Kaja Jasińska is fundamentally interested in the neural mechanisms that support language (monolingual or bilingual, signed or spoken), reading and cognitive development across the lifespan. Her research asks questions such as how early life experience changes the brain’s capacity for language and learning. She uses MRI and functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS) neuroimaging technology in combination with genetic and behavioral analyses to gain new insights into the biological underpinnings of language, reading, and human cognition.
Visit Dr. Jasińska’s personal page here.
Benjamin Zinszer Ben is a research associate in the BOLD lab and the Princeton Baby Lab. His research explores language learning, bilingualism, and how the brain represents linguistic categories. He uses many behavioral, computational, and neuroimaging methods in this work. Recently, Ben directed the Multimodal Neuroimaging at the University of Texas at Austin, worked as a research associate in the SoundBrain Lab (UT-Austin), and postdoc’d in the Baby Lab and Raizada Lab (University of Rochester).
Visit Benjamin’s personal page here.
Hermann Akpe has a PhD in Social Sciences and Human Capital Development from the Institute Development and Anthropology (ISAD) at Félix Houphouët Boigny University (UFHB). He holds M.A. and B.A. degrees in developmental economy. His research focuses on education, and he has worked on projects concerning the quality of professional development at private institutions of higher education. His research interests also include professional integration strategies. He is a member of the National Committee for Early Childhood Integrated Development (CNDIDJE) and has a special interest in young children’s learning abilities.
Fabrice Tanoh — Research coordinator for Ivorian team Fabrice is a third-year doctoral student in Economic Sociology at the University Felix Houphouet Boigny (UFHB) in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. His research focuses on issues related to children’s education in rural areas. His work on the Promoting Literacy Development in Rural Cocoa-Producing Communities project centers around the sociological and socioeconomic context of child literacy development. He also leads the Science Capacity Building collaboration with research partners in Ivory Coast (CIERPA, World Education, Laboratory of Neuroscience, French Agency of Development, and others). This project aims to increase the skills of young researchers and launch joint research projects on education in Côte d’Ivoire.
Axel Seri is pursuing an master’s degree in ethics and governance with a focus on sustainable development at the Center for Research and Action for Peace (CERAP) in Côte d’Ivoire. He is passionate about research and hopes to contribute to scientific innovation serving sustainable development in Africa. He works on the Promoting Literacy Development in Rural Cocoa-Producing Communities project and plans to continue studies at the doctoral level.
Joelle Hannon is a first-year doctoral student in Linguistics at the University of Delaware. She holds a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of North Texas and an M.A. in Linguistics and Cognitive Science from the University of Delaware. Her research interests are in literacy development and second language acquisition and how these relate to memory and other aspects of neurocognitive development. She is particularly interested in these issues within the context of lower and middle income countries. She is involved in the Promoting Literacy Development in Rural Cocoa-Producing Communities project.
Janina Boecher is a first-year PhD student at the department of Linguistics & Cognitive Science. She holds a B.A. in English Linguistics and Literature from Justus-Liebig-University Giessen, Germany. She is interested in child language development and second language acquisition. Janina is currently involved in a research project investigating the impact of noise on neural pathways subserving emerging language skills in young children with cochlear implants.
Alyssa Kampa is a collaborator from the Language and Cognition Lab and is a PhD student in Linguistics & Cognitive Science at the University of Delaware. She is interested in the study of child language acquisition, specifically the acquisition of pragmatics. Her research focuses on the development of complex pragmatic reasoning abilities necessary for the comprehension of scalar implicatures. Her work with the BOLD lab involves studying the neural mechanisms behind scalar implicature derivation, executive functioning, and theory of mind abilities in preschool-aged children, as well as investigating how these cognitive processes in the developing brain compare to adult correlates.
Danyang Wang is a collaborator from the The Language Learning and Bilingualism Lab and is a first year doctoral student in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at University of Delaware. She obtained her master’s degree in Linguistics and Cognitive Science. She started working with Dr. Kaja Jasinska in the BOLD Lab in May 2018. She is currently working on a bilingual project that examines the influences of L1 cross-linguistics differences on L2 processing.
Kelsey Mulford – Lab Manager Kelsey graduated from the University of Delaware with a B.S. in Cognitive Science (Speech-Language pathology). In the fall, she will start her masters program at the University of Delaware in Communication Sciences and Disorders. She is interested in research related to speech and language and how research influences clinical practice.
Adji Thierry holds a masters in Linguistics from the University of Félix Houphouët-Boigny, where he has also studied law. He is the team’s Attie specialist and also administers French-language assessments as part of the Promoting Literacy Development in Rural Cocoa-Producing Communities project. He has now participated in four field experiments with the team and plans to continue his studies in linguistics.
Jennifer Rojas is a senior studying Neuroscience with a pre-med track at the University of Delaware. She is a research assistant in BOLD lab and is very interested in how language is affected during different stages of child development. She hopes to attend Medical school and become a pediatric neurologist.
Justus Matteson is a junior computer engineering major here at UD with a minor in cybersecurity. As a research assistant in the BOLD lab he develops computer programs to analyze lab data. He hopes to apply his computer engineering knowledge to areas of cognitive and neuroscience.
Reyna Trujillo is a junior biology major with a psychology minor at the University of Delaware. She hopes to pursue a career in the medical field, with a strong interest in psychology and/or neuroscience. She is a research assistant in the BOLD Lab and is very grateful to be part of such a great team!
Hanna Stephen is a sophomore studying neuroscience and cognitive science (Speech-Language pathology) at the University of Delaware. She is very interested in how the brain gives rise to linguistic abilities. She hopes to pursue graduate school and is very excited to work at the BOLD Lab.
Laís Freitas — Former Visiting Student Lais is a clinical psychologist and was a visiting student from the Federal University of São Paulo in Brazil. Her collaboration at the BOLD Lab centered around childhood cognitive development, transcultural neuropsychology, socioeconomic status, and literacy, with a primary focus on executive functions.
Sosthene Guei — Former Research Coordinator. Sosthene is now pursuing a masters degree in child development at the University of Haifa in Israel. He holds an M.A. in sustainable development with a specialization in corporate social responsibility, as well as a master’s in English studies. His research works focus on development issues related to education and sustainability in Africa.
Kali Bussey — Former Research Assistant. Kali is currently pursuing a masters in communication sciences and disorders at the University of Delaware. After her two years at UD, she plans on becoming a Speech-Language Pathologist in a clinical setting.
Sarah Wang — Former Doctoral Student. Sarah Wang was a second year doctoral student in Linguistics at the University of Delaware. She is currently an SAT tutor for high school students.
Kenya Neal — Former Research Assistant. Kenya is a senior sociology major at the University of Delaware with a double minors in Human Development and Family Services and Medical Social Services . She plans to go to graduate school to pursue her masters in social work. She is passionate about working with children and child development. She joined the Bold Lab through the McNair scholars program.
Violet Kozloff — Former Lab Manager. Violet graduated from Wellesley College with a B.A. in Cognitive and Linguistic Sciences and French, where she developed a study on children’s acquisition of non-native intonation patterns. Her interests include language development, speech processing, and bilingualism. She is particularly interested in the acquisition of second language phonology and intonation. She is currently the lab manager for the QLab at the University of Delaware and plans to go to graduate school in the future.