Welcome to Alp Visual Neuroscience Lab

Learn more about who we are and what we do

How do we perceive the world? 

What is your internal representation of the world? How does it affect your perception?
How does the visual system combine the local properties of the visual scene into a coherent whole?




In collaboration with Huseyin Ozkan from Sabanci University, Suayb S. Arslan, and Tuna Çakar from MEF University, we are pleased to share our latest paper on "A new benchmark dataset for P300 ERP-based BCI applications". It has just been published in Elsevier (Digital Signal Processing). In this study, we introduce a new freely -and publicly- accessible P300 #dataset obtained using 32-channel #eeg, in the hope that it will lead to new research findings and eventually more efficient BCI designs. Please find our paper here.

Dr. Alp is awarded TUBITAK 1001 and TUBITAK 2509 - Turkey-France Bosphorus Programme! TUBITAK 1001 is about "Behavioral and neural correlates of the integration processes during dynamic face perception and episodic memory". TUBITAK 2509 is about "Information compression by the visual brain and neural correlates of redundancy masking". TUBITAK 2509 is a collaboration between  AlViN and the Psychophysics of Appearance (PA) laboratories and requires traveling to France. We have multiple job openings (master, Ph.D., and post-doc levels) in visual neuroscience, if you are interested in any of the positions please send a CV, motivation letter, and statement of purpose to nihan.alp@sabanciuniv.edu. 


Together with Dr. Junko Kanero and a master's student Selen Akay, we have a new book chapter "When vision is unreliable: the role of play in supporting children." In Handbook of Research on Play Specialism Strategies to Prevent Pediatric Hospitalization Trauma (pp. 203-239). IGI Global. You can reach our chapter here.

Together with lovely (previous and current) members of the AlViN lab and in collaboration with Prof. Bilge Sayim, we are pleased to share our latest paper on "The Sabanci University Dynamic Face Database (SUDFace): Development and validation of an audiovisual stimulus set of recited and free speeches with neutral facial expressions". It has just been published in Behavior Research Methods. In this study, we generated a multimodal dynamic neutral face #database by validating neutral faces among other neutral faces; we ensured that even slight deviation from "neutralness" was captured. The database is in Turkish and includes three different types of speeches: two recited and one spontaneous/free speech. You can find our paper here and all documentation here.

Together with Huseyin Ozkan from Sabanci University Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences, our latest research on "Neural correlates of integration processes during dynamic face perception" has just been published with SpringerNature in Scientific Reports. In this study, we specifically trace the temporal integration processes during dynamic face perception by introducing a new application of the frequency tagging paradigm. You can reach the paper here.  Happy reading!

We are pleased to have Prof. Bilge Sayim as a visiting researcher in our lab at Sabancı University. Prof. Sayim is currently the head of Psychophysics of Appearance Laboratory at the Institute of Psychology, University of Bern. He is also affiliated with the SCALab at the Université de Lille, CNRS, France. Stay tuned for Prof. Sayim's talk on perception.

AlViN lab welcomes a great research assistant Selin Yılmaz to the lab!

Are you interested in visual perception? How do we perceive faces, objects, and scenes? How about motion? Currently, Dr. Alp is looking for a research volunteer, who can help in programming experiments (in Matlab or Python), collecting and analyzing data. Relevant research experience is a plus but not required.  If you would like to be a part of the AlViN lab, please do not hesitate to contact Dr. Alp here.

Congratulations to Gülce Lale, and Damla Ciftci for getting into the MSc programs at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Humboldt University of Berlin, respectively!!

Dr. Alp will give a talk at the CogSci Days 2021 and discuss what changes when the part becomes whole.  The panel titled "A cognitive approach to emergence" will be held on Friday, September 3, at Yeditepe University. More information can be found here.

Miao Li from Prof. Dr. Bilge Sayim's lab and Gülce Lale from the AlViN lab will present posters at the ECVP 2021. Mio's poster is titled "Seeing features of unseen objects: feature migration in redundancy masking" and will be held on Monday, August 23, at 19:00 (CEST) while Gülce's poster is titled "Effect of eye and mouth movement in dynamic face perception"and will be held on Wednesday, August 25, at 11:00 (CEST).

We are very excited to announce our Ph.D. Program at the Sabanci University. Please see the details here!
The application deadline is on the 2nd of August!
AlViN lab also has funding for Ph.D. positions. Please feel free to get in touch with Dr. Alp (nihan.alp@sabanciuniv.edu) if you are interested in the position.

