People

Olivia Cheung

Principal Investigator

olivia.cheung@nyu.edu, NYU Abu Dhabi faculty page, video, Google Scholar, ORCID, CV

Olivia is an assistant professor of psychology at NYU Abu Dhabi. Her research aims to understand how we perceive the visual world. Olivia holds a Ph.D. in Psychology from Vanderbilt University. Before joining NYU Abu Dhabi, she did postdoctoral research at Harvard Medical School, at the Center of Mind/Brain Sciences (CIMeC) in Trento, Italy, and at Harvard University.

Tobiasz Trawinski

Postdoctoral Researcher

tobiasz.trawinski@nyu.edu, CV

Tobiasz is a postdoctoral researcher in the lab. He studied his PhD at the University of Southampton, UK, and also worked at Liverpool Hope University, UK. His current research projects explore the mechanisms underlying face perception and category learning processes, in relation to visual expertise. Tobiasz also studies the impact of cognitive and aesthetic processes on spectatorship of art.

Haiyang Jin

Postdoctoral Researcher

haiyang.jin@nyu.edu, CV

Haiyang is a postdoctoral researcher in the lab. He studied his PhD at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. He is mainly interested in face processing and vision science. His projects investigate the role of experience in holistic processing of faces and non-face objects, and the relationship between subjective perception and the neural signatures of face processing (e.g., the N170 component, and activations in the face-specific cortical areas such as the FFA).

Nawal Aljaeedi

Capstone Student, class of 2021

nha241@nyu.edu

Nawal is a senior student at NYU Abu Dhabi. She currently double majors in Psychology and Music Studies. Her main interests include topics within the fields of forensic science and cognitive neuroscience, such as learning about how we perceive the world and our environment through different lenses of experience. Her capstone project investigates how musical experts process different configurations of musical notation in the brain compared with novices.

Alumni

Natasha Maria Treunen

Former Capstone Student, class of 2020

nmt303@nyu.edu

Natasha majored in Psychology with minors in Social Research and Public Policy, Film and New Media, and Child Development and Social Interventions. She is interested in how culture, life experiences and social interactions impact our development and shape our behavior. Her capstone research investigated the relationship between face and word processing, specifically how reading experience may influence face perception.

Anna Erdi

Former Capstone Student and Post-graduate Practical Trainee, class of 2020

ae1463@nyu.edu

As a Psychology major, Anna's main interests include finding out how different types of physical exercise can change the brain, and the possibilities of involving sports and exercise in the treatment of mental disorders and neurodegenerative diseases. Her capstone project examined how emotional state and language expertise can influence holistic processing of words. Anna now studies a master's degree in Sports Psychology at Loughborough University, UK.

Chenxi He

Former Postdoctoral Researcher

hechenxi0727@gmail.com, CV

Chenxi was a postdoctoral researcher in the lab. She received her Ph.D. from Beijing Normal University. Chenxi is interested in the neural basis of visual object recognition and concept learning. Her projects investigated the nature of representation of different concepts. Specifically, she studied how category-selective effects for animals and man-made objects observed in behavior and in the brain are explained by visual or conceptual differences among the categories. Chenxi is now a postdoc with Stanislas Dehaene at INSERM, France.

Emma Wei Chen

Former Postdoctoral Researcher

emma.chen.w@gmail.com, CV

Emma was a postdoctoral researcher in the lab. She received her Ph.D. from Chinese Academy of Sciences, and did postdoctoral research at Center for Cognition and Brain Disorders, Hangzhou Normal University. Emma is interested in quantitative characterizations of expert object recognition. Her main projects investigated the nature of face perception, specifically how holistic processing of faces is dynamic and may be influenced by socio-cognitive factors. Emma is now a lecturer at Khalifa University, Abu Dhabi, UAE.

Seoyoung Lee

Former Capstone Student and Post-graduate Practical Trainee, class of 2019

syl511@nyu.edu

Seoyoung majored in Psychology with minors in Social Research and Public Policy and Urbanization. She is interested in the neural mechanisms underlying decision-making, attention, and scene perception. Her capstone research used fMRI to investigate the roles of the parahippocampal place area and the retrosplenial cortex in scene perception, specifically how these brain regions spatially and temporally integrate panoramic scenes. Seoyoung presented her findings at the 2019 Asian-Pacific Conference on Vision (APCV) in Osaka, Japan.

Araz Aslanian

Former Capstone Student and Post-graduate Practical Trainee, class of 2019

araz.aslanian@nyu.edu

Araz majored in Psychology with a minor in Interactive Media. She is passionate about how social attitudes influence the way we perceive the world. Using eye tracking, her capstone research investigated the effect of implicit racial biases, whether positive or negative, on face memory and perception. Araz presented her findings at the 2019 Asian-Pacific Conference on Vision (APCV) in Osaka, Japan.

Shao-Chin Hung

Former Postdoctoral Researcher

shaochin.hung@nyu.edu, CV

Shao-Chin was a postdoctoral researcher in the lab. She received her Ph.D. from University of California, Riverside, where she used psychophysics and eye-tracking to study mechanisms of human perceptual learning. As a postdoctoral fellow in Biomedical Engineering at Purdue University, she conducted fMRI and EEG research on human visual perception. Shao-Chin is interested in applying psychophysics and neuroimaging methods to study human attention, learning, object recognition, and conceptual knowledge. Shao-Chin is now a visiting scholar with Marisa Carrasco at NYU.

James Smoley

Former Capstone Student, class of 2017

james.smoley@nyu.edu

James majored in Psychology with a minor in Social Research and Public Policy. He is interested in how our culture and life experiences can affect our ways of thinking. His capstone research investigated whether our initial judgments of a stranger's face are affected by our implicit racial biases and our experience with individuals of different races. James's findings were presented at the 2019 International Convention of Psychological Science (ICPS) in Paris, France.

Oliver Heyn

Former Capstone Student, class of 2017

oliver.heyn@nyu.edu

Oliver majored in Psychology with minors in Business Studies and Economics. He is primarily interested in studying how marketing and branding strategies intersect with psychological phenomena. The topic of his capstone research was the study of company logos, specifically in understanding what kinds of visual properties attract attention and make certain logos more preferable than others. Oliver now holds a Master of Science degree in Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship from Manchester University, UK.

Mahlet Kassa

Former Capstone Student and Post-graduate Practical Trainee, class of 2016

mtk297@nyu.edu

Mahlet majored in Psychology with a concentration in Film and New Media. Her research interests include affective science, cognitive and social psychology. The topic of her capstone research was on the relative effects of experience and social bias on cross-race face recognition. Mahlet received the UNITN-SISSA scholarship and completed the master's program in cognitive science in Center for Mind/Brain Sciences (CIMeC), University of Trento, Italy. She is pursuing her PhD at Berlin School of Mind and Brain, Germany.

Sachith Joseph Cheruvatur

Former Post-graduate Practical Trainee, class of 2015

sachith.cheruvatur@nyu.edu

Sachith majored in Philosophy, specializing in a philosophy of mind, with a strong concentration in psychology. His research interests lie primarily in the area of empirical philosophy of mind. At the moment he is interested in object concept representation in the brain from both a philosophy of science/mind and cognitive neuroscience point of view. Sachith is pursuing his PhD in Neurophilosophy at Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, Germany.