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On this page, you will find academic publications associated with our lab. For shorter, less technical summaries of our research, please visit our Teacher and Parent Information page.

The lab advocates for open and transparent science. Where possible we publish open access articles that are available to all. If you cannot access an article that you would like to read, please check Research Gate ( or email us at 

You can also visit our Open Science Framework page (OSF | Katie Gilligan-Lee) to access data sets, tasks and other measures associated with our research. 


  1. Mc Dougal, E., Silverstein, P., Treleavan, O., Jerrom, L., Gilligan-Lee, K.A., Gilmore, C., & Farran, E.K (2024). Assessing the impact of LEGO® construction training on spatial and mathematical skills. Developmental Science, e13432.

  2. McDougal, E., Gilligan-Lee, K. A., Gilmore, C., & Farran, E. K. (2024). Construction play frequency and relations with spatial ability and mathematics performance. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 42, 72–77.

  3. Gentle, J., Shakur, A., Ivanova, M., & Gilligan-Lee, K.A. (2024). Navigation abilities and spatial anxiety in individuals with and without Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD/Dyspraxia). Research in Developmental Disabilities, 146.


  1. Gilligan-Lee, K.A., Hawes, Z.C., Williams, A.Y., Farran, E.K., & Mix, K. S. (2023). Hands-On: Investigating the role of physical manipulatives in spatial training: Registered Report. Child Development, 94 (5) 1205-1221. 

  2. Gilligan-Lee, K.A., Fink, E ., Jerrom, L., Davies, M. P., Dempsey, C., Hughes, C, & Farran, E. K. (2023) Building numeracy skills: Associations between DUPLO® block construction and numeracy in early childhood. Journal of Intelligence (special issue on Spatial Intelligence and Learning), 11(8):161.

  3. Gilligan-Lee, K. A, Bradbury, A., Bradley, C., Farran, E.K., Outhwaite, L., & Van Herwegen, J., (2023). Spatial Thinking in Practice: A snapshot of teacher’s spatial activity use in the early years’ classroom. Mind, Brain and Education, 17(2), 107-116.

  4. Morris, S., Farran, E.K., & Gilligan-Lee, K.A. (2023). Examining the prevalence and type of technology-use in people with Down syndrome: Perspectives from parents and caregivers. Journal of Intellectual Disabilities.

  5. McDougal, E., Silverstein, P., Treleaven, O., Jerrom, L., Gilligan-Lee, K. A., Gilmore, C., & Farran, E. K. (2023) Associations and Indirect Effects Between LEGO® Construction and Mathematics Performance. Child Development.

  6. Morris, S., Farran, E. K., & Gilligan-Lee, K. A. (2023). Spatial abilities in Down syndrome: characterising the profile of spatial skills and models of spatial development. Cognitive development, 66, 101325.

  7. Bates, K. E., Williams, A. Y., Gilligan-Lee, K. A., Gripton, C., Lancaster, A., Williams, H., Dr, … Farran, E. K. (2023). Practitioner’s perspectives on spatial reasoning in educational practice from birth to 7 years. British Journal of Educational Psychology, 93(2), 571-590.

  8. Pownall M, Pennington CR, Norris E, et al. Evaluating the Pedagogical Effectiveness of Study Preregistration in the Undergraduate Dissertation. Advances in Methods and Practices in Psychological Science. 2023;6(4).

  9. Terry, J., Ross, R. M., Nagy, T., Salgado, M., Garrido-Vásquez, P., Sarfo, J. O., Cooper, S., Buttner, A. C., Lima, T. J. S., Öztürk, İ., Akay, N., Santos, F. H., Artemenko, C., Copping, L. T., Elsherif, M. M., Milovanović, I., Cribbie, R. A., Drushlyak, M. G., Swainston, K., . . . Field, A. P. (2023). Data from an International Multi-Centre Study of Statistics and Mathematics Anxieties and Related Variables in University Students (the SMARVUS Dataset). Journal of Open Psychology Data, 11(1), Article 8.

