Centre for Clinical Brain Sciences

Dr Sue Fletcher-Watson

Dr Sue Fletcher-Watson is a Chancellor's Fellow in CCBS and the Patrick Wild Centre, who studies how children develop and learn.

Dr Sue Fletcher-Watson

Chancellor’s Fellow

  • Centre for Clinical Brain Sciences
  • Child Life & Health
  • Patrick Wild Centre for Research into Autism, Fragile X Syndrome & Intellectual Disabilities

Contact details

Research summary

I am interested in how children develop and learn, and in particular in cases where this follows an unusual trajectory.

First, I explore how we can characterise the early abilities and difficulties of babies who have either already experienced adversity (such as those born preterm) or who later go on to receive a specific diagnosis (such as autism).

Second, I ask how we can intervene to improve outcome for such babies and young children. My methods involve mostly direct observation and assessment including eye-tracking, and I also have an interest in technology, such as iPads, as an intervention route.

child playing on an iPAD

Research aims and areas of interest

  • Cognitive and behavioural approaches to understanding typical and atypical (social) development & consequent educational and therapeutic work
  • Applied research for autism in Psychology, Medicine, Informatics and Education
  • Autism social communication interventions, especially early years and/or technology-based, including rigorous outcome measurement for clinical trials
  • Infant cognition; eye-tracking as a measure of cognitive and social ability; studying long-term outcomes in infants born premature, and in other neonatal risk categories
  • Technology for learning; therapeutic and educational iPad app development; use of augmentative and alternative communication systems
  • Methodologies: randomised controlled trials; eye-movement recording; experimental group comparisons; focus groups; interviews; online surveys