Molecular Biology and Physiology, Ecole Normale Superieure, Lyon



Laura Pirazzoli, PhD candidate, works social touch

Elena Serena Piccardi, PhD candidate, works on information sampling in autism/adhd

Viktoria Csink, PhD candidate, works on surprise-led learning


Former students

Katarina Begus (now at CEU, Budapest)

Barbara Pomiechowska (now at CEU, Budapest)

Manuela Barona (now at UCL)

Noreen Gilhooly (now at Pearson)

Carina deKlerk


Neuroscience in the playground: bringing together psychology, education and technology to investigate human curiosity. British Academy Rising Star Engagement Award (£14300, 2016-2017, PI)

Understanding the role social touch plays in cognitive development. BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grant (£9800, 2014-2015, PI)

Investigating gender differences in cognitive and brain development to unveil protective factors in ASD,  TRIGGER grant (£21000, 2014-2016; co-applicant; PI Helen Lawton Smith)


Publications (PDFs)


Shepherd, E., Bosiljka, M., Pasco, G., Jones, EJH, Gliga, T., Happe, F., Johnson, M. & Charman, T. Mid-Childhood Outcomes of Infant Siblings at Familial High- Risk of Autism Spectrum Disorder. Autism Research pdf

Begus, K, Gliga, T, & Soutgate, V.  Infant’s social preferences are associated with an expectation of information. PNAS pdf

Cheung, C., Bedford, R, Charman, T., Johnson, M.H., & Gliga., T. Superior visual search in infants with later ASD diagnosis. Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience pdf

Bedford, R., Jones, E.J.H., Johnson, M.H., Charman, T., Pickles, A., Gliga, T (in press).  Sex differences in the association between infant markers and later autistic traits. Molecular Autism pdf

Gliga, T., Smith T., Gilhooly N., Charman T. & Johnson M.H. (in press) Early visual foraging in relationship to familial risk for autism and hyperactivity/inattention: A preliminary study. Journal of Attention Disorders pdf


Gliga, T., Bedford, R., Charman, T.,  Johnson, M & The BASIS Team (2015) Enhanced visual search in infancy predicts emerging autism symptoms. Current Biology, 25(13), 1727-1730 pdf

Begus, K., Southgate, V. & Gliga, T. (2015) Neural mechanisms of infant learning: Differences in frontal theta activity during object exploration modulate subsequent object recognition. Biology Letters pdf

Green J., Charman T., Pickles A., Wan MW., Elsabbagh M., Slonims V., Taylor C., McNally J., Booth R., Gliga T., Jones EJH., Harrop C., Bedford R., Johnson MH. and the BASIS Team (accepted) Parent-mediated intervention for infants at high-risk for autism: randomised clinical trial. Lancet Psychiatry pdf

Wass, S., Jones, E., Gliga, T., Smith T. and The BASIS Team (accepted). Shorter spontaneous fixation durations in infants at risk and with later emerging autism. Nature Science Reports pdf

Gliga, T., Jones, E.J. & Johnson, M.H. (in press). Low noise in autism, cause or consequence? Autism

Johnson, M.H., Jones, E. & Gliga, T. (2015). Brain adaptation and alternative developmental trajectories. Development & Psychopathology, 27, 425-442 pdf

Johnson, M.H., Gliga, T., Jones, E.J.H & Charman, T. (in press). Annual Research Review: Infant development, autism, and ADHD – early pathways to emerging disorders. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry pdf


Begus K., Gliga, T. & Southgate V. (2014). Infants learn what they choose to learn. PLOS One pdf

Gliga, T., Jones, E.J.H, Bedford, R., Charman, T., Johnson, M.H. (2014) From early markers to neuro-develpmental mechanisms of autism. Developmental Review, 34(3), 189-207 pdf

Wu, R., Swan, K.,  Kirkham, N., Gliga, T. (2014) Ostensive signals support learning from novel attention cues during infancy. Frontiers in Psychology. pdf

Gliga, T and Johnson M.H. (2014) Infant predictors of autism spectrum disorders.  Cutting Edge Psychiatry in Practice

deKlerk, C., Gliga, T. & the BASIS team. (2014). Face engagement during infancy predicts later face recognition ability in younger siblings of children with autism. Developmental Science pdf

Jones, E., Gliga T, Charman T & Johnson, M. (2014). Developmental pathways to autism: a review of prospective studies of infants at-risk. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 39, 1-33 pdf

Bedford, R., Pickles, A., Gliga, T., Elsabbagh, M., Charman, T., Johnson, M. H. and The BASIS Team (2014). Additive effects of social and non-social attention during infancy relate to later Autism Spectrum Disorder. Developmental Science, 17(4), 612-620 pdf