#NeuromatchAcademy is happening now! Thanks to our sponsors, we are delivering our message of borderless #education in #computationalneuroscience and #deeplearning. Here is Dr. Alp's message to the globe.

A new book "Experimental Approaches to Cognitive and Behavioral Processes in Psychology (Psikolojide Bilişsel ve Davranışsal Süreçlere Deneysel Yaklaşımlar)" is now on sale. The book contains six chapters that cover a wide range starting from animal models to social cognition. You can get it from here! See the preface and contents here.

All VSS 2021 poster presentations and talks are now available on YouTube, and through Kohler's lab, you can check them out! 

A workshop for the online experiment platform Labvanced will be held on 22 April, Thursday at 8 p.m. You can join via the Zoom link: https://sabanciuniv.zoom.us/j/9098405400

Dr. Alp will give a talk at the VSS 2021. The talk is titled "Neural Correlates of Integration Processes during Dynamic Face Perception", which will be held on Saturday, May 22, during the Face Perception: Models and mechanisms session.

"The Sabancı University Dynamic Face Database (SU DFace)" has been accepted to be presented during the Just-In-Time Poster Session B on the 25th of May (8:00-10:00 AM EDT) at the VSS 2021. The undergraduate research assistant Mahnoor Nadeem will present the poster. 

AlViN lab congratulates Rachel Moreau, who will give a talk at the Vision Sciences Society (VSS) 2021 conference. The talk is titled "Differential processing of reflection and rotation symmetries in visual textures". This is collaborative work between the AlViN lab and Kohler Visual Neuroscience Lab (KVNL). The talk will be held on Tuesday, May 25 during the Perceptual Organization session.

Dr. Alp will be giving a seminar on the integration processes as a part of the CS + X seminar series, check the details here.

AlViN lab welcomes two great research assistants; Damla Ciftci (Middle East Technical University), and Baris Kaan Ok (Kadir Has University) to the lab!

Dr. Alp is awarded a TUBITAK 3501 Career Development Grant!

AlViN lab congratulates Sandra Saghir who successfully defended her master thesis titled “Ecoc Based Multi-Class Classification in Brain-Computer Interfaces with SSVEP”.

AlViN lab welcomes master student Ilker Duymaz and research assistants Yagmur Damla Senturk, Gülce Lale, Mert Yılmaz, and Hazal Nil Kirelli to the lab.

Congratulations to Berfu Karaca, Beril Timuçin, Duygu Yücel, and Serkan Müsellim for getting into MSc/MA programs at Radboud University (Cognitive Neuroscience), Bogaziçi University (Psychological Science), Sabancı University (Psychological Science), and Korea University (Artificial Intelligence), respectively!!

We welcome two great summer research students; Sahcan Özdemir (Middle East Technical University) and Meltem Lübe Yasaran (Bilkent University) to the lab!

Dr. Alp received French Embassy Research Fellowship, in 2019. She spent her summer of 2019 in Lille/France working with Prof. Bilge Sayim on a newly described visual phenomenon called “redundancy masking”. She also gave a seminar on “Lost lines in warped space” at the SCA lab.

Dr. Alp gives a talk about “Integration Processes in Visual Perception” at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) at Sinha Lab.

Dr. Alp receives a new grant, Starting Projects Support from Sabancı University, in 2018.

We pursue research and education with a passion for serious impact. The SU Psychology program video is now online. Check the video here




The visual system has the challenging task to reconstruct retinal input into meaningful representations by first extracting basic features, such as form, motion, color etc., and evaluate them within their given context. Dr. Alp's passion for scientific research is to understand how the brain is capable of integrating these basic features into coherent wholes.

In other words, the goal of her research is to understand how the visual system combines local properties of the visual scene (e.g., elements, features, parts) to obtain holistic representations (e.g., patterns, objects, wholes). By using electrophysiological measures, the AlViN team aims to increase our knowledge of the cortical mechanisms that are involved in this holistic processing. 

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Do you want to join us?

There are new positions available in the lab. Don’t hesitate to send your CV and application letter.

Even you do not see any vacancies we are always looking for highly motivated and bright masters and Ph.D. candidates. Personal fellowships through TUBITAK are also possible.

Contact Us

Office Hours

Grab your coffee and bring your questions!

Tuesday: 11:40 - 12:30
Otherwise: Appointments only