Movement is the only way we have of interacting with the world, whether manipulating objects, navigating through our environment, playing musical instruments, or communicating with others. Thus, understanding how actions are planned and controlled, how actions are perceived by observers, and how skilled actions are learned, is an important enterprise.
The goal of research in the Cognition & Action Lab is to understand the cognitive, computational and neural foundations of each of these abilities. In addition to studies with healthy adults, we also carry out research on action impairments in neurological conditions.
Studies carried out in the lab involve the measurement of eye and hand movements as well as forces applied to manipulated objects. To study action control and learning, we use virtual environments in which we can manipulate visual feedback and, using robots, the forces experienced by participants as they move. In addition to psychophysical studies and modeling, we use functional magnetic imaging and other tools to investigate the neural bases of action.
The lab is based in the Department of Psychology, Queen's University, and is part of the Centre for Neuroscience Studies.
Research in the laboratory is supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Canadian Foundation for Innovation, the Ontario Innovation Trust, and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.
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