Much of our research focuses on identifying the neuro-cognitive mechanisms underlying individual differences in general intelligence. In particular, we are investigating how interactions between processes and properties of the cognitive system such as mental speed, attention, executive functions, and working memory give rise to individual differences in intelligence.
To achieve this goal, we employ a variety of neuro-cognitive methods. We use an experimental approach to determine how experimental or pharmaceutical manipulations of specific processes affect cognitive functions and general intelligence. Moreover, we use neurophysiological methods to study the biological basis of mental abilities. The method we most frequently use for the study of brain activity is the electroencephalogram (EEG), which gives us detailed information about the ongoing stream of neural information processing. Finally, we employ mathematical models of cognition to identify process parameters differing between individuals.
All physiological experiments are conducted in an acoustically shielded cabin (Industrial Acoustics Company, IAC). We use two amplifier systems: One amplifier system (Brain Products Munich, Germany) with 2 x 32 channels for EEG signals, and one amplifier system (Brain Products Munich, Germany) with 16 channels for peripheral signals (muscle activity, ECG, skin conductance and other bipolar measurements). Our EEG lab also contains four workspaces for behavioral measurements.
To record and analyze our data, we use Brain Vision Controller, Brain Vision Analyzer 2, E-Prime 2 Professional, MATLAB and R.
A look into the lab
Examples of Recorded Signals