The Main Laboratory for Neurocognitive ResearchHead: Prof. Asaid Khateb
The Main Laboratory for Neurocognitive Research has several devices of diverse technologies that are at the disposal of each our students and investigators: EEG devices, functional near infra-red spectroscopy (fNIRS) devices, Eye-tracking device, Electrode positioning device, Force plate device and Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) device. These most up-to-date technologies give our staff the opportunity to carry out innovative studies in different cognitive domains including language processing, reading, learning, attention and visual processing.
Human Brain & Learning Laboratory
Research at the HBL laboratory focuses on the neuro-behavioral constraints that are imposed on the ability of humans to acquire, retain and master novel skills (“how to” knowledge). The studies stem from the notion that human learning and especially the generation of long-term memory reflects a set of basic and highly controlled biological processes (neuronal plasticity), at cellular and brain systems level, that need to be accounted for, and satisfied in order to achieve mastery and skill. The goal is to contribute to a neuro-behavioral perspective on learning, across the human life span, so as to better recruit biological memory processes in the practice of teaching, skill acquisition and in the rehabilitation of disabled individuals. In the lab, analyses of behavior, physiological measurements and brain-imaging techniques are employed to study learning and memory in multiple domains; from the generation of novel movement sequences to the mastery of a new language.
The Laboratory for Attention
Our team is studying the neurocognitive mechanisms underlying attention in humans. We use a variety of techniques to study attention. This includes behavioral tests that aim to reveal how attention influences our performance and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) that aim to reveal the biological neural properties of attentions in the brain. In addition to studying the attention mechanism in healthy population they are interested in studying this mechanism in attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
The laboratory for Reading Comprehension
Our main fields of interest are:
- Linking cognition and emotion in reading
- Reading comprehension
- Digital reading and text display
- Reading intervention
The Numerical Neurocognitive Research Laboratory
We investigate high-level human cognitive functions using experimental psychology, neuropsychology, and electrophysiological approaches (Event-Related Potential Technique – ERP).
Our aim is to better understand computations throughout the brain and the cognitive system, and to be able to contribute to the predictive markers of intact and deficient development of numerical skills. We wish to shed light on the important issue of how numerical intuitions can be fostered by classroom practice in typical as well as atypical (e.g., dyscalculia and math anxiety) developing children
Language Learning and Executive Function Laboratory
The Prior Lab focuses on better characterizing and understanding the interactions between two (or more) languages in a single neural and cognitive system, and aims to identify mechanisms underlying individual differences in language learning and processing. Our goal is for this research to foster the development of effective instruction and intervention programs in the domain of foreign language learning, as well as programs targeted at minority language students in mainstream education
Literacy and Writing Systems
The Literacy and Writing Systems Laboratory is founded on the idea that an understanding of writing system architecture is essential to any theory of literacy learning. Although writing first and foremost represents language, written language is not simply a clone of spoken language, but an additional and unique dimension of language learning. Furthermore, because writing systems differ in fundamental ways, these differences have a profound influence on the course of learning to read and write, and more generally, on literacy learning.
The Edmond J. Safra Early Childhood Laboratory Prevention and Intervention of Learning DisabilitiesHead: Dr. Shelly Shaul
The early childhood laboratory was established in order to develop early identification tests (behavioral and brain-based) for at risk children for learning disabilities and behavioral and computerized interventions for at-risk groups from the age of 3 years old. The main topics of research are the development of language and cognitive abilities such as working memory, visual perception, sequential perception, speed of processing and executive functions and their connection to early literacy and numeracy skills. Understanding the role of these skills, which are the foundation of all learning processes, will help to develop screening batteries and intervention programs to help children and prevent difficulties before entering formal schooling
The Unit for the study of Arabic LanguageHead: Prof. Asaid Khateb
The Unit focuses on the impact of diglossia in Arabic on reading acquisition in young children and on the characteristics of skilled reading in adults. Research activity explores the neural bases of language processing using various techniques, including event-related potentials (ERPs), functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and functional near infra-red spectroscopy (fNIRS), together with behavioral measures.
Learning and Language Research Laboratory
Head. Dr. Yafit Gabay
Research conducted in the lab focuses on cognitive aspects of learning and its breakdown in neurodevelopmental disorders. Yafit and her team focus on different phases of skill learning, from initial acquisition (online learning) to memory consolidation (offline learning). A major part of the research is also dedicated to understand the learning mechanisms that underlie the acquisition of speech and language-related skills, and specifically how these processes might be affected in developmental dyslexia. A related line of research concerns adaptive plasticity of speech among individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders. To this end, research combines different disciplines such as cognitive psychology, neuropsychology and speech perception. Through the research conducted in the lab they hope to gain a better understanding about the mechanisms involved in skill acquisition and to unravel the neurocoginitive basis of different neurodevelopemntal disorders.
The Neuro-phenomenological lab studying brain, mind and behavior
Head: Prof. Aviva Berkovich-Ohana
The research in my lab focuses on the neural mechanisms underlying various meditation training techniques, both in the context of basic science and consciousness research, as well as the context of applied science – i.e. their relevance to education, teachers and students. To this ends we utilize various research tools, including neuroimaging (fMRI, MEG and EEG), behavior (cognitive tasks) and phenomenology (using depth-interviews)
Laboratory for Clinical Research
Our main fields of study in the lab are:
- Research on profiles of Hebrew-speaking individuals with reading disabilities.
- Research on emotional characteristics of readers with difficulties and their parents and teachers, with a particular emphasis on the negative contribution of rumination about RD to academic achievement and on changes in such relationships throughout periods of intervention.
- At the lab, we also engaged in practical work, which includes development of assessment tools and teacher training to cope with learning difficulties
The Emotion Lab
The Emotion Lab, directed by Noga Cohen, studies the ways in which emotion, attention and cognitive control shape human behavior and experience. We use a combination of behavioral, psychophysiological and brain imaging methods to understand adaptive and maladaptive emotion regulation processes. We study basic emotion regulation mechanisms and design cognitive interventions with the aim to improve emotion regulation among healthy and clinical populations.
The Laboratory for the Study of BilingualismHead: Prof. Mark Leikin Three research fields are in focus at our lab:
- Examination of the possible effect of bilingualism on different types of creativity in non-mathematical (verbal, figurative and general) and mathematical problem solving;
- Development of creativity in early Childhood in normal and abnormal (SLI, ADHD) populations;
- Hebrew-Arabic bilingualism and morphological development.
Visual Attention and Cognition Lab
The Yashar Lab investigates visual perception and cognition, particularly, the processes, which determine how people detect and identify visual features and objects. Our goal is to understand how cognitive and brain capacities such as plasticity, attention, and memory can enhance visual perception in both typical and atypical populations – e.g. people with autism, visual impairments, and learning disabilities. We use various research methods, including psychophysics, eye tracking, and computational modeling
The Unit for Software Development
Our team develops innovative and creative web-based software used for intervention and research investigations in the field of Learning Disabilities. This software is widely used by teachers and research investigators around the world. The software acts as a platform for diverse assessment and treatment programs. The Reading Acceleration Program (RAP) is one of the most advanced programs in this platform. It is an innovative, interactive, individualized computerized web application for improving reading-fluency and reading-comprehension skills.
The mission of our Unit for Software Development is to create computerized tools that can adapt to the individual needs of the students to help them reach their full academic potential, no matter where they live or what language they speak.