2015 Symposia

Attention! Features? Objects? How features, objects, and categories control visual selective attention.

Organizers: Rebecca Nako, Birkbeck, University of London
Time/Room: Friday, May 15, 2015, 12:00 – 2:00 pm, Talk Room 1

Attentional selectivity in vision is not purely space-based. Feature-based, object-based, and category-based attention all play a critical role in the selection of visual input, but the mechanisms of these types of attentional control and the interactions between them are not yet fully understood. This symposium brings together leading researchers who made recent important contributions to this area, using a variety of different converging methods (single-unit electrophysiology, fMRI, EEG, MEG, and computational modelling). Its aim is to provide a new and integrated perspective on the roles of features, objects and categories in the control of visual attention. More…

Measuring and Interpreting Oscillations in Perception and Behavior

Organizers: Jan Drewes and David Melcher, Center for Mind/Brain Sciences (CIMeC), University of Trento, Rovereto, Italy
Time/Room: Friday, May 15, 2015, 12:00 – 2:00 pm, Pavilion

Oscillations in attention and other brain mechanisms may lead to regular oscillations in perceptual and behavioral performance. Novel results and methods aimed at the measurement, undestanding and interpretation of these effects will be presented. More…

Neurally informed theories on visual working memory

Organizer: Ilja G. Sligte, University of Amsterdam
Time/Room: Friday, May 15, 2015, 2:30 – 4:30 pm, Talk Room 1

Our ability to represent information that is longer in present in our direct environment, or our so-called working memory, is of utmost importance to most goal-directed behavior. But how does our brain coordinate what to do now and in a few seconds or minutes time? In this symposium, we will discuss theories on how the brain enables working memory and how the contents of our working minds are stored in different brain regions. More…

How to break the cortical face perception network

Organizer: David Pitcher, NIMH
Time/Room: Friday, May 15, 2015, 2:30 – 4:30 pm, Pavilion

The speakers in this symposium use novel combinations of experimental techniques to study the behavioral effects of damage and disruption in the cortical face perception network in both human and non-human primates. Our aims are to update the fundamental understanding of how faces are cortically represented and to establish common theoretical ground amongst researchers who use different experimental techniques. To achieve this we will present studies using a range of subject populations (healthy-humans, brain-damaged patients, pre-operative epileptic patients and macaques) and experimental methods (optogenetics, fMRI, microstimulation, physiology, TMS, diffusion weighted imaging and neuropsychology). More…

Linking behavior to different measures of cortical activity

Organizers: Justin Gardner1, John Serences2, Franco Pestilli3, 1Stanford University, 2UC San Diego, 3Indiana University
Time/Room: Friday, May 15, 2015, 5:00 – 7:00 pm, Talk Room 1

Several methods are available to study brain activity across spatiotemporal scales. Electrodes measure fast, microscopic activity of single-units. Multi-electrodes, voltage-sensitive dyes and intrinsic-imaging measure mesoscale population-activity. Cortical-activity can be mapped using fMRI, ECoG and EEG. Leveraging knowledge across measurements is essential for understanding brain and behavior. Attention provides an excellent case. Behavioral work established that reaction times and discrimination improve with attention. Unfortunately, attentional effects on visual response differ across measurements, suggesting different models relating brain and behavior. This symposium invites investigators measuring at different scales to synthesize knowledge about cortical mechanisms of attention and their role for behavior. More…

How learning changes the brain

Organizers: Chris Baker and Hans Op de Beeck, NIMH, USA; University of Leuven, Belgium
Time/Room: Friday, May 15, 2015, 5:00 – 7:00 pm, Pavilion

It is well established that learning is associated with changes in visual representations and the underlying neural substrate. However, the brain regions implicated vary from experiment to experiment, ranging from primary visual cortex to all higher levels of the visual system. Further, the nature of the changes are often inconsistent between studies. In this symposium, speakers will present multidisciplinary data from human and non-human primates that collectively highlight that to understand how learning changes the brain, it is critical to consider the underlying complexity and distributed nature of the visual system. More…