News

BU Research Feature Story on Robert Reinhart

Published: October 10th, 2017

BU Research has written “A ‘Turbo Charge’ for Your Brain?“, a profile on the work of PBS faculty member Robert Reinhart. From the article:

Robert Reinhart calls the medial frontal cortex the “alarm bell of the brain.”

“If you make an error, this brain area fires,” says Reinhart, an assistant professor of psychological and brain sciences at Boston University. “If I tell you that you make an error, it also fires. If something surprises you, it fires.” Hit a sour note on the piano and the medial frontal cortex lights up, helping you correct your mistake as fast as possible. In healthy people, this region of the brain works hand in hand (or perhaps lobe in lobe) with a nearby region, the lateral prefrontal cortex, an area that stores rules and goals and also plays an important role in changing our decisions and actions.

Professor Deborah Kelemen’s New Children’s Book About Evolution Featured in BU Today

Published: October 1st, 2017

PBS Professor Deborah Kelemen has recently published How the Piloses Evolved Skinny Noses, a children’s book designed to teach the concept of evolution by natural selection to very young audiences. BU Today offers an in-depth profile on the book and how it came about. From the article:

Conventional wisdom holds that natural selection is too complex for young children to grasp and so should not be taught until middle and high school. The problem with that wisdom, as Deborah Kelemen’s research has shown, is that by middle school, kids’ intuitive biases have taken hold, making it harder for them to understand the concept. So Kelemen, a College of Arts & Sciences professor of psychological and brain sciences, and her research team wrote their own research-based book about natural selection, How the Piloses Evolved Skinny Noses, and aimed it at children ages five to eight. Then, with funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF), Kelemen tested the children, who listened to the book about the fictional anteater-like piloses, and found that they got it.

“Kids are smarter than we give them credit for,” says Kelemen, who studies child development and directs BU’s Child Cognition Lab.

Steve Ramirez Featured in BU Today

Published: September 26th, 2017

BU Today has published a profile on PBS Assistant Professor Steve Ramirez, detailing his background, research interests, and bevy of upcoming projects. From the article:

His research into the nature and mechanisms of memory have made him a hot hand in neuroscience. His TED talk with research partner Xu Liu garnered over a million views. He just signed a deal for a book combining neuroscience and memoir, to be published by Penguin’s Riverhead Books in fall 2019. And this summer, the 29-year-old returned to BU, joining the College of Arts & Sciences psychological and brain sciences department as an assistant professor and settling into a lab at the new Rajen Kilachand Center for Integrated Life Sciences & Engineering.

Memorial Service for Professor Howard Eichenbaum

Published: September 14th, 2017

A memorial service will be held for PBS Professor Howard Eichenbaum:

October 5, 2017, 1:00 – 2:30 PM
Followed by reception.
Boston University, Trustee Ballroom, 1 Silber Way, 9th Floor.

Free parking will be available for attendees at the Warren Towers garage (700 Commonwealth Avenue, garage entrance on Hindsale street). Please let the parking attendant know that you are attending the memorial service.

Remembrance of Howard Eichenbaum Published in Science

Published: September 13th, 2017

In remembrance of Howard Eichenbaum, PBS Professors Michael Hasselmo and Chantal Stern have authored a brief retrospective, published in Science, on his many contributions to psychological research, Boston University, and its faculty and students.

Remembering Howard Eichenbaum’s career prompts the recall of many vivid memories, which is appropriate given Howard’s influential research on declarative memory function. His work elucidated the neural basis of memory organization in the brain. As director of the Center for Memory and Brain and the Laboratory of Cognitive Neurobiology and as Warren Professor in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, all at Boston University, Massachusetts, Howard performed research on the intricacies of memory processing in the hippocampus, a brain structure essential for the memory of episodes. As editor-in-chief of the journal Hippocampus until his passing on 21 July at the age of 69, Howard remained a vital leader in elucidating the role of the hippocampus in cognition and behavior.

Prof. Jean Berko Gleason Receives Roger Brown Award

Published: August 1st, 2017

PBS Prof. Emerita Jean Berko Gleason received the Roger Brown Award at the 14th International Congress of the International Association for the Study of Child Language in Lyon, France. The Department congratulates her on this honor!

PBS Prof. Emerita Jean Berko Gleason receives the Roger Brown Award at the 14th International Congress of the International Association for the Study of Child Language in Lyon, France. Presented by Brian MacWhinney. Background image is a Wug. In order to perform Prof. Berko Gleason’s famous 'Wug Test’ one requires two of them!

PBS Prof. Emerita Jean Berko Gleason receives the Roger Brown Award at the 14th International Congress of the International Association for the Study of Child Language in Lyon, France. Presented by Brian MacWhinney. Background image is a Wug. In order to perform Prof. Berko Gleason’s famous ‘Wug Test’ one requires two of them!

BU mourns the passing of PBS Professor Howard Eichenbaum

Published: July 25th, 2017

The Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences mourns the sudden passing of Professor Howard Eichenbaum. From the obituary in BU Today:

Howard Eichenbaum, a William Fairfield Warren Distinguished Professor and a College of Arts & Sciences professor of psychological and brain sciences, director of BU’s Center for Memory and Brain and the Laboratory of Cognitive Neurobiology, and an internationally recognized figure in advancing the understanding of the fundamental nature and mechanisms of memory, died in Boston on Friday at age 69, following recent spinal surgery.

Child Cognition Lab & “How the Piloses Evolved Skinny Noses” Making News!

Published: July 11th, 2017

PBS Professor Deborah Kelemen and the Child Cognition Lab recently published How the Piloses Evolved Skinny Noses, a book designed to teach young children about evolution. The book has since received positive attention. Professor Kelemen recently participated in a panel discussion (26 minutes in) with Professor Richard Dawkin’s on BBC Radio 4’s Start the Week, the UK’s largest cultural/arts radio magazine program. Professor Kelemen was also featured on BBC World Service Newshour (46 minutes in).

We congratulate Professor Kelemen and her lab on their excellent work!

Professor Helen Tager-Flusberg Participates in Reddit AMA!

Published: April 19th, 2017

Professor Helen Tager-Flusberg recently took part in a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” session. The extensive Q&A covered a wide range of topics, from how our understanding of autism spectrum disorders has evolved over Dr. Tager-Flusberg’s 40-year career, to how the field may change in the years to come.

Khodadad Distinguished Lecture: The Altruistic Brain

Published: March 23rd, 2017