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CBB talk series

The Cognitive Brown Bag (CBB) is a graduate student organized talk series, primarily attended by the faculty, graduate students, and staff from the cognitive labs at Dartmouth College. A list of past CBB talks can be found here.

Hybrid CBB : Fall 2021-Spring 2022

Talks will be held on Mondays from 3:30-4:30pm, in person and on Zoom.

Fall 2021 Speaker(s) Title Abstract
Mon, 10/18 Yong Hoon Chung (Dartmouth College)

Better memory for simple features when embedded in naturalistic objects

Understanding the limits of working memory is critical as it is related to fluid intelligence, academic achievement, and other important abilities. Prior work on visual working memory has predominantly used isolated simple stimuli such as oriented lines or colored squares, and has concluded that working memory capacity -- how much information you can actively maintain -- is fixed and that memory capacity for simple features remains uninfluenced of what contexts they are presented in. However, recent studies have demonstrated that working memory capacity can increase when using more meaningful stimuli. Here we demonstrate that this memory benefit is present even for simple features (i.e. colors) when they are embedded in real-world objects. That is, participants remember a simple color better when it is superimposed on a realistic object relative to an unrecognizable shape. This finding significantly changes how we ordinarily think about memory capacity, as it is not bound by a fixed amount of resources, but rather can flexibly be adjusted depending on the context.


Mon, 10/25 Jesse Gomez (Princeton University) Brain development in visual cortex and beyond The development of the human brain is the most protracted of any species. For humans, this makes childhood experience an especially pronounced factor in sculpting the neural hardware that will support essential behaviors in adulthood. Despite its importance, the period of time separating gestation from adulthood still remains a bit of a mystery in human cognitive neuroscience. In this talk I’ll cover a project from our lab that attempts to shed light on how visual experience may sculpt the emergent organization of visual cortex using life-long players of Pokémon as a case study. I’ll also discuss some of our recent efforts in understanding brain development beyond visual cortex, examining for the first time how the human cerebellum develops from childhood to adulthood. We make some surprising observations, overturning the idea that the cerebellum is a homogenous brain structure, showing its various lobules contain distinct tissue environments, and that it undergoes differential structural and functional development across childhood. I’ll discuss these results in the context of Autism Spectrum Disorder and future work planned on understanding atypical brain development.
Mon, 11/1 Xinming Xu (Dartmouth College)    
Mon, 11/15 Marvin Maechler (Dartmouth College & Nate Heller (Dartmouth College)    
Mon, 12/6 Stephan Meylan (MIT)    
Winter 2022      
Mon, 1/10 Tom Donoghue (Columbia University)    
Mon, 1/24 Doug Addleman (Dartmouth College)    
Mon, 2/7 Rachel Dennison (Boston University) - virtual talk    
Mon, 2/21 Mijin Kwon (Dartmouth College) & YB Choi (Dartmouth College)    
Mon, 3/7 Angela Radulescu (NYU)    
Mon, 3/14 Heejung Jung (Dartmouth College) & Megan Hillis (Dartmouth College)    
Spring 2022      
Mon, 3/28 Mohsen Rakhshan (Dartmouth College) & Luke Slipski (Dartmouth College)    
Mon, 4/4 Biyu He (NYU)    
Mon, 4/18 Anna Mynick (Dartmouth College) & Caroline Lee (Dartmouth College)    
Mon, 5/2 Kirsten Ziman (Dartmouth College) & Mert Ozkan (Dartmouth College)    
Mon, 5/23 Mary Kieseler (Dartmouth College) & AJ Haskins (Dartmouth College)    
Mon, 6/6 Sharif Saleki (Dartmouth College)