We conduct research on hearing and speech perception, as well as the disorders (e.g., hearing loss, tinnitus) associated with them. This is done by using a combination of computational modeling, brain imaging experiments, and behavioral experiments. Computational modeling allows for the generation of detailed, elaborate computer programs that simulate auditory and speech perception in the brain, specifically the cerebral cortex. The modeling allows us to describe the essence of a phenomenon being studied and to make testable predictions. The predictions made by the model are tested using behavioral and imaging tools. We use magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to obtain detailed images of the structure and function of the brain, in particular, to investigate the differences between patient populations and healthy controls. This will allows us to evaluate therapies and to propose novel treatment methods for a particular disorder.
Our research is conducted at the Department of Speech and Hearing Science and the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
The Principal Investigator of the ACN lab is Dr. Fatima T. Husain. She has a PhD in Cognitive and Neural Systems from Boston University. She worked for several years as a PostDoc and later as a Research Fellow in the Brain Imaging and Modeling lab of NIDCD, National Institutes of Health. She first came to the US as an international student from India. She has been at University of Illinois since January 2008.