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Sample records for auditory spatial learning

  1. Auditory Spatial Layout

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wightman, Frederic L.; Jenison, Rick

    1995-01-01

    All auditory sensory information is packaged in a pair of acoustical pressure waveforms, one at each ear. While there is obvious structure in these waveforms, that structure (temporal and spectral patterns) bears no simple relationship to the structure of the environmental objects that produced them. The properties of auditory objects and their layout in space must be derived completely from higher level processing of the peripheral input. This chapter begins with a discussion of the peculiarities of acoustical stimuli and how they are received by the human auditory system. A distinction is made between the ambient sound field and the effective stimulus to differentiate the perceptual distinctions among various simple classes of sound sources (ambient field) from the known perceptual consequences of the linear transformations of the sound wave from source to receiver (effective stimulus). Next, the definition of an auditory object is dealt with, specifically the question of how the various components of a sound stream become segregated into distinct auditory objects. The remainder of the chapter focuses on issues related to the spatial layout of auditory objects, both stationary and moving.

  2. Incidental Auditory Category Learning

    PubMed Central

    Gabay, Yafit; Dick, Frederic K.; Zevin, Jason D.; Holt, Lori L.

    2015-01-01

    Very little is known about how auditory categories are learned incidentally, without instructions to search for category-diagnostic dimensions, overt category decisions, or experimenter-provided feedback. This is an important gap because learning in the natural environment does not arise from explicit feedback and there is evidence that the learning systems engaged by traditional tasks are distinct from those recruited by incidental category learning. We examined incidental auditory category learning with a novel paradigm, the Systematic Multimodal Associations Reaction Time (SMART) task, in which participants rapidly detect and report the appearance of a visual target in one of four possible screen locations. Although the overt task is rapid visual detection, a brief sequence of sounds precedes each visual target. These sounds are drawn from one of four distinct sound categories that predict the location of the upcoming visual target. These many-to-one auditory-to-visuomotor correspondences support incidental auditory category learning. Participants incidentally learn categories of complex acoustic exemplars and generalize this learning to novel exemplars and tasks. Further, learning is facilitated when category exemplar variability is more tightly coupled to the visuomotor associations than when the same stimulus variability is experienced across trials. We relate these findings to phonetic category learning. PMID:26010588

  3. Auditory-motor learning influences auditory memory for music.

    PubMed

    Brown, Rachel M; Palmer, Caroline

    2012-05-01

    In two experiments, we investigated how auditory-motor learning influences performers' memory for music. Skilled pianists learned novel melodies in four conditions: auditory only (listening), motor only (performing without sound), strongly coupled auditory-motor (normal performance), and weakly coupled auditory-motor (performing along with auditory recordings). Pianists' recognition of the learned melodies was better following auditory-only or auditory-motor (weakly coupled and strongly coupled) learning than following motor-only learning, and better following strongly coupled auditory-motor learning than following auditory-only learning. Auditory and motor imagery abilities modulated the learning effects: Pianists with high auditory imagery scores had better recognition following motor-only learning, suggesting that auditory imagery compensated for missing auditory feedback at the learning stage. Experiment 2 replicated the findings of Experiment 1 with melodies that contained greater variation in acoustic features. Melodies that were slower and less variable in tempo and intensity were remembered better following weakly coupled auditory-motor learning. These findings suggest that motor learning can aid performers' auditory recognition of music beyond auditory learning alone, and that motor learning is influenced by individual abilities in mental imagery and by variation in acoustic features. PMID:22271265

  4. Auditory-motor learning influences auditory memory for music.

    PubMed

    Brown, Rachel M; Palmer, Caroline

    2012-05-01

    In two experiments, we investigated how auditory-motor learning influences performers' memory for music. Skilled pianists learned novel melodies in four conditions: auditory only (listening), motor only (performing without sound), strongly coupled auditory-motor (normal performance), and weakly coupled auditory-motor (performing along with auditory recordings). Pianists' recognition of the learned melodies was better following auditory-only or auditory-motor (weakly coupled and strongly coupled) learning than following motor-only learning, and better following strongly coupled auditory-motor learning than following auditory-only learning. Auditory and motor imagery abilities modulated the learning effects: Pianists with high auditory imagery scores had better recognition following motor-only learning, suggesting that auditory imagery compensated for missing auditory feedback at the learning stage. Experiment 2 replicated the findings of Experiment 1 with melodies that contained greater variation in acoustic features. Melodies that were slower and less variable in tempo and intensity were remembered better following weakly coupled auditory-motor learning. These findings suggest that motor learning can aid performers' auditory recognition of music beyond auditory learning alone, and that motor learning is influenced by individual abilities in mental imagery and by variation in acoustic features.

  5. Models of plasticity in spatial auditory processing.

    PubMed

    Shinn-Cunningham, B

    2001-01-01

    Both psychophysical and physiological studies have examined plasticity of spatial auditory processing. While there is a great deal known about how the system computes basic cues that influence spatial perception, less is known about how these cues are integrated to form spatial percepts and how the auditory system adapts and calibrates in order to maintain accurate spatial perception. After summarizing evidence for plasticity in the spatial auditory pathway, this paper reviews a statistical, decision-theory model of short-term plasticity and a system-level model of the spatial auditory pathway that may help elucidate how long- and short-term experiences influence the computations underlying spatial hearing.

  6. Spatial auditory processing in pinnipeds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holt, Marla M.

    Given the biological importance of sound for a variety of activities, pinnipeds must be able to obtain spatial information about their surroundings thorough acoustic input in the absence of other sensory cues. The three chapters of this dissertation address spatial auditory processing capabilities of pinnipeds in air given that these amphibious animals use acoustic signals for reproduction and survival on land. Two chapters are comparative lab-based studies that utilized psychophysical approaches conducted in an acoustic chamber. Chapter 1 addressed the frequency-dependent sound localization abilities at azimuth of three pinniped species (the harbor seal, Phoca vitulina, the California sea lion, Zalophus californianus, and the northern elephant seal, Mirounga angustirostris). While performances of the sea lion and harbor seal were consistent with the duplex theory of sound localization, the elephant seal, a low-frequency hearing specialist, showed a decreased ability to localize the highest frequencies tested. In Chapter 2 spatial release from masking (SRM), which occurs when a signal and masker are spatially separated resulting in improvement in signal detectability relative to conditions in which they are co-located, was determined in a harbor seal and sea lion. Absolute and masked thresholds were measured at three frequencies and azimuths to determine the detection advantages afforded by this type of spatial auditory processing. Results showed that hearing sensitivity was enhanced by up to 19 and 12 dB in the harbor seal and sea lion, respectively, when the signal and masker were spatially separated. Chapter 3 was a field-based study that quantified both sender and receiver variables of the directional properties of male northern elephant seal calls produce within communication system that serves to delineate dominance status. This included measuring call directivity patterns, observing male-male vocally-mediated interactions, and an acoustic playback study

  7. Tactile feedback improves auditory spatial localization.

    PubMed

    Gori, Monica; Vercillo, Tiziana; Sandini, Giulio; Burr, David

    2014-01-01

    Our recent studies suggest that congenitally blind adults have severely impaired thresholds in an auditory spatial bisection task, pointing to the importance of vision in constructing complex auditory spatial maps (Gori et al., 2014). To explore strategies that may improve the auditory spatial sense in visually impaired people, we investigated the impact of tactile feedback on spatial auditory localization in 48 blindfolded sighted subjects. We measured auditory spatial bisection thresholds before and after training, either with tactile feedback, verbal feedback, or no feedback. Audio thresholds were first measured with a spatial bisection task: subjects judged whether the second sound of a three sound sequence was spatially closer to the first or the third sound. The tactile feedback group underwent two audio-tactile feedback sessions of 100 trials, where each auditory trial was followed by the same spatial sequence played on the subject's forearm; auditory spatial bisection thresholds were evaluated after each session. In the verbal feedback condition, the positions of the sounds were verbally reported to the subject after each feedback trial. The no feedback group did the same sequence of trials, with no feedback. Performance improved significantly only after audio-tactile feedback. The results suggest that direct tactile feedback interacts with the auditory spatial localization system, possibly by a process of cross-sensory recalibration. Control tests with the subject rotated suggested that this effect occurs only when the tactile and acoustic sequences are spatially congruent. Our results suggest that the tactile system can be used to recalibrate the auditory sense of space. These results encourage the possibility of designing rehabilitation programs to help blind persons establish a robust auditory sense of space, through training with the tactile modality. PMID:25368587

  8. Auditory learning: a developmental method.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yilu; Weng, Juyang; Hwang, Wey-Shiuan

    2005-05-01

    Motivated by the human autonomous development process from infancy to adulthood, we have built a robot that develops its cognitive and behavioral skills through real-time interactions with the environment. We call such a robot a developmental robot. In this paper, we present the theory and the architecture to implement a developmental robot and discuss the related techniques that address an array of challenging technical issues. As an application, experimental results on a real robot, self-organizing, autonomous, incremental learner (SAIL), are presented with emphasis on its audition perception and audition-related action generation. In particular, the SAIL robot conducts the auditory learning from unsegmented and unlabeled speech streams without any prior knowledge about the auditory signals, such as the designated language or the phoneme models. Neither available before learning starts are the actions that the robot is expected to perform. SAIL learns the auditory commands and the desired actions from physical contacts with the environment including the trainers.

  9. Auditory-visual spatial interaction and modularity

    PubMed

    Radeau, M

    1994-02-01

    The results of dealing with the conditions for pairing visual and auditory data coming from spatially separate locations argue for cognitive impenetrability and computational autonomy, the pairing rules being the Gestalt principles of common fate and proximity. Other data provide evidence for pairing with several properties of modular functioning. Arguments for domain specificity are inferred from comparison with audio-visual speech. Suggestion of innate specification can be found in developmental data indicating that the grouping of visual and auditory signals is supported very early in life by the same principles that operate in adults. Support for a specific neural architecture comes from neurophysiological studies of the bimodal (auditory-visual) neurons of the cat superior colliculus. Auditory-visual pairing thus seems to present the four main properties of the Fodorian module.

  10. The plastic ear and perceptual relearning in auditory spatial perception.

    PubMed

    Carlile, Simon

    2014-01-01

    The auditory system of adult listeners has been shown to accommodate to altered spectral cues to sound location which presumably provides the basis for recalibration to changes in the shape of the ear over a life time. Here we review the role of auditory and non-auditory inputs to the perception of sound location and consider a range of recent experiments looking at the role of non-auditory inputs in the process of accommodation to these altered spectral cues. A number of studies have used small ear molds to modify the spectral cues that result in significant degradation in localization performance. Following chronic exposure (10-60 days) performance recovers to some extent and recent work has demonstrated that this occurs for both audio-visual and audio-only regions of space. This begs the questions as to the teacher signal for this remarkable functional plasticity in the adult nervous system. Following a brief review of influence of the motor state in auditory localization, we consider the potential role of auditory-motor learning in the perceptual recalibration of the spectral cues. Several recent studies have considered how multi-modal and sensory-motor feedback might influence accommodation to altered spectral cues produced by ear molds or through virtual auditory space stimulation using non-individualized spectral cues. The work with ear molds demonstrates that a relatively short period of training involving audio-motor feedback (5-10 days) significantly improved both the rate and extent of accommodation to altered spectral cues. This has significant implications not only for the mechanisms by which this complex sensory information is encoded to provide spatial cues but also for adaptive training to altered auditory inputs. The review concludes by considering the implications for rehabilitative training with hearing aids and cochlear prosthesis.

  11. The plastic ear and perceptual relearning in auditory spatial perception

    PubMed Central

    Carlile, Simon

    2014-01-01

    The auditory system of adult listeners has been shown to accommodate to altered spectral cues to sound location which presumably provides the basis for recalibration to changes in the shape of the ear over a life time. Here we review the role of auditory and non-auditory inputs to the perception of sound location and consider a range of recent experiments looking at the role of non-auditory inputs in the process of accommodation to these altered spectral cues. A number of studies have used small ear molds to modify the spectral cues that result in significant degradation in localization performance. Following chronic exposure (10–60 days) performance recovers to some extent and recent work has demonstrated that this occurs for both audio-visual and audio-only regions of space. This begs the questions as to the teacher signal for this remarkable functional plasticity in the adult nervous system. Following a brief review of influence of the motor state in auditory localization, we consider the potential role of auditory-motor learning in the perceptual recalibration of the spectral cues. Several recent studies have considered how multi-modal and sensory-motor feedback might influence accommodation to altered spectral cues produced by ear molds or through virtual auditory space stimulation using non-individualized spectral cues. The work with ear molds demonstrates that a relatively short period of training involving audio-motor feedback (5–10 days) significantly improved both the rate and extent of accommodation to altered spectral cues. This has significant implications not only for the mechanisms by which this complex sensory information is encoded to provide spatial cues but also for adaptive training to altered auditory inputs. The review concludes by considering the implications for rehabilitative training with hearing aids and cochlear prosthesis. PMID:25147497

  12. Multichannel Spatial Auditory Display for Speed Communications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begault, Durand R.; Erbe, Tom

    1994-01-01

    A spatial auditory display for multiple speech communications was developed at NASA/Ames Research Center. Input is spatialized by the use of simplifiedhead-related transfer functions, adapted for FIR filtering on Motorola 56001 digital signal processors. Hardware and firmware design implementations are overviewed for the initial prototype developed for NASA-Kennedy Space Center. An adaptive staircase method was used to determine intelligibility levels of four-letter call signs used by launch personnel at NASA against diotic speech babble. Spatial positions at 30 degree azimuth increments were evaluated. The results from eight subjects showed a maximum intelligibility improvement of about 6-7 dB when the signal was spatialized to 60 or 90 degree azimuth positions.

  13. Multichannel spatial auditory display for speech communications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begault, D. R.; Erbe, T.; Wenzel, E. M. (Principal Investigator)

    1994-01-01

    A spatial auditory display for multiple speech communications was developed at NASA/Ames Research Center. Input is spatialized by the use of simplified head-related transfer functions, adapted for FIR filtering on Motorola 56001 digital signal processors. Hardware and firmware design implementations are overviewed for the initial prototype developed for NASA-Kennedy Space Center. An adaptive staircase method was used to determine intelligibility levels of four-letter call signs used by launch personnel at NASA against diotic speech babble. Spatial positions at 30 degrees azimuth increments were evaluated. The results from eight subjects showed a maximum intelligibility improvement of about 6-7 dB when the signal was spatialized to 60 or 90 degrees azimuth positions.

  14. Sonic morphology: Aesthetic dimensional auditory spatial awareness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whitehouse, Martha M.

    The sound and ceramic sculpture installation, " Skirting the Edge: Experiences in Sound & Form," is an integration of art and science demonstrating the concept of sonic morphology. "Sonic morphology" is herein defined as aesthetic three-dimensional auditory spatial awareness. The exhibition explicates my empirical phenomenal observations that sound has a three-dimensional form. Composed of ceramic sculptures that allude to different social and physical situations, coupled with sound compositions that enhance and create a three-dimensional auditory and visual aesthetic experience (see accompanying DVD), the exhibition supports the research question, "What is the relationship between sound and form?" Precisely how people aurally experience three-dimensional space involves an integration of spatial properties, auditory perception, individual history, and cultural mores. People also utilize environmental sound events as a guide in social situations and in remembering their personal history, as well as a guide in moving through space. Aesthetically, sound affects the fascination, meaning, and attention one has within a particular space. Sonic morphology brings art forms such as a movie, video, sound composition, and musical performance into the cognitive scope by generating meaning from the link between the visual and auditory senses. This research examined sonic morphology as an extension of musique concrete, sound as object, originating in Pierre Schaeffer's work in the 1940s. Pointing, as John Cage did, to the corporeal three-dimensional experience of "all sound," I composed works that took their total form only through the perceiver-participant's participation in the exhibition. While contemporary artist Alvin Lucier creates artworks that draw attention to making sound visible, "Skirting the Edge" engages the perceiver-participant visually and aurally, leading to recognition of sonic morphology.

  15. Auditory spatial processing in Alzheimer’s disease

    PubMed Central

    Golden, Hannah L.; Nicholas, Jennifer M.; Yong, Keir X. X.; Downey, Laura E.; Schott, Jonathan M.; Mummery, Catherine J.; Crutch, Sebastian J.

    2015-01-01

    The location and motion of sounds in space are important cues for encoding the auditory world. Spatial processing is a core component of auditory scene analysis, a cognitively demanding function that is vulnerable in Alzheimer’s disease. Here we designed a novel neuropsychological battery based on a virtual space paradigm to assess auditory spatial processing in patient cohorts with clinically typical Alzheimer’s disease (n = 20) and its major variant syndrome, posterior cortical atrophy (n = 12) in relation to healthy older controls (n = 26). We assessed three dimensions of auditory spatial function: externalized versus non-externalized sound discrimination, moving versus stationary sound discrimination and stationary auditory spatial position discrimination, together with non-spatial auditory and visual spatial control tasks. Neuroanatomical correlates of auditory spatial processing were assessed using voxel-based morphometry. Relative to healthy older controls, both patient groups exhibited impairments in detection of auditory motion, and stationary sound position discrimination. The posterior cortical atrophy group showed greater impairment for auditory motion processing and the processing of a non-spatial control complex auditory property (timbre) than the typical Alzheimer’s disease group. Voxel-based morphometry in the patient cohort revealed grey matter correlates of auditory motion detection and spatial position discrimination in right inferior parietal cortex and precuneus, respectively. These findings delineate auditory spatial processing deficits in typical and posterior Alzheimer’s disease phenotypes that are related to posterior cortical regions involved in both syndromic variants and modulated by the syndromic profile of brain degeneration. Auditory spatial deficits contribute to impaired spatial awareness in Alzheimer’s disease and may constitute a novel perceptual model for probing brain network disintegration across the Alzheimer

  16. Effect of sound source position on learning and performance of auditory delayed matching-to-sample task in dogs.

    PubMed

    Kuśmierek, Paweł; Kowalska, Danuta M

    2002-01-01

    Spatial adjacency of stimulus source and response site has been proven important for learning of simple behavioural tasks, including auditory quality and location discrimination. We investigated effect of sound source position (adjacent or not adjacent to manipulanda) on learning and performance of a complex auditory recognition memory task. Spatial adjacency of stimuli and manipulanda improved learning of a simple auditory directional task, which was an intermediate stage of training. In contrast, no improvement of learning and performance of the recognition task was found.

  17. Hemispheric competence for auditory spatial representation.

    PubMed

    Spierer, Lucas; Bellmann-Thiran, Anne; Maeder, Philippe; Murray, Micah M; Clarke, Stephanie

    2009-07-01

    Sound localization relies on the analysis of interaural time and intensity differences, as well as attenuation patterns by the outer ear. We investigated the relative contributions of interaural time and intensity difference cues to sound localization by testing 60 healthy subjects: 25 with focal left and 25 with focal right hemispheric brain damage. Group and single-case behavioural analyses, as well as anatomo-clinical correlations, confirmed that deficits were more frequent and much more severe after right than left hemispheric lesions and for the processing of interaural time than intensity difference cues. For spatial processing based on interaural time difference cues, different error types were evident in the individual data. Deficits in discriminating between neighbouring positions occurred in both hemispaces after focal right hemispheric brain damage, but were restricted to the contralesional hemispace after focal left hemispheric brain damage. Alloacusis (perceptual shifts across the midline) occurred only after focal right hemispheric brain damage and was associated with minor or severe deficits in position discrimination. During spatial processing based on interaural intensity cues, deficits were less severe in the right hemispheric brain damage than left hemispheric brain damage group and no alloacusis occurred. These results, matched to anatomical data, suggest the existence of a binaural sound localization system predominantly based on interaural time difference cues and primarily supported by the right hemisphere. More generally, our data suggest that two distinct mechanisms contribute to: (i) the precise computation of spatial coordinates allowing spatial comparison within the contralateral hemispace for the left hemisphere and the whole space for the right hemisphere; and (ii) the building up of global auditory spatial representations in right temporo-parietal cortices.

