Past Project Scientists

Julia EvansJulia Evans

  • Neurobiology of learning and memory, language acquisition and childhood language disorders, real-time language processing; eyetracking, EEG, ERP, aMEG
  • Infant language development
  • Language and cognitive processing in children and adolescents with Specific Language Impairment
  • Neuroanatomical and neurophysiological correlates of real-time language processing in typically developing children and children with Specific Language Impairment
  • Implicit learning and memory


Current Location: University of Texas at Dallas

Past Postdoctoral Researchers

Katherine Alcock

Lateralization of pitch and phoneme processing; the effect of schooling on phonological awareness; The processing of noun class in Kiswahili.
Oral motor skill, production and perception of timing, and production and perception of pitch in musical and linguistic contexts in two groups of dysphasic subjects (members of a family with an inherited nonfluent dysphasia or adult patients with acquired nonfluent dysphasia).


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, City University, London, UK

Ben AmselBen Amsel

My research encompasses behavioural and electrophysiological approaches to understanding human memory and language. I study the organization of semantic memory--our storehouse of knowledge about the world.  I additionally study how the brain uses knowledge represented in semantic memory to guide language comprehension

Jennifer Aydelott

Effects of perceptual degradation &  variations in timing on semantic priming in aphasics, children with focal brain injury, & normal controls


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Lecturer Univ. of Oxford , UK

Tim Beyer

Language development, language processing & comprehension, bilingualism, language & thought, grammatical gender, linking basic research to teaching

Klinton BicknellKlinton Bicknell

My research seeks to understand the remarkable efficiency of language comprehension. I investigate how we comprehend using a diverse set of methodologies: I build formal, computational models of comprehension using tools from computational linguistics and machine learning, and I also perform a wide range of empirical work, including both controlled experiments (especially eye tracking) and statistical analyses of large, naturalistic corpora.


Position and Current Location: Postdoctoral fellow, Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, University of Rochester

Arielle Borovsky

Language acquisition and processing in children and adults. More specifically, I examine the impact of linguistic experience and knowledge on word learning and sentence processing in children and adults using eyetracking and ERP methodologies.


Eileen Cardillo

Interactions between perceptual, attentional, and semantic processes in language. In particular:

  • The impact of acoustic degradations and auditory distractions on speech comprehension
  • The role of impaired cognitive control in the aphasic deficits associated with prefrontal lesions


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Penn State, Philadelphia, PA

Juli A. Carter

Auditory processing of morphologically complex words


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Linguist and Program Coordinator, Metaphor, Inc.

Leah Fabiano

Phonological acquisition in bilingual children

Kara Federmeier

The neural bases of language processing in the representation and organization of information in long-term semantic memory


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Asst. Professor of Psychology, Univ. of Illinois Champaign Urbana

Tamar Gollan

Focus on characterizing lexical retrieval in language comprehension and production in both monolingual and bilinguals subjects (Spanish and Hebrew)


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Assistant Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry, UCSD

Lea Hald

The nature of semantic information that is utilized during on-line sentence comprehension.


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Department of Human Communication Science, University College London

Mary Hare

Neural network models of grammatical morphology


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Asst. Professor, Bowling Green  State Univ.

Claudio HartmannClaudio Hartmann

I am interested in the pathway from visual perception to articulation and I study the effects of routine and cognitive load on the verbalization of dynamic nonverbal stimuli.

There is evidence from action narrations by novice speakers that a range of speech quality parameters are affected by working memory load and I investigate our natural tendency to routinize recurrent messages in recurrent communicative settings in order to free up working memory resources. Previous findings show that as the speech tasks become increasingly more predictable, the verbalizations become more formulaic and qualitatively enhanced, which is often interpreted as shift from a more working memory based into a predominantly long-term memory based speech production mode of skilled speakers.

My postdoctoral goals are to gradually extend and automatize the linguistic analyses of quality of speech indicators and I plan to introduce electroencephalography into my research as a hopeful neurological source of evidence to shed more light on this language phenomenon.

