Brain Awareness Week features two public lectures

The annual observance of Brain Awareness Week at BGSU will feature two public lectures Thursday afternoon (March 16) on the neuroscience of language disorders known as aphasia.

Dr. Brooke Hallowell, director of the School of Hearing, Speech and Language Sciences and the Neurolinguistics Laboratory at Ohio University, will give a presentation on “Using Eye Tracking to Study Comprehension in People with Aphasia.”

Hallowell is an expert on acquired neurogenic communication disorders in adults. Her primary research deals with developing novel ways of using eye-tracking technology to assess linguistic comprehension in patients with neurological disorders.

Her talk will consider the challenges of assessing individuals with aphasia and the potential benefits of eye-tracking measures of reading and auditory comprehension to improve assessment in patients with neurological impairments.

The second speaker, Dr. Steven L. Small, an associate professor of neurology and co-director of the Brain Research MR Imaging Center at the University of Chicago, will address “Action Observation and Language Comprehension.” He will discuss the role of the motor system in the comprehension of language.

Small’s research examines language and motor function in the brain before and after stroke. He is particularly interested in the normal functioning of the cerebral cortex to better understand how the brain functions after damage to the area.

The lecture program will be held from 1-3 p.m. in the Bowen-Thompson Student Union Theater. Lunchtime snacks will be served from noon-1 p.m. in the theater lobby.

The annual lecture program, which is open to the public, is sponsored by the University’s J.P. Scott Center for Neuroscience, Mind and Behavior with the departments of psychology and biology. The theme of this year’s Brain Awareness Week is “Just Use It.”

For more information, contact Dr. Howard Casey Cromwell in the psychology department at 2-9408 or
March 13, 2006