  18. Auditory and visual spatial impression: Recent studies of three auditoria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nguyen, Andy; Cabrera, Densil

    2004-10-01

    Auditory spatial impression is widely studied for its contribution to auditorium acoustical quality. By contrast, visual spatial impression in auditoria has received relatively little attention in formal studies. This paper reports results from a series of experiments investigating the auditory and visual spatial impression of concert auditoria. For auditory stimuli, a fragment of an anechoic recording of orchestral music was convolved with calibrated binaural impulse responses, which had been made with the dummy head microphone at a wide range of positions in three auditoria and the sound source on the stage. For visual stimuli, greyscale photographs were used, taken at the same positions in the three auditoria, with a visual target on the stage. Subjective experiments were conducted with auditory stimuli alone, visual stimuli alone, and visual and auditory stimuli combined. In these experiments, subjects rated apparent source width, listener envelopment, intimacy and source distance (auditory stimuli), and spaciousness, envelopment, stage dominance, intimacy and target distance (visual stimuli). Results show target distance to be of primary importance in auditory and visual spatial impression-thereby providing a basis for covariance between some attributes of auditory and visual spatial impression. Nevertheless, some attributes of spatial impression diverge between the senses.

  19. Auditory and motor imagery modulate learning in music performance.

    PubMed

    Brown, Rachel M; Palmer, Caroline

    2013-01-01

    Skilled performers such as athletes or musicians can improve their performance by imagining the actions or sensory outcomes associated with their skill. Performers vary widely in their auditory and motor imagery abilities, and these individual differences influence sensorimotor learning. It is unknown whether imagery abilities influence both memory encoding and retrieval. We examined how auditory and motor imagery abilities influence musicians' encoding (during Learning, as they practiced novel melodies), and retrieval (during Recall of those melodies). Pianists learned melodies by listening without performing (auditory learning) or performing without sound (motor learning); following Learning, pianists performed the melodies from memory with auditory feedback (Recall). During either Learning (Experiment 1) or Recall (Experiment 2), pianists experienced either auditory interference, motor interference, or no interference. Pitch accuracy (percentage of correct pitches produced) and temporal regularity (variability of quarter-note interonset intervals) were measured at Recall. Independent tests measured auditory and motor imagery skills. Pianists' pitch accuracy was higher following auditory learning than following motor learning and lower in motor interference conditions (Experiments 1 and 2). Both auditory and motor imagery skills improved pitch accuracy overall. Auditory imagery skills modulated pitch accuracy encoding (Experiment 1): Higher auditory imagery skill corresponded to higher pitch accuracy following auditory learning with auditory or motor interference, and following motor learning with motor or no interference. These findings suggest that auditory imagery abilities decrease vulnerability to interference and compensate for missing auditory feedback at encoding. Auditory imagery skills also influenced temporal regularity at retrieval (Experiment 2): Higher auditory imagery skill predicted greater temporal regularity during Recall in the presence of

  20. Covert Auditory Spatial Orienting: An Evaluation of the Spatial Relevance Hypothesis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roberts, Katherine L.; Summerfield, A. Quentin; Hall, Deborah A.

    2009-01-01

    The spatial relevance hypothesis (J. J. McDonald & L. M. Ward, 1999) proposes that covert auditory spatial orienting can only be beneficial to auditory processing when task stimuli are encoded spatially. We present a series of experiments that evaluate 2 key aspects of the hypothesis: (a) that "reflexive activation of location-sensitive neurons is…

  1. Auditory spatial localization: Developmental delay in children with visual impairments.

    PubMed

    Cappagli, Giulia; Gori, Monica

    2016-01-01

    For individuals with visual impairments, auditory spatial localization is one of the most important features to navigate in the environment. Many works suggest that blind adults show similar or even enhanced performance for localization of auditory cues compared to sighted adults (Collignon, Voss, Lassonde, & Lepore, 2009). To date, the investigation of auditory spatial localization in children with visual impairments has provided contrasting results. Here we report, for the first time, that contrary to visually impaired adults, children with low vision or total blindness show a significant impairment in the localization of static sounds. These results suggest that simple auditory spatial tasks are compromised in children, and that this capacity recovers over time. PMID:27002960

  2. From ear to body: the auditory-motor loop in spatial cognition

    PubMed Central

    Viaud-Delmon, Isabelle; Warusfel, Olivier

    2014-01-01

    Spatial memory is mainly studied through the visual sensory modality: navigation tasks in humans rarely integrate dynamic and spatial auditory information. In order to study how a spatial scene can be memorized on the basis of auditory and idiothetic cues only, we constructed an auditory equivalent of the Morris water maze, a task widely used to assess spatial learning and memory in rodents. Participants were equipped with wireless headphones, which delivered a soundscape updated in real time according to their movements in 3D space. A wireless tracking system (video infrared with passive markers) was used to send the coordinates of the subject's head to the sound rendering system. The rendering system used advanced HRTF-based synthesis of directional cues and room acoustic simulation for the auralization of a realistic acoustic environment. Participants were guided blindfolded in an experimental room. Their task was to explore a delimitated area in order to find a hidden auditory target, i.e., a sound that was only triggered when walking on a precise location of the area. The position of this target could be coded in relationship to auditory landmarks constantly rendered during the exploration of the area. The task was composed of a practice trial, 6 acquisition trials during which they had to memorize the localization of the target, and 4 test trials in which some aspects of the auditory scene were modified. The task ended with a probe trial in which the auditory target was removed. The configuration of searching paths allowed observing how auditory information was coded to memorize the position of the target. They suggested that space can be efficiently coded without visual information in normal sighted subjects. In conclusion, space representation can be based on sensorimotor and auditory cues only, providing another argument in favor of the hypothesis that the brain has access to a modality-invariant representation of external space. PMID:25249933

  3. Auditory Discrimination Learning: Role of Working Memory.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yu-Xuan; Moore, David R; Guiraud, Jeanne; Molloy, Katharine; Yan, Ting-Ting; Amitay, Sygal

    2016-01-01

    Perceptual training is generally assumed to improve perception by modifying the encoding or decoding of sensory information. However, this assumption is incompatible with recent demonstrations that transfer of learning can be enhanced by across-trial variation of training stimuli or task. Here we present three lines of evidence from healthy adults in support of the idea that the enhanced transfer of auditory discrimination learning is mediated by working memory (WM). First, the ability to discriminate small differences in tone frequency or duration was correlated with WM measured with a tone n-back task. Second, training frequency discrimination around a variable frequency transferred to and from WM learning, but training around a fixed frequency did not. The transfer of learning in both directions was correlated with a reduction of the influence of stimulus variation in the discrimination task, linking WM and its improvement to across-trial stimulus interaction in auditory discrimination. Third, while WM training transferred broadly to other WM and auditory discrimination tasks, variable-frequency training on duration discrimination did not improve WM, indicating that stimulus variation challenges and trains WM only if the task demands stimulus updating in the varied dimension. The results provide empirical evidence as well as a theoretic framework for interactions between cognitive and sensory plasticity during perceptual experience. PMID:26799068

  4. Spatial processing in the auditory cortex of the macaque monkey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Recanzone, Gregg H.

    2000-10-01

    The patterns of cortico-cortical and cortico-thalamic connections of auditory cortical areas in the rhesus monkey have led to the hypothesis that acoustic information is processed in series and in parallel in the primate auditory cortex. Recent physiological experiments in the behaving monkey indicate that the response properties of neurons in different cortical areas are both functionally distinct from each other, which is indicative of parallel processing, and functionally similar to each other, which is indicative of serial processing. Thus, auditory cortical processing may be similar to the serial and parallel "what" and "where" processing by the primate visual cortex. If "where" information is serially processed in the primate auditory cortex, neurons in cortical areas along this pathway should have progressively better spatial tuning properties. This prediction is supported by recent experiments that have shown that neurons in the caudomedial field have better spatial tuning properties than neurons in the primary auditory cortex. Neurons in the caudomedial field are also better than primary auditory cortex neurons at predicting the sound localization ability across different stimulus frequencies and bandwidths in both azimuth and elevation. These data support the hypothesis that the primate auditory cortex processes acoustic information in a serial and parallel manner and suggest that this may be a general cortical mechanism for sensory perception.

  5. Call sign intelligibility improvement using a spatial auditory display

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begault, Durand R.

    1993-01-01

    A spatial auditory display was used to convolve speech stimuli, consisting of 130 different call signs used in the communications protocol of NASA's John F. Kennedy Space Center, to different virtual auditory positions. An adaptive staircase method was used to determine intelligibility levels of the signal against diotic speech babble, with spatial positions at 30 deg azimuth increments. Non-individualized, minimum-phase approximations of head-related transfer functions were used. The results showed a maximal intelligibility improvement of about 6 dB when the signal was spatialized to 60 deg or 90 deg azimuth positions.

  6. Call sign intelligibility improvement using a spatial auditory display

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Begault, Durand R.

    1993-04-01

    A spatial auditory display was used to convolve speech stimuli, consisting of 130 different call signs used in the communications protocol of NASA's John F. Kennedy Space Center, to different virtual auditory positions. An adaptive staircase method was used to determine intelligibility levels of the signal against diotic speech babble, with spatial positions at 30 deg azimuth increments. Non-individualized, minimum-phase approximations of head-related transfer functions were used. The results showed a maximal intelligibility improvement of about 6 dB when the signal was spatialized to 60 deg or 90 deg azimuth positions.

  7. Sensory Substitution: The Spatial Updating of Auditory Scenes "Mimics" the Spatial Updating of Visual Scenes.

    PubMed

    Pasqualotto, Achille; Esenkaya, Tayfun

    2016-01-01

    Visual-to-auditory sensory substitution is used to convey visual information through audition, and it was initially created to compensate for blindness; it consists of software converting the visual images captured by a video-camera into the equivalent auditory images, or "soundscapes". Here, it was used by blindfolded sighted participants to learn the spatial position of simple shapes depicted in images arranged on the floor. Very few studies have used sensory substitution to investigate spatial representation, while it has been widely used to investigate object recognition. Additionally, with sensory substitution we could study the performance of participants actively exploring the environment through audition, rather than passively localizing sound sources. Blindfolded participants egocentrically learnt the position of six images by using sensory substitution and then a judgment of relative direction task (JRD) was used to determine how this scene was represented. This task consists of imagining being in a given location, oriented in a given direction, and pointing towards the required image. Before performing the JRD task, participants explored a map that provided allocentric information about the scene. Although spatial exploration was egocentric, surprisingly we found that performance in the JRD task was better for allocentric perspectives. This suggests that the egocentric representation of the scene was updated. This result is in line with previous studies using visual and somatosensory scenes, thus supporting the notion that different sensory modalities produce equivalent spatial representation(s). Moreover, our results have practical implications to improve training methods with sensory substitution devices (SSD). PMID:27148000

  8. Call sign intelligibility improvement using a spatial auditory display

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begault, Durand R.

    1994-01-01

    A spatial auditory display was designed for separating the multiple communication channels usually heard over one ear to different virtual auditory positions. The single 19 foot rack mount device utilizes digital filtering algorithms to separate up to four communication channels. The filters use four different binaural transfer functions, synthesized from actual outer ear measurements, to impose localization cues on the incoming sound. Hardware design features include 'fail-safe' operation in the case of power loss, and microphone/headset interfaces to the mobile launch communication system in use at KSC. An experiment designed to verify the intelligibility advantage of the display used 130 different call signs taken from the communications protocol used at NASA KSC. A 6 to 7 dB intelligibility advantage was found when multiple channels were spatially displayed, compared to monaural listening. The findings suggest that the use of a spatial auditory display could enhance both occupational and operational safety and efficiency of NASA operations.

  9. Attention Modulates the Auditory Cortical Processing of Spatial and Category Cues in Naturalistic Auditory Scenes

    PubMed Central

    Renvall, Hanna; Staeren, Noël; Barz, Claudia S.; Ley, Anke; Formisano, Elia

    2016-01-01

    This combined fMRI and MEG study investigated brain activations during listening and attending to natural auditory scenes. We first recorded, using in-ear microphones, vocal non-speech sounds, and environmental sounds that were mixed to construct auditory scenes containing two concurrent sound streams. During the brain measurements, subjects attended to one of the streams while spatial acoustic information of the scene was either preserved (stereophonic sounds) or removed (monophonic sounds). Compared to monophonic sounds, stereophonic sounds evoked larger blood-oxygenation-level-dependent (BOLD) fMRI responses in the bilateral posterior superior temporal areas, independent of which stimulus attribute the subject was attending to. This finding is consistent with the functional role of these regions in the (automatic) processing of auditory spatial cues. Additionally, significant differences in the cortical activation patterns depending on the target of attention were observed. Bilateral planum temporale and inferior frontal gyrus were preferentially activated when attending to stereophonic environmental sounds, whereas when subjects attended to stereophonic voice sounds, the BOLD responses were larger at the bilateral middle superior temporal gyrus and sulcus, previously reported to show voice sensitivity. In contrast, the time-resolved MEG responses were stronger for mono- than stereophonic sounds in the bilateral auditory cortices at ~360 ms after the stimulus onset when attending to the voice excerpts within the combined sounds. The observed effects suggest that during the segregation of auditory objects from the auditory background, spatial sound cues together with other relevant temporal and spectral cues are processed in an attention-dependent manner at the cortical locations generally involved in sound recognition. More synchronous neuronal activation during monophonic than stereophonic sound processing, as well as (local) neuronal inhibitory mechanisms in

  10. Use of auditory learning to manage listening problems in children

    PubMed Central

    Moore, David R.; Halliday, Lorna F.; Amitay, Sygal

    2008-01-01

    This paper reviews recent studies that have used adaptive auditory training to address communication problems experienced by some children in their everyday life. It considers the auditory contribution to developmental listening and language problems and the underlying principles of auditory learning that may drive further refinement of auditory learning applications. Following strong claims that language and listening skills in children could be improved by auditory learning, researchers have debated what aspect of training contributed to the improvement and even whether the claimed improvements reflect primarily a retest effect on the skill measures. Key to understanding this research have been more circumscribed studies of the transfer of learning and the use of multiple control groups to examine auditory and non-auditory contributions to the learning. Significant auditory learning can occur during relatively brief periods of training. As children mature, their ability to train improves, but the relation between the duration of training, amount of learning and benefit remains unclear. Individual differences in initial performance and amount of subsequent learning advocate tailoring training to individual learners. The mechanisms of learning remain obscure, especially in children, but it appears that the development of cognitive skills is of at least equal importance to the refinement of sensory processing. Promotion of retention and transfer of learning are major goals for further research. PMID:18986969

  11. Emergence of Spatial Stream Segregation in the Ascending Auditory Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Justin D.; Bremen, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Stream segregation enables a listener to disentangle multiple competing sequences of sounds. A recent study from our laboratory demonstrated that cortical neurons in anesthetized cats exhibit spatial stream segregation (SSS) by synchronizing preferentially to one of two sequences of noise bursts that alternate between two source locations. Here, we examine the emergence of SSS along the ascending auditory pathway. Extracellular recordings were made in anesthetized rats from the inferior colliculus (IC), the nucleus of the brachium of the IC (BIN), the medial geniculate body (MGB), and the primary auditory cortex (A1). Stimuli consisted of interleaved sequences of broadband noise bursts that alternated between two source locations. At stimulus presentation rates of 5 and 10 bursts per second, at which human listeners report robust SSS, neural SSS is weak in the central nucleus of the IC (ICC), it appears in the nucleus of the brachium of the IC (BIN) and in approximately two-thirds of neurons in the ventral MGB (MGBv), and is prominent throughout A1. The enhancement of SSS at the cortical level reflects both increased spatial sensitivity and increased forward suppression. We demonstrate that forward suppression in A1 does not result from synaptic inhibition at the cortical level. Instead, forward suppression might reflect synaptic depression in the thalamocortical projection. Together, our findings indicate that auditory streams are increasingly segregated along the ascending auditory pathway as distinct mutually synchronized neural populations. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Listeners are capable of disentangling multiple competing sequences of sounds that originate from distinct sources. This stream segregation is aided by differences in spatial location between the sources. A possible substrate of spatial stream segregation (SSS) has been described in the auditory cortex, but the mechanisms leading to those cortical responses are unknown. Here, we investigated SSS in

  12. Auditory Highlighting as a Strategy for Improving Listening Comprehension. Auditory Learning Monograph Series 2.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fleming, James W.

    Fifty-eight students (in grades 5 and 6) of average or near-average intelligence (who were reading 2 or more years below their normal expected level and who learned best through the auditory modality) took part in a study to evaluate the following areas: the effectiveness of two auditory highlighting procedures for increasing listening…

  13. The affective Auditory Verbal Learning Test.

    PubMed

    Snyder, K A; Harrison, D W

    1997-01-01

    The study of emotion is hindered by the lack of tests for affect perception or comprehension. One solution is to develop affective versions of well-known tests. Using an index of word norms (Toglia & Battig, 1978), positively and negatively valenced word lists were developed as alternate forms of the affectively neutral Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVL; Rey, 1964). Participants (N=102) received either the original RAVL list, the positively valenced list, or the negatively valenced list. Results are depicted across acquisition trials and location within the list for comparison of primacy and recency effects. Each word list yielded comparable patterns of acquisition. Participants receiving the negative list evidenced an enhanced primacy effect, while participants receiving the positive list evidenced an enhanced recency effect. The positive and negative lists may prove useful in the evaluation of individuals with affective disorders and may provide an alternative for affect induction through an active learning paradigm.

  14. The Role of Auditory Cues in the Spatial Knowledge of Blind Individuals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Papadopoulos, Konstantinos; Papadimitriou, Kimon; Koutsoklenis, Athanasios

    2012-01-01

    The study presented here sought to explore the role of auditory cues in the spatial knowledge of blind individuals by examining the relation between the perceived auditory cues and the landscape of a given area and by investigating how blind individuals use auditory cues to create cognitive maps. The findings reveal that several auditory cues…

  15. Multisensory Training Improves Auditory Spatial Processing following Bilateral Cochlear Implantation

    PubMed Central

    Isaiah, Amal; Vongpaisal, Tara; King, Andrew J.