Roberto Heredia

Lexical access, bilingual lexical processes, lexical ambiguity, literal vs. nonliteral language processes, sentence processing, second-language acquisition, word recognition, memory and information processing


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Associate Professor of Psychology, Texas A&M International University

Melissa Herzig Melissa Herzig

How sign language and gestural language in spoken language reveal children's readiness to learn new concepts.


Philip HofmeisterPhilip Hofmeister

How the complexity of linguistic representations affects the ability to retrieve those representations from memory during language comprehension.

Amy HubbardAmy Hubbard

Neural bases of multimodal and paralinguistic aspects of speech communication (e.g., gesture, head movement, intonation, rhythm).  Neural underpinnings of bilingualism in regards to both spoken and signed languages.  Sociocultural (Vygotskian) Theory and its implications for second language learning and teaching.

So-One HwangSo-One Hwang

I study the interaction of language, gesture, and cognition for communicating, thinking, and learning. I am also interested in the temporal dynamics of language processing and its interface with the sensori-motor systems. My training is in linguistics and cognitive neuroscience.

Jon King

Clarifying which language processes are indexed by components of the ERP to written and spoken language


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Asst. Professor of Psychology, University of Missouri

Tanya Kraljic

Research focuses on the cognition and perception of speech, in particular:

  • The processes that enable speaker-hearer coordination in dialogue
  • The effect of implicit and perceptual learning on adult language
  • Performance
  • Dialectal variation
  • The role of self-perception (feedback) in spoken and signed language


Gary Oppenheim

Incremental Learning in Lexical Retrieval


Jennie Pyers

Investigating code switching in bimodal-bilingual speaker of English and American Sign Language (ASL).
Examining emergence of narrative role-shifting in Nicaraguan Sign Language (NSL).
Tracked changes in false-belief and language performance in Nicaraguan Signers.


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Wellesley College, Boston, MA, US

Carolyn QuamCarolyn Quam

I use experimental and corpus-phonetics methods to investigate phonological learning in early childhood, the application of phonological knowledge to word learning, and how regularities in the sounds children hear constrain their word-learning and sound-learning hypotheses.

Doug Roland

Computational modeling of the human brain using regression moedeling and corpus data to investigate the availability of and interactions between different potential sources of information for structural ambiguity resolution during sentence processing.


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Assistant Professor, University at Buffalo

Ayse Pinar SayginAyse Pinar Saygin

1999-2005 Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Marie Curie Research Fellow
Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience
University College London

Marie St. George

The nature, extent, and time course of brain activation, as measured by fMRI and ERPs


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Special Education Teacher, Vista, CA

Robert Thornton

Grammatical agreement processes, cross-linguistic differences in comprehension, the influence of pragmatic and plausibility information on processing, and the relationship between language production and comprehension


Position and Current Location: Lecturer, Research Associate, Department of Linguistics and Cognitive Sciences, Pomona College

Past Predoctoral Trainees

Chris Barkley

The role of selective attention in language learning and online language comprehension. The nature of expectations generated during language comprehension and the neural mechanism mediating these expectations. The processing of dependencies between various types of discontinuous linguistic elements.

Rebecca Colavin

My main area of interest is computational phonologyand more specifically in phonotactics, the set of language specific rules that determine the acceptability of sound sequences. I am currently evaluating the performance of a maximum entropy phonotactic learner (Hayes and Wilson, 2008) on data from Amharic. The goal of my dissertation is to obtain experimental evidence of how nonce words of varying acceptability are processed by speakers and to propose an improved model of phonotactic learning.

Carson DanceCarson Dance

Cognitive Science

Phonological organization; changes in language though development; changes in language through second language learning.

Hanna Gelfand

Language and Communicative Disorders

Gaze patterns in children with specific language impairment

Simone Gieselman


The Processing of Negation and of Negative Islands.

Alex Del Giudice

My background in Sign Language Phonology and interests in language change and evolution have led to my research on the evolutionary origins of phonology.  Part of this research focuses on how words, which may have begun as holistic form-meaning pairs, gain sub-lexical structure overtime as re-occurring sub-lexical pieces (such as phonemes or syllables) pervade the lexicon.  Furthermore, evidence from newly developed sign languages suggest that the adoption of such innovations are closely dependent on the structure of the population (i.e. how large the language community is, how many social-communicative links each speaker has to other speakers in the community, etc).  To explore these dependencies, I'm designing an agent-based computer simulation that explores the development of a simple phonology in a population of agents with varying social structures.

