ASD Research

Our Research

The lab performs experiments to further understand human cognition. Below you can find current and past research.



We would like to thank the numerous collaborators who assist us with our research. Click below for a list of those who have worked to assist us


University of California San Diego

Department of Cognitive Science

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Our interest in BCIs has been to study information maximization by how information is presented, developing ways to improve signal detection, and determining how long it takes to learn to develop intentional control of brain rhythms.  We are examining factors that can improve learning, such as neurofeedback, realistic environments, and motivationally-engaging stimuli.  We are also interested in whether learning to control brain rhythms affects cognition in general.  One question is whether subjects who are learning to become more attentive to cognitive states show changes in attention, memory, understanding action, etc.

Brain-computer interfaces

  1. Brain computer interfaces

Mirror neurons, originally identified in macaque premotor cortex, become active during self and observed movement and are thought to contribute to the ability to understand actions and relate to others (to learn more).   Our studies have shown that suppression of EEG oscillations in the mu frequency band (8-13Hz) over prefrontal cortex may reflect mirror neuron activity.  We study this ‘suppression’ or event-related desynchronization (ERD) in a variety of populations (for more information on autism work see Research and news story) to determine how a dysfunctional mirror neuron system may contribute to the pathology of social behaviors in autism, addiction, and other disorders.

  1. Mirror neuron system

  1. Tinnitus

Mirror  Neurons, Mu Rhythms and Autism

Tinnitus—a persistent “ringing” in the ears that affects approximately 44 million people in the U.S. —is commonly thought to be incurable.  One hypothesis suggests that tinnitus activity interferes with the perception of real sounds, causing measurable changes in the patient’s EEG compared to those of normal individuals.  Our results suggest a measurable difference between the two groups.  We have developed a sound-based therapy that exposes patients to sounds that mimic their internal noise.  Over a short period of time, patients habituate to the sound, and this extends to their internal tinnitus perception.  (See news story). 

Tinnitus Research

There is limited understanding of the brain underpinnings of human sex differences in cognitive computation styles during object processing. This study examines whether sex differences are a reflection of biases in individual cognitive styles to either processing the “what” or the “where” of an object.  We will be using multimodal behavioral and brain imaging measures to study this.

Gender Differences During spatial Tracking

Gender Differences