    2014-01-01

    Cochlear implants (CIs) partially restore hearing to the deaf by directly stimulating the inner ear. In individuals fitted with CIs, lack of auditory experience due to loss of hearing before language acquisition can adversely impact outcomes. For example, adults with early-onset hearing loss generally do not integrate inputs from both ears effectively when fitted with bilateral CIs (BiCIs). Here, we used an animal model to investigate the effects of long-term deafness on auditory localization with BiCIs and approaches for promoting the use of binaural spatial cues. Ferrets were deafened either at the age of hearing onset or as adults. All animals were implanted in adulthood, either unilaterally or bilaterally, and were subsequently assessed for their ability to localize sound in the horizontal plane. The unilaterally implanted animals were unable to perform this task, regardless of the duration of deafness. Among animals with BiCIs, early-onset hearing loss was associated with poor auditory localization performance, compared with late-onset hearing loss. However, performance in the early-deafened group with BiCIs improved significantly after multisensory training with interleaved auditory and visual stimuli. We demonstrate a possible neural substrate for this by showing a training-induced improvement in the responsiveness of auditory cortical neurons and in their sensitivity to interaural level differences, the principal localization cue available to BiCI users. Importantly, our behavioral and physiological evidence demonstrates a facilitative role for vision in restoring auditory spatial processing following potential cross-modal reorganization. These findings support investigation of a similar training paradigm in human CI users. PMID:25122908

  16. Spatial organization of tettigoniid auditory receptors: insights from neuronal tracing.

    PubMed

    Strauß, Johannes; Lehmann, Gerlind U C; Lehmann, Arne W; Lakes-Harlan, Reinhard

    2012-11-01

    The auditory sense organ of Tettigoniidae (Insecta, Orthoptera) is located in the foreleg tibia and consists of scolopidial sensilla which form a row termed crista acustica. The crista acustica is associated with the tympana and the auditory trachea. This ear is a highly ordered, tonotopic sensory system. As the neuroanatomy of the crista acustica has been documented for several species, the most distal somata and dendrites of receptor neurons have occasionally been described as forming an alternating or double row. We investigate the spatial arrangement of receptor cell bodies and dendrites by retrograde tracing with cobalt chloride solution. In six tettigoniid species studied, distal receptor neurons are consistently arranged in double-rows of somata rather than a linear sequence. This arrangement of neurons is shown to affect 30-50% of the overall auditory receptors. No strict correlation of somata positions between the anterio-posterior and dorso-ventral axis was evident within the distal crista acustica. Dendrites of distal receptors occasionally also occur in a double row or are even massed without clear order. Thus, a substantial part of auditory receptors can deviate from a strictly straight organization into a more complex morphology. The linear organization of dendrites is not a morphological criterion that allows hearing organs to be distinguished from nonhearing sense organs serially homologous to ears in all species. Both the crowded arrangement of receptor somata and dendrites may result from functional constraints relating to frequency discrimination, or from developmental constraints of auditory morphogenesis in postembryonic development.

  17. Auditory feedback in error-based learning of motor regularity.

    PubMed

    van Vugt, Floris T; Tillmann, Barbara

    2015-05-01

    Music and speech are skills that require high temporal precision of motor output. A key question is how humans achieve this timing precision given the poor temporal resolution of somatosensory feedback, which is classically considered to drive motor learning. We hypothesise that auditory feedback critically contributes to learn timing, and that, similarly to visuo-spatial learning models, learning proceeds by correcting a proportion of perceived timing errors. Thirty-six participants learned to tap a sequence regularly in time. For participants in the synchronous-sound group, a tone was presented simultaneously with every keystroke. For the jittered-sound group, the tone was presented after a random delay of 10-190 ms following the keystroke, thus degrading the temporal information that the sound provided about the movement. For the mute group, no keystroke-triggered sound was presented. In line with the model predictions, participants in the synchronous-sound group were able to improve tapping regularity, whereas the jittered-sound and mute group were not. The improved tapping regularity of the synchronous-sound group also transferred to a novel sequence and was maintained when sound was subsequently removed. The present findings provide evidence that humans engage in auditory feedback error-based learning to improve movement quality (here reduce variability in sequence tapping). We thus elucidate the mechanism by which high temporal precision of movement can be achieved through sound in a way that may not be possible with less temporally precise somatosensory modalities. Furthermore, the finding that sound-supported learning generalises to novel sequences suggests potential rehabilitation applications.

  18. Natural auditory scene statistics shapes human spatial hearing

    PubMed Central

    Parise, Cesare V.; Knorre, Katharina; Ernst, Marc O.

    2014-01-01

    Human perception, cognition, and action are laced with seemingly arbitrary mappings. In particular, sound has a strong spatial connotation: Sounds are high and low, melodies rise and fall, and pitch systematically biases perceived sound elevation. The origins of such mappings are unknown. Are they the result of physiological constraints, do they reflect natural environmental statistics, or are they truly arbitrary? We recorded natural sounds from the environment, analyzed the elevation-dependent filtering of the outer ear, and measured frequency-dependent biases in human sound localization. We find that auditory scene statistics reveals a clear mapping between frequency and elevation. Perhaps more interestingly, this natural statistical mapping is tightly mirrored in both ear-filtering properties and in perceived sound location. This suggests that both sound localization behavior and ear anatomy are fine-tuned to the statistics of natural auditory scenes, likely providing the basis for the spatial connotation of human hearing. PMID:24711409

  19. Does visual experience influence the spatial distribution of auditory attention?

    PubMed

    Lerens, Elodie; Renier, Laurent

    2014-02-01

    Sighted individuals are less accurate and slower to localize sounds coming from the peripheral space than sounds coming from the frontal space. This specific bias in favour of the frontal auditory space seems reduced in early blind individuals, who are particularly better than sighted individuals at localizing sounds coming from the peripheral space. Currently, it is not clear to what extent this bias in the auditory space is a general phenomenon or if it applies only to spatial processing (i.e. sound localization). In our approach we compared the performance of early blind participants with that of sighted subjects during a frequency discrimination task with sounds originating either from frontal or peripheral locations. Results showed that early blind participants discriminated faster than sighted subjects both peripheral and frontal sounds. In addition, sighted subjects were faster at discriminating frontal sounds than peripheral ones, whereas early blind participants showed equal discrimination speed for frontal and peripheral sounds. We conclude that the spatial bias observed in sighted subjects reflects an unbalance in the spatial distribution of auditory attention resources that is induced by visual experience. PMID:24378238

  20. Auditory cortex involvement in emotional learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Grosso, A; Cambiaghi, M; Concina, G; Sacco, T; Sacchetti, B

    2015-07-23

    Emotional memories represent the core of human and animal life and drive future choices and behaviors. Early research involving brain lesion studies in animals lead to the idea that the auditory cortex participates in emotional learning by processing the sensory features of auditory stimuli paired with emotional consequences and by transmitting this information to the amygdala. Nevertheless, electrophysiological and imaging studies revealed that, following emotional experiences, the auditory cortex undergoes learning-induced changes that are highly specific, associative and long lasting. These studies suggested that the role played by the auditory cortex goes beyond stimulus elaboration and transmission. Here, we discuss three major perspectives created by these data. In particular, we analyze the possible roles of the auditory cortex in emotional learning, we examine the recruitment of the auditory cortex during early and late memory trace encoding, and finally we consider the functional interplay between the auditory cortex and subcortical nuclei, such as the amygdala, that process affective information. We conclude that, starting from the early phase of memory encoding, the auditory cortex has a more prominent role in emotional learning, through its connections with subcortical nuclei, than is typically acknowledged.

  1. Auditory Processing Learning Disability, Suicidal Ideation, and Transformational Faith

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bailey, Frank S.; Yocum, Russell G.

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this personal experience as a narrative investigation is to describe how an auditory processing learning disability exacerbated--and how spirituality and religiosity relieved--suicidal ideation, through the lived experiences of an individual born and raised in the United States. The study addresses: (a) how an auditory processing…

  2. Transformation of spatial sensitivity along the ascending auditory pathway

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Justin D.; Bremen, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Locations of sounds are computed in the central auditory pathway based primarily on differences in sound level and timing at the two ears. In rats, the results of that computation appear in the primary auditory cortex (A1) as exclusively contralateral hemifield spatial sensitivity, with strong responses to sounds contralateral to the recording site, sharp cutoffs across the midline, and weak, sound-level-tolerant responses to ipsilateral sounds. We surveyed the auditory pathway in anesthetized rats to identify the brain level(s) at which level-tolerant spatial sensitivity arises. Noise-burst stimuli were varied in horizontal sound location and in sound level. Neurons in the central nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICc) displayed contralateral tuning at low sound levels, but tuning was degraded at successively higher sound levels. In contrast, neurons in the nucleus of the brachium of the inferior colliculus (BIN) showed sharp, level-tolerant spatial sensitivity. The ventral division of the medial geniculate body (MGBv) contained two discrete neural populations, one showing broad sensitivity like the ICc and one showing sharp sensitivity like A1. Dorsal, medial, and shell regions of the MGB showed fairly sharp spatial sensitivity, likely reflecting inputs from A1 and/or the BIN. The results demonstrate two parallel brainstem pathways for spatial hearing. The tectal pathway, in which sharp, level-tolerant spatial sensitivity arises between ICc and BIN, projects to the superior colliculus and could support reflexive orientation to sounds. The lemniscal pathway, in which such sensitivity arises between ICc and the MGBv, projects to the forebrain to support perception of sound location. PMID:25744891

  3. Auditory-Perceptual Learning Improves Speech Motor Adaptation in Children

    PubMed Central

    Shiller, Douglas M.; Rochon, Marie-Lyne

    2015-01-01

    Auditory feedback plays an important role in children’s speech development by providing the child with information about speech outcomes that is used to learn and fine-tune speech motor plans. The use of auditory feedback in speech motor learning has been extensively studied in adults by examining oral motor responses to manipulations of auditory feedback during speech production. Children are also capable of adapting speech motor patterns to perceived changes in auditory feedback, however it is not known whether their capacity for motor learning is limited by immature auditory-perceptual abilities. Here, the link between speech perceptual ability and the capacity for motor learning was explored in two groups of 5–7-year-old children who underwent a period of auditory perceptual training followed by tests of speech motor adaptation to altered auditory feedback. One group received perceptual training on a speech acoustic property relevant to the motor task while a control group received perceptual training on an irrelevant speech contrast. Learned perceptual improvements led to an enhancement in speech motor adaptation (proportional to the perceptual change) only for the experimental group. The results indicate that children’s ability to perceive relevant speech acoustic properties has a direct influence on their capacity for sensory-based speech motor adaptation. PMID:24842067

  4. Auditory-perceptual learning improves speech motor adaptation in children.

    PubMed

    Shiller, Douglas M; Rochon, Marie-Lyne

    2014-08-01

    Auditory feedback plays an important role in children's speech development by providing the child with information about speech outcomes that is used to learn and fine-tune speech motor plans. The use of auditory feedback in speech motor learning has been extensively studied in adults by examining oral motor responses to manipulations of auditory feedback during speech production. Children are also capable of adapting speech motor patterns to perceived changes in auditory feedback; however, it is not known whether their capacity for motor learning is limited by immature auditory-perceptual abilities. Here, the link between speech perceptual ability and the capacity for motor learning was explored in two groups of 5- to 7-year-old children who underwent a period of auditory perceptual training followed by tests of speech motor adaptation to altered auditory feedback. One group received perceptual training on a speech acoustic property relevant to the motor task while a control group received perceptual training on an irrelevant speech contrast. Learned perceptual improvements led to an enhancement in speech motor adaptation (proportional to the perceptual change) only for the experimental group. The results indicate that children's ability to perceive relevant speech acoustic properties has a direct influence on their capacity for sensory-based speech motor adaptation.

  5. Multi-channel spatial auditory display for speech communications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Begault, Durand; Erbe, Tom

    1993-10-01

    A spatial auditory display for multiple speech communications was developed at NASA-Ames Research Center. Input is spatialized by use of simplified head-related transfer functions, adapted for FIR filtering on Motorola 56001 digital signal processors. Hardware and firmware design implementations are overviewed for the initial prototype developed for NASA-Kennedy Space Center. An adaptive staircase method was used to determine intelligibility levels of four letter call signs used by launch personnel at NASA, against diotic speech babble. Spatial positions at 30 deg azimuth increments were evaluated. The results from eight subjects showed a maximal intelligibility improvement of about 6 to 7 dB when the signal was spatialized to 60 deg or 90 deg azimuth positions.

  6. Multi-channel spatial auditory display for speech communications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begault, Durand; Erbe, Tom

    1993-01-01

    A spatial auditory display for multiple speech communications was developed at NASA-Ames Research Center. Input is spatialized by use of simplified head-related transfer functions, adapted for FIR filtering on Motorola 56001 digital signal processors. Hardware and firmware design implementations are overviewed for the initial prototype developed for NASA-Kennedy Space Center. An adaptive staircase method was used to determine intelligibility levels of four letter call signs used by launch personnel at NASA, against diotic speech babble. Spatial positions at 30 deg azimuth increments were evaluated. The results from eight subjects showed a maximal intelligibility improvement of about 6 to 7 dB when the signal was spatialized to 60 deg or 90 deg azimuth positions.

  7. Biological impact of auditory expertise across the life span: musicians as a model of auditory learning

    PubMed Central

    Strait, Dana L.; Kraus, Nina

    2013-01-01

    Experience-dependent characteristics of auditory function, especially with regard to speech-evoked auditory neurophysiology, have garnered increasing attention in recent years. This interest stems from both pragmatic and theoretical concerns as it bears implications for the prevention and remediation of language-based learning impairment in addition to providing insight into mechanisms engendering experience-dependent changes in human sensory function. Musicians provide an attractive model for studying the experience-dependency of auditory processing in humans due to their distinctive neural enhancements compared to nonmusicians. We have only recently begun to address whether these enhancements are observable early in life, during the initial years of music training when the auditory system is under rapid development, as well as later in life, after the onset of the aging process. Here we review neural enhancements in musically trained individuals across the life span in the context of cellular mechanisms that underlie learning, identified in animal models. Musicians’ subcortical physiologic enhancements are interpreted according to a cognitive framework for auditory learning, providing a model by which to study mechanisms of experience-dependent changes in auditory function in humans. PMID:23988583

  8. Biological impact of auditory expertise across the life span: musicians as a model of auditory learning.

    PubMed

    Strait, Dana L; Kraus, Nina

    2014-02-01

    Experience-dependent characteristics of auditory function, especially with regard to speech-evoked auditory neurophysiology, have garnered increasing attention in recent years. This interest stems from both pragmatic and theoretical concerns as it bears implications for the prevention and remediation of language-based learning impairment in addition to providing insight into mechanisms engendering experience-dependent changes in human sensory function. Musicians provide an attractive model for studying the experience-dependency of auditory processing in humans due to their distinctive neural enhancements compared to nonmusicians. We have only recently begun to address whether these enhancements are observable early in life, during the initial years of music training when the auditory system is under rapid development, as well as later in life, after the onset of the aging process. Here we review neural enhancements in musically trained individuals across the life span in the context of cellular mechanisms that underlie learning, identified in animal models. Musicians' subcortical physiologic enhancements are interpreted according to a cognitive framework for auditory learning, providing a model in which to study mechanisms of experience-dependent changes in human auditory function.

  9. The descending corticocollicular pathway mediates learning-induced auditory plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Bajo, Victoria M; Nodal, Fernando R; Moore, David R; King, Andrew J

    2013-01-01

    Descending projections from sensory areas of the cerebral cortex are among the largest pathways in the brain, suggesting that they are important for subcortical processing. Although corticofugal inputs have been shown to modulate neuronal responses in the thalamus and midbrain, the behavioral importance of these changes remains unknown. In the auditory system, one of the major descending pathways is from cortical layer V pyramidal cells to the inferior colliculus in the midbrain. We examined the role of these neurons in experience-dependent recalibration of sound localization in adult ferrets by selectively killing the neurons using chromophore-targeted laser photolysis. When provided with appropriate training, animals normally relearn to localize sound accurately after altering the spatial cues available by reversibly occluding one ear. However, this ability was lost after eliminating corticocollicular neurons, whereas normal sound-localization accuracy was unaffected. The integrity of this descending pathway is therefore critical for learning-induced localization plasticity. PMID:20037578

  10. Analysis of auditory spatial receptive fields: An application of virtual auditory space technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takahashi, Terry T.; Keller, Clifford H.; Euston, David R.; Spezio, Michael L.

    2002-05-01

    Virtual auditory space technology, typically used to simulate acoustical environments, also allows one to vary one sound localization cue independently of others. VAST was used to determine the contributions of interaural time and level differences (ITD, ILD) to the spatial receptive fields (RFs) of neurons in the owl's midbrain. The presentation of noise filtered so that only ITD varied evoked a response along a vertical strip of virtual space, called the ITD-alone RF. Conversely, when ITD was fixed at the cell's optimum and the ILD spectrum of each location was presented, the cell responded along a horizontal strip, called the ILD-alone RF. The spatial RF was at the intersection of the ITD and ILD-alone RFs. The cell's ILD tuning across frequency, combined with individualized head-related transfer functions, was transformed into an ILD-alone RF that predicted half the variance in the measured one. This discrepancy was due partly to the poor response of the neurons to tones, and a new method of inferring frequency-specific ILD tuning from responses to noise explained about 75% of the variance. By understanding how spatial RFs are constructed, it is possible to infer the neural image of complex auditory scenes containing multiple sources and echoes. [Work supported by NIDCD.

  11. Unconscious learning of auditory discrimination using mismatch negativity (MMN) neurofeedback.

    PubMed

    Chang, Ming; Iizuka, Hiroyuki; Naruse, Yasushi; Ando, Hideyuki; Maeda, Taro

    2014-10-24

    Neurofeedback is a strong direct training method for brain function, wherein brain activity patterns are measured and displayed as feedback, and trainees try to stabilize the feedback signal onto certain desirable states to regulate their own mental states. Here, we introduce a novel neurofeedback method, using the mismatch negativity (MMN) responses elicited by similar sounds that cannot be consciously discriminated. Through neurofeedback training, without participants' attention to the auditory stimuli or awareness of what was to be learned, we found that the participants could unconsciously achieve a significant improvement in the auditory discrimination of the applied stimuli. Our method has great potential to provide effortless auditory perceptual training. Based on this method, participants do not need to make an effort to discriminate auditory stimuli, and can choose tasks of interest without boredom due to training. In particular, it could be used to train people to recognize speech sounds that do not exist in their native language and thereby facilitate foreign language learning.

