My research program has utilized cognitive science paradigms to evaluate attention, memory, and executive functioning issues in both neurologically normal (i.e., younger and older adults) and clinical populations (e.g., traumatic brain injury survivors, dementia patients). The long-term goal of my research programs is to help bridge cognitive science and cognitive rehabilitation.
Traumatic Brain Injury Laboratory
Difficulties with memory, attention and complex problem-solving are common cognitive problems that can occur after someone experiences a traumatic brain injury (TBI). By bridging basic science research with rehabilitation techniques, our work is designed to help persons with TBI overcome cognitive difficulties. Participants in our studies complete standardized neuropsychological tests and cognitive experimental tasks that assess many different types of cognitive abilities. In conjunction with St. Luke’s Rehabilitation Institute in Spokane, we are currently investigating the recovery process of several important cognitive abilities (e.g., time perception, prospective memory, focused and divided attention, and metamemorial abilities) following a TBI.
We are seeking individuals who are age 50 years or older who are currently experiencing no memory problems, mild memory problems or who have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. We are examining different types of memory abilities and how they relate to activities that older adults are involved with everyday. The project goal is to better understand memory disorders in older adulthood and to develop programs to help with those difficulties.