The Department of Cognitive Sciences Colloquia Series presents
with Birte U. Forstmann, Ph.D., Cognitive Science Center Amsterdam, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Social & Behavioral Sciences Gateway (SBSG), Room 1517
Cognitive neuroscientists study how the brain implements particular cognitive processes such as perception, learning, and decision-making. Traditional approaches in which experiments are designed to target a specific cognitive process have been supplemented by two recent innovations. First, formal models of cognition can decompose observed behavioral data into multiple latent cognitive processes, allowing brain measurements to be associated with a particular cognitive process more precisely and more confidently. Second, cognitive neuroscience can provide additional data to inform the development of cognitive models, providing greater constraint than behavioral data alone. In this colloquium, Forstmann will argue that these fields are mutually dependent. She will present a series of model-based neuroimaging experiments including data from ultra-high resolution 7T structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging and diffusion weighted imaging. The experiments set out to understand the fronto-basal ganglia network in strategically adjusting response thresholds by combining neuroimaging data with parameters from a mathematical model for response times. The results will be discussed in light of cortico-basal ganglia networks implementing flexible adaptive behavior.
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