  12. Manipulation of a central auditory representation shapes learned vocal output

    PubMed Central

    Lei, Huimeng; Mooney, Richard

    2009-01-01

    Learned vocalizations depend on the ear’s ability to monitor and ultimately instruct the voice. Where is auditory feedback processed in the brain and how does it modify motor networks for learned vocalizations? Here we addressed these questions using singing-triggered microstimulation and chronic recording methods in the singing zebra finch, a small songbird that relies on auditory feedback to learn and maintain its species-typical vocalizations. Manipulating the singing-related activity of feedback-sensitive thalamic neurons subsequently triggered vocal plasticity, constraining the central pathway and functional mechanisms through which feedback-related information shapes vocalization. PMID:20152118

  13. Influence of Syllable Structure on L2 Auditory Word Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hamada, Megumi; Goya, Hideki

    2015-01-01

    This study investigated the role of syllable structure in L2 auditory word learning. Based on research on cross-linguistic variation of speech perception and lexical memory, it was hypothesized that Japanese L1 learners of English would learn English words with an open-syllable structure without consonant clusters better than words with a…

  14. The Auditory Verbal Learning Test (Rey AVLT): An Arabic Version

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sharoni, Varda; Natur, Nazeh

    2014-01-01

    The goals of this study were to adapt the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (AVLT) into Arabic, to compare recall functioning among age groups (6:0 to 17:11), and to compare gender differences on various memory dimensions (immediate and delayed recall, learning rate, recognition, proactive interferences, and retroactive interferences). This…

  15. Sensory Substitution: The Spatial Updating of Auditory Scenes “Mimics” the Spatial Updating of Visual Scenes

    PubMed Central

    Pasqualotto, Achille; Esenkaya, Tayfun

    2016-01-01

    Visual-to-auditory sensory substitution is used to convey visual information through audition, and it was initially created to compensate for blindness; it consists of software converting the visual images captured by a video-camera into the equivalent auditory images, or “soundscapes”. Here, it was used by blindfolded sighted participants to learn the spatial position of simple shapes depicted in images arranged on the floor. Very few studies have used sensory substitution to investigate spatial representation, while it has been widely used to investigate object recognition. Additionally, with sensory substitution we could study the performance of participants actively exploring the environment through audition, rather than passively localizing sound sources. Blindfolded participants egocentrically learnt the position of six images by using sensory substitution and then a judgment of relative direction task (JRD) was used to determine how this scene was represented. This task consists of imagining being in a given location, oriented in a given direction, and pointing towards the required image. Before performing the JRD task, participants explored a map that provided allocentric information about the scene. Although spatial exploration was egocentric, surprisingly we found that performance in the JRD task was better for allocentric perspectives. This suggests that the egocentric representation of the scene was updated. This result is in line with previous studies using visual and somatosensory scenes, thus supporting the notion that different sensory modalities produce equivalent spatial representation(s). Moreover, our results have practical implications to improve training methods with sensory substitution devices (SSD). PMID:27148000

  16. Processing of spatial sounds in human auditory cortex during visual, discrimination and 2-back tasks

    PubMed Central

    Rinne, Teemu; Ala-Salomäki, Heidi; Stecker, G. Christopher; Pätynen, Jukka; Lokki, Tapio

    2014-01-01

    Previous imaging studies on the brain mechanisms of spatial hearing have mainly focused on sounds varying in the horizontal plane. In this study, we compared activations in human auditory cortex (AC) and adjacent inferior parietal lobule (IPL) to sounds varying in horizontal location, distance, or space (i.e., different rooms). In order to investigate both stimulus-dependent and task-dependent activations, these sounds were presented during visual discrimination, auditory discrimination, and auditory 2-back memory tasks. Consistent with previous studies, activations in AC were modulated by the auditory tasks. During both auditory and visual tasks, activations in AC were stronger to sounds varying in horizontal location than along other feature dimensions. However, in IPL, this enhancement was detected only during auditory tasks. Based on these results, we argue that IPL is not primarily involved in stimulus-level spatial analysis but that it may represent such information for more general processing when relevant to an active auditory task. PMID:25120423

  17. Spatial localization and auditory lateralization: binaural cues and their absence.

    PubMed

    Cheatham, B H; Herbig, R

    1992-12-01

    In 1990 Cheatham suggested there might be a right-ear advantage for the perception of speech and music for right-handed individuals, which confirms Kinsbourne's observation of a general right-ear advantage. These findings, however, contrast with Segalowitz and Plantery's work that supports attentional bias in lateralized processing of these stimuli. The attentional bias model has also been criticized by Bryden on the basis of its circularity. At present there has not been sufficient evidence to settle this debate empirically. The author suggests that the controversy may best be resolved by disentangling the folklore surrounding spatial localization and auditory lateralization to reexamine this field in light of recent empirical findings by Bryden and by Porac, Coren, and Duncan, who inferred an inherent rightward bias to many kinds of stimulation, including auditory, in right-handed individuals. The present focus is that Cheatham's 1990 data lend themselves more readily to the rightward bias that occurs in right-handed subjects and not to previous structural or attentional models.

  18. Late Maturation of Auditory Perceptual Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huyck, Julia Jones; Wright, Beverly A.

    2011-01-01

    Adults can improve their performance on many perceptual tasks with training, but when does the response to training become mature? To investigate this question, we trained 11-year-olds, 14-year-olds and adults on a basic auditory task (temporal-interval discrimination) using a multiple-session training regimen known to be effective for adults. The…

  19. Effects of category learning on auditory perception and cortical maps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guenther, Frank H.

    2002-05-01

    Our ability to discriminate sounds is not uniform throughout acoustic space. One example of auditory space warping, termed the perceptual magnet effect by Kuhl and colleagues, appears to arise from exposure to the phonemes of an infant's native language. We have developed a neural model that accounts for the magnet effect in terms of neural map dynamics in auditory cortex. This model predicts that it should be possible to induce a magnet effect for non-speech stimuli. This prediction was verified by a psychophysical experiment in which subjects underwent categorization training involving non-speech auditory stimuli that were not categorical prior to training. The model further predicts that the magnet effect arises because prototypical vowels have a smaller cortical representation than non-prototypical vowels. This prediction was supported by an fMRI experiment involving prototypical and non-prototypical examples of the vowel /i/. Finally, the model predicts that categorization training with non-speech stimuli should lead to a decreased cortical representation for stimuli near the center of the category. This prediction was supported by an fMRI experiment involving categorization training with non-speech auditory stimuli. These results provide strong support for the model's account of the effects of category learning on auditory perception and auditory cortical maps.

  20. Lack of Generalization of Auditory Learning in Typically Developing Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Halliday, Lorna F.; Taylor, Jenny L.; Millward, Kerri E.; Moore, David R.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: To understand the components of auditory learning in typically developing children by assessing generalization across stimuli, across modalities (i.e., hearing, vision), and to higher level language tasks. Method: Eighty-six 8- to 10-year-old typically developing children were quasi-randomly assigned to 4 groups. Three of the groups…

  1. Using Spatial Manipulation to Examine Interactions between Visual and Auditory Encoding of Pitch and Time.

    PubMed

    McLachlan, Neil M; Greco, Loretta J; Toner, Emily C; Wilson, Sarah J

    2010-01-01

    Music notations use both symbolic and spatial representation systems. Novice musicians do not have the training to associate symbolic information with musical identities, such as chords or rhythmic and melodic patterns. They provide an opportunity to explore the mechanisms underpinning multimodal learning when spatial encoding strategies of feature dimensions might be expected to dominate. In this study, we applied a range of transformations (such as time reversal) to short melodies and rhythms and asked novice musicians to identify them with or without the aid of notation. Performance using a purely spatial (graphic) notation was contrasted with the more symbolic, traditional western notation over a series of weekly sessions. The results showed learning effects for both notation types, but performance improved more for graphic notation. This points to greater compatibility of auditory and visual neural codes for novice musicians when using spatial notation, suggesting that pitch and time may be spatially encoded in multimodal associative memory. The findings also point to new strategies for training novice musicians. PMID:21833287

  2. The Time Course of Neural Changes Underlying Auditory Perceptual Learning

    PubMed Central

    Atienza, Mercedes; Cantero, Jose L.; Dominguez-Marin, Elena

    2002-01-01

    Improvement in perception takes place within the training session and from one session to the next. The present study aims at determining the time course of perceptual learning as revealed by changes in auditory event-related potentials (ERPs) reflecting preattentive processes. Subjects were trained to discriminate two complex auditory patterns in a single session. ERPs were recorded just before and after training, while subjects read a book and ignored stimulation. ERPs showed a negative wave called mismatch negativity (MMN)—which indexes automatic detection of a change in a homogeneous auditory sequence—just after subjects learned to consciously discriminate the two patterns. ERPs were recorded again 12, 24, 36, and 48 h later, just before testing performance on the discrimination task. Additional behavioral and neurophysiological changes were found several hours after the training session: an enhanced P2 at 24 h followed by shorter reaction times, and an enhanced MMN at 36 h. These results indicate that gains in performance on the discrimination of two complex auditory patterns are accompanied by different learning-dependent neurophysiological events evolving within different time frames, supporting the hypothesis that fast and slow neural changes underlie the acquisition of improved perception. PMID:12075002

  3. Rapid cortical dynamics associated with auditory spatial attention gradients

    PubMed Central

    Mock, Jeffrey R.; Seay, Michael J.; Charney, Danielle R.; Holmes, John L.; Golob, Edward J.

    2015-01-01

    Behavioral and EEG studies suggest spatial attention is allocated as a gradient in which processing benefits decrease away from an attended location. Yet the spatiotemporal dynamics of cortical processes that contribute to attentional gradients are unclear. We measured EEG while participants (n = 35) performed an auditory spatial attention task that required a button press to sounds at one target location on either the left or right. Distractor sounds were randomly presented at four non-target locations evenly spaced up to 180° from the target location. Attentional gradients were quantified by regressing ERP amplitudes elicited by distractors against their spatial location relative to the target. Independent component analysis was applied to each subject's scalp channel data, allowing isolation of distinct cortical sources. Results from scalp ERPs showed a tri-phasic response with gradient slope peaks at ~300 ms (frontal, positive), ~430 ms (posterior, negative), and a plateau starting at ~550 ms (frontal, positive). Corresponding to the first slope peak, a positive gradient was found within a central component when attending to both target locations and for two lateral frontal components when contralateral to the target location. Similarly, a central posterior component had a negative gradient that corresponded to the second slope peak regardless of target location. A right posterior component had both an ipsilateral followed by a contralateral gradient. Lateral posterior clusters also had decreases in α and β oscillatory power with a negative slope and contralateral tuning. Only the left posterior component (120–200 ms) corresponded to absolute sound location. The findings indicate a rapid, temporally-organized sequence of gradients thought to reflect interplay between frontal and parietal regions. We conclude these gradients support a target-based saliency map exhibiting aspects of both right-hemisphere dominance and opponent process models. PMID:26082679

  4. Neurofeedback in Learning Disabled Children: Visual versus Auditory Reinforcement.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Thalía; Bosch-Bayard, Jorge; Harmony, Thalía; Caballero, María I; Díaz-Comas, Lourdes; Galán, Lídice; Ricardo-Garcell, Josefina; Aubert, Eduardo; Otero-Ojeda, Gloria

    2016-03-01

    Children with learning disabilities (LD) frequently have an EEG characterized by an excess of theta and a deficit of alpha activities. NFB using an auditory stimulus as reinforcer has proven to be a useful tool to treat LD children by positively reinforcing decreases of the theta/alpha ratio. The aim of the present study was to optimize the NFB procedure by comparing the efficacy of visual (with eyes open) versus auditory (with eyes closed) reinforcers. Twenty LD children with an abnormally high theta/alpha ratio were randomly assigned to the Auditory or the Visual group, where a 500 Hz tone or a visual stimulus (a white square), respectively, was used as a positive reinforcer when the value of the theta/alpha ratio was reduced. Both groups had signs consistent with EEG maturation, but only the Auditory Group showed behavioral/cognitive improvements. In conclusion, the auditory reinforcer was more efficacious in reducing the theta/alpha ratio, and it improved the cognitive abilities more than the visual reinforcer.

  5. Reduction of internal noise in auditory perceptual learning.

    PubMed

    Jones, Pete R; Moore, David R; Amitay, Sygal; Shub, Daniel E

    2013-02-01

    This paper examines what mechanisms underlie auditory perceptual learning. Fifteen normal hearing adults performed two-alternative, forced choice, pure tone frequency discrimination for four sessions. External variability was introduced by adding a zero-mean Gaussian random variable to the frequency of each tone. Measures of internal noise, encoding efficiency, bias, and inattentiveness were derived using four methods (model fit, classification boundary, psychometric function, and double-pass consistency). The four methods gave convergent estimates of internal noise, which was found to decrease from 4.52 to 2.93 Hz with practice. No group-mean changes in encoding efficiency, bias, or inattentiveness were observed. It is concluded that learned improvements in frequency discrimination primarily reflect a reduction in internal noise. Data from highly experienced listeners and neural networks performing the same task are also reported. These results also indicated that auditory learning represents internal noise reduction, potentially through the re-weighting of frequency-specific channels.

  6. Selective Increase of Auditory Cortico-Striatal Coherence during Auditory-Cued Go/NoGo Discrimination Learning

    PubMed Central

    Schulz, Andreas L.; Woldeit, Marie L.; Gonçalves, Ana I.; Saldeitis, Katja; Ohl, Frank W.

    2016-01-01

    Goal directed behavior and associated learning processes are tightly linked to neuronal activity in the ventral striatum. Mechanisms that integrate task relevant sensory information into striatal processing during decision making and learning are implicitly assumed in current reinforcement models, yet they are still weakly understood. To identify the functional activation of cortico-striatal subpopulations of connections during auditory discrimination learning, we trained Mongolian gerbils in a two-way active avoidance task in a shuttlebox to discriminate between falling and rising frequency modulated tones with identical spectral properties. We assessed functional coupling by analyzing the field-field coherence between the auditory cortex and the ventral striatum of animals performing the task. During the course of training, we observed a selective increase of functional coupling during Go-stimulus presentations. These results suggest that the auditory cortex functionally interacts with the ventral striatum during auditory learning and that the strengthening of these functional connections is selectively goal-directed. PMID:26793085

  7. Feedback delays eliminate auditory-motor learning in speech production.

    PubMed

    Max, Ludo; Maffett, Derek G

    2015-03-30

    Neurologically healthy individuals use sensory feedback to alter future movements by updating internal models of the effector system and environment. For example, when visual feedback about limb movements or auditory feedback about speech movements is experimentally perturbed, the planning of subsequent movements is adjusted - i.e., sensorimotor adaptation occurs. A separate line of studies has demonstrated that experimentally delaying the sensory consequences of limb movements causes the sensory input to be attributed to external sources rather than to one's own actions. Yet similar feedback delays have remarkably little effect on visuo-motor adaptation (although the rate of learning varies, the amount of adaptation is only moderately affected with delays of 100-200ms, and adaptation still occurs even with a delay as long as 5000ms). Thus, limb motor learning remains largely intact even in conditions where error assignment favors external factors. Here, we show a fundamentally different result for sensorimotor control of speech articulation: auditory-motor adaptation to formant-shifted feedback is completely eliminated with delays of 100ms or more. Thus, for speech motor learning, real-time auditory feedback is critical. This novel finding informs theoretical models of human motor control in general and speech motor control in particular, and it has direct implications for the application of motor learning principles in the habilitation and rehabilitation of individuals with various sensorimotor speech disorders.

  8. Analysis of Mean Learning of Normal Participants on the Rey Auditory-Verbal Learning Test

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poreh, Amir

    2005-01-01

    Analysis of the mean performance of 58 groups of normal adults and children on the free-recall trials of the Rey Auditory-Verbal Learning Test shows that the mean auditory-verbal learning of each group is described by the function R1+Sln(t), where R1 is a measure of the mean immediate memory span, S is the slope of the mean logarithmic learning…

  9. Functional characteristics of auditory temporal-spatial short-term memory: evidence from serial order errors.

    PubMed

    Parmentier, F B; Jones, D M

    2000-01-01

    The functional characteristics of auditory temporal-spatial short-term memory were explored in 8 experiments in which the to-be-remembered stimuli were sequences of bursts of white noise presented in spatial locations separated in azimuth. Primacy and recency effects were observed in all experiments. A 10-s delay impaired recall for primacy and middle list items but not recency. This effect was shown not to depend on the response modality or on the incidence of omissions or repetitions. Verbal and nonverbal secondary tasks did not affect memory for auditory spatial sounds. Temporal errors rather than spatial errors predominated, suggesting that participants were engaged in a process of maintaining order. This pattern of results may reflect characteristics that serial recall has in common with verbal and spatial recall, but some are unique to the representation of memory for temporal-spatial auditory events.

  10. Motor-related signals in the auditory system for listening and learning.

    PubMed

    Schneider, David M; Mooney, Richard

    2015-08-01

    In the auditory system, corollary discharge signals are theorized to facilitate normal hearing and the learning of acoustic behaviors, including speech and music. Despite clear evidence of corollary discharge signals in the auditory cortex and their presumed importance for hearing and auditory-guided motor learning, the circuitry and function of corollary discharge signals in the auditory cortex are not well described. In this review, we focus on recent developments in the mouse and songbird that provide insights into the circuitry that transmits corollary discharge signals to the auditory system and the function of these signals in the context of hearing and vocal learning.

  11. Auditory middle latency response in children with learning difficulties

    PubMed Central

    Frizzo, Ana Claudia Figueiredo; Issac, Myriam Lima; Pontes-Fernandes, Angela Cristina; Menezes, Pedro de Lemos; Funayama, Carolina Araújo Rodrigues

    2012-01-01

    Summary Introduction: This is an objective laboratory assessment of the central auditory systems of children with learning disabilities. Aim: To examine and determine the properties of the components of the Auditory Middle Latency Response in a sample of children with learning disabilities. Methods: This was a prospective, cross-sectional cohort study with quantitative, descriptive, and exploratory outcomes. We included 50 children aged 8–13 years of both genders with and without learning disorders. Those with disorders of known organic, environmental, or genetic causes were excluded. Results and Conclusions: The Na, Pa, and Nb waves were identified in all subjects. The ranges of the latency component values were as follows: Na = 9.8–32.3 ms, Pa = 19.0–51.4 ms, Nb = 30.0–64.3 ms (learning disorders group) and Na = 13.2–29.6 ms, Pa = 21.8–42.8 ms, Nb = 28.4–65.8 ms (healthy group). The values of the Na-Pa amplitude ranged from 0.3 to 6.8 ìV (learning disorders group) or 0.2–3.6 ìV (learning disorders group). Upon analysis, the functional characteristics of the groups were distinct: the left hemisphere Nb latency was longer in the study group than in the control group. Peculiarities of the electrophysiological measures were observed in the children with learning disorders. This study has provided information on the Auditory Middle Latency Response and can serve as a reference for other clinical and experimental studies in children with these disorders. PMID:25991954

  12. Rapid auditory learning of temporal gap detection.

    PubMed

    Mishra, Srikanta K; Panda, Manasa R

    2016-07-01

    The rapid initial phase of training-induced improvement has been shown to reflect a genuine sensory change in perception. Several features of early and rapid learning, such as generalization and stability, remain to be characterized. The present study demonstrated that learning effects from brief training on a temporal gap detection task using spectrally similar narrowband noise markers defining the gap (within-channel task), transfer across ears, however, not across spectrally dissimilar markers (between-channel task). The learning effects associated with brief training on a gap detection task were found to be stable for at least a day. These initial findings have significant implications for characterizing early and rapid learning effects. PMID:27475211

  13. Spatial Language Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fu, Zhengling

    2016-01-01

    Spatial language constitutes part of the basic fabric of language. Although languages may have the same number of terms to cover a set of spatial relations, they do not always do so in the same way. Spatial languages differ across languages quite radically, thus providing a real semantic challenge for second language learners. The essay first…

  14. Spatial and temporal factors determine auditory-visual interactions in human saccadic eye movements.

    PubMed

    Frens, M A; Van Opstal, A J; Van der Willigen, R F

    1995-08-01

    In this paper, we show that human saccadic eye movements toward a visual target are generated with a reduced latency when this target is spatially and temporally aligned with an irrelevant auditory nontarget. This effect gradually disappears if the temporal and/or spatial alignment of the visual and auditory stimuli are changed. When subjects are able to accurately localize the auditory stimulus in two dimensions, the spatial dependence of the reduction in latency depends on the actual radial distance between the auditory and the visual stimulus. If, however, only the azimuth of the sound source can be determined by the subjects, the horizontal target separation determines the strength of the interaction. Neither saccade accuracy nor saccade kinematics were affected in these paradigms. We propose that, in addition to an aspecific warning signal, the reduction of saccadic latency is due to interactions that take place at a multimodal stage of saccade programming, where the perceived positions of visual and auditory stimuli are represented in a common frame of reference. This hypothesis is in agreement with our finding that the saccades often are initially directed to the average position of the visual and the auditory target, provided that their spatial separation is not too large. Striking similarities with electrophysiological findings on multisensory interactions in the deep layers of the midbrain superior colliculus are discussed.

