Colloquium Information

Jennifer Pals Lilgendahl, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Haverford College

Friday, February 6, 2015
4:00 PM, 215 Tolentine Hall

"So Now, I Wonder, What Am I?": Identity Challenges, Narrative Processes, and Growth

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Arthur F. Kramer, Ph.D.
Swanlund Chair and Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience
Director of Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology
University of Illinois

Friday, February 20, 2015
3:30 PM, 215 Tolentine Hall

"Walking Towards a Healthier Brain and Mind"

"Populations throughout the industrialized world are becoming increasing sedentary as a result of the changing nature of work and leisure activities.  As a result of these societal changes increases in diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, osteoporosis, and forms of cancer are increasing.  Physical activity serves to reduce susceptibility to these diseases.  However, increased physical activity also has direct, and relatively rapid effects on cognition and brain health.  Such results have now been reported, over the course of several decades, in animal studies of physical activity. 

In my presentation I will review research conducted in our laboratory, and the field in general, which has examined the extent to which fitness training and physical activity enhances cognition and brain structure and function of older adults.  The presentation will cover both cross-sectional and intervention studies of fitness differences and fitness and physical activity training.  Studies which assess cognition via both behavioral measures and non-invasive neuroimaging measures, such as magnetic resonance imaging, funtional magnetic resonance imaging, event-related brain potentials, and the event-related optical signal, will be reviewed and discussed.  Finally, I will explore the gaps in the human and animal literature on cognitive and brain health and the manner in which they can be addressed in future research."

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Aidan Wright, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, University of Pittsburgh

Friday, April 10, 2015
3:00 PM, 215 Tolentine Hall

Challenges Facing an Empirically Supported Personality Disorder Model: Integrating Structure and Dynamic Processes

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Navin Viswanathan, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology & Program in Linguistics State University of New York – New Paltz

Friday, April 17, 2015
3:30 PM, 215 Tolentine Hall

Speech perception despite signal variability: An unsolved puzzle

Despite over half a century of research, the question of how listeners demonstrate robust speech perception despite a widely varying acoustic speech signal remains unanswered. In this talk, I will illustrate this issue by focusing on a central source of signal variability - one that occurs due to speakers’ coarticulation. I will discuss differing explanations of how listeners compensate for coarticulation during speech perception from two prominent theoretical perspectives. Then, I will describe a series of studies that attempt to dissociate these competing explanations.  I will discuss implications of these studies both for accounts of compensation for coarticulation as well as more generally for theories of speech perception. Finally, I will briefly describe ongoing projects that investigate other sources of signal variability (due to speaking rate changes and cross-linguistic differences) that are pertinent to the signal variability puzzle.