Lead


Lay summary
The acquisition of episodic memory, the memory for events that happen in a unique spatiotemporal context, is dependent on the hippocampal formation in adult humans. Still, our understanding of the specific neural circuits underlying episodic memory, and our knowledge of how these systems develop, is very much incomplete. For instance, the emergence of allocentric spatial relational memory, a fundamental component of episodic memory, has not been characterized. Here, I propose to investigate the development of allocentric spatial relational memory in young (2-6-year-old) children. Specifically, I will characterize the ability of children to use spatial and non-spatial relational information to navigate in a real-world open-field environment. My findings will thus 1) allow me to infer the relative maturity of different cognitive functions supported by the hippocampus, and 2) further our understanding of the normal development of spatial relational memory, a fundamental component of human episodic memory.