Associate Professor of Cognitive Science
In 1990, she was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship which enabled her to pursue an M.Phil. in Theoretical Linguistics at Wolfson College, Oxford University. She received her Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania in 1998.
She is interested in the structure of lexical representations and in applying electrophysiological techniques, in particular event related potentials, to the investigation of cognitive phenomena. Her thesis work consisted of investigating the relationship between orthography and lexical stress in English.
Her current research is focused on examining how complex words are represented in the mental lexicon. She teaches courses in cognitive psychology, cognitive neuroscience and psycholinguistics.
This course will focus on the acquisition of two or more languages by both children and adults. We will look at how two or more languages are represented in the mind of an individual and attempt to elucidate the mental processes that allow individuals to produce and understand sentences in each language. Questions that we will consider include: Who is considered bilingual and what are the criteria for 'knowing' a language? How does bilingualism influence linguistic and cognitive development? How does the cognitive system cope with the need to develop efficient processing mechanisms for two or more different languages and maintain separate access and representational mechanisms for each language? How is language is represented in the bilingual brain?
This course will examine the brain mechanisms that allow us to understand and produce spoken, written and signed language. We will examine how fMRI and ERP studies as well as those examining brain lesions and developmental disorders can shed light on the brain mechanisms that underlie this uniquely human ability. The course will emphasize reading and discussion of primary literature.
Words are the basic linguistics units of a language and the ability to recognize a word is a fundamental component of reading. For many years most of the research in reading was conducted in English, and it was assumed that what was true for reading English words would also be true for words in other languages. However, many languages differ in striking ways from English and studying these languages can be useful in illustrating the different ways that people approach reading. In this class we will look at the structure of words in the Semitic languages-Hebrew and Arabic-and consider how differences in word structure can influence the ways in which we read. Students will learn how to read and critically evaluate the scholarly literature on the psychology of reading. No knowledge of Hebrew or Arabic is required.
This course is an upper-level research seminar designed for students who wish to learn electrophysiological techniques and how to analyze electrophysiology data. Course requirements will consist of reading primary research articles, executing an event related potential (ERP) research project on visual processing, and analyzing the data that is collected. The class will cover all elements of setting up an ERP research project and we will focus on both the theory and practical aspects of developing and running research study. The data analyses methods will cover a range of techniques from classical univariate statistical techniques to more advanced multivariate statistical learning methods. Students are expected to work independently.