Speech and Hearing Sciences
Biological Sciences, Health Sciences, Software Engineering
Applications in Health Sciences
The focus of the my work is understanding the interplay between brain maturation and cognitive development. The development of many important cognitive abilities, such as skilled reading, requires brain circuits to modify their structure in response to experience. This process occurs over the course of many years. By capitalizing on rapidly evolving, non-invasive, techniques for measuring the structure and function of the living human brain my lab works on modelingl how changes in brain circuit structure relate to changes in cortical computation and behavior. Current projects in the Brain Development & Education Lab, focus on understanding how the brain’s reading circuitry develops in response to education and how targeted behavioral interventions prompt changes in the brain’s of children with dyslexia. A major component of this work is the development of open-source software to measure properties of human brain tissue, localize abnormalities and quantify changes over development. A long-term goal is to translate research on the neurobiology of reading development into personalized education programs that are tailored and timed with respect to a child’s unique pattern of brain maturation.