  15. Disruption of auditory spatial working memory by inactivation of the forebrain archistriatum in barn owls.

    PubMed

    Knudsen, E I; Knudsen, P F

    1996-10-01

    Barn owls not only localize auditory stimuli with great accuracy, they also remember the locations of auditory stimuli and can use this remembered spatial information to guide their flight and strike. Although the mechanisms of sound localization have been studied extensively, the neurobiological basis of auditory spatial memory has not. Here we show that the ability of barn owls to orient their gaze towards and fly to the remembered location of auditory targets is lost during pharmacological inactivation of a small region in the forebrain, the anterior archistriatum. In contrast, archistriatal inactivation has no effect on stimulus-guided responses to auditory targets. The memory-dependent deficit is evident only for acoustic events that occur in the hemifield contralateral to the side that is inactivated. The data demonstrate that in the avian archistriatum, as in the mammalian frontal cortex, there exists a region that is essential for the expression of spatial working memory and that, in the barn owl, this region encodes auditory spatial memory. PMID:8837773

  16. Foxp2 mutations impair auditory-motor association learning.

    PubMed

    Kurt, Simone; Fisher, Simon E; Ehret, Günter

    2012-01-01

    Heterozygous mutations of the human FOXP2 transcription factor gene cause the best-described examples of monogenic speech and language disorders. Acquisition of proficient spoken language involves auditory-guided vocal learning, a specialized form of sensory-motor association learning. The impact of etiological Foxp2 mutations on learning of auditory-motor associations in mammals has not been determined yet. Here, we directly assess this type of learning using a newly developed conditioned avoidance paradigm in a shuttle-box for mice. We show striking deficits in mice heterozygous for either of two different Foxp2 mutations previously implicated in human speech disorders. Both mutations cause delays in acquiring new motor skills. The magnitude of impairments in association learning, however, depends on the nature of the mutation. Mice with a missense mutation in the DNA-binding domain are able to learn, but at a much slower rate than wild type animals, while mice carrying an early nonsense mutation learn very little. These results are consistent with expression of Foxp2 in distributed circuits of the cortex, striatum and cerebellum that are known to play key roles in acquisition of motor skills and sensory-motor association learning, and suggest differing in vivo effects for distinct variants of the Foxp2 protein. Given the importance of such networks for the acquisition of human spoken language, and the fact that similar mutations in human FOXP2 cause problems with speech development, this work opens up a new perspective on the use of mouse models for understanding pathways underlying speech and language disorders.

  17. Learning Anatomy Enhances Spatial Ability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vorstenbosch, Marc A. T. M.; Klaassen, Tim P. F. M.; Donders, A. R. T.; Kooloos, Jan G. M.; Bolhuis, Sanneke M.; Laan, Roland F. J. M.

    2013-01-01

    Spatial ability is an important factor in learning anatomy. Students with high scores on a mental rotation test (MRT) systematically score higher on anatomy examinations. This study aims to investigate if learning anatomy also oppositely improves the MRT-score. Five hundred first year students of medicine ("n" = 242, intervention) and…

  18. New perspectives on the auditory cortex: learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Weinberger, Norman M

    2015-01-01

    Primary ("early") sensory cortices have been viewed as stimulus analyzers devoid of function in learning, memory, and cognition. However, studies combining sensory neurophysiology and learning protocols have revealed that associative learning systematically modifies the encoding of stimulus dimensions in the primary auditory cortex (A1) to accentuate behaviorally important sounds. This "representational plasticity" (RP) is manifest at different levels. The sensitivity and selectivity of signal tones increase near threshold, tuning above threshold shifts toward the frequency of acoustic signals, and their area of representation can increase within the tonotopic map of A1. The magnitude of area gain encodes the level of behavioral stimulus importance and serves as a substrate of memory strength. RP has the same characteristics as behavioral memory: it is associative, specific, develops rapidly, consolidates, and can last indefinitely. Pairing tone with stimulation of the cholinergic nucleus basalis induces RP and implants specific behavioral memory, while directly increasing the representational area of a tone in A1 produces matching behavioral memory. Thus, RP satisfies key criteria for serving as a substrate of auditory memory. The findings suggest a basis for posttraumatic stress disorder in abnormally augmented cortical representations and emphasize the need for a new model of the cerebral cortex.

  19. Task-dependent calibration of auditory spatial perception through environmental visual observation.

    PubMed

    Tonelli, Alessia; Brayda, Luca; Gori, Monica

    2015-01-01

    Visual information is paramount to space perception. Vision influences auditory space estimation. Many studies show that simultaneous visual and auditory cues improve precision of the final multisensory estimate. However, the amount or the temporal extent of visual information, that is sufficient to influence auditory perception, is still unknown. It is therefore interesting to know if vision can improve auditory precision through a short-term environmental observation preceding the audio task and whether this influence is task-specific or environment-specific or both. To test these issues we investigate possible improvements of acoustic precision with sighted blindfolded participants in two audio tasks [minimum audible angle (MAA) and space bisection] and two acoustically different environments (normal room and anechoic room). With respect to a baseline of auditory precision, we found an improvement of precision in the space bisection task but not in the MAA after the observation of a normal room. No improvement was found when performing the same task in an anechoic chamber. In addition, no difference was found between a condition of short environment observation and a condition of full vision during the whole experimental session. Our results suggest that even short-term environmental observation can calibrate auditory spatial performance. They also suggest that echoes can be the cue that underpins visual calibration. Echoes may mediate the transfer of information from the visual to the auditory system. PMID:26082692

  20. Auditory Discrimination as a Condition for E-Learning Based Speech Therapy: A Proposal for an Auditory Discrimination Test (ADT) for Adult Dysarthric Speakers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beijer, L. J.; Rietveld, A. C. M.; van Stiphout, A. J. L.

    2011-01-01

    Background: Web based speech training for dysarthric speakers, such as E-learning based Speech Therapy (EST), puts considerable demands on auditory discrimination abilities. Aims: To discuss the development and the evaluation of an auditory discrimination test (ADT) for the assessment of auditory speech discrimination skills in Dutch adult…

  1. Integration of Auditory and Visual Spatial Information During Early Infancy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lyons-Ruth, Karlen

    An experiment was performed to show that infants perceive auditory and visual stimuli within a common space and that they perceive the sound as an attribute of the visual object. Subjects were 22 infants aged 3 to 5 months. Each infant was presented with a toy that moved in a small arc from side to side of a small window at the rate of one arc per…

  2. Czech version of Rey Auditory Verbal Learning test: normative data.

    PubMed

    Bezdicek, Ondrej; Stepankova, Hana; Moták, Ladislav; Axelrod, Bradley N; Woodard, John L; Preiss, Marek; Nikolai, Tomáš; Růžička, Evžen; Poreh, Amir

    2014-01-01

    The present study provides normative data stratified by age for the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning test Czech version (RAVLT) derived from a sample of 306 cognitively normal subjects (20-85 years). Participants met strict inclusion criteria (absence of any active or past neurological or psychiatric disorder) and performed within normal limits on other neuropsychological measures. Our analyses revealed significant relationships between most RAVLT indices and age and education. Normative data are provided not only for basic RAVLT scores, but for the first time also for a variety of derived (gained/lost access, primacy/recency effect) and error scores. The study confirmed a logarithmic character of the learning slope and is consistent with other studies. It enables the clinician to evaluate more precisely subject's RAVLT memory performance on a vast number of indices and can be viewed as a concrete example of Quantified Process Approach to neuropsychological assessment.

  3. Absolute pitch in infant auditory learning: evidence for developmental reorganization.

    PubMed

    Saffran, J R; Griepentrog, G J

    2001-01-01

    To what extent do infants represent the absolute pitches of complex auditory stimuli? Two experiments with 8-month-old infants examined the use of absolute and relative pitch cues in a tone-sequence statistical learning task. The results suggest that, given unsegmented stimuli that do not conform to the rules of musical composition, infants are more likely to track patterns of absolute pitches than of relative pitches. A 3rd experiment tested adults with or without musical training on the same statistical learning tasks used in the infant experiments. Unlike the infants, adult listeners relied primarily on relative pitch cues. These results suggest a shift from an initial focus on absolute pitch to the eventual dominance of relative pitch, which, it is argued, is more useful for both music and speech processing.

  4. Spatial pattern of intra-laminar connectivity in supragranular mouse auditory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Watkins, Paul V.; Kao, Joseph P. Y.; Kanold, Patrick O.

    2014-01-01

    Neuronal responses and topographic organization of feature selectivity in the cerebral cortex are shaped by ascending inputs and by intracortical connectivity. The mammalian primary auditory cortex has a tonotopic arrangement at large spatial scales (greater than 300 microns). This large-scale architecture breaks down in supragranular layers at smaller scales (around 300 microns), where nearby frequency and sound level tuning properties can be quite heterogeneous. Since layer 4 has a more homogeneous architecture, the heterogeneity in supragranular layers might be caused by heterogeneous ascending input or via heterogeneous intralaminar connections. Here we measure the functional 2-dimensional spatial connectivity pattern of the supragranular auditory cortex on micro-column scales. In general connection probability decreases with radial distance from each neuron, but the decrease is steeper in the isofrequency axis leading to an anisotropic distribution of connection probability with respect to the tonotopic axis. In addition to this radial decrease in connection probability we find a patchy organization of inhibitory and excitatory synaptic inputs that is also anisotropic with respect to the tonotopic axis. These periodicities are at spatial scales of ~100 and ~300 μm. While these spatial periodicities show anisotropy in auditory cortex, they are isotropic in visual cortex, indicating region specific differences in intralaminar connections. Together our results show that layer 2/3 neurons in auditory cortex show specific spatial intralaminar connectivity despite the overtly heterogeneous tuning properties. PMID:24653677

  5. Interface Design Implications for Recalling the Spatial Configuration of Virtual Auditory Environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McMullen, Kyla A.

    Although the concept of virtual spatial audio has existed for almost twenty-five years, only in the past fifteen years has modern computing technology enabled the real-time processing needed to deliver high-precision spatial audio. Furthermore, the concept of virtually walking through an auditory environment did not exist. The applications of such an interface have numerous potential uses. Spatial audio has the potential to be used in various manners ranging from enhancing sounds delivered in virtual gaming worlds to conveying spatial locations in real-time emergency response systems. To incorporate this technology in real-world systems, various concerns should be addressed. First, to widely incorporate spatial audio into real-world systems, head-related transfer functions (HRTFs) must be inexpensively created for each user. The present study further investigated an HRTF subjective selection procedure previously developed within our research group. Users discriminated auditory cues to subjectively select their preferred HRTF from a publicly available database. Next, the issue of training to find virtual sources was addressed. Listeners participated in a localization training experiment using their selected HRTFs. The training procedure was created from the characterization of successful search strategies in prior auditory search experiments. Search accuracy significantly improved after listeners performed the training procedure. Next, in the investigation of auditory spatial memory, listeners completed three search and recall tasks with differing recall methods. Recall accuracy significantly decreased in tasks that required the storage of sound source configurations in memory. To assess the impacts of practical scenarios, the present work assessed the performance effects of: signal uncertainty, visual augmentation, and different attenuation modeling. Fortunately, source uncertainty did not affect listeners' ability to recall or identify sound sources. The present

  6. Differential Effects of Music and Video Gaming During Breaks on Auditory and Visual Learning.

    PubMed

    Liu, Shuyan; Kuschpel, Maxim S; Schad, Daniel J; Heinz, Andreas; Rapp, Michael A

    2015-11-01

    The interruption of learning processes by breaks filled with diverse activities is common in everyday life. This study investigated the effects of active computer gaming and passive relaxation (rest and music) breaks on auditory versus visual memory performance. Young adults were exposed to breaks involving (a) open eyes resting, (b) listening to music, and (c) playing a video game, immediately after memorizing auditory versus visual stimuli. To assess learning performance, words were recalled directly after the break (an 8:30 minute delay) and were recalled and recognized again after 7 days. Based on linear mixed-effects modeling, it was found that playing the Angry Birds video game during a short learning break impaired long-term retrieval in auditory learning but enhanced long-term retrieval in visual learning compared with the music and rest conditions. These differential effects of video games on visual versus auditory learning suggest specific interference of common break activities on learning.

  7. The Use of Spatialized Speech in Auditory Interfaces for Computer Users Who Are Visually Impaired

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sodnik, Jaka; Jakus, Grega; Tomazic, Saso

    2012-01-01

    Introduction: This article reports on a study that explored the benefits and drawbacks of using spatially positioned synthesized speech in auditory interfaces for computer users who are visually impaired (that is, are blind or have low vision). The study was a practical application of such systems--an enhanced word processing application compared…

  8. Learning-dependent plasticity in human auditory cortex during appetitive operant conditioning.

    PubMed

    Puschmann, Sebastian; Brechmann, André; Thiel, Christiane M

    2013-11-01

    Animal experiments provide evidence that learning to associate an auditory stimulus with a reward causes representational changes in auditory cortex. However, most studies did not investigate the temporal formation of learning-dependent plasticity during the task but rather compared auditory cortex receptive fields before and after conditioning. We here present a functional magnetic resonance imaging study on learning-related plasticity in the human auditory cortex during operant appetitive conditioning. Participants had to learn to associate a specific category of frequency-modulated tones with a reward. Only participants who learned this association developed learning-dependent plasticity in left auditory cortex over the course of the experiment. No differential responses to reward predicting and nonreward predicting tones were found in auditory cortex in nonlearners. In addition, learners showed similar learning-induced differential responses to reward-predicting and nonreward-predicting tones in the ventral tegmental area and the nucleus accumbens, two core regions of the dopaminergic neurotransmitter system. This may indicate a dopaminergic influence on the formation of learning-dependent plasticity in auditory cortex, as it has been suggested by previous animal studies.

  9. Auditory experience-dependent cortical circuit shaping for memory formation in bird song learning

    PubMed Central

    Yanagihara, Shin; Yazaki-Sugiyama, Yoko

    2016-01-01

    As in human speech acquisition, songbird vocal learning depends on early auditory experience. During development, juvenile songbirds listen to and form auditory memories of adult tutor songs, which they use to shape their own vocalizations in later sensorimotor learning. The higher-level auditory cortex, called the caudomedial nidopallium (NCM), is a potential storage site for tutor song memory, but no direct electrophysiological evidence of tutor song memory has been found. Here, we identify the neuronal substrate for tutor song memory by recording single-neuron activity in the NCM of behaving juvenile zebra finches. After tutor song experience, a small subset of NCM neurons exhibit highly selective auditory responses to the tutor song. Moreover, blockade of GABAergic inhibition, and sleep decrease their selectivity. Taken together, these results suggest that experience-dependent recruitment of GABA-mediated inhibition shapes auditory cortical circuits, leading to sparse representation of tutor song memory in auditory cortical neurons. PMID:27327620

  10. Auditory experience-dependent cortical circuit shaping for memory formation in bird song learning.

    PubMed

    Yanagihara, Shin; Yazaki-Sugiyama, Yoko

    2016-01-01

    As in human speech acquisition, songbird vocal learning depends on early auditory experience. During development, juvenile songbirds listen to and form auditory memories of adult tutor songs, which they use to shape their own vocalizations in later sensorimotor learning. The higher-level auditory cortex, called the caudomedial nidopallium (NCM), is a potential storage site for tutor song memory, but no direct electrophysiological evidence of tutor song memory has been found. Here, we identify the neuronal substrate for tutor song memory by recording single-neuron activity in the NCM of behaving juvenile zebra finches. After tutor song experience, a small subset of NCM neurons exhibit highly selective auditory responses to the tutor song. Moreover, blockade of GABAergic inhibition, and sleep decrease their selectivity. Taken together, these results suggest that experience-dependent recruitment of GABA-mediated inhibition shapes auditory cortical circuits, leading to sparse representation of tutor song memory in auditory cortical neurons. PMID:27327620

  11. Binding of Verbal and Spatial Features in Auditory Working Memory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maybery, Murray T.; Clissa, Peter J.; Parmentier, Fabrice B. R.; Leung, Doris; Harsa, Grefin; Fox, Allison M.; Jones, Dylan M.

    2009-01-01

    The present study investigated the binding of verbal identity and spatial location in the retention of sequences of spatially distributed acoustic stimuli. Study stimuli varying in verbal content and spatial location (e.g. V[subscript 1]S[subscript 1], V[subscript 2]S[subscript 2], V[subscript 3]S[subscript 3], V[subscript 4]S[subscript 4]) were…

  12. Auditory Artificial Grammar Learning in Macaque and Marmoset Monkeys

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Benjamin; Slater, Heather; Kikuchi, Yukiko; Milne, Alice E.; Marslen-Wilson, William D.; Smith, Kenny

    2013-01-01

    Artificial grammars (AG) are designed to emulate aspects of the structure of language, and AG learning (AGL) paradigms can be used to study the extent of nonhuman animals' structure-learning capabilities. However, different AG structures have been used with nonhuman animals and are difficult to compare across studies and species. We developed a simple quantitative parameter space, which we used to summarize previous nonhuman animal AGL results. This was used to highlight an under-studied AG with a forward-branching structure, designed to model certain aspects of the nondeterministic nature of word transitions in natural language and animal song. We tested whether two monkey species could learn aspects of this auditory AG. After habituating the monkeys to the AG, analysis of video recordings showed that common marmosets (New World monkeys) differentiated between well formed, correct testing sequences and those violating the AG structure based primarily on simple learning strategies. By comparison, Rhesus macaques (Old World monkeys) showed evidence for deeper levels of AGL. A novel eye-tracking approach confirmed this result in the macaques and demonstrated evidence for more complex AGL. This study provides evidence for a previously unknown level of AGL complexity in Old World monkeys that seems less evident in New World monkeys, which are more distant evolutionary relatives to humans. The findings allow for the development of both marmosets and macaques as neurobiological model systems to study different aspects of AGL at the neuronal level. PMID:24285889

  13. Changes in Auditory Frequency Guide Visual-Spatial Attention

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mossbridge, Julia A.; Grabowecky, Marcia; Suzuki, Satoru

    2011-01-01

    How do the characteristics of sounds influence the allocation of visual-spatial attention? Natural sounds typically change in frequency. Here we demonstrate that the direction of frequency change guides visual-spatial attention more strongly than the average or ending frequency, and provide evidence suggesting that this cross-modal effect may be…

  14. Independent impacts of age and hearing loss on spatial release in a complex auditory environment

    PubMed Central

    Gallun, Frederick J.; Diedesch, Anna C.; Kampel, Sean D.; Jakien, Kasey M.

    2013-01-01

    Listeners in complex auditory environments can benefit from the ability to use a variety of spatial and spectrotemporal cues for sound source segregation. Probing these abilities is an essential part of gaining a more complete understanding of why listeners differ in navigating the auditory environment. Two fundamental processes that can impact the auditory systems of individual listeners are aging and hearing loss. One difficulty with uncovering the independent effects of age and hearing loss on spatial release is the commonly observed phenomenon of age-related hearing loss. In order to reveal the effects of aging on spatial hearing, it is essential to develop testing methods that reduce the influence of hearing loss on the outcomes. The statistical power needed for such testing generally requires a larger number of participants than can easily be tested using traditional behavioral methods. This work describes the development and validation of a rapid method by which listeners can be categorized in terms of their ability to use spatial and spectrotemporal cues to separate competing speech streams. Results show that when age and audibility are not covarying, age alone can be shown to substantially reduce spatial release from masking. These data support the hypothesis that aging, independent of an individual's hearing threshold, can result in changes in the cortical and/or subcortical structures essential for spatial hearing. PMID:24391535

  15. Auditory sustained attention is a marker of unilateral spatial neglect.

    PubMed

    Robertson, I H; Manly, T; Beschin, N; Daini, R; Haeske-Dewick, H; Hömberg, V; Jehkonen, M; Pizzamiglio, G; Shiel, A; Weber, E

    1997-12-01

    The relationships between performance on a non-spatially-lateralized measure of sustained attention and spatial bias on tests sensitive to unilateral neglect were considered in a group of 44 patients with right hemisphere lesions following stroke. As predicted from earlier studies showing a strong association between unilateral spatial neglect and sustained attention, performance on a brief and monotonous tone-counting measure formed a significant predictor of spatial bias across a variety of measures of unilateral visual neglect. This study provides further evidence for a very close link between two attentional systems hitherto regarded as being quite separate, namely a spatial attention system implicated in unilateral neglect and a sustained attention system. A close connection between these two systems was predicted by Posner, who argued that the right hemisphere-dominant sustained attention system provides a strong modulatory influence on the functioning of the lateralized posterior attention system.

