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Satellite meeting organised by Professor Dorothy Bishop FMedSci FBA, Professor Kate Nation and Professor Karalyn Patterson FMedSci FBA
Models of developmental and acquired language disorders have evolved separately. At our Discussion meeting in London, the focus will be on opportunities for sharing methods and concepts. At this Satellite meeting we will discuss key questions that can be addressed from both perspectives, and find common ground – or else identify research strategies for resolving differences.
Biographies of the key contributors are available below and you can also download the programme (PDF). Recorded audio of the presentations will be available on this page shortly after the event.
This meeting was preceded by the related scientific discussion meeting Language in developmental and acquired disorders: converging evidence for models of language representation in the brain.
Enquiries: Contact the events team
Professor Dorothy Bishop FMedSci FBA, University of Oxford, UK
Dorothy Bishop studied Experimental Psychology at Oxford University and Clinical Psychology at the Institute of Psychiatry, London, before completing a D.Phil in neuropsychology back at Oxford. She was for 20 years funded by the Medical Research Council before moving in 1998 to the Department of Experimental Psychology in Oxford to take up her Wellcome Principal Research Fellowship. She is a Fellow of the British Academy and the Academy of Medical Sciences.
Her research focuses on the nature and causes of children’s communication problems, encompassing psychological, linguistic, neurological and genetic aspects. Her book Uncommon Understanding won the British Psychology Society’s annual book prize in 1998. As well as publishing in conventional academic outlets, she writes a popular blog which was a runner-up in the Good Thinking Society’s UK Science Blog 2012 prize. She is a founder of a YouTube campaign for Raising Awareness of Language Learning Impairments.
Professor Karalyn Patterson FMedSci FBA, University of Cambridge, UK
Karalyn Patterson is a senior research fellow in the Department of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Cambridge; a Visiting Scientist at the MRC Cognition & Brain Sciences Unit, Cambridge; and Fellow and Wine Steward of Darwin College, Cambridge. Her educational background is in experimental psychology and neuropsychology, with degrees from the Universities of Toronto (Canada), Michigan and California (USA) and Cambridge (UK). Her research concentrates on what we can learn about the organisation and neural representation of language and memory from the study of neurological patients who were cognitively normal until the onset of brain disease or damage in adulthood. This research programme includes extensive cognitive testing of different patient groups, to obtain detailed patterns of processes that are impaired and those that are still relatively preserved, combined with structural and functional brain imaging to reveal malfunctioning brain regions. She has been lucky to be able to study and compare the impact of the same brain disorders on two very different languages, English and Japanese.
Professor Kate Nation, University of Oxford, UK
Kate Nation is Professor of Experimental Psychology at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of St John’s College, Oxford. Kate’s research is focused on language and literacy development and disorder. She is interested in a range of questions concerning the nature of reading and its development, from how children begin to recognize words through to how we extract and construct meaning from written language. Further details of her research can be found at: http://lcd.psy.ox.ac.uk
Professor Wendy Best, University College London, UK
Wendy Best is Professor of Communication Science and Language Therapy in the Division of Psychology and Language Sciences at UCL. Wendy followed her Psychology BSc (at Leicester University) with clinical training as a Speech and Language Therapist (City University). She obtained a MSc (Cognitive Neuropsychology), her PhD and first lectureship at Birkbeck College before moving to UCL in 2001. Wendy’s research involves work with adults with aphasia and children with specific language needs to increase our understanding of communication disorder and language production. She has a particular interest in investigating the effect of interventions, including newly devised approaches, and in linking research and practice. Wendy directs the Centre for Speech & Language Intervention Research and co-directs UCL’s specialist Doctorate in Clinical Communication Science. Projects include WORD: exploring lexical development and word-retrieval difficulties in children (http://sites.google.com/site/wordfinding/) and Better Conversations with Aphasia (http://www.ucl.ac.uk/betterconversations/aphasia).
Professor Holly Branigan, University of Edinburgh, UK
Holly Branigan is Professor of Psychology of Language and Cognition at the University of Edinburgh. After completing a PhD in Cognitive Science at the University of Edinburgh, she held a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Glasgow before joining the School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences at Edinburgh. Her research is mainly concerned with the nature of the cognitive processes and representations that underlie language production in adults and children, with a particular focus on lexical and syntactic structure. It uses experimental methodologies to investigate a range of adult and typical and atypical child populations.