Matthew HallMatthew Hall


Interaction of language modality and cognition.

Dan Kleinman


Computational models of language.

Philip Lai

Previous Projects: Music and emotions in Williams Syndrome.
Current Project: Non-verbal behavior and its integration with language in children who suffered a focal lesion due to a perinatal stroke.
In both projects, I coded and will code non-verbal categories (gestures, eye gaze, ect.) and see if these developmental disordered populations use the same types of communication by looking at multiple channels of non-verbal behaviors. For the Williams Syndrome project, I found that the WS population tended to be more expressive when they are in the musical domain. For the focal lesion group, I want to see if they communicate through nonverbal channels the same way typically developing children do (age 6)

Matt Leonard

Neural basis of bilingual word processing/language organization.  Using anatomically-constrained magnetoencephalography (aMEG) and direct intracranial recordings to study different stages of word processing in native vs. non-native languages of varying proficiency.  Processing stages of interest include early sensory processing, early word encoding, and lexico-semantic processing in both visual and auditory modalities.

Ross MetusalemRoss Metusalem

Cognitive Science

Language processing; cognitive neuroscience; discourse comprehension

Amy Pace

My current research explores event segmentation and verb learning in young children to identify the behavioral and neurological mechanisms that guide the mapping of novel verb labels to action events.  Because actions often occur simultaneously or in sequence with other actions, the ability to select a referent action for mapping is dependent in part upon earlier emerging event segmentation skills.  The long-term goals of this project are to (1) assess the behavioral and neural indices of event segmentation and (2) identify how sensitivity to perceptual cues and intentional boundaries within complex events supports verb-learning within the second year of life.

Patrick PlummerPatrick Plummer


Page Piccinini


Bilinguals' abilities to use L1 and L2 categories in learning a third language

Lara PolseLara Polse

Language and Communicative Disorders

Development and integration of orthographic and semantic processing during reading acquisition

Lara PolseLara Polse

Language & Communicative Disorders

Identifying neural correlates of perceptual (orthographic) and conceptual (semantic) processing across development in a single-word reading paradigm.

Liz SchotterLiz Schotter


Serial and parallel architectures of language comprehension (reading) and production; Eye movements and language processing.

Nathaniel Smith

Suppose you hear someone say "The children went outside to..." You can probably guess that the next word will be "play". Making this guess is actually quite complicated, because it requires you to assemble all sorts of different knowledge -- of what children do, and where they do it, and what words are used to describe that in English -- and yet it turns out that people are making these kinds of predictions all the time, and in just fractions of a second. In my work I study how these predictions affect people's eye movements and brain waves when they're reading, as a way to better understand the brain's strategies for deciphering language.

Past Visiting Scholars


Name Affiliation
Andonova, Elena New Bulgarian Univ. , Bulgaria
Bentrovato, Simone Univ. La Sapienza , Italy
Bertoni, Matteo Univ. Degli Studi , Italy
Cotelli, Maria Univ. of Padua , Italy

Devescovi, Antonella

Univ. La Sapienza , Italy

Gollan, Tamar

Univ. of Arizona

Hare, Mare

Bowling Green State Univ. , OH

Janyan, Armina

New Bulgarian Univ , Bulgaria

Kostadinova-Minkovska, Tatyana

Sofia Univ., Bulgaria

Krupa-Kwiatkowski, Magdalena

San Diego State University , CA

McRae, Ken

Univ. of Western Ontario , Canada

Poulsen, Mads

Univ. of Copenhagen , Denmark

Szekely, Anna

Univ. of Budapest , Hungary


Name Affiliation
Alcock, Katherine City University , London
Andonova, Elena New Bulgarian Univ. , Bulgaria
Balota, David Solana Beach

