The D.E.N. Lab at the University of Iowa, under the direction of Dr. Ece Demir-Lira, is currently seeking parents and their children to participate in remote research opportunities. The success of our research depends largely upon the participation of families like yours. If you have a young child, you may be eligible to participate in one of our research projects. Your family's involvement will help us to gain valuable insight into how children develop. 

We try our best to make our study serious for science but still fun for families. Your child will go on an on-going adventure with the DEN Pack’s close friend Flynn the fox! Flynn the fox needs help finding his friends on Winterberry Road, the more activities your child completes the farther Flynn the fox moves down Winterberry Road and the closer he comes to finding all of his friends! Your child will receive some gifts from our DEN Pack along the way and your family will also receive monetary compensation for completing the study!

All of our current research is occurring remotely. If you have a young child and are interested in participating, please see the details of each study below.


Online Preterm Birth Project

Are you curious about how your child learns? Researchers in the Development, Experience, and Neurocognition Lab in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences invite families to participate in an online study of preterm birth and neurodevelopment. You can now contribute to science by playing our fun studies from the comfort of home. All you need is a computer and a webcam to participate, and you can do so at any time.

We are looking for families with:

  • At least one child between the ages of 3-5 years (term or preterm) 

The child must: 

  • Be a native speaker of English 
  • Have normal or corrected-to-normal vision and hearing 
  • Have no physical limitations that would prevent them from doing paper/pencil tasks 
  • Have no history of a genetic syndrome, birth defect, or intellectual and developmental disability

Children taking stimulant medication must do a 24-48 hour wash-out prior to the visit. Participation requires the child and the parent who is the primary caregiver to meet with members of our research team via Zoom or Adobe Connect for four 30-minutes sessions. The primary caregiver will complete questionnaires about their child. Children will complete neurocognitive testing. Parents and children may provide a saliva sample for future DNA analyses. Compensation and results from neurocognitive testing are provided. 

If interested, please go to to complete eligibility screening.

Online Math Interactions and Neurocognition Project

Parents and children are invited to an online research study at the Development, Experience and Neurocognition (DEN) Lab in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Iowa.  To participate, your child must:

  • Be 4 to 6 years-old
  • Be fluent in written and spoken English
  • Have normal or corrected-to-normal vision 
  • Have normal hearing 

If you choose to participate, the study involves one online session via Zoom. The online session will last 1-hour. During the online session, children will be asked to complete various cognitive tasks one on one with a member of our team. Parents will complete questionnaires about themselves and their child. Finally, parents and children will be observed as they play together. Compensation is provided.

If interested, please complete this online survey to see if you are eligible for this particular study.

If you have questions or would like more information, please contact the DEN Lab by email ( or phone (319-467-0591). We look forward to hearing from you!

Contact us!

SLP room 201
308 Iowa Avenue
Iowa City, IA 52242
Phone: 319-467-0591