Ph.D. Candidate, Psychology

Previous Degrees: M.A., Carleton University; B.A., St. Thomas University

Research Interests:
My research focuses on preschool children’s understanding of representations.  Recently, I have been investigating cognitive skills that facilitate children’s understanding of how something stands for something else (e.g., how a wavy blue line on a map can represent a river).  My research provides information about what aspects of representations cause difficulties for children who lack understanding, and will hopefully direct future research which will aim to establish methods for assisting for those children.

If you and your child would like to participate in Andrea’s research, please click here for more info.

Thesis Title: Conveying symbolic relations: Children’s ability to evaluate and create informative legends.

Research Contributions:

Journal Articles:

Astle, A., Kamawar, D., Vendetti, C., Podjarny, G. (2013). When This Means That: The Role of Working Memory and Inhibitory Control in Children’s Understanding of Representations. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 116, 169-185.

Vendetti, C., Kamawar, D., Podjarny, G., & Astle, A. (2013). The Black/White Stroop: A better way to measure Inhibitory Control in preschoolers. Manuscript submitted for publication.

Presentations:

Astle, A., Keighley, K., & Kamawar, D. (2014, May). Conveying symbolic relations: Preschoolers’ ability to create informative legends. Poster presented at Development 2014: A Canadian Conference on Developmental Psychology, Ottawa, Ontario.

Podjarny, G., Kamawar, D., Vendetti, C., Andrews, K., & Astle, A. (2014, May). Factors affecting preschoolers’ cognitive flexibility performance. In G. Podjarny (Chair), Current Issues in Cognitive Flexibility Development During Childhood. Symposium conducted at the meeting of Development 2014: A Canadian Conference on Developmental Psychology, Ottawa, Canada.

Podjarny, G., Andrews, K., Kamawar, D., Vendetti, C., & Astle, A. (2014, May). Cognitive flexibility development and individual differences in preschoolers. Paper presented at the 44th Annual Meeting of the Jean Piaget Society, San Francisco, CA.

Astle, A., Vendetti, C., Bradley, C., & Kamawar, D. (2013, October). Children’s Evaluations of Effective and Ineffective Symbol Systems. Poster to be presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Cognitive Development Society, Memphis, Tennessee.

Podjarny, G., Andrews, K., Vendetti, C., Astle, A., & Kamawar, D. (2013, June). The Multidimensional Card Selection task: A new way to measure cognitive flexibility in preschoolers. Poster presented at the 43rd Annual Meeting of The Jean Piaget Society, Chicago, Illinois.

Astle, A., Connolly, K., Kamawar, D., Vendetti, C., Smygwaty, S., & Chowdhury, S. (2013, April). Not Losing all of Your Marbles: Experience and Planning Help Children Save. Poster presented at the Biennial Meeting of The Society for Research in Child Development, Seattle, Washington.

Vendetti, C., Astle, A., Gomes, J., & Kamawar, D. (2013, April). So Much for Good Intentions: Evidence From Deviant and Typical Causal Chains That 5-year-olds Judge Negative, but not Positive, Acts as Intentional. Poster presented at the Biennial Meeting of The Society for Research in Child Development, Seattle, Washington.

Podjarny, G., Kamawar, D., Vendetti, C., & Astle, A. (2013, April). Preschoolers’ Performance on a new Matrix Completion Task. Poster presented at the Biennial Meeting of The Society for Research in Child Development, Seattle, Washington.

Vendetti, C., Astle, A., & Kamawar, D. (2012, July) Apparently It’s Not the Thought That Counts: Preschoolers’ Consideration of Intention and Outcome when Making Moral Judgments and Assigning Punishment. Poster presented at the Biennial Meeting of the International Society for the Study of Behavioural Development.

Singh, R., Wexler, K., Astle, A., Kamawar, D., & Fox, D. (2012, April). Disjunction, Acquisition, and the Theory of Scalar Implicature. Talk given for the Context Dependence in Language and Communication Workshop Series at Stanford University, California.

Astle, A., Kamawar, D., & Singh, R. (2012, March). Disjunction, Acquisition, and the Theory of Scalar Implicature. Talk given for the Institute of Cognitive Science Colloquium Series, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario.  

Astle, A., Vendetti, C., Kamawar, D., Bradley, C., & Gomes, J. (2011, October). Orange dots tell you where green things are? The role of executive functions in understanding symbol-referent relations. Poster presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Cognitive Development Society, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Presenting author).

Astle, A., Vendetti, C., Podjarny, G., & Kamawar, D. (2010, May). When X doesn’t mark the spot: Children’s understanding of cartographic symbols in maps. Poster presented at Development 2010, Ottawa, Ontario. (Presenting author).

Vendetti, C., Kamawar, D., Podjarny, G., & Astle, A. (2009, April). Attentional inertia: Accounting for young children’s difficulty on the dimensional change card sort. Poster presented at the Biennial Meeting of The Society for Research in Child Development, Denver, Colorado.

Podjarny, G., Kamawar, D., Vendetti, C., & Astle, A. (2009, April).  Flexible Item Selection Task (FIST) and executive functions in preschoolers. Poster presented at the Biennial Meeting of The Society for Research in Child Development, Denver, Colorado.

Astle, A., Vendetti, C., Jansman, E., Podjarny, G., & Kamawar, D. (2009, October). When X doesn’t mark the spot: Children’s understanding of the representational nature of maps. Poster presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Cognitive Development Society, San Antonio, Texas. (Presenting author).