McMaster University

McMaster University

People

John ConnollyJohn F. Connolly, Ph.D

Co-Director of LMB lab, with specific focus on neuroscience of cognition with applications to assessment of clinical populations
Professor, Department of Linguistics and Languages

Senator William McMaster Chair in Cognitive Neuroscience of Language (effective July 1, 2010).

Dr. John Connolly is the Senator William McMaster Chair in the Cognitive Neuroscience of Language (2010; renewed 2015). His areas of investigation include the cognitive neuroscience of language with particular emphasis on the use of brain imaging techniques (e.g., event-related potentials, magnetoencephalography, and functional magnetic resonance imaging) in the study of speech processing and reading. His research includes applications to brain injury with reference to disorders of consciousness in the unresponsive wakefulness syndrome, minimally conscious states and coma. This work focuses on developing brain imaging tools to enable the assessment of cognitive functioning in patients who are unable to communicate through language or gesture. His work also includes research in both assessment and brain-computer interfacing with locked-in syndrome patients.

Dr. Connolly has published extensively in peer-reviewed journals for 35 years. He has been an invited speaker at numerous scientific conferences in Europe, Asia, and North America. His research has been supported by Canadian, American, British, and European funding agencies. He has served on the Editorial Board and as an Associate Editor of Clinical Neurophysiology, on the Editorial Board of the International Journal of Psychophysiology, and reviews regularly for a range of journals. He has also served as reviewer for North American, European and Asian agencies and institutions and as a panel reviewer for the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, the National Institutes of Health, and the Department of Defense.

John ConnollyElisabet Service, Ph.D

Co-Director of LMB lab, with specific focus on cognitive aspects of processing, acquisition and impairments of language
Associate Professor, Department of Linguistics and Languages

Dr. Elisabet Service’s research incorporates three major elements: working memory, language and dyslexia. She started her research career in Helsinki, Finland, by investigating how working memory is involved in learning a second or foreign language. It turned out that phonological aspects of memory, i.e. the ability to form representations for how foreign words sound, were a powerful predictor for ease of language learning. As this type of memory is also critical in learning to read, Dr. Service expanded into research on the causes of dyslexia. Over the years, she has done basic research in the area of memory, but also applied working memory concepts and methods to studying morphological complexity in the mental lexicon, sentence processing, language acquisition, bilingualism, reading difficulty, and developmental language impairment. As for methods, Dr. Service has mainly used memory tasks, but also EEG and MEG (magnetoencephalography) based measures in collaborative projects. She is still looking for the elementary cognitive building blocks that play a key role in language development, language learning and successful literacy.

PhD Students

Robert BoshraRober Boshra

boshrar@mcmaster.ca

School of Biomedical Engineering, co-supervised by: Dr. John Connolly and Dr. James Reilly

Research Interests: High level representations of brain imaging data and brain-computer interfacing through methods of machine learning.


Cassandra ChapmanCassandra Chapman

chapmc3@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, supervised by Dr. Ivona Kucerova

Research Interests: Sentence processing, syntax-semantics interface, syntactic reconstruction effects, effects of logical form on real-time processing, working memory.


Angela HarrisonAngela Harrison

harriav2@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, supervised by Dr. John Connolly

Research Interests: Language and reading acquisition in children with deafness and language impairment.


Richard MahRichard Mah

mahrl@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, supervised by Dr. John Connolly

Research Interests: ERP investigation of multi-lingualism and second language acquisition.


Gaisha OralovaGaisha Oralova

oralovag@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, supervised by Dr. John Connolly

Research Interests: Visual and spoken word recognition of Chinese characters; more particularly, the time course of phonological and semantic activation during these recognition processes


No PhotoAlexander Rokos

alexander.rokos@mail.mcgill.ca

Integrated Program in Neuroscience (IPN), McGill University, co-supervised by Dr. Stefanie Blain-Moraes and Dr. John Connolly

Research Interests: ERP and Continuous EEG analysis; more specifically, detecting and assessing consciousness in unresponsive populations


Kyle I Ruiter Kyle I. Ruiter

ruiterki@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, supervised by Dr. John Connolly

Research Interests: Neurolinguistics: ERP investigation of language deficiencies in Concussions and Traumatic Brain Injuries


Edalat Shekari Edalat Shekari

shekare@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, supervised by Dr. Elisabet Service

Research Interests: Psycho/neurolinguistics; bilingual language processing; the role of working memory resources in processing L1 & L2 input; working memory span and sentence processing in L1 & L2.


Bryor Snefjella Bryor Snefjella

snefjebn@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, supervised by Dr. Victor Kuperman

Research Interests: Role of emotion in word processing


Narcisse Torshizi Narcisse Torshizi

torshizin@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, co-supervised by Dr. Elisabet Service & Dr. Magda Stroinska

Research Interests: Neuro-cognitive aspects of language processing and word recognition in bilinguals; more specifically, it is focused on questions of how morphologically complex words are represented and processed in the bilingual brain


No PhotoKaren Tucker

tuckeke@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, supervised by Dr. John Connolly

Research Interests: using music to assess cognitive processing in non-communicative patients.


Chelsea WhitwellChelsea Whitwell

whitwelc@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, supervised by Dr. Elisabet Service

Research Interests: Third language acquisition and the affects of incomplete second language acquisition; more specifically, the focus is on sentence processing at the initial stage of learning Romance languages in Canada


Master's Students

Michael GreencornMichael Greencorn

greencom@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, supervised by Dr. Elisabet Service

Research Interests: The role of working memory in visual word recognition and the use of memory recall tasks as investigative tools


Natalia LapinskayaNatalia Lapinskaya

lapinskn@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Integrative Neuroscience Discovery and Study (MiNDS), supervised by Dr. John Connolly

Research Interests: Using neuroimaging to investigate neurocognitive faculties in non-verbal/unresponsive populations.


Kenny LukKenny Luk

luks@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, co-supervised by Dr. Daniel Pape and Dr. Elisabet Service

Research Interests: ERP investigation of speech perception, particularly cross-language perception and tone perception


Fareeha RanaFareeha Rana

ranafs@mcmaster.ca

McMaster Cognitive Science of Language Program, co-supervised by Dr. Elisabet Service & Dr. Magda Stroinska

Research Interests: Cost of reading and processing English internet and texting shortcuts; phonological and lexical access during language processing


Undergraduate Students


Nitish DhingraNitish Dhingra

dhingn2@mcmaster.ca

Bachelor of Health Sciences Program (Honours)

Volunteer Research Assistant


NathaleeEwersNathalee Ewers

ewersnp@mcmaster.ca

Bachelor of Sciences Program, Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour (Honours)

Volunteer Research Assistant


Ravish GuptaRavish Gupta

guptar14@mcmaster.ca

Bachelor of Health Sciences Program (Honours)

Volunteer Research Assistant


Harpreet JaswalHarpreet Jaswal

jaswah1@mcmaster.ca

Bachelor of Science, Life Sciences (Honours)

Volunteer Research Assistant


Bomi ParkBomi Park

parkb1@mcmaster.ca

Bachelor of Health Sciences Program (Honours)

Volunteer Research Assistant


Courtney TiddCourtney Tidd

tiddca2@mcmaster.ca

Cognitive Science of Language Program (Honours)

Volunteer Research Assistant


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