How do families care for ill, elderly family members who can no longer take care of themselves? What role do early family characteristics play in determining how a child will cope with the demands of adulthood? What are the processes and elements that enable people to be healthy, competent, productive, and independent members of society?
These are just some of the questions and issues they're considering at Concordia University's Centre for Research in Human Development. First created in 1981, the centre encourages and supports research that focuses on patterns of human social, emotional, and cognitive functioning. The centre's research programs include basic studies to better understand the developmental processes in both normal and atypical populations, as well as research on applied issues relating to social problems. It also promotes new research methodologies for studying human development in the context of social environments.
Now with infrastructure support from the CFI and its partners, the centre is continuing its work armed with the equipment it needs: an integrated network of lab-based micro-computers and accompanying software for data entry, processing, and communications; and an upgrade of video recording, editing, and processing equipment used in lab-based behavioural observation. The equipment improves the centre's capacity for data collection, coding, processing, and the management and statistical analysis of data. It allows the centre's researchers to have direct access to data banks and archives located at other research institutes and government centres, and enables the centre to better communicate the results of its research with other researchers and policy-making agencies.
With the infrastructure in place, the centre is helping to train researchers in the educational, health, and social service areas concerned with helping individuals attain and maintain competent adult functioning and health. It's also allowing the CRDH to link and collaborate with researchers and practitioners in a variety of disciplines, both nationally and internationally.