  10. Pownall, M., Azevedo, F., König, L. M., Slack, H. R., Evans, T. R., Flack, Z., ... & FORRT. (2023). Teaching open and reproducible scholarship: a critical review of the evidence base for current pedagogical methods and their outcomes. Royal Society Open Science, 10(5), 221255,


  1. Massonnié J, Frasseto P, Ng-Knight T, Gilligan-Lee K.A, Kirkham N, Mareschal D. (2022). Children’s Effortful Control Skills, but Not Their Prosocial Skills, Relate to Their Reactions to Classroom Noise. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health; 19(14):8815.

  2. Gilligan-Lee, K. A, Hawes, Z. C., & Mix, K. S. (2022). Spatial cognition: The forgotten piece in mathematics curricula. Nature Partner Journal Science of Learning, 7, 10,

  3. Hawes, Z. C. K., Gilligan-Lee, K. A., & Mix, K. S. (2022). Effects of spatial training on mathematics performance: A meta-analysis. Developmental Psychology, 58(1), 112-137.


  1. Ng-Knight, T., Gilligan-Lee, K.A, Gooch, D., Massonnié, J., Querstret, D., Johnstone, N., (2021). Does Taekwondo improve children’s self-regulation? If so, how? A randomised field experiment. Developmental Psychology.

  2. Hodgkiss, A., Gilligan-Lee, K.A., Tolmie, A. K., Thomas, M.S.C., Farran, E.K. (2021). The developmental trajectories of spatial skills in middle childhood. British Journal of Developmental Psychology.

  3. Bates, K., Gilligan-Lee, K.A., Farran, E.K. (2021). Reimagining Mathematics: The Role of Mental Imagery in Explaining Mathematical Calculation Skills in Childhood. Mind, Brain and Education.

  4. Gilligan-Lee, K. A., Hodgkiss, A., Patel, P.C., & Farran, E. K (2021). Aged-based differences in spatial language skills from 6 to 10 years: Relations with spatial and mathematics skills. Learning and Instruction, 73, 101417.


  1. Gilligan, K.A. (2020) Make Space: The Importance of Spatial Thinking for Learning Mathematics. Frontiers for Young Minds, 8:50.

  2. Gilligan, K. A., Thomas, M. S., & Farran, E. K. (2020). First demonstration of effective spatial training for near‐transfer to spatial performance and far‐transfer to a range of mathematics skills at 8 years. Developmental Science, 23, e12909.

  3. Gilligan, K. A., Hodgkiss, A., Thomas, M. S. C., & Farran, E. K. (2019). The developmental relations between spatial cognition and mathematics in primary school children. Developmental Science, 22 (4), e12786.

  4. Gilligan, K. A., Hodgkiss, A., Thomas, M, S, C., & Farran, E, K. (2018). The use of discrimination scaling tasks: a novel perspective on the development of spatial scaling. Cognitive Development, 47, 133-145.

  5. Hodgkiss, A., Gilligan, K. A., Tolmie, A. K., Thomas, M. S. C., & Farran, E. K. (2018). Spatial cognition and science achievement: The contribution of intrinsic and extrinsic spatial skills from 7 to 11 years. British Journal of Educational Psychology, 88 (4), 675-697.

  6. Clerkin, A., & Gilligan, K. A. (2018). Pre-school numeracy play as a predictor of children’s attitudes towards mathematics at age 10. Journal of Early Childhood Research.

  7. Gilligan, K. A., Flouri, E., & Farran, E. K. (2017). The contribution of spatial ability to mathematics achievement in middle childhood. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 163, 107–125.


  1. Gilligan, K.A., Roberts, E., & Farran, E. K. (2022). Understanding visuo-spatial processing in the context of paediatric neuropsychology: Theory, assessment and implications. In R. Booth, T. Murphy & K. Zebracki (Eds). Paediatric Neuropsychology within the Multidisciplinary Context: A guide for clinicians, academics and students. Mac Keith Press.

  2. Hawes, Z., Gilligan-Lee, K.A., & Mix, K.S. (2023). Infusing spatial thinking into middle school mathematics: What, why, and how? In K.M. Robinson, D. Kostopoulos, and A. Dubé (Eds.), Mathematical Cognition and Understanding: Perspectives on Mathematical Minds in the Elementary and Middle School Years, p13-33. Springer International Publishing

Publications: Publications
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