(May 30, 2018) -- A team of researchers at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) received a two-year, $387,000 grant, from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), to develop technology that will identify brain activity patterns that contribute to stuttering and use that technology to train people how to optimize brain functions.
Edward Golob, a psychology professor and principal investigator of the grant, is teaming up with Kay Robbins, a professor in the UTSA Department of Computer Science, Jeffrey Mock, an assistant professor of research at UTSA, and Farzan Irani, an assistant professor of communication disorders at Texas State University, to study persistent developmental stuttering (PDS).
According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, stuttering affects roughly three million Americans of all ages.
With this grant, the research team of professors and their doctoral and undergraduate students will create brain-computer interface (BCI) technology with the goal to reduce how often participants stutter.
The study’s participants will have sensors on their heads that are connected to a computer system. The sensors will read what the brain is doing in real-time and will be used to identify brain activity patterns associated with successful and stuttered speech in each person.
After identifying brain states associated with a participant’s best performance, researchers train the brain to get into that state more often, with the hopes that their stuttering rate will be reduced.
“We are studying how to get the most out of the brain that you have,” said Golob, whose research expertise includes cognitive neuroscience with a focus on perception, attention and memory in the auditory system. “This general approach could be developed into a powerful tool for rehabilitation and therapy for neurological and psychiatric disorders including stroke, Alzheimer’s disease and traumatic brain injuries.”
Golob works alongside Mock, graduate, and undergraduate students in his Cognitive Neuroscience Lab. In the lab, research is conducted on aspects of hearing, such as determining where a sound is coming from in space, allocating spatial attention, understanding how perception is influenced by memory and actions. Through their work, the researchers are striving to understand the cognitive and neurobiological differences that accompany normal aging as well as neurodegenerative disease.
Golob is part of the Brain Health Consortium, a world-class research enterprise at UTSA comprised of 40 of the nation’s leading brain health researchers. These researchers leverage their expertise in neurodegenerative disease, brain circuits and electrical signaling, traumatic brain injury, regenerative medicine, stem cell therapies, medicinal chemistry, neuroinflammation, drug design and psychology to collaborate on complex, large-scale research projects that will produce a greater understanding of the brain’s complexity and the factors that cause its decline.
Learn more about the UTSA Department of Psychology.
Explore the UTSA College of Liberal and Fine Arts.
Discover the UTSA Department of Computer Science.
Delve into the UTSA Brain Health Consortium.
De-stress during Finals Week with UTSA Libraries' Relaxation Stations, located at John Peace Library on the second floor, and at the Downtown Library. The Relaxation Stations will include puzzles, coloring and more from Dec. 6-Dec. 14.John Peace Library, second floor and Downtown Library, Main and Downtown Campuses
This UTSA student exhibit features the work of anthropology students who have examined the effects tourism has on local culture.UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures, Hemisfair Campus
Students from grades 9 to 12 at Brooks Academy of Science and Engineering delved into their family histories and turned their family photos into artworks.UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures, Hemisfair Campus
The first ceremony begins at 10 a.m. honors graduates from the College of Architecture, Construction and Planning, College of Business, College of Education and Human Development and College of Public Policy.Alamodome, 100 Montana St., San Antonio
At 4 p.m., the second ceremony will be held to honor graduates from the College of Engineering, College of Liberal and Fine Arts, College of Science and the University College.Alamodome, 100 Montana St., San Antonio
UTSA's John Nix invites the community to sing "Amazing Grace" and “We Shall Overcome” at 11 a.m. on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The intent of this nationwide effort is to honor Dr. King's legacy and to spread a sense of community in the United States.Locations throughout the United States
The annual event features authentic foods, music, dance, martial arts, shopping, games and entertainment from China, to the Indian Sub-continent, and the island nations of the Pacific. The Festival features two stages, a martial arts demonstration area, children’s hands on crafting area, anime activities, bonsai and ikebana displays, mahjong table and more.UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures, Hemisfair Campus
UTSA Day is an Open House and one of the best ways to see what it is like to be part of the UTSA Family! Schedule a visit the way you want, based on your interests and time. Learn more about the next steps on becoming a Roadrunner!Various locations, Main Campus
The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.
We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.