Dr. Birch received multiple award for her work as a health scientist, teacher and researcher. She cumulate years of cognitive science research in order to foster communication and enhance health and well-being amongst our communities.
She completed her Ph.D. in Psychology from Yale University in 2004 where she specialized in cognitive and developmental science. Her Ph.D. research received the American Psychological Association (APA) Dissertation Award for developmental science in 2004. She is currently Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of British Columbia where she directs a Developmental Science Research Lab.
Her research examines children’s and adults’ social perspective-taking (i.e. the ability to take other people’s perspective and make inferences about their knowledge, intentions, and beliefs).
Her research assesses the interdisciplinary impact of social cognition biases. For example, she highlights the widespread impact of cognitive biases in corporate settings, medical contexts, legal arenas, and in educational and family contexts.
Her consulting experiences include generating research-based solutions for organizations (as well as individuals and small groups) to minimize bias and miscommunication and enhance group cohesion and productivity. She also provides research-backed strategies to improve the clarity, impact and accessibility of communication (including written and oral communication skills as well as media content).
Dr. Birch has recently been examining the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the health and wellness of parents and children and is especially passionate about using her research insights to promote health and wellness.
Dr. Birch’s research has received awards from both the Natural and Social Sciences divisions of the Federal Government (NSERC and SSHRC). She also received an Early Career Award from the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Interdisciplinary studies and was honored with the Robert E. Knox Teaching Award for her teaching excellence.