Head of Department; Professor of Neurodevelopmental Disorders
+44 (0)20 7919 7886
+44 (0)20 7919 7873
Whitehead Building, Department of Psychology
Goldsmiths, University of London,
New Cross, SE14 6NW
Neurodevelopmental disorders, developmental co-ordination disorder, autism spectrum disorder, the relationship between social and motor development in typical and atypical populations, the role of alexithymia in neurodevelopmental disorders, mental health in adults with neurodevelopmental disorders, employment experiences of adults with neurodevelopmental disorders and those caring for a child with a neurodevelopmental disorder
BSc PhD CPsychol
Much of my research has been funded through small grants from a variety of organisations as well as larger grants and through unfunded work in collaboration with a range of individuals and organisations including The British Academy, The Royal Society, ESRC, The Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities, Prospects Employment Agency, The Wellcome Trust and the Experimental Psychology Society. I have been working with the Progress Educational Trust on the Spectrum of Opinion project (funded by The Wellcome Trust; see http://www.progress.org.uk/page_58324.asp) in which we have developed materials aimed at raising awareness of issues relating to genes, autism and psychological spectrum disorders (see http://www.progress.org.uk/page_58594.asp). We are also working with the BASIS team (http://www.basisnetwork.org/)to investigate the relationships between early motor development and social outcomes. I am involved in part of the work funded by a large grant awarded by the European Research Council to Dr. Andy Bremner (http://www.gold.ac.uk/psychology/staff/bremner/), and I am working with the Dr Antonia Hamilton's lab (http://www.antoniahamilton.com/) at the University of Nottingham on a project investigating the underlying cognitive causes of autism and dyspraxia.
Sample grants awarded:
Farran, E., Karmiloff-Smith, A. & Hill, E.L. Motor development and navigation in ADHD. The Waterloo Foundation (2014-2015).
Hill, E.L. The role of motor abilities in the development of typical and atypical social behaviour. The Leverhulme Trust (2013-2016).
Crane, L., Goddard, L. Henry, L. & Hill, E.L. Experiences of receiving and communicating a diagnosis of autism: Perspectives of adults, parents and practitioners. The British Academy (2012-2013).
Henry, L., Leonard, H.C. & Hill, E.L. Executive functioning in children with Developmental Coordination Disorder. The Waterloo Foundation (2012-2014).
Hamilton, A. & Hill, E.L. Autism and dyspraxia: A common cognitive cause? The Waterloo Foundation (2011-2013).
Kirby, A. & Hill, E.L. Employment in adults with Developmental Coordination Disorder. The Waterloo Foundation (2011-2012).
Hill, E.L. The impact of motor development on social and educational outcomes in early childhood: a pilot study. The Nuffield Foundation (2011).
Hill, E.L. Evaluating the relationship between the development of motor skills and social behaviour: A prospective study. The British Academy (2010-2011).
Hill, E.L. DCD as a translational impairment. The Experimental Psychology Society (2009-2010).
Hill, E.L. The Autism & Employment Study. The Wellcome Trust (2007).
Custance, D., Heaton, P. & Hill, E.L. Object-directed motor imitation in children with autism. ESRC (2007).
Hill, E.L. & Bremner, A. Cross-modal representations of visual/tactual space in typical children and children with developmental coordination disorder. The British Academy (2006–2007).
Hill, E.L. & Bremner, A. Cross-modal representations of visual/tactual space in typical children and children with developmental coordination disorder. University of London, Central Research Fund (2006–2007).
Hill, E.L. Defining the pattern of cognitive function and dysfunction in neurodevelopmental disorders Royal Society Research Grant (2004–2005).
