Asking questions to the brain (Vragen stellen aan het brein): a 60min interactive workshop about the brain and rhythm. In February and May 2019 Katerina Kandylaki of BAND-Lab brought this workshop to 5th year class pupils at two local schools (Porta Mosana, Maastricht and Sophianum, Gulpen). She explained the basic concepts of imaging and stimulation methods (EEG, s/fMRI, TMS), the function of rhythm in language, and the basic idea of her current project NERHYMUS. This project investigates speech rhythm perception in musicians and non-musicians and is funded by the European Commission.
We had an EEG demonstration and a rhythm activity which were very well received by the teenagers. Even the “too-cool-for-school” ones were asking questions and joined the activities by the end of the workshop. A very rewarding and enjoyable experience for the researchers!
Many thanks to Kobus Lampe, master student in Neuropsychology for his support on the workshop. We also want to thank Isabelle Grosch (Marketing and Communications of the Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience), and Ellen Krijnen and Tanja Peters (Marketing and Communications of Maastricht University) for connecting researchers and schools and promoting interactions.
BAND-lab’s Xan Duggirala organised an event at the inaugural Pint of Science festival in May 2019 in Maastricht. The post-doc Katerina Kandylaki and the collaborator Andrea Ravignani presented their research in a fun and accessible way. We do the science and its communication.
In the above picture the participants are clapping to the beats of language, discovering an isochronous rhythm in poetry and a free rhythm in prose.
We are proud to present our new publication, the editorial of the special issue on story comprehension “From story comprehension to the neuorobiology of language” in the Language, Cognition, and Neuroscience journal of Taylor Francis.
Three BAND-lab members were involved in this special issue. Sonja Kotz and Laura Verga wrote about “Putting language back into ecological communication contexts”. Katerina Kandylaki edited the special issue, together with Ina Bornkessel-Schlesewsky of the University of South Australia.
Ever wanted to test the timing of your MIDI percussion pads, sound modules, and instrument patches? Well now you can! The SMIDIBT is available and the scripts are free to download:
If you have any comments or questions, feel free to contact Ben Schultz: firstname.lastname@example.org
Schultz, B. G. (2018). The Schultz MIDI Benchmarking Toolbox for MIDI interfaces, percussion pads, and sound cards, Behavior Research Methods.
The second part of a project investigating the relationship between prosody and speaker’s gestures, in collaboration with Lauren Fromont (Montreal) and Salvador Soto-Faraco (Barcelona), has been published now. If you want to read the whole story, check this out:
Fromont L.A., Soto-Faraco S., and Biau E. (2017) Searching High and Low: Prosodic Breaks Disambiguate Relative Clauses. Front. Psychol. 8:96.
Biau, E., Fromont, L. A. and Soto-Faraco, S. (2017), Beat Gestures and Syntactic Parsing: An ERP Study. Language Learning. doi:10.1111/lang.12257
The article can be read here for free (for a limited time): http://rdcu.be/vTrT
When learning rhythms, sighted people tend to learn rhythms better when they induce a sense of beat (i.e., metrical rhythms) compared to when they don’t (i.e., nonmetrical rhythms). This experiment shows that blind people demonstrated the reverse trend; they learned nonmetrical rhythms better than metrical rhythms. These results suggest that the blind might be more sensitive to rhythms that are irregular, perhaps as a survival mechanism to detect changes in the environment that signal danger.