Professor Gina Conti-Ramsden, University of Manchester, UK
Gina Conti-Ramsden is Professor of Child Language and Learning at The University of Manchester, UK. Gina’s interests cover a variety of issues regarding the development of individuals with specific language impairment (SLI), from infancy to adolescence and early adulthood. Gina is the Director of the well-known longitudinal study of SLI which has been running in England for the past eighteen years, following children from 7 years of age to adulthood and has over 100 publications in the area. She is a fellow of the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists, a fellow of the British Psychological Society and an Academician of the Social Sciences. Gina has been internationally recognised with the gold medal for research excellence by the oldest University in Latin America, La Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, Lima, Perú where she holds a lifetime Honorary Professorship. Gina is interested in raising public awareness of SLI and fostering the relationship between research and practice. She is a founder member of RALLI, a campaign to raise awareness of language learning impairments.
Dr Matt Davis, MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit, UK
Matt Davis is a programme leader in Hearing Speech and Language at the Medical Research Council, Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit in Cambridge, UK. His research is focussed on understanding the computational and neural mechanisms supporting adaptive processing of spoken language. He has published over 75 papers that contribute to our understanding of how higher-level knowledge, perceptual learning and consolidation allow human speech comprehension to achieve unmatched speed, accuracy and flexibility. His group uses a variety of methods, from psycholinguistics, cognitive psychology and neuroscience, including behavioural studies, computational modelling and digital speech manipulation, fMRI and EEG/MEG.
Professor Gareth Gaskell, University of York, UK
Professor Gaskell read Experimental Psychology at Cambridge, and then studied for a PhD at Birkbeck College, London. He has since worked at Birkbeck and the MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit in Cambridge before joining the Psychology Department in York in 1999. He has published widely on language, including speech perception, phonological processing, the mental lexicon, vocabulary acquisition. More recently these interests have been combined with an interest in sleep and memory consolidation. He edited the Oxford Handbook of Psycholinguistics and currently runs a sleep and language research lab in York, funded by the ESRC and Leverhulme Trust.
Dr Chloë Marshall, Institute of Education, University of London, UK
Chloë Marshall has a background in biology, Montessori education, linguistics and psychology. She is currently a Senior Lecturer in Psychology and Human Development at the IOE, where she leads the Masters in Special and Inclusive Education. She sits on the management committee of the Centre for Educational Neuroscience at Birkbeck/IOE/UCL and contributes to the Masters in Educational Neuroscience at Birkbeck/IOE. She recently edited the volume Current Issues in Developmental Disorders (2013; Psychology Press) and is Associate Editor of the journal First Language. Her research interests include typical and atypical language and literacy development in hearing and deaf children. Current research projects include an investigation of executive functions and language in deaf primary school children, with Tanya Denmark, Gary Morgan, Nicola Botting and Kathryn Mason at UCL and City University London, and an evaluation of “Talk for Writing”, with Julie Dockrell and Dominic Wyse at the IOE.
Professor David Plaut, Carnegie Mellon University, USA
David C Plaut is Professor of Psychology at Carnegie Mellon University, with a joint appointment in the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition. He is an internationally recognized expert in applying computational/neural-network modeling to understand normal and impaired cognitive processes, particularly in the domains of reading, language, and semantics. He received a FIRST award from NIH in 1997, a Fulbright Scholarship in 2000 and a Troland Research Award from NIH in 2003. He has been Associate Editor of Cognitive Neuropsychology and Journal of Memory and Language, has served on numerous Editorial Boards and Grant Review Panels, and has contributed to over 160 scientific publications.
Professor Athanassios Protopapas, University of Athens, Greece
Athanassios Protopapas is Associate Professor of Cognitive Science in the Department of Philosophy and History of Science, University of Athens, Greece. He holds a degree in Physics from the University of Patras (1991), MS in Cognitive Science (1993) and in Engineering (1995) and PhD in Cognitive Science from Brown University (Providence, RI, USA). In his dissertation he examined the role of stress and syllables in the perception of speech. He has worked on psychoacoustics, development of software for the assessment and remediation of language, reading, and cognitive abilities as well as on development and standardization of psychoeducational assessment tests. His main research interests focus on cognitive mechanisms of spoken and written language learning and perception at the lexical and sublexical level. He also works on computational cognitive models, acoustic phonetics, and development of resources and tools to support psycholinguistic research.
