The Science of Early Child Development (SECD) is a knowledge translation and mobilization initiative designed to make current research accessible to anyone interested in learning more about the impact of early experience on lifelong health and well-being.

The period from conception through the first 3 years of life is a time of very rapid development for the brain and other biological systems. Evidence shows that a child’s earliest experiences, in the womb and in the first years of life, affect how genes are expressed and how brain connections are built. The quality of a child’s environment, the nurturing, and the responsiveness of adults is vitally important for shaping brain architecture.

From the latest research into brain development and the social determinants of health to topics such as child rights, literacy and the importance of play, SECD shows how nature and nurture interact from conception on to construct a foundation for development.

Beginning as a tool to help share the emerging science about early child development, SECD now offers a suite  of online and offline media-rich  educational resources with examples of research and programmes from around the world. SECD has been developed at Red River College Polytechnic in Canada in partnership with the University of Toronto and the Aga Khan Development Network.

Click on the SECD Overview video below to learn more about the SECD Initiative. (To view the SECD Overview – International video click on SECD – An Introduction under "Watch videos").


Red River College University of Toronto AKDN - Aga Khan Development Network