University Relations
spring research day

Spring Research Day 2014

Thursday, April 10, 9:00am - 4:00pm
The Presidents Room at Coffman Memorial Union
Open to the public. Lunch will be provided.
Sponsored by the Center for Cognitive Sciences and Coca Cola.

Adam Johnson, Psychology Department, Bethel University, St Paul, MN

Schema learning and hippocampal representation: A theory of learning and exploration


The hippocampus plays a critical role in spatial look-ahead, single-trial learning, memory consolidation, and imagination. Each of these learning dynamics depends on memory schemas. In this talk, I develop a simple hierarchical Bayesian approach define the contribution of hippocampal schemas to memory tasks. I show how the approach can be used to account for hippocampus dependent, schema-based single-trial learning and variable consolidation times. Next, I extend the schema learning approach to show how the approach can be used to predict novelty preferences in spontaneous exploration tasks. Finally, I discuss the utility of the approach for understanding individual differences in memory task performance and exploration.



Jeremy Loebach, Department of Psychology, Neuroscience and Linguistics, St. Olaf College, Northfield, MN

Perceptual Learning and Cochlear Implants: From Theory to Practice


When an individual receives a cochlear implant (CI) as a treatment for deafness, they undergo an intensive period of perceptual learning in order to learn how to hear. However, the process of perceptual learning is not fully understood, and there is much debate regarding the types of materials that an individual should train with, and how well they will generalize to novel tasks and listening situations. This study investigated the long-term perceptual learning of CI simulations in 194 normal hearing (NH) individuals in order to better understand the mechanisms of perceptual learning, discern which tasks provide the most robust generalization and transfer, and to assess the efficacy of a proposed training program for new adult CI users. The results will be discussed in terms of perceptual learning, interactions between general auditory and speech specific cognitive abilities, and their application to clinical practice.




The CCS Spring Research Day program will also feature talks and poster presentations by CCS Predoctoral Members. Lunch will be provided. Sponsored by the Center for Cognitive Sciences and Coca Cola.

Spring Research Day 2014 Posters
1. Samantha Abram From rats to humans: A translationalforaging model
2. Ethan Brown Introductory statistics students’ reasoning about sample size
3. Madeline Harms Differential amygdala response to masked fearful and happy eye-whites in children and adults
4. Virginia Heinen Jays devalue social cues in uncertain environments
5. Chelsea Hetherington  Social competence, peer victimization, and hysiological stress reactivity in middle childhood
6. Kelly Jedd Inhibitory control in the face of emotional distraction
7. Alyssa Meuwissen Father autonomy support and preschool executive function
8. Marc Pisansky The chromodomain helicase DNA-binding 5 knockout mouse as an epigenetic model of neurodevelopmental dysfunction
9. Nicole Scott Reduction of cognitive entropy during human development

Updated February 20, 2015