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About the lab

The focus of our research is the relationship between perceptual and attentional processes and spoken language comprehension throughout the lifespan.


Current research

  • We are currently investigating:
    • the effects of a challenging listening environment on semantic and syntactic comprehension in healthy adults and children 
    • the relationship between auditory perceptual development and language acquisition in children
    • changes in perceptual sensitivity, working memory capacity and attentional control that accompany normal ageing, and their effects on spoken language comprehension in quiet and noise
    • the role of perceptual and attentional factors in developmental and acquired language disorders
    • the neural mechanisms responsible for the perception of speech and non-speech stimuli in ideal and adverse listening conditions
    • parallels between emerging expert systems in audition, language and vision.
  • We explore these questions using:
    • behavioural paradigms
    • functional magnetic resonance imaging
    • electrophysiological measures (in collaboration with other research groups).

Where our research is conducted

Funding (past and present)

In loving memory of Elizabeth Bates (1947-2003), our incomparable mentor and friend.