• Congratulations to Olivia Kang!

    Congratulations to Olivia Kang for successfully defending her PhD thesis, receiving a (college-wide) Dartmouth Graduate Teaching Award, and for becoming a Harvard College Fellow!   She leaves the lab to teach at Harvard and do postdocotral research with the brilliant Dr. Mahzarin Banaji. 

  • Congratulations

    Olivia Kang won the Marie A. Center 1982 Award for Excellence in Teaching.  Congratulations Olivia! 

  • PBS video

    The PBS blog It's Okay to Be Smart discusses Beau's study!

  • Beau Sievers named a Neukom Graduate Fellow

    Beau Sievers was awarded a Neukom Graduate Fellowship for his research proposal to investigate the utility of music listening for statistical learning.  Congratulations Beau!

  • Dr. Looser

    Congratulations to Christine Looser for successfully defending her dissertation entitled "A light in the attic: Inferring minds from faces."

    By request, I am posting a short video that some of the faculty made.  It played before her talk as part of an introduction in which we suggest that she may have had her own motivations for studying animacy.

  • Congratulations

    Christine Looser accepted a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard Business School which begins in August, 2012.

    Carolyn Parkinson won the Marie A. Center 1982 Award for Excellence in Research.

  • Warner Writing Retreat #3

    Georgia and Animal welcome the new guy (Eshin Jolly).  Eshin starts August, 2012.

    And a partial lab photo (minus Olivia Kang and Beau Sievers)

    Eshin Jolly, Animal, Carolyn Parkinson, Christine Looser, Thalia Wheatley, Georgia, Will Haslett

  • Social Affective Neuroscience Society (SANS) conference

    Underway in NYC.  SANS is a relatively small (~500 attendees) and focused annual meeting.  If you're interested in social neuroscience, I highly recommend it.  This year the focus is on the neural correlates of empathy, culture, health, development, and emotion.

  • Alan Alda visits the lab to talk about free will.

    Alan Alda visits the lab to talk about free will.

    Here I am talking to my scientific crush of twenty years.  It's hard enough discussing the issue of free will without getting tongue-tied in the best of circumstances but with Alan Alda?  On camera?  Terrifying.

    We started by putting 64 electrodes on his head so that he could do the original Libet experiment.  I had assumed that we'd stage that part --that he wouldn't want hair full of electrode gel for the rest of the day or go through all the trials necessary to collect real ERP data.  He immediately rejected the staging idea, countering that it would be much more compelling if we could analyze his own data to test whether the key finding replicated (it did --thanks go to Alex Schlegel and Scottie Alexander for crunching the numbers in a couple of hours!). 

    When someone mentioned the hair problem again, he just looked at me and said "Can you find me a sink and a brush?" When I nodded he smiled, adding, "well, then, problem solved." There were no make-up people, no egos --just an extremely agile crew of four including the insightful producer/director Graham Chedd.  Everything was filmed as it happened organically, from the moments of confusion to the moments of clarity and a lot of laughter in between. As a bonus, Alan is hypnotizable so we did hypnosis to illustrate the brain's ability to generate action without the feeling of will.  Who knows if any of it will make it into the eventual documentary Brains on Trial, but it was a day I will never forget.  <more here>

  • Carolyn Parkinson presents at CNS

    Carolyn presents her research on the white matter microstructure underlying empathy (under review) at the Cognitive Neuroscience Society meeting in Chicago, 2012.  Thanks to Cat Norris for the photo.

  • The dilemma of weak neuroimaging papers

    Check out Daniel Bor's blog this week for a discussion of why weak neuroimaging papers are still published and what can be done about it. The comments, from some of the best neuroscientists in the field, are especially insightful.