Staff Directory

About Kerstin Meints

Dr. Kerstin Meints completed her PhD at Hamburg University within its Cognitive Science Doctoral programme in 1996. She then collaborated with Professors Kim Plunkett and Paul L. Harris in Oxford’s department of Experimental Psychology on a Leverhulme grant proposal from which her post-doctoral position arose. Within the project, she carried out a range of experiments on early word learning and categorisation in the Oxford Babylab. She is a member of Wolfson College, Oxford. Dr. Meints joined the University of Lincoln in 1999, opened the Lincoln Babylab the year after and has since established the lab as one of the world’s most advanced infant research labs. Recently, new software has been developed in the Lincoln Lab to facilitate Intermodal Preferential Looking, Listening, Habituation and Eye-tracking studies and to enable the combination of these studies in one user interface. The Lincoln Infant Lab programme package (2008) enables precise, fast and easy data collection and processing and more convenient data management. Next to this, an online vocabulary database has been set up and the first UK-CDI vocabulary database will be hosted from 2015 on the Lincoln webpages. Next to ongoing and externally-funded research in young children’s language learning and categorisation skills, Dr. Meints also researches colour and face perception, the development of trust and also works on comparative research - together with colleagues a Dog Preferential Looking Lab was set up on the Riseholme campus so children and dogs can be tested with the same methods on a range of topics. She also works on applied research in human-animal interaction, especially dog bite prevention. She has recently been awarded a prestigious NIH research project on teaching children dog signalling and is part of the international project on dog bite prevention “The Blue Dog”. She has been responsible for helping to create the final version of the Blue Dog DVD and booklet and also for the first assessment of the Blue Dog programme. Dr. Meints is a Professor in Psychology.

Department Responsibilities

Director of Lincoln Infant and Child Development Lab Teaching, supervision and research with undergraduate, Masters and PhD students. PhD supervisor for 4 PhD students Module coordinator for 1. Research methods in Developmental Psychology (Developmental Psychology Masters) 2. Theories and Mechanisms in Developmental Psychology (Developmental Psychology Masters) Committees and other administrative roles: 1. College Senior Staff Committee for Research: a) working group on Impact and b) working group on Quality 2. ADA / PRP reviewer 3. Autism Research and Innovation Centre (ARIC) member 4. WISE / Eleanor Glanville Centre membership 5. Mentor in Psychology 8. Mentor in University-wide mentoring programme External project grant administration: 1. Management and administration of MARS grant for longitudinal project animal-assisted intervention 2015-2018 2. Management and administration of ESRC grant External roles: 1. MARS Consortium on Human-Animal Interaction 2. Suffrage Women in Science network member

Subject Specialism

Developmental Psychology, Psycholinguistics, Injury Prevention, Human-Animal Interaction, Comparative Cognition, Animal-assisted Interventions


  • PhD in Linguistics / Psycholinguistics within Doctoral Programme for Cognitive Science — University of Hamburg, Germany, 1997
  • MA in English Linguistics and Russian Literature — University of Hamburg, Germany, 1992


  • Suffrage Science Award for Women in Science — Medical Research Council (MRC) London Institute of Medical Sciences,
  • Award of university-wide competitive sabbatical — University of Lincoln,
  • Won University-wide competition for a 3-year scholarship to employ PhD student from Canada — University of Lincoln,
  • Travel Awards (various) — British Academy travel grant, Oxford University,
  • Doctoral Scholarship for 3 years in Cognitive Science Graduate Programme — German Research Foundation,


Infant Lab Package - software distribution and management; UK-CDI electronic database; Blue Dog bite prevention programme - assessment, dissemination and distribution; External Examiner; Reviewer for Funding Bodies and peer-reviewed journals

Orcid ID


Research Interests

  • Developmental Psychology

  • Human-Animal Interaction

  • Injury Prevention

  • Psycholinguistics

Research Groups Memberships

Research Projects

  • “Investigating the effects of animal-assisted interventions on children—what works?” — awarded £205114 by MARS/Waltham in 2015
  • “UK standardisation of Communicative Development Inventory”. — awarded £357925 by ESRC 3-year project grant in 2012
  • “Teaching children and parents dog signalling” — awarded £70000 by National Institute of Health, USA in 2012
  • “Longitudinal Assessment of Blue Dog bite prevention programme” — University of Lincoln and Blue Dog Trust in 2010
  • “Children’s abilities to detect dog signalling” — awarded £3000 by University of Lincoln in 2010
  • “Why do children mistake aggressive dogs’ faces for friendly ones? — awarded £2000 by Blue Dog Trust in 2009
  • “Comparative investigation on the development of trust in children, dogs and monkeys (macaques)” — University of Lincoln in 2009
  • “Pronoun acquisition via Eye-tracking and IPL” — CERD in 2009
  • NordForsk Nordic Infrastructure Project — Nordforsk, NUST, Norway in 2008
  • Facial Proximity study — awarded £8000 by Waltham Foundation in 2008
  • ‘Why do young children get bitten in the face?” — awarded £6000 by Blue Dog Trust in 2008
  • University of Oxford remuneration - support for experimental software generation. — awarded £1000 by University of Oxford in 2007
  • Left gaze bias project — awarded £5000 by University of Lincoln in 2007
  • Assessment Blue Dog project — awarded £20137 by FECAVA, ESVCE, DogsTrust, Companion Animal Behaviour Therapy Study Group, Wylie Vet. Centre, Gr. Gen in 2005

Research in the Lincoln Repository

Professional Affiliations

  • BPS (British Psychological Association) — CPsychol AFBPsS
  • International Association for the Study of Child Language (IASCL) — Member
  • International Society for Anthrozoology (ISAZ) — Member
  • International Association of Human Animal Interaction Organizations (IAHAIO) — Member
  • Cognitive Linguistics Association UK — Member
  • International Cognitive Linguistics Association (ICLA) — Member
  • International Society for Infant Studies (ISIS) — Member
  • Society for research in CHild Development (SRCD) — Member