Professor Franck Ramus, Ecole Normale Supérieure, CNRS, France
Professor Ramus is a CNRS senior research scientist at the Institute of Cognitive Studies, Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris, where he leads the Cognitive development and pathology group. He previously graduated from Ecole Polytechnique and obtained his PhD in Cognitive Science from Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Paris. He was also a post-doctoral fellow for two years at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience (UCL) in London. His research attempts to address how the human genome builds a brain that can acquire a language, and other typically human cognitive skills. His main strategy is to study developmental disorders affecting language and/or social cognition (dyslexia, specific language impairment, autism…) at the cognitive, neural, and genetic levels.
Dr Jessie Ricketts, University of Reading, UK
Professor Timothy Rogers, University of Madison-Wisconsin, USA
Timothy Rogers is an associate professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Psychology Department. His research focuses on the cognitive, biological, and computational mechanisms that support human behavior in conceptual tasks such as language comprehension, induction and inference, object-recognition and categorization. Rogers uses biologically-inspired computer models to investigate how domain-general learning processes interact with pre-specified architectural constraints to support conceptual knowledge acquisition and processing in healthy and brain-damaged populations.This work is aimed at understanding the mechanisms that first give rise to conceptual abilities in development, how such mechanisms are influenced by experience and/or pathology, and how mature abilities can degrade as a consequence of focal and progressive brain injury. Rogers is the co-author (with Jay McClelland of Stanford University) of Semantic Cognition: A Parallel Distributed Processing Approach (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2004).
Professor Sophie Scott FMedSci, Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College London, UK
Sophie Scott is a cognitive neuroscientist interested in the neural systems that underlie human vocal communication, with a particular interest in the different ways that the human brain processes sounds and speech, the contributions of hemispheric asymmetries, and the ways that speech perception and production interact. She has been extending her research to address the social use of speech and language as well as affective aspects of vocal behaviour, such as laughter. She is group leader of the Speech Communication group at the ICN, and funded by a Senior Fellowship from the Wellcome Trust.
Professor Jesse Snedeker, Harvard University, USA
Biography not yet available
Professor Lorraine K Tyler, University of Cambridge, UK
Lorraine K Tyler is Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge. She heads the Centre for Speech, Language and the Brain [http://csl.psychol.cam.ac.uk/], an interdisciplinary research group which combines neuroimaging, neuropsychological, and behavioural methods to reveal how the human brain is organised to support language, perception, and meaning. Her work is currently funded by an ERC Advanced Investigator Grant. She also leads the Cambridge Centre for Ageing and Neuroscience (CamCan; http://www.cam-can.org/). CamCan is a University-wide consortium, funded by the BBSRC, to study ‘The Resilient Brain” - how age-related changes in brain structure and function relate to patterns of preserved and declining cognitive functions with age.
Professor Tyler gained her PhD from the University of Chicago. She worked at the Max Plank Institute for Psycholinguistics in Nijmegen before moving to the Department of Experimental Psychology at the University of Cambridge and from there to Birkbeck College, London. She returned to Cambridge in 1998. She is a Fellow of the British Academy, American Psychological Society and British Psychological Society.
Dr Anna Woollams, School of Psychological Sciences, University of Manchester, UK
Dr Anna Woollams began research into normal reading in her doctorate in experimental psycholinguistics in the Macquarie Centre for Cognitive Science in Sydney, Australia, which was awarded in 2003. After a lectureship in the School of Psychology at the University of Wollongong in Australia, she then moved to the UK in 2004 to take up a postdoctoral research position with Professor Karalyn Patterson at the Medical Research Council Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit in Cambridge. This allowed her to study the consequences of fronto-temporal dementia for spoken and written language processing, using a large case-series methodology combined with connectionist modelling. She moved to a Lectureship in the Neuroscience and Aphasia Unit at the University of Manchester in 2007, allowing her to extend her research to encompass neurostimulation, neuroimaging, stroke aphasic language deficits, rehabilitation for language disorders and, most recently, aspects of early language development.
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