  16. Cross-modal activation of auditory regions during visuo-spatial working memory in early deafness.

    PubMed

    Ding, Hao; Qin, Wen; Liang, Meng; Ming, Dong; Wan, Baikun; Li, Qiang; Yu, Chunshui

    2015-09-01

    Early deafness can reshape deprived auditory regions to enable the processing of signals from the remaining intact sensory modalities. Cross-modal activation has been observed in auditory regions during non-auditory tasks in early deaf subjects. In hearing subjects, visual working memory can evoke activation of the visual cortex, which further contributes to behavioural performance. In early deaf subjects, however, whether and how auditory regions participate in visual working memory remains unclear. We hypothesized that auditory regions may be involved in visual working memory processing and activation of auditory regions may contribute to the superior behavioural performance of early deaf subjects. In this study, 41 early deaf subjects (22 females and 19 males, age range: 20-26 years, age of onset of deafness < 2 years) and 40 age- and gender-matched hearing controls underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging during a visuo-spatial delayed recognition task that consisted of encoding, maintenance and recognition stages. The early deaf subjects exhibited faster reaction times on the spatial working memory task than did the hearing controls. Compared with hearing controls, deaf subjects exhibited increased activation in the superior temporal gyrus bilaterally during the recognition stage. This increased activation amplitude predicted faster and more accurate working memory performance in deaf subjects. Deaf subjects also had increased activation in the superior temporal gyrus bilaterally during the maintenance stage and in the right superior temporal gyrus during the encoding stage. These increased activation amplitude also predicted faster reaction times on the spatial working memory task in deaf subjects. These findings suggest that cross-modal plasticity occurs in auditory association areas in early deaf subjects. These areas are involved in visuo-spatial working memory. Furthermore, amplitudes of cross-modal activation during the maintenance stage were

  17. Prolonged maturation of auditory perception and learning in gerbils.

    PubMed

    Sarro, Emma C; Sanes, Dan H

    2010-08-01

    In humans, auditory perception reaches maturity over a broad age range, extending through adolescence. Despite this slow maturation, children are considered to be outstanding learners, suggesting that immature perceptual skills might actually be advantageous to improvement on an acoustic task as a result of training (perceptual learning). Previous non-human studies have not employed an identical task when comparing perceptual performance of young and mature subjects, making it difficult to assess learning. Here, we used an identical procedure on juvenile and adult gerbils to examine the perception of amplitude modulation (AM), a stimulus feature that is an important component of most natural sounds. On average, Adult animals could detect smaller fluctuations in amplitude (i.e., smaller modulation depths) than Juveniles, indicating immature perceptual skills in Juveniles. However, the population variance was much greater for Juveniles, a few animals displaying adult-like AM detection. To determine whether immature perceptual skills facilitated learning, we compared naïve performance on the AM detection task with the amount of improvement following additional training. The amount of improvement in Adults correlated with naïve performance: those with the poorest naïve performance improved the most. In contrast, the naïve performance of Juveniles did not predict the amount of learning. Those Juveniles with immature AM detection thresholds did not display greater learning than Adults. Furthermore, for several of the Juveniles with adult-like thresholds, AM detection deteriorated with repeated testing. Thus, immature perceptual skills in young animals were not associated with greater learning. PMID:20506133

  18. Auditory Model: Effects on Learning under Blocked and Random Practice Schedules

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Han, Dong-Wook; Shea, Charles H.

    2008-01-01

    An experiment was conducted to determine the impact of an auditory model on blocked, random, and mixed practice schedules of three five-segment timing sequences (relative time constant). We were interested in whether or not the auditory model differentially affected the learning of relative and absolute timing under blocked and random practice.…

  19. An exploration of spatial auditory BCI paradigms with different sounds: music notes versus beeps.

    PubMed

    Huang, Minqiang; Daly, Ian; Jin, Jing; Zhang, Yu; Wang, Xingyu; Cichocki, Andrzej

    2016-06-01

    Visual brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) are not suitable for people who cannot reliably maintain their eye gaze. Considering that this group usually maintains audition, an auditory based BCI may be a good choice for them. In this paper, we explore two auditory patterns: (1) a pattern utilizing symmetrical spatial cues with multiple frequency beeps [called the high low medium (HLM) pattern], and (2) a pattern utilizing non-symmetrical spatial cues with six tones derived from the diatonic scale [called the diatonic scale (DS) pattern]. These two patterns are compared to each other in terms of accuracy to determine which auditory pattern is better. The HLM pattern uses three different frequency beeps and has a symmetrical spatial distribution. The DS pattern uses six spoken stimuli, which are six notes solmizated as "do", "re", "mi", "fa", "sol" and "la", and derived from the diatonic scale. These six sounds are distributed to six, spatially distributed, speakers. Thus, we compare a BCI paradigm using beeps with another BCI paradigm using tones on the diatonic scale, when the stimuli are spatially distributed. Although no significant differences are found between the ERPs, the HLM pattern performs better than the DS pattern: the online accuracy achieved with the HLM pattern is significantly higher than that achieved with the DS pattern (p = 0.0028). PMID:27275376

  20. An exploration of spatial auditory BCI paradigms with different sounds: music notes versus beeps.

    PubMed

    Huang, Minqiang; Daly, Ian; Jin, Jing; Zhang, Yu; Wang, Xingyu; Cichocki, Andrzej

    2016-06-01

    Visual brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) are not suitable for people who cannot reliably maintain their eye gaze. Considering that this group usually maintains audition, an auditory based BCI may be a good choice for them. In this paper, we explore two auditory patterns: (1) a pattern utilizing symmetrical spatial cues with multiple frequency beeps [called the high low medium (HLM) pattern], and (2) a pattern utilizing non-symmetrical spatial cues with six tones derived from the diatonic scale [called the diatonic scale (DS) pattern]. These two patterns are compared to each other in terms of accuracy to determine which auditory pattern is better. The HLM pattern uses three different frequency beeps and has a symmetrical spatial distribution. The DS pattern uses six spoken stimuli, which are six notes solmizated as "do", "re", "mi", "fa", "sol" and "la", and derived from the diatonic scale. These six sounds are distributed to six, spatially distributed, speakers. Thus, we compare a BCI paradigm using beeps with another BCI paradigm using tones on the diatonic scale, when the stimuli are spatially distributed. Although no significant differences are found between the ERPs, the HLM pattern performs better than the DS pattern: the online accuracy achieved with the HLM pattern is significantly higher than that achieved with the DS pattern (p = 0.0028).

  1. Memory in learning disabled children: digit span and the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test.

    PubMed

    Talley, J L

    1986-01-01

    Scores on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT) were compared to WISC-R digit span results in a sample of 153 learning disabled students. With statistical controls for age and IQ, regression analyses indicated no significant relationships between the RAVLT and longest forward span, longest backward span and total digit span raw score. Factor analysis of the RAVLT variables, forward span, backward span and total digit span raw score yielded three factors that were interpreted to represent a long term memory factor, a short-term memory factor with high coding demands and a short-term memory factor with low coding demands. Conclusions were made regarding the inadequacy of using only digit span when making diagnostic statements about the auditory memory functioning of learning disabled students.

  2. Spatial learning while navigating with severely degraded viewing: The role of attention and mobility monitoring.

    PubMed

    Rand, Kristina M; Creem-Regehr, Sarah H; Thompson, William B

    2015-06-01

    The ability to navigate without getting lost is an important aspect of quality of life. In 5 studies, we evaluated how spatial learning is affected by the increased demands of keeping oneself safe while walking with degraded vision (mobility monitoring). We proposed that safe low vision mobility requires attentional resources, providing competition for those needed to learn a new environment. In Experiments 1 and 2, participants navigated along paths in a real-world indoor environment with simulated degraded vision or normal vision. Memory for object locations seen along the paths was better with normal compared with degraded vision. With degraded vision, memory was better when participants were guided by an experimenter (low monitoring demands) versus unguided (high monitoring demands). In Experiments 3 and 4, participants walked while performing an auditory task. Auditory task performance was superior with normal compared with degraded vision. With degraded vision, auditory task performance was better when guided compared with unguided. In Experiment 5, participants performed both the spatial learning and auditory tasks under degraded vision. Results showed that attention mediates the relationship between mobility-monitoring demands and spatial learning. These studies suggest that more attention is required and spatial learning is impaired when navigating with degraded viewing.

  3. Disentangling the effects of spatial cues on selection and formation of auditory objects.

    PubMed

    Ihlefeld, Antje; Shinn-Cunningham, Barbara

    2008-10-01

    When competing sources come from different directions, a desired target is easier to hear than when the sources are co-located. How much of this improvement is the result of spatial attention rather than improved perceptual segregation of the competing sources is not well understood. Here, listeners' attention was directed to spatial or nonspatial cues when they listened for a target masked by a competing message. A preceding cue signaled the target timbre, location, or both timbre and location. Spatial separation improved performance when the cue indicated the target location, or both the location and timbre, but not when the cue only indicated the target timbre. However, response errors were influenced by spatial configuration in all conditions. Both attention and streaming contributed to spatial effects when listeners actively attended to location. In contrast, when attention was directed to a nonspatial cue, spatial separation primarily appeared to improve the streaming of auditory objects across time. Thus, when attention is focused on location, spatial separation appears to improve both object selection and object formation; when attention is directed to nonspatial cues, separation affects object formation. These results highlight the need to distinguish between these separate mechanisms when considering how observers cope with complex auditory scenes.

  4. Spatial organization of repetition rate processing in cat anterior auditory field.

    PubMed

    Imaizumi, Kazuo; Priebe, Nicholas J; Cheung, Steven W; Schreiner, Christoph E

    2011-10-01

    Auditory cortex updates incoming information on a segment by segment basis for human speech and animal communication. Measuring repetition rate transfer functions (RRTFs) captures temporal responses to repetitive sounds. In this study, we used repetitive click trains to describe the spatial distribution of RRTF responses in cat anterior auditory field (AAF) and to discern potential variations in local temporal processing capacity. A majority of RRTF filters are band-pass. Temporal parameters estimated from RRTFs and corrected for characteristic frequency or latency dependencies are non-homogeneously distributed across AAF. Unlike the shallow global gradient observed in spectral receptive field parameters, transitions from loci with high to low temporal parameters are steep. Quantitative spatial analysis suggests non-uniform, circumscribed local organization for temporal pattern processing superimposed on global organization for spectral processing in cat AAF.

  5. Behavioral semantics of learning and crossmodal processing in auditory cortex: the semantic processor concept.

    PubMed

    Scheich, Henning; Brechmann, André; Brosch, Michael; Budinger, Eike; Ohl, Frank W; Selezneva, Elena; Stark, Holger; Tischmeyer, Wolfgang; Wetzel, Wolfram

    2011-01-01

    Two phenomena of auditory cortex activity have recently attracted attention, namely that the primary field can show different types of learning-related changes of sound representation and that during learning even this early auditory cortex is under strong multimodal influence. Based on neuronal recordings in animal auditory cortex during instrumental tasks, in this review we put forward the hypothesis that these two phenomena serve to derive the task-specific meaning of sounds by associative learning. To understand the implications of this tenet, it is helpful to realize how a behavioral meaning is usually derived for novel environmental sounds. For this purpose, associations with other sensory, e.g. visual, information are mandatory to develop a connection between a sound and its behaviorally relevant cause and/or the context of sound occurrence. This makes it plausible that in instrumental tasks various non-auditory sensory and procedural contingencies of sound generation become co-represented by neuronal firing in auditory cortex. Information related to reward or to avoidance of discomfort during task learning, that is essentially non-auditory, is also co-represented. The reinforcement influence points to the dopaminergic internal reward system, the local role of which for memory consolidation in auditory cortex is well-established. Thus, during a trial of task performance, the neuronal responses to the sounds are embedded in a sequence of representations of such non-auditory information. The embedded auditory responses show task-related modulations of auditory responses falling into types that correspond to three basic logical classifications that may be performed with a perceptual item, i.e. from simple detection to discrimination, and categorization. This hierarchy of classifications determine the semantic "same-different" relationships among sounds. Different cognitive classifications appear to be a consequence of learning task and lead to a recruitment of

  6. Effects of chronic stress on the auditory system and fear learning: an evolutionary approach.

    PubMed

    Dagnino-Subiabre, Alexies

    2013-01-01

    Stress is a complex biological reaction common to all living organisms that allows them to adapt to their environments. Chronic stress alters the dendritic architecture and function of the limbic brain areas that affect memory, learning, and emotional processing. This review summarizes our research about chronic stress effects on the auditory system, providing the details of how we developed the main hypotheses that currently guide our research. The aims of our studies are to (1) determine how chronic stress impairs the dendritic morphology of the main nuclei of the rat auditory system, the inferior colliculus (auditory mesencephalon), the medial geniculate nucleus (auditory thalamus), and the primary auditory cortex; (2) correlate the anatomic alterations with the impairments of auditory fear learning; and (3) investigate how the stress-induced alterations in the rat limbic system may spread to nonlimbic areas, affecting specific sensory system, such as the auditory and olfactory systems, and complex cognitive functions, such as auditory attention. Finally, this article gives a new evolutionary approach to understanding the neurobiology of stress and the stress-related disorders.

  7. Auditory processing deficits among language-learning disordered children and adults

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wayland, Ratree; Lombardino, Linda

    2003-10-01

    It has been estimated that approximately 5%-9% of school-aged children in the United States are diagnosed with some kind of learning disorders. Moreover, previous research has established that many of these children exhibited perceptual deficits in response to auditory stimuli, suggesting that an auditory perceptual deficit may underlie their learning disabilities. The goal of this research is to examine the ability to auditorily process speech and nonspeech stimuli among language-learning disabled (LLD) children and adults. The two questions that will be addressed in this study are: (a) Are there subtypes of LLD children/adults based on their auditory processing deficit, and (b) Is there any relationship between types of auditory processing deficits and types of language deficits as measured by a battery of psychoeducational tests.

  8. Auditory Discrimination and Identification in Foreign Language Learning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weiss, Louis

    The main purpose of this study was to investigate the validity of the assumption that auditory discrimination and pronunciation in a foreign language are closely related. If the assumption were to be well-founded, then it might be possible for foreign language students with high auditory discrimination ability to work alone in the language…

  9. Investigating Verbal and Visual Auditory Learning After Conformal Radiation Therapy for Childhood Ependymoma

    SciTech Connect

    Di Pinto, Marcos; Conklin, Heather M.; Li Chenghong; Xiong Xiaoping; Merchant, Thomas E.

    2010-07-15

    Purpose: The primary objective of this study was to determine whether children with localized ependymoma experience a decline in verbal or visual-auditory learning after conformal radiation therapy (CRT). The secondary objective was to investigate the impact of age and select clinical factors on learning before and after treatment. Methods and Materials: Learning in a sample of 71 patients with localized ependymoma was assessed with the California Verbal Learning Test (CVLT-C) and the Visual-Auditory Learning Test (VAL). Learning measures were administered before CRT, at 6 months, and then yearly for a total of 5 years. Results: There was no significant decline on measures of verbal or visual-auditory learning after CRT; however, younger age, more surgeries, and cerebrospinal fluid shunting did predict lower scores at baseline. There were significant longitudinal effects (improved learning scores after treatment) among older children on the CVLT-C and children that did not receive pre-CRT chemotherapy on the VAL. Conclusion: There was no evidence of global decline in learning after CRT in children with localized ependymoma. Several important implications from the findings include the following: (1) identification of and differentiation among variables with transient vs. long-term effects on learning, (2) demonstration that children treated with chemotherapy before CRT had greater risk of adverse visual-auditory learning performance, and (3) establishment of baseline and serial assessment as critical in ascertaining necessary sensitivity and specificity for the detection of modest effects.

  10. Auditory spatial discrimination by barn owls in simulated echoic conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spitzer, Matthew W.; Bala, Avinash D. S.; Takahashi, Terry T.

    2003-03-01

    In humans, directional hearing in reverberant conditions is characterized by a ``precedence effect,'' whereby directional information conveyed by leading sounds dominates perceived location, and listeners are relatively insensitive to directional information conveyed by lagging sounds. Behavioral studies provide evidence of precedence phenomena in a wide range of species. The present study employs a discrimination paradigm, based on habituation and recovery of the pupillary dilation response, to provide quantitative measures of precedence phenomena in the barn owl. As in humans, the owl's ability to discriminate changes in the location of lagging sources is impaired relative to that for single sources. Spatial discrimination of lead sources is also impaired, but to a lesser extent than discrimination of lagging sources. Results of a control experiment indicate that sensitivity to monaural cues cannot account for discrimination of lag source location. Thus, impairment of discrimination ability in the two-source conditions most likely reflects a reduction in sensitivity to binaural directional information. These results demonstrate a similarity of precedence effect phenomena in barn owls and humans, and provide a basis for quantitative comparison with neuronal data from the same species.

  11. Effect of GIS Learning on Spatial Thinking

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Jongwon; Bednarz, Robert

    2009-01-01

    A spatial-skills test is used to examine the effect of GIS learning on the spatial thinking ability of college students. Eighty students at a large state university completed pre- and post- spatial-skills tests administered during the 2003 fall semester. Analysis of changes in the students' test scores revealed that GIS learning helped students…

  12. Auditory spatial resolution in horizontal, vertical, and diagonal planes.

    PubMed

    Grantham, D Wesley; Hornsby, Benjamin W Y; Erpenbeck, Eric A

    2003-08-01

    Minimum audible angle (MAA) and minimum audible movement angle (MAMA) thresholds were measured for stimuli in horizontal, vertical, and diagonal (60 degrees) planes. A pseudovirtual technique was employed in which signals were recorded through KEMAR's ears and played back to subjects through insert earphones. Thresholds were obtained for wideband, high-pass, and low-pass noises. Only 6 of 20 subjects obtained wideband vertical-plane MAAs less than 10 degrees, and only these 6 subjects were retained for the complete study. For all three filter conditions thresholds were lowest in the horizontal plane, slightly (but significantly) higher in the diagonal plane, and highest for the vertical plane. These results were similar in magnitude and pattern to those reported by Perrott and Saberi [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 87, 1728-1731 (1990)] and Saberi and Perrott [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 88, 2639-2644 (1990)], except that these investigators generally found that thresholds for diagonal planes were as good as those for the horizontal plane. The present results are consistent with the hypothesis that diagonal-plane performance is based on independent contributions from a horizontal-plane system (sensitive to interaural differences) and a vertical-plane system (sensitive to pinna-based spectral changes). Measurements of the stimuli recorded through KEMAR indicated that sources presented from diagonal planes can produce larger interaural level differences (ILDs) in certain frequency regions than would be expected based on the horizontal projection of the trajectory. Such frequency-specific ILD cues may underlie the very good performance reported in previous studies for diagonal spatial resolution. Subjects in the present study could apparently not take advantage of these cues in the diagonal-plane condition, possibly because they did not externalize the images to their appropriate positions in space or possibly because of the absence of a patterned visual field.

