Research on individualized perception and cognition

Our research group is fundamentally interested in how the brain encodes and processes information. The vertebrate nervous system routinely achieves feats of pattern recognition unparalleled by modern computers. The natural algorithms underlying this pattern recognition and the neuronal circuitry computing them have both represented targets for the lab’s research, predominantly by measuring single and bulk neuron activity in awake subjects. Of particular interest has been how complex sounds are encoded in the brain when interfering noise is present and how language is processed.

In related work, we also seek to be able to manipulate brain function for therapeutic purposes using invasive technologies such as brain-computer interfaces and noninvasive technologies such as smartphone based training apps. A key advance for this research has been the application of active machine learning to behavioral tests of perception and cognition. Current work is heavily focused on developing and validating these methods to provide some of the highest resolution behavioral testing available, with applications toward neural rehabilitation and education.