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Dr Sinead Rocha-Thomas

Hi, I’m Sinead Rocha, and I’m a post-doctoral researcher on the BabyRhythm project.

My research has always considered rhythm from a musical perspective, and the big questions I’ve been interested in exploring include how we develop complex musical skills such as being able to synchronise our movements with rhythms that we hear, and why our species might be so particularly motivated for, and good at this task. For the past seven years I have been working with babies – I believe that studying development, and especially starting at the beginning, provides us with a unique insight, allowing us to tease apart the skills and experiences that build into the complicated behaviours that seem so simple and natural as adults.

My previous work has looked at how infants might perceive rhythm, using EEG sensor nets, and infants’ own ability to produce regular movement and adapt this to songs they hear, by measuring their movement and muscle activation. In the BabyRhythm project I’m very excited to be looking at spoken language and to see how these seemingly basic early rhythmic skills relate to later language development.

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