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PhD positions in UConn’s Language & Cognition Program 

      The Language & Cognition faculty at the University of Connecticut’s Department of Psychological Sciences are soliciting applications for PhD students to begin in the fall of 2022. 

     The Language & Cognition group is part of the Perception-Action-Cognition division, one of 6 highly interactive divisions within the department. We have a strong track record in interdisciplinary research with work spanning from theory and computational modeling to empirical cognitive and neuroscience research. Our work is animated by a focus on the interplay between new cognitive science insights and the classical foundation in the computational theory of mind in a broad range of domains (e.g., brain plasticity, embodied cognition, event dynamics, spoken language understanding, reading, sentence processing, dynamical systems methods)Our group is a core member of three interdisciplinary graduate training programs: Neurobiology of Language (launched with NSF IGERT funding), Science of Learning & Art of Communication (funded by an NSF NRT training grant), and the Cognitive Neuroscience of Communication (funded by an NIH pre- and postdoctoral training grant). Facilities include state-of-the-art MRI, high-density EEG, tDCS, TMS, eyetracking, and other behavioral techniques, as well as access to computing clusters, lab space, and a dynamic program of colloquia, internal talk series, and interest groups. We have strong collaborative links to researchers outside of UConn as well as our colleagues in Linguistics, Speech, Language, & Hearing Sciences, Philosophy, Biomedical Engineering, Educational Psychology, and UConn Health and the Medical School. Typically, students are funded through a mix of fellowships and Teaching and Research Assistantships, and our students have an excellent recent track record competing for external and internal fellowships. UConn is home to a vibrant community of faculty and students and expects to see major growth in research activity over the next decade. 

 The Language & Cognition faculty, and their interests, include: 

Gerry Altmann (Director, CT Institute for the Brain and Cognitive Sciences). Sentence processing and prediction; the mapping between language and vision; event cognition. 

Christian Brodbeck Cognitive neuroscience of language, speech perception, EEG/MEG. 

Roeland Hancock (Associate Director, Brain Imaging Research Center). Neurochemistry and neuromodulation; Neurobiology of sentence processing; Auditory Processing. 

Fumiko Hoeft (Director, Brain Imaging Research Center). Brain development; various neuroimaging methods; machine learning; individual differences; literacy acquisition; dyslexia. 

Jim Magnuson (Director, NSF NRT training program in Science of Learning & Art of Communication). Neurobiology and psychology of language; spoken language understanding; computational modeling; language and learning over the lifespan; science communication. 

Emily Myers (Co-Director, NIH training program in the Cognitive Neuroscience of  Communication). Speech perception; cognitive neuroscience of speech and language; aphasia; second language acquisition. 

Ken Pugh (President, Haskins Laboratories). Reading; reading disorders; neurobiology of language. 

Jay Rueckl Neurobiology and psychology of reading; implicit and explicit memory; statistical learning; computational modeling and dynamical systems. 

Whit Tabor Sentence processing; theory of grammar; dynamical systems; neural networks; language change; group coordination. 

Eiling Yee Semantic memory and the neural representation of concepts; spoken word recognition and situated/embodied language processing. 

Next steps: Contact a potential faculty advisor from the list above, explore UConn and, by Dec 1, 2020, complete the application procedure.