I am a member of the committee of ISR-DCD-UK (http://psych.brookes.ac.uk/isrdcd/) and a founding member of Movement Matters UK (http://www.movementmattersuk.org/), an umbrella organisation involved in informing policy makers, producing dissemination materials and other issues relating to those with movement disorders in the UK. With Movement Matters, I have been involved in developing European Guidelines for clinical/educational issues relating to the diagnosis, assessment and remediation of developmental coordination disorder (http://www.eacd.org/publications.php) to the UK context, a consensus process involving a wide range of professions. I am also involved in providing guidance for adults with DCD and those supporting them.
You can listen to / watch discussion of some of our recent work, including broader issues relating to developmental coordination disorder (DCD) or autism spectrum disorder (ASD) by clicking on the links below:
Podcast Academy interview by Adam Smith focusing on a mini-intervention study using the Wii with children with movement difficulties: http://podacademy.org/podcasts/can-nintendo-wii-help-children-with-coordination-difficulties/
Podcast Academy interview by Adam Smith focusing on the dilemmas involved in conducting intervention studies: http://podacademy.org/2013/uncategorized/are-researchers-who-take-corporate-funding-selling-out/
Reuters video piece focusing on the use of the Wii Fit to support children with DCD:
Autism Employment event at the RSA:
My research concerns cognitive dysfunction across and within neurodevelopmental disorders. Overall, my research has both theoretical and applied (educational and clinical) aims and benefits. My work falls into the following strands:
Interested in participating in my research?
We have lots of studies running at the moment!
The 'Moving People' study
Motor skills support the way we interact with the environment and those around us. Children with developmental coordination disorder (DCD) and those with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) present with difficulties in motor skill or social interaction, to varying degrees. To fully investigate the relationship between motor and social abilities, we are seeking children aged between 7-10 years with a diagnosis of DCD or ASD to take part in this study. We have developed new innovative eye-tracking measures, which address action perception and understanding, and also social processing scenarios. These measures support the more standardised assessments. We hope you would agree, this is a great way to further our understanding of these two neurodevelopmental disorders and to raise awareness of the relationship between motor and social development. Even better, children love the eye-tracking games! Interested in taking part? For further information, please contact email@example.com or DCDproject@gold.ac.uk.
The Movers & Shakers Study
Researchers in my lab are investigating the role on motor development of having an older sibling. We are looking for infants of 6 months and younger to take part in a study of motor development. Infants who have no older siblings or who have one older sibling who is 6 years or younger can take part. Parents will receive a diary in which they can keep track of their infant's motor milestones between the ages of 4 months and 18 months. At 18 months, we will organise a research visit to conduct a short motor assessment with your child. The diary has blank pages for comments and photos, and parents can keep the diary at the end of the study as a keepsake. Parents will also be asked to complete a few questionnaires during the study. This is a great way to keep a note of your child's development (see http://baby-brains.com/2013/09/24/time-really-flies/) and we'll provide plenty of support over the course of the study. If you are interested or know someone with an infant who would be interested, please contact Hanna Adeyinka on firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 7078 5484 to find out more details and to sign up.
The Body Sense Study
We are investigating how children learn to use different senses (such as vision and touch) to understand their own bodies, which is important for everyday environmental interactions. Children with DCD or Williams syndrome can take part. They will complete fun sensory, cognitive and motor tasks with us, and parents would complete several paper-based questionnaires. This project is funded by the European Research Council. For more information please email Joanne Camp at email@example.com.
Study of Teachers' Awareness of Neurodevelopmental Disorders
How much do teachers know about neurodevelopmental disorders? We are keen to hear from teachers who know even nothing about neurodevelopmental disorders as well as those who know a bit or a lot. Please take a few minutes to complete this short on-line survey. Responses will help us provide tailored information sources for teachers and other school-based workers.
Ongoing studies that we are recruiting for:
Expert opinion piece written for Autism Awareness Day 2014 on autism & employment. Read it here.
Content last modified: 01 May 2014
Goldsmiths, University of London, New Cross, London, SE14 6NW, UK
Telephone: + 44 (0)20 7919 7171
Goldsmiths has charitable status