Listen with your brain while hearing with your ears

In a conversation we sometimes hear what is said but we still don’t understand. Other times we don’t hear, but we can still understand what a person means. I study how the brain understands speech when communicating in adverse listening conditions. I am also involved in projects dealing with large databases and clinical registers. I teach in scientific methods
and experimental designs, primarly using basic and advanced statistical methods.

During speech-communication one must be able to perceive as well as interpret the meaning of the auditory speech-signal. Speech-understanding may be complicated by factors such as background noise or hearing loss. Under those circumstances are not all parts of the auditory speech-signal perceived, but we may as well be able to understand.

In my research I study how our brains make use of prior knowledge and cognitive abilities to predict what will be involved in the auditory speech-signal. Highly predictive brains have higher ability to ”fill in the gaps” in a degraded speech-signal. I study how people with different cognitive abilities try to understand speech in different kinds and levels of noise. I am especially interested in experimental designs where those cognitive abilities are actively manipulated, for example by manipulating the expectations on what the speech signal will contain. I use fMRI and MEG to examine the neurocognitive processing under such circumstances.

Clinical registers

I also do research using different clinical registers. Often this research takes an interdisciplinary approach where people from very different backgrounds meet and contribute. I really enjoy being part of such a team where I can use my experiences from the technical, medical as well as behavioural parts of the academy when communicating over different disciplins. (I was once called ’an academic amobea’ to describe that I cope with research in many different fields of research.)

Teaching

I teach mainly in scientific methods and experimental designs, primarly using basic and advanced statistical metohds. I enjoy teaching at a variety of programs where students have very different backgrounds and interest in scientific methods.