  13. Polarity-specific transcranial direct current stimulation disrupts auditory pitch learning.

    PubMed

    Matsushita, Reiko; Andoh, Jamila; Zatorre, Robert J

    2015-01-01

    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is attracting increasing interest because of its potential for therapeutic use. While its effects have been investigated mainly with motor and visual tasks, less is known in the auditory domain. Past tDCS studies with auditory tasks demonstrated various behavioral outcomes, possibly due to differences in stimulation parameters, task-induced brain activity, or task measurements used in each study. Further research, using well-validated tasks is therefore required for clarification of behavioral effects of tDCS on the auditory system. Here, we took advantage of findings from a prior functional magnetic resonance imaging study, which demonstrated that the right auditory cortex is modulated during fine-grained pitch learning of microtonal melodic patterns. Targeting the right auditory cortex with tDCS using this same task thus allowed us to test the hypothesis that this region is causally involved in pitch learning. Participants in the current study were trained for 3 days while we measured pitch discrimination thresholds using microtonal melodies on each day using a psychophysical staircase procedure. We administered anodal, cathodal, or sham tDCS to three groups of participants over the right auditory cortex on the second day of training during performance of the task. Both the sham and the cathodal groups showed the expected significant learning effect (decreased pitch threshold) over the 3 days of training; in contrast we observed a blocking effect of anodal tDCS on auditory pitch learning, such that this group showed no significant change in thresholds over the 3 days. The results support a causal role for the right auditory cortex in pitch discrimination learning. PMID:26041982

  14. A blueprint for vocal learning: auditory predispositions from brains to genomes.

    PubMed

    Wheatcroft, David; Qvarnström, Anna

    2015-08-01

    Memorizing and producing complex strings of sound are requirements for spoken human language. We share these behaviours with likely more than 4000 species of songbirds, making birds our primary model for studying the cognitive basis of vocal learning and, more generally, an important model for how memories are encoded in the brain. In songbirds, as in humans, the sounds that a juvenile learns later in life depend on auditory memories formed early in development. Experiments on a wide variety of songbird species suggest that the formation and lability of these auditory memories, in turn, depend on auditory predispositions that stimulate learning when a juvenile hears relevant, species-typical sounds. We review evidence that variation in key features of these auditory predispositions are determined by variation in genes underlying the development of the auditory system. We argue that increased investigation of the neuronal basis of auditory predispositions expressed early in life in combination with modern comparative genomic approaches may provide insights into the evolution of vocal learning. PMID:26246333

  15. Learning to produce speech with an altered vocal tract: The role of auditory feedback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, Jeffery A.; Munhall, K. G.

    2003-01-01

    Modifying the vocal tract alters a speaker's previously learned acoustic-articulatory relationship. This study investigated the contribution of auditory feedback to the process of adapting to vocal-tract modifications. Subjects said the word /tas/ while wearing a dental prosthesis that extended the length of their maxillary incisor teeth. The prosthesis affected /s/ productions and the subjects were asked to learn to produce ``normal'' /s/'s. They alternately received normal auditory feedback and noise that masked their natural feedback during productions. Acoustic analysis of the speakers' /s/ productions showed that the distribution of energy across the spectra moved toward that of normal, unperturbed production with increased experience with the prosthesis. However, the acoustic analysis did not show any significant differences in learning dependent on auditory feedback. By contrast, when naive listeners were asked to rate the quality of the speakers' utterances, productions made when auditory feedback was available were evaluated to be closer to the subjects' normal productions than when feedback was masked. The perceptual analysis showed that speakers were able to use auditory information to partially compensate for the vocal-tract modification. Furthermore, utterances produced during the masked conditions also improved over a session, demonstrating that the compensatory articulations were learned and available after auditory feedback was removed.

  16. Subthreshold resonance properties contribute to the efficient coding of auditory spatial cues

    PubMed Central

    Remme, Michiel W. H.; Donato, Roberta; Mikiel-Hunter, Jason; Ballestero, Jimena A.; Foster, Simon; Rinzel, John; McAlpine, David

    2014-01-01

    Neurons in the medial superior olive (MSO) and lateral superior olive (LSO) of the auditory brainstem code for sound-source location in the horizontal plane, extracting interaural time differences (ITDs) from the stimulus fine structure and interaural level differences (ILDs) from the stimulus envelope. Here, we demonstrate a postsynaptic gradient in temporal processing properties across the presumed tonotopic axis; neurons in the MSO and the low-frequency limb of the LSO exhibit fast intrinsic electrical resonances and low input impedances, consistent with their processing of ITDs in the temporal fine structure. Neurons in the high-frequency limb of the LSO show low-pass electrical properties, indicating they are better suited to extracting information from the slower, modulated envelopes of sounds. Using a modeling approach, we assess ITD and ILD sensitivity of the neural filters to natural sounds, demonstrating that the transformation in temporal processing along the tonotopic axis contributes to efficient extraction of auditory spatial cues. PMID:24843153

  17. Learning of new sound categories shapes neural response patterns in human auditory cortex.

    PubMed

    Ley, Anke; Vroomen, Jean; Hausfeld, Lars; Valente, Giancarlo; De Weerd, Peter; Formisano, Elia

    2012-09-19

    The formation of new sound categories is fundamental to everyday goal-directed behavior. Categorization requires the abstraction of discrete classes from continuous physical features as required by context and task. Electrophysiology in animals has shown that learning to categorize novel sounds alters their spatiotemporal neural representation at the level of early auditory cortex. However, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies so far did not yield insight into the effects of category learning on sound representations in human auditory cortex. This may be due to the use of overlearned speech-like categories and fMRI subtraction paradigms, leading to insufficient sensitivity to distinguish the responses to learning-induced, novel sound categories. Here, we used fMRI pattern analysis to investigate changes in human auditory cortical response patterns induced by category learning. We created complex novel sound categories and analyzed distributed activation patterns during passive listening to a sound continuum before and after category learning. We show that only after training, sound categories could be successfully decoded from early auditory areas and that learning-induced pattern changes were specific to the category-distinctive sound feature (i.e., pitch). Notably, the similarity between fMRI response patterns for the sound continuum mirrored the sigmoid shape of the behavioral category identification function. Our results indicate that perceptual representations of novel sound categories emerge from neural changes at early levels of the human auditory processing hierarchy.

  18. Interference between postural control and spatial vs. non-spatial auditory reaction time tasks in older adults.

    PubMed

    Fuhrman, Susan I; Redfern, Mark S; Jennings, J Richard; Furman, Joseph M

    2015-01-01

    This study investigated whether spatial aspects of an information processing task influence dual-task interference. Two groups (Older/Young) of healthy adults participated in dual-task experiments. Two auditory information processing tasks included a frequency discrimination choice reaction time task (non-spatial task) and a lateralization choice reaction time task (spatial task). Postural tasks included combinations of standing with eyes open or eyes closed on either a fixed floor or a sway-referenced floor. Reaction times and postural sway via center of pressure were recorded. Baseline measures of reaction time and sway were subtracted from the corresponding dual-task results to calculate reaction time task costs and postural task costs. Reaction time task cost increased with eye closure (p = 0.01), sway-referenced flooring (p < 0.0001), and the spatial task (p = 0.04). Additionally, a significant (p = 0.05) task x vision x age interaction indicated that older subjects had a significant vision X task interaction whereas young subjects did not. However, when analyzed by age group, the young group showed minimal differences in interference for the spatial and non-spatial tasks with eyes open, but showed increased interference on the spatial relative to non-spatial task with eyes closed. On the contrary, older subjects demonstrated increased interference on the spatial relative to the non-spatial task with eyes open, but not with eyes closed. These findings suggest that visual-spatial interference may occur in older subjects when vision is used to maintain posture.

  19. A Latent Consolidation Phase in Auditory Identification Learning: Time in the Awake State Is Sufficient

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roth, Daphne Ari-Even; Kishon-Rabin, Liat; Hildesheimer, Minka; Karni, Avi

    2005-01-01

    Large gains in performance, evolving hours after practice has terminated, were reported in a number of visual and some motor learning tasks, as well as recently in an auditory nonverbal discrimination task. It was proposed that these gains reflect a latent phase of experience-triggered memory consolidation in human skill learning. It is not clear,…

  20. Hearing impairment induces frequency-specific adjustments in auditory spatial tuning in the optic tectum of young owls.

    PubMed

    Gold, J I; Knudsen, E I

    1999-11-01

    Bimodal, auditory-visual neurons in the optic tectum of the barn owl are sharply tuned for sound source location. The auditory receptive fields (RFs) of these neurons are restricted in space primarily as a consequence of their tuning for interaural time differences and interaural level differences across broad ranges of frequencies. In this study, we examined the extent to which frequency-specific features of early auditory experience shape the auditory spatial tuning of these neurons. We manipulated auditory experience by implanting in one ear canal an acoustic filtering device that altered the timing and level of sound reaching the eardrum in a frequency-dependent fashion. We assessed the auditory spatial tuning at individual tectal sites in normal owls and in owls raised with the filtering device. At each site, we measured a family of auditory RFs using broadband sound and narrowband sounds with different center frequencies both with and without the device in place. In normal owls, the narrowband RFs for a given site all included a common region of space that corresponded with the broadband RF and aligned with the site's visual RF. Acute insertion of the filtering device in normal owls shifted the locations of the narrowband RFs away from the visual RF, the magnitude and direction of the shifts depending on the frequency of the stimulus. In contrast, in owls that were raised wearing the device, narrowband and broadband RFs were aligned with visual RFs so long as the device was in the ear but not after it was removed, indicating that auditory spatial tuning had been adaptively altered by experience with the device. The frequency tuning of tectal neurons in device-reared owls was also altered from normal. The results demonstrate that experience during development adaptively modifies the representation of auditory space in the barn owl's optic tectum in a frequency-dependent manner. PMID:10561399

  1. Spatial sensitivity of neurons in the anterior, posterior, and primary fields of cat auditory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Harrington, Ian A.; Stecker, G. Christopher; Macpherson, Ewan A.; Middlebrooks, John C.

    2008-01-01

    We assessed the spatial-tuning properties of units in the cat’s anterior auditory field (AAF) and compared them with those observed previously in the primary (A1) and posterior auditory fields (PAF). Multi-channel, silicon-substrate probes were used to record single- and multi-unit activity from the right hemispheres of α-chloralose-anesthetized cats. Spatial tuning was assessed using broadband noise bursts that varied in azimuth or elevation. Response latencies were slightly, though significantly shorter in AAF than A1, and considerably shorter in both of those fields than in PAF. Compared to PAF, spike counts and latencies were more poorly modulated by changes in stimulus location in AAF and A1, particularly at higher sound pressure levels. Moreover, units in AAF and A1 demonstrated poorer level tolerance than units in PAF with spike rates modulated as much by changes in stimulus intensity as changes in stimulus location. Finally, spike-pattern-recognition analyses indicated that units in AAF transmitted less spatial information, on average, than did units in PAF—an observation consistent with recent evidence that PAF is necessary for sound-localization behavior, whereas AAF is not. PMID:18359176

  2. Registration of neural maps through value-dependent learning: modeling the alignment of auditory and visual maps in the barn owl's optic tectum.

    PubMed

    Rucci, M; Tononi, G; Edelman, G M

    1997-01-01

    In the optic tectum (OT) of the barn owl, visual and auditory maps of space are found in close alignment with each other. Experiments in which such alignment has been disrupted have shown a considerable degree of plasticity in the auditory map. The external nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICx), an auditory center that projects massively to the tectum, is the main site of plasticity; however, it is unclear by what mechanisms the alignment between the auditory map in the ICx and the visual map in the tectum is established and maintained. In this paper, we propose that such map alignment occurs through a process of value-dependent learning. According to this paradigm, value systems, identifiable with neuromodulatory systems having diffuse projections, respond to innate or acquired salient cues and modulate changes in synaptic efficacy in many brain regions. To test the self-consistency of this proposal, we have developed a computer model of the principal neural structures involved in the process of auditory localization in the barn owl. This is complemented by simulations of aspects of the barn owl phenotype and of the experimental environment. In the model, a value system is activated whenever the owl carries out a foveation toward an auditory stimulus. A term representing the diffuse release of a neuromodulator interacts with local pre- and postsynaptic events to determine synaptic changes in the ICx. Through large-scale simulations, we have replicated a number of experimental observations on the development of spatial alignment between the auditory and visual maps during normal visual experience, after the retinal image is shifted through prismatic goggles, and after the reestablishment of normal visual input. The results suggest that value-dependent learning is sufficient to account for the registration of auditory and visual maps of space in the OT of the barn owl, and they lead to a number of experimental predictions. PMID:8987759

  3. Implicit learning of between-group intervals in auditory temporal structures.

    PubMed

    Terry, J; Stevens, C J; Weidemann, G; Tillmann, B

    2016-08-01

    Implicit learning of temporal structure has primarily been reported when events within a sequence (e.g., visual-spatial locations, tones) are systematically ordered and correlated with the temporal structure. An auditory serial reaction time task was used to investigate implicit learning of temporal intervals between pseudorandomly ordered syllables. Over exposure, participants identified syllables presented in sequences with weakly metrical temporal structures. In a test block, the temporal structure differed from exposure only in the duration of the interonset intervals (IOIs) between groups. It was hypothesized that reaction time (RT) to syllables following between-group IOIs would decrease with exposure and increase at test. In Experiments 1 and 2, the sequences presented over exposure and test were counterbalanced across participants (Pattern 1 and Pattern 2 conditions). An RT increase at test to syllables following between-group IOIs was only evident in the condition that presented an exposure structure with a slightly stronger meter (Pattern 1 condition). The Pattern 1 condition also elicited a global expectancy effect: Test block RT slowed to earlier-than-expected syllables (i.e., syllables shifted to an earlier beat) but not to later-than-expected syllables. Learning of between-group IOIs and the global expectancy effect extended to the Pattern 2 condition when meter was strengthened with an external pulse (Experiment 2). Experiment 3 further demonstrated implicit learning of a new weakly metrical structure with only earlier-than-expected violations at test. Overall findings demonstrate learning of weakly metrical rhythms without correlated event structures (i.e., sequential syllable orders). They further suggest the presence of a global expectancy effect mediated by metrical strength. PMID:27301354

  4. Localized brain activation related to the strength of auditory learning in a parrot.

    PubMed

    Eda-Fujiwara, Hiroko; Imagawa, Takuya; Matsushita, Masanori; Matsuda, Yasushi; Takeuchi, Hiro-Aki; Satoh, Ryohei; Watanabe, Aiko; Zandbergen, Matthijs A; Manabe, Kazuchika; Kawashima, Takashi; Bolhuis, Johan J

    2012-01-01

    Parrots and songbirds learn their vocalizations from a conspecific tutor, much like human infants acquire spoken language. Parrots can learn human words and it has been suggested that they can use them to communicate with humans. The caudomedial pallium in the parrot brain is homologous with that of songbirds, and analogous to the human auditory association cortex, involved in speech processing. Here we investigated neuronal activation, measured as expression of the protein product of the immediate early gene ZENK, in relation to auditory learning in the budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus), a parrot. Budgerigar males successfully learned to discriminate two Japanese words spoken by another male conspecific. Re-exposure to the two discriminanda led to increased neuronal activation in the caudomedial pallium, but not in the hippocampus, compared to untrained birds that were exposed to the same words, or were not exposed to words. Neuronal activation in the caudomedial pallium of the experimental birds was correlated significantly and positively with the percentage of correct responses in the discrimination task. These results suggest that in a parrot, the caudomedial pallium is involved in auditory learning. Thus, in parrots, songbirds and humans, analogous brain regions may contain the neural substrate for auditory learning and memory. PMID:22701714

  5. Localized brain activation related to the strength of auditory learning in a parrot.

    PubMed

    Eda-Fujiwara, Hiroko; Imagawa, Takuya; Matsushita, Masanori; Matsuda, Yasushi; Takeuchi, Hiro-Aki; Satoh, Ryohei; Watanabe, Aiko; Zandbergen, Matthijs A; Manabe, Kazuchika; Kawashima, Takashi; Bolhuis, Johan J

    2012-01-01

    Parrots and songbirds learn their vocalizations from a conspecific tutor, much like human infants acquire spoken language. Parrots can learn human words and it has been suggested that they can use them to communicate with humans. The caudomedial pallium in the parrot brain is homologous with that of songbirds, and analogous to the human auditory association cortex, involved in speech processing. Here we investigated neuronal activation, measured as expression of the protein product of the immediate early gene ZENK, in relation to auditory learning in the budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus), a parrot. Budgerigar males successfully learned to discriminate two Japanese words spoken by another male conspecific. Re-exposure to the two discriminanda led to increased neuronal activation in the caudomedial pallium, but not in the hippocampus, compared to untrained birds that were exposed to the same words, or were not exposed to words. Neuronal activation in the caudomedial pallium of the experimental birds was correlated significantly and positively with the percentage of correct responses in the discrimination task. These results suggest that in a parrot, the caudomedial pallium is involved in auditory learning. Thus, in parrots, songbirds and humans, analogous brain regions may contain the neural substrate for auditory learning and memory.

  6. Sensorimotor learning in children and adults: Exposure to frequency-altered auditory feedback during speech production.

    PubMed

    Scheerer, N E; Jacobson, D S; Jones, J A

    2016-02-01

    Auditory feedback plays an important role in the acquisition of fluent speech; however, this role may change once speech is acquired and individuals no longer experience persistent developmental changes to the brain and vocal tract. For this reason, we investigated whether the role of auditory feedback in sensorimotor learning differs across children and adult speakers. Participants produced vocalizations while they heard their vocal pitch predictably or unpredictably shifted downward one semitone. The participants' vocal pitches were measured at the beginning of each vocalization, before auditory feedback was available, to assess the extent to which the deviant auditory feedback modified subsequent speech motor commands. Sensorimotor learning was observed in both children and adults, with participants' initial vocal pitch increasing following trials where they were exposed to predictable, but not unpredictable, frequency-altered feedback. Participants' vocal pitch was also measured across each vocalization, to index the extent to which the deviant auditory feedback was used to modify ongoing vocalizations. While both children and adults were found to increase their vocal pitch following predictable and unpredictable changes to their auditory feedback, adults produced larger compensatory responses. The results of the current study demonstrate that both children and adults rapidly integrate information derived from their auditory feedback to modify subsequent speech motor commands. However, these results also demonstrate that children and adults differ in their ability to use auditory feedback to generate compensatory vocal responses during ongoing vocalization. Since vocal variability also differed across the children and adult groups, these results also suggest that compensatory vocal responses to frequency-altered feedback manipulations initiated at vocalization onset may be modulated by vocal variability.

  7. Spatially selective auditory responses in the superior colliculus of the echolocating bat.

    PubMed

    Valentine, D E; Moss, C F

    1997-03-01

    When a bat approaches a target, it continuously modifies its echolocation sounds and relies on incoming echo information to shape the characteristics of its subsequent sonar cries. In addition, acoustic information about the azimuth and elevation of a sonar target elicits orienting movements of the head and pinnae toward the sound source. This requires a common sensorimotor interface, where echo information is used to guide motor behaviors. Using single-unit neurophysiological methods and free-field auditory stimulation, we present data on biologically relevant specializations in the superior colliculus (SC) of the bat for orientation by sonar. In the bat's SC, two classes of spatially tuned neurons are distinguished by their sensitivity to echoes. One population shows facilitated, delay-tuned responses to pairs of sounds, simulating sonar emissions and echoes. Delay tuning, related to encoding target range, may play a role in guiding motor responses in echolocation, because the bat adjusts its emissions with changes in target distance. The delay-facilitated response depends on the direction of stimulation and on the temporal relationship between the simulated emission and echo in the sound pair, suggesting that this class of neurons represents the location of a target in three dimensions. A second population encodes the target in two dimensions, azimuth and elevation, and does not show a facilitated response to echoes delivered from any locus. Encoding of azimuth and elevation may be important for directing head aim, and this class may function in transforming auditory spatial information into signals used to guide acoustic orientation.