Behrens, Heike

Univ. Groningeu

Cappa, Stefano

Univ. of Milan , Italy

Caselli , Cristina

Univ. La Sapienze, Rome , Italy

Ceponiene, Rita


Derani, Daniela

Milan , Italy

Devescovi, Antonella

Univ.La Sapienze, Rome , Italy

Diamico, Simonetta

Univ. La Sapienze, Rome , Italy

Hare, Mary

Bowling Green State Univ. , OH

Keibel, Jens-Holger

Univ. of Freiburg , Germany

Krupa-Kwiatkowski, Magdalena

San Diego State University , CA

McRae, Ken

Univ. of Western Ontario , Canada

Roland, Doug

Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO

Sager, Nicole

Boulder , CO

Sazonova, Tatiana


Schluh, Gisela

Univ. of Freiburg , Germany

Szekely, Anna

Univ. of Budapest , Hungary

Zangl, Renate



Name Affiliation
Andonova, Elena New Bulgarian Univ.
Bentrovato, Simone Italy
Cappa, Stefano Univ. of Milan , Italy
Devescovi, Antonella Univ. of La Sapienze, Rome , Italy
Diamico, Simonetta Univ. of La Sapienze, Rome , Italy
Dronkers, Nina Kensington , CA
Ernst, Rosemarie Univ. Zurich , Switzerland
Goodman, Judith Columbia , MO
Jackson-Maldonado, Donna El Colegio de Mexico , Mexico
Janssen, Dirk Netherlands
Keibel, Jens-Holger Univ. of Freiburg , Germany
Kohnert, Kathryn Saint Paul , MN
Kuroda, Kow
Lu, Ching Ching National Hsinchu Teachers College , Hsinchu , Taiwan
Mary Hare Bowling Green State Univ. , OH
McRae, Ken Univ. of Western Ontario , Canada
Perani, Daniela Univ. of Milan , Italy
Pizzamiglio, Luigi Italy
Purini-Hahn, Luise Univ. Venna , Austria
Schalling, Ellika Sweden
Szekely, Anna Univ. of Budapest , Hungary
Tzeng, Angela Chung-Yuan Christian University
Volterra , Virginia Italian National Research
Wilson, Stephen Australia


Name Affiliation
Aronoff, Mark Stony Brook University , NY
Cappa, Stefano Univ. of Milan , Italy
Damico, Simonetta Univ. of La Sapienze, Rome , Italy
Devescovi, Antonella Univ. of La Sapienze, Rome , Italy
Dronkers, Nina  
Fabrizio, Piras  
Hahn, Luise Italy
Hare, Mary Bowling Green State Univ. , OH
Harris, Catherine  
Jackson-Maldonado, Donna El Colegio De Mexico , Mexico
Keibel, Holger Univ. of Freiburg , Germany
Kokinov, Boicko New Bulgarian Univ. , Bulgaria
Krupa-Kwiatowski, Magdalena San Diego State University , CA
McRae, Ken Univ. of Western Ontario , Canada
Meir, Irit Univ. of Haifa , Israel
Sandler, Wendy Univ. of Haifa , Israel
Szekely, Anna Univ. of Budapest , Hungary


Name Affiliation
Aronoff, Mark Stony Brook University , NY
Baldo, Juliana VA Nothern California Health Care System
Behrens, Heike Univ. Groningen
Karmiloff-Smith, Annette Institute of Child Health
Kwiatkowski, Magdalena San Diego State University , CA
Meri, Irit Univ. of Haifa , Israel
Sandler, Wendy Univ. of Haifa , Israel
Schul, Rina Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Smith, Linda  

St. George, Marie

Madison Middle School

Wiles, Janet

Univ. of Queensland


Name Affiliation
Gerken, LouAnn University of Arizona
Hare, Mary Bowling Green State University, OH
McRae, Ken University of Western Ontario
Stiebels, Barbara Tentrum F. Allgemeine Sprachwissenscheft Berlin


Name Affiliation
Alcock, Katherine City University , London
Hare, Mary Bowling Green State University, OH
McRae, Ken University of Western Ontario

In Memoriam

Elizabeth BatesElizabeth Bates


Cognitive Science, Psychology

Keith RaynerKeith Rayner



Researchers in the Eyetracking Lab under the general direction of Keith Rayner use various eyetracking apparati to study a wide variety of cognitive processes:

  • eye movements during reading
  • language comprehension
  • language production
  • scene perception
  • visual search
  • eye movement control