Gliga, T., Senju, A., Pettinato, M., Charman, T., Johnson, M. & the BASIS Team (2014). Spontaneous Belief Attribution in Younger Siblings of Children on the Autism Spectrum. Developmental Psychology, 50(3), 903-913 pdf

Hudry, K., Chandler, S., Bedford, R., Pasco, G., Gliga, T., Elsabbagh, M., Johnson M., Charman T. & the BASIS team (2014). Early language profiles in infants at high-risk for autism spectrum disorders. JADD, 44(1), 154-167


Elsabbagh M., Gliga, T., Hudry K., Charman T., and Johnson M. (2013). The development of face orienting mechanisms in infants at-risk for autism. Behavioral Brain Research, 251, 147–154 pdf

Bedford, R., Gliga, T., Frame K., Hudry K., Chandler S., Johnson M. H., Charman T. & the BASIS team (2013). Failure to learn from feed-back underlies word learning difficulties in children at-risk for autism. Journal of Child Language, 40 pdf


Bedford R., Elsabbagh M., Gliga T., Senju A. & the BASIS team (2012). Precursors to social and communication difficulties in infants at-risk for autism: gaze following and attentional engagement. Journal of Autism and Develomental Disorders, 42(10), 2208-2218 pdf

Gliga, T. & Southgate V. Prepared to learn about human body's goals and intentions. (2012) V. Slaughter & C. Brownell (Eds.) Early Development of Body Representations, Cambridge University Press pdf

Gliga, T., Elsabbagh M., Hudry K., Charman T, and Johnson M. (2012). Gaze following, gaze reading and word learning in children at-risk for autism. Child Development, 83(3), 926-938 pdf


Elsabbagh, M., Holmboe K., Gliga, T., Mercure E., Hudry K., Charman, T., Baron-Cohen S., Bolton P., Johnson M.H. (2011) Social and attention factors during infancy and the later emergence of autism characteristics. Progress in Brain Research.

Gliga, T. & Csibra, G. (2010). Verbal labels modulate perceptual object processing in one-year-old infants. Journal of Cognitive Neurosciences pdf


Gliga, T., Elsabbagh, M., Andravizou, A. & Johnson, M. (2009) Faces attract infants' attention in complex displays. Infancy, 14(5), 550-562 pdf

Gliga, T., Volein A. & Csibra, G. (2009). One-year-old infants appreciate the referential nature of deictic gestures and words. Psychological Science, 20(3) pdf

Grossmann, T., Gliga, T., Mareschal, D. & Johnson, M. (2009). The neural basis of perceptual category learning in human infants. Journal of Cognitive Neurosciences, 21(12), 2276-2286 pdf

Bristow, D., Dehaene-Lambertz, G., Mattout, J., Soares, C., Gliga, T., Baillet, S. & Mangin, F. (2009). How the infant brain matches the face it sees with the voice it hears. Journal of Cognitive Neurosciences, 21(5), 905-921 pdf


Gliga, T., Mareschal, D. (2008). What can neuroimaging tell us about the early development of visual categories? Brain, Cognition & Behavior pdf

Gliga, T., Mareschal, D. & Johnson, M.H. (2008). Ten-months-olds’ selective use of visual dimensions in category learning. Infant Behaviour and Development, 31(2), 287-293 pdf


Gliga, T. & Csibra, G. (2007) Seeing the face through the eyes: A developmental perspective on face expertise. Progress in Brain Research, 164, 323-339 pdf

Gliga, T., Dehaene-Lambertz, G. (2007). Development of a view-invariant representation of the human head. Cognition (2)  pdf

Gliga, T., Dehaene-Lambertz, G. (2006). Structural encoding of body and face in human infants and adults. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. 17(8): 1328-40. pdf

Dehaene-Lambertz, G., Gliga, T. (2004). Common neural basis for phoneme processing in infants and adults. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. 16(8): 1375-87. Review.


General public

Gliga, T. and Johnson M.H. (2014) Infant predictors of autism spectrum disorders.  Cutting Edge Psychiatry in Practice

Gliga, T. (2012) The Social Brain. In Oates, J., Johnson, M. & Karmiloff- Smith, A. Early Childhood in Focus - Developing Brains, The Open University. pdf

Gliga, T. (2012). Comprendre l'autisme - la seule voie vers son depassionement. Medecine & Enfance (in french). pdf


Submitted and in preparation

Barona M., Krisnan S., Karmiloff-Smith A., & Gliga T.. (submitted/rejected/awaiting interested student) Producing new words helps children remember them.

Pomiechowska, B., & Gliga, T. (in preparation) Conceptual knowledge modulates object memory in infancy.