  8. Utilising reinforcement learning to develop strategies for driving auditory neural implants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Geoffrey W.; Zambetta, Fabio; Li, Xiaodong; Paolini, Antonio G.

    2016-08-01

    Objective. In this paper we propose a novel application of reinforcement learning to the area of auditory neural stimulation. We aim to develop a simulation environment which is based off real neurological responses to auditory and electrical stimulation in the cochlear nucleus (CN) and inferior colliculus (IC) of an animal model. Using this simulator we implement closed loop reinforcement learning algorithms to determine which methods are most effective at learning effective acoustic neural stimulation strategies. Approach. By recording a comprehensive set of acoustic frequency presentations and neural responses from a set of animals we created a large database of neural responses to acoustic stimulation. Extensive electrical stimulation in the CN and the recording of neural responses in the IC provides a mapping of how the auditory system responds to electrical stimuli. The combined dataset is used as the foundation for the simulator, which is used to implement and test learning algorithms. Main results. Reinforcement learning, utilising a modified n-Armed Bandit solution, is implemented to demonstrate the model’s function. We show the ability to effectively learn stimulation patterns which mimic the cochlea’s ability to covert acoustic frequencies to neural activity. Time taken to learn effective replication using neural stimulation takes less than 20 min under continuous testing. Significance. These results show the utility of reinforcement learning in the field of neural stimulation. These results can be coupled with existing sound processing technologies to develop new auditory prosthetics that are adaptable to the recipients current auditory pathway. The same process can theoretically be abstracted to other sensory and motor systems to develop similar electrical replication of neural signals.

  9. Modulation of Auditory Spatial Attention by Angry Prosody: An fMRI Auditory Dot-Probe Study.

    PubMed

    Ceravolo, Leonardo; Frühholz, Sascha; Grandjean, Didier

    2016-01-01

    Emotional stimuli have been shown to modulate attentional orienting through signals sent by subcortical brain regions that modulate visual perception at early stages of processing. Fewer studies, however, have investigated a similar effect of emotional stimuli on attentional orienting in the auditory domain together with an investigation of brain regions underlying such attentional modulation, which is the general aim of the present study. Therefore, we used an original auditory dot-probe paradigm involving simultaneously presented neutral and angry non-speech vocal utterances lateralized to either the left or the right auditory space, immediately followed by a short and lateralized single sine wave tone presented in the same (valid trial) or in the opposite space as the preceding angry voice (invalid trial). Behavioral results showed an expected facilitation effect for target detection during valid trials while functional data showed greater activation in the middle and posterior superior temporal sulci (STS) and in the medial frontal cortex for valid vs. invalid trials. The use of reaction time facilitation [absolute value of the Z-score of valid-(invalid+neutral)] as a group covariate extended enhanced activity in the amygdalae, auditory thalamus, and visual cortex. Taken together, our results suggest the involvement of a large and distributed network of regions among which the STS, thalamus, and amygdala are crucial for the decoding of angry prosody, as well as for orienting and maintaining attention within an auditory space that was previously primed by a vocal emotional event.

  10. Modulation of Auditory Spatial Attention by Angry Prosody: An fMRI Auditory Dot-Probe Study.

    PubMed

    Ceravolo, Leonardo; Frühholz, Sascha; Grandjean, Didier

    2016-01-01

    Emotional stimuli have been shown to modulate attentional orienting through signals sent by subcortical brain regions that modulate visual perception at early stages of processing. Fewer studies, however, have investigated a similar effect of emotional stimuli on attentional orienting in the auditory domain together with an investigation of brain regions underlying such attentional modulation, which is the general aim of the present study. Therefore, we used an original auditory dot-probe paradigm involving simultaneously presented neutral and angry non-speech vocal utterances lateralized to either the left or the right auditory space, immediately followed by a short and lateralized single sine wave tone presented in the same (valid trial) or in the opposite space as the preceding angry voice (invalid trial). Behavioral results showed an expected facilitation effect for target detection during valid trials while functional data showed greater activation in the middle and posterior superior temporal sulci (STS) and in the medial frontal cortex for valid vs. invalid trials. The use of reaction time facilitation [absolute value of the Z-score of valid-(invalid+neutral)] as a group covariate extended enhanced activity in the amygdalae, auditory thalamus, and visual cortex. Taken together, our results suggest the involvement of a large and distributed network of regions among which the STS, thalamus, and amygdala are crucial for the decoding of angry prosody, as well as for orienting and maintaining attention within an auditory space that was previously primed by a vocal emotional event. PMID:27242420

  11. Modulation of Auditory Spatial Attention by Angry Prosody: An fMRI Auditory Dot-Probe Study

    PubMed Central

    Ceravolo, Leonardo; Frühholz, Sascha; Grandjean, Didier

    2016-01-01

    Emotional stimuli have been shown to modulate attentional orienting through signals sent by subcortical brain regions that modulate visual perception at early stages of processing. Fewer studies, however, have investigated a similar effect of emotional stimuli on attentional orienting in the auditory domain together with an investigation of brain regions underlying such attentional modulation, which is the general aim of the present study. Therefore, we used an original auditory dot-probe paradigm involving simultaneously presented neutral and angry non-speech vocal utterances lateralized to either the left or the right auditory space, immediately followed by a short and lateralized single sine wave tone presented in the same (valid trial) or in the opposite space as the preceding angry voice (invalid trial). Behavioral results showed an expected facilitation effect for target detection during valid trials while functional data showed greater activation in the middle and posterior superior temporal sulci (STS) and in the medial frontal cortex for valid vs. invalid trials. The use of reaction time facilitation [absolute value of the Z-score of valid-(invalid+neutral)] as a group covariate extended enhanced activity in the amygdalae, auditory thalamus, and visual cortex. Taken together, our results suggest the involvement of a large and distributed network of regions among which the STS, thalamus, and amygdala are crucial for the decoding of angry prosody, as well as for orienting and maintaining attention within an auditory space that was previously primed by a vocal emotional event. PMID:27242420

  12. Auditory-Motor Learning during Speech Production in 9-11-Year-Old Children

    PubMed Central

    Shiller, Douglas M.; Gracco, Vincent L.; Rvachew, Susan

    2010-01-01

    Background Hearing ability is essential for normal speech development, however the precise mechanisms linking auditory input and the improvement of speaking ability remain poorly understood. Auditory feedback during speech production is believed to play a critical role by providing the nervous system with information about speech outcomes that is used to learn and subsequently fine-tune speech motor output. Surprisingly, few studies have directly investigated such auditory-motor learning in the speech production of typically developing children. Methodology/Principal Findings In the present study, we manipulated auditory feedback during speech production in a group of 9–11-year old children, as well as in adults. Following a period of speech practice under conditions of altered auditory feedback, compensatory changes in speech production and perception were examined. Consistent with prior studies, the adults exhibited compensatory changes in both their speech motor output and their perceptual representations of speech sound categories. The children exhibited compensatory changes in the motor domain, with a change in speech output that was similar in magnitude to that of the adults, however the children showed no reliable compensatory effect on their perceptual representations. Conclusions The results indicate that 9–11-year-old children, whose speech motor and perceptual abilities are still not fully developed, are nonetheless capable of auditory-feedback-based sensorimotor adaptation, supporting a role for such learning processes in speech motor development. Auditory feedback may play a more limited role, however, in the fine-tuning of children's perceptual representations of speech sound categories. PMID:20886033

  13. Developmental Changes in Medial Auditory Thalamic Contributions to Associative Motor Learning

    PubMed Central

    Ng, Ka H.; Freeman, John H.

    2012-01-01

    Eyeblink conditioning (EBC) was used in the current study to examine the mechanisms underlying the ontogeny of associative motor learning in rats. Eyeblink conditioning emerges ontogenetically between postnatal days (P) 17 and 24 in rats. Previous studies used electrical stimulation to show that the ontogeny of EBC is influenced by developmental changes in input from the medial auditory thalamus to the pontine nuclei, which in turn affects input to the cerebellum. The current study used tetrode recordings to examine the ontogeny of medial auditory thalamic sensory responses to the conditioned stimulus (CS) and learning-related activity during EBC. Rat pups were implanted with multiple tetrodes in the medial nucleus of the medial geniculate (MGm) and suprageniculate (SG) and trained on delay EBC on P17–19, P24–26, or P31–33 while recording spike activity. Developmental changes in MGm and SG sensory-related activity were found during a pre-training session with unpaired presentations of the auditory CS and periorbital stimulation US. Substantial developmental changes were observed in learning-related activity in the MGm and SG during CS-US paired training. The ontogenetic changes in learning-related activity may be related to developmental changes in input to the medial auditory thalamus from the amygdala and cerebellum. The findings suggest that the ontogeny of associative motor learning involves developmental changes in sensory input to the thalamus, amygdala input to the thalamus, thalamic input to the pontine nuclei, and cerebellar feedback to the thalamus. PMID:22593053

  14. Auditory Perceptual Learning for Speech Perception Can be Enhanced by Audiovisual Training

    PubMed Central

    Bernstein, Lynne E.; Auer, Edward T.; Eberhardt, Silvio P.; Jiang, Jintao

    2013-01-01

    Speech perception under audiovisual (AV) conditions is well known to confer benefits to perception such as increased speed and accuracy. Here, we investigated how AV training might benefit or impede auditory perceptual learning of speech degraded by vocoding. In Experiments 1 and 3, participants learned paired associations between vocoded spoken nonsense words and nonsense pictures. In Experiment 1, paired-associates (PA) AV training of one group of participants was compared with audio-only (AO) training of another group. When tested under AO conditions, the AV-trained group was significantly more accurate than the AO-trained group. In addition, pre- and post-training AO forced-choice consonant identification with untrained nonsense words showed that AV-trained participants had learned significantly more than AO participants. The pattern of results pointed to their having learned at the level of the auditory phonetic features of the vocoded stimuli. Experiment 2, a no-training control with testing and re-testing on the AO consonant identification, showed that the controls were as accurate as the AO-trained participants in Experiment 1 but less accurate than the AV-trained participants. In Experiment 3, PA training alternated AV and AO conditions on a list-by-list basis within participants, and training was to criterion (92% correct). PA training with AO stimuli was reliably more effective than training with AV stimuli. We explain these discrepant results in terms of the so-called “reverse hierarchy theory” of perceptual learning and in terms of the diverse multisensory and unisensory processing resources available to speech perception. We propose that early AV speech integration can potentially impede auditory perceptual learning; but visual top-down access to relevant auditory features can promote auditory perceptual learning. PMID:23515520

  15. Rapid Serial Auditory Presentation: A New Measure of Statistical Learning in Speech Segmentation.

    PubMed

    Franco, Ana; Eberlen, Julia; Destrebecqz, Arnaud; Cleeremans, Axel; Bertels, Julie

    2015-01-01

    The Rapid Serial Visual Presentation procedure is a method widely used in visual perception research. In this paper we propose an adaptation of this method which can be used with auditory material and enables assessment of statistical learning in speech segmentation. Adult participants were exposed to an artificial speech stream composed of statistically defined trisyllabic nonsense words. They were subsequently instructed to perform a detection task in a Rapid Serial Auditory Presentation (RSAP) stream in which they had to detect a syllable in a short speech stream. Results showed that reaction times varied as a function of the statistical predictability of the syllable: second and third syllables of each word were responded to faster than first syllables. This result suggests that the RSAP procedure provides a reliable and sensitive indirect measure of auditory statistical learning. PMID:26592534

  16. Auditory categories with separable decision boundaries are learned faster with full feedback than with minimal feedback.

    PubMed

    Yi, Han Gyol; Chandrasekaran, Bharath

    2016-08-01

    During visual category learning, full feedback (e.g., "Wrong, that was a category 4."), relative to minimal feedback (e.g., "Wrong."), enhances performance when the relevant dimensions are separable. This pattern is reversed with inseparable dimensions. Here, the interaction between trial-by-trial feedback and separability of dimensions in the auditory domain is examined. Participants were trained to categorize auditory stimuli along separable or inseparable dimensions. One group received full feedback, while the other group received minimal feedback. In the separable-dimensions condition, the full-feedback group achieved higher accuracy than did the minimal-feedback group. In the inseparable-dimensions condition, performance was equivalent across the feedback groups. These results altogether suggest that trial-by-trial feedback affects auditory category learning performance differentially for separable and inseparable categories. PMID:27586759

  17. Auditory Spatial Discrimination and the Mismatch Negativity Response in Hearing-Impaired Individuals

    PubMed Central

    Cai, Yuexin; Zheng, Yiqing; Liang, Maojin; Zhao, Fei; Yu, Guangzheng; Liu, Yu; Chen, Yuebo; Chen, Guisheng

    2015-01-01

    The aims of the present study were to investigate the ability of hearing-impaired (HI) individuals with different binaural hearing conditions to discriminate spatial auditory-sources at the midline and lateral positions, and to explore the possible central processing mechanisms by measuring the minimal audible angle (MAA) and mismatch negativity (MMN) response. To measure MAA at the left/right 0°, 45° and 90° positions, 12 normal-hearing (NH) participants and 36 patients with sensorineural hearing loss, which included 12 patients with symmetrical hearing loss (SHL) and 24 patients with asymmetrical hearing loss (AHL) [12 with unilateral hearing loss on the left (UHLL) and 12 with unilateral hearing loss on the right (UHLR)] were recruited. In addition, 128-electrode electroencephalography was used to record the MMN response in a separate group of 60 patients (20 UHLL, 20 UHLR and 20 SHL patients) and 20 NH participants. The results showed MAA thresholds of the NH participants to be significantly lower than the HI participants. Also, a significantly smaller MAA threshold was obtained at the midline position than at the lateral position in both NH and SHL groups. However, in the AHL group, MAA threshold for the 90° position on the affected side was significantly smaller than the MMA thresholds obtained at other positions. Significantly reduced amplitudes and prolonged latencies of the MMN were found in the HI groups compared to the NH group. In addition, contralateral activation was found in the UHL group for sounds emanating from the 90° position on the affected side and in the NH group. These findings suggest that the abilities of spatial discrimination at the midline and lateral positions vary significantly in different hearing conditions. A reduced MMN amplitude and prolonged latency together with bilaterally symmetrical cortical activations over the auditory hemispheres indicate possible cortical compensatory changes associated with poor behavioral spatial

  18. Learning the phonological forms of new words: effects of orthographic and auditory input.

    PubMed

    Hayes-Harb, Rachel; Nicol, Janet; Barker, Jason

    2010-01-01

    We investigated the relationship between the phonological and orthographic representations of new words for adult learners. Three groups of native English speakers learned a set of auditorily-presented pseudowords along with pictures indicating their "meanings". They were later tested on their memory of the words via an auditory word-picture matching test. While all three groups of participants heard the same auditory stimuli and saw the same pictures, the groups differed with respect to the written stimuli that accompanied each item during training. Some participants were presented with written forms for the auditory labels that were consistent with English spelling conventions (e.g., spelled form , auditory form [kamed]), while others saw written forms that were not consistent with English spelling conventions (e.g., spelled form , auditory form [kamed]), and a third group of participants was presented with no written forms. Participants who saw written forms that were not consistent with English spelling conventions showed interference from the words' spelled forms at test. This finding provides evidence for a relationship between orthographic and phonological representations for newly-learned words. PMID:21033652

  19. Auditory Middle Latency Response and Phonological Awareness in Students with Learning Disabilities

    PubMed Central

    Romero, Ana Carla Leite; Funayama, Carolina Araújo Rodrigues; Capellini, Simone Aparecida; Frizzo, Ana Claudia Figueiredo

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Behavioral tests of auditory processing have been applied in schools and highlight the association between phonological awareness abilities and auditory processing, confirming that low performance on phonological awareness tests may be due to low performance on auditory processing tests. Objective To characterize the auditory middle latency response and the phonological awareness tests and to investigate correlations between responses in a group of children with learning disorders. Methods The study included 25 students with learning disabilities. Phonological awareness and auditory middle latency response were tested with electrodes placed on the left and right hemispheres. The correlation between the measurements was performed using the Spearman rank correlation coefficient. Results There is some correlation between the tests, especially between the Pa component and syllabic awareness, where moderate negative correlation is observed. Conclusion In this study, when phonological awareness subtests were performed, specifically phonemic awareness, the students showed a low score for the age group, although for the objective examination, prolonged Pa latency in the contralateral via was observed. Negative weak to moderate correlation for Pa wave latency was observed, as was positive weak correlation for Na-Pa amplitude. PMID:26491479

  20. Auditory Learning Using a Portable Real-Time Vocoder: Preliminary Findings

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Casserly, Elizabeth D.; Pisoni, David B.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Although traditional study of auditory training has been in controlled laboratory settings, interest has been increasing in more interactive options. The authors examine whether such interactive training can result in short-term perceptual learning, and the range of perceptual skills it impacts. Method: Experiments 1 (N = 37) and 2 (N =…

  1. The Effect of Auditory Integration Training on the Working Memory of Adults with Different Learning Preferences

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ryan, Tamara E.

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of auditory integration training (AIT) on a component of the executive function of working memory; specifically, to determine if learning preferences might have an interaction with AIT to increase the outcome for some learners. The question asked by this quantitative pretest posttest design is…

  2. Auditory Training for Experienced and Inexperienced Second-Language Learners: Native French Speakers Learning English Vowels

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Iverson, Paul; Pinet, Melanie; Evans, Bronwen G.

    2012-01-01

    This study examined whether high-variability auditory training on natural speech can benefit experienced second-language English speakers who already are exposed to natural variability in their daily use of English. The subjects were native French speakers who had learned English in school; experienced listeners were tested in England and the less…

  3. Auditory attention strategy depends on target linguistic properties and spatial configurationa)

    PubMed Central

    McCloy, Daniel R.; Lee, Adrian K. C.

    2015-01-01

    Whether crossing a busy intersection or attending a large dinner party, listeners sometimes need to attend to multiple spatially distributed sound sources or streams concurrently. How they achieve this is not clear—some studies suggest that listeners cannot truly simultaneously attend to separate streams, but instead combine attention switching with short-term memory to achieve something resembling divided attention. This paper presents two oddball detection experiments designed to investigate whether directing attention to phonetic versus semantic properties of the attended speech impacts listeners' ability to divide their auditory attention across spatial locations. Each experiment uses four spatially distinct streams of monosyllabic words, variation in cue type (providing phonetic or semantic information), and requiring attention to one or two locations. A rapid button-press response paradigm is employed to minimize the role of short-term memory in performing the task. Results show that differences in the spatial configuration of attended and unattended streams interact with linguistic properties of the speech streams to impact performance. Additionally, listeners may leverage phonetic information to make oddball detection judgments even when oddballs are semantically defined. Both of these effects appear to be mediated by the overall complexity of the acoustic scene. PMID:26233011

  4. Dynamic stimulation evokes spatially focused receptive fields in bat auditory cortex.

    PubMed

    Hoffmann, Susanne; Schuller, Gerd; Firzlaff, Uwe

    2010-01-01

    Bats can orient and hunt for prey in complete darkness using echolocation. Due to the pulse-like character of call emission they receive a stroboscopic view of their environment. During target approach, bats adjust their emitted echolocation calls to