Cognitive-Motor Learning Laboratory

Director: Aaron L. Wong

Overview

Movements are what enable us to interact with others and our environment; thus, the ability to move precisely and accurately is crucial throughout daily life. Moreover, as a society we recognize the value of the achievements of movement specialists such as athletes, dancers, and musicians. The goal of the CML Lab is to understand how interactions between the cognitive and motor systems allow us to acquire and maintain skilled actions and become movement experts. This includes identifying the processes that contribute both to the planning and the online control of actions.

Using motion tracking of the eye and arm in healthy individuals and in patients with neurological disorders, we aim to not only gain a better understanding of the motor system from a neurological and computational standpoint, but also to identify new approaches to enhance rehabilitation efforts.

Programs of Research
  • The role of abstract kinematics in movement imitation (with John Krakauer, MD, PhD, Laurel Buxbaum, PsyD, and Steve Jax, PhD)
  • The contribution of verbal and imitative instructions in acquiring skilled behaviors
  • Interactions between motivation, confidence, and learning
  • Neural circuits that regulate variability to sustain movement accuracy
  • Factors influencing the reaction time