Andrew Chang 張詠沂

I am a postdoctoral researcher working with Professor David Poeppel at Department of Psychology, New York University. I am fascinated by various topics in cognitive science with a focus on auditory perception and the relevant neural mechanisms.

Currently, I am investigating the fundamental differences between speech and music at the acoustic, perceptual, and neural levels. Speech and music are two specialized forms of auditory signals that are closely tied to human mind; however, despite our increasingly rich understanding of the perceptual and neural mechanisms of human processing for speech or music, surprisingly little is known how they are treated as different auditory signals by the human mind and brain at the first place. Investigating these distinctions is foundational for a thorough understanding of how acoustic waveforms are transformed into meaningful information. The work will provide a more solid basis for understanding cognition and communication as well as treating people with communicative deficits, such as people with autism, Alzheimer’s disease, and aphasia. Gratefully, this project is supported by the Ruth L. Kirschstein Postdoctoral Individual National Research Service Award, National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, National Institutes of Health.

I obtained my Ph.D. in Psychology at McMaster University, supervised by Professor Laurel J. Trainor. I investigated how human process dynamic auditory information and their reactions. The daily communication and social interaction activities are highly dynamic and complicated, because we have to capture the fleeting information in sounds to perceive it, and instantaneous coordination is required to perform successful responses with others. Specifically, my research included (1) whether prediction and attention facilitate processing dynamic auditory information, (2) how our brains (especially, the neural oscillatory activities) enable us to perform such dynamic tasks, (3) how these psychological and neural mechanisms developed from childhood to adulthood, and related to developmental disorders such as developmental coordination disorder (“clumsiness”) and dyslexia, and (4) how these mechanisms are implemented in real-world interpersonal social interaction.

Depending on the scientific appropriateness, I combine various research methods for my investigations from different aspects, which includes (but not limited to) behavioral experiment, psychophysics, computational modeling, EEG, and motion capture. I have been working with adults, musicians, and children individually and in a multipersonal environment.

A little bit about me. I grew up in Taipei, Taiwan, and I completed my B.S. in Psychology at National Taiwan University. I am an unprofessional classical violinist but am now interested in jazz, and a foodie who undoubtedly eats too much. I used to swim and play squash but now I enjoy making bad jokes, playing games and being quarantined at home.

(Last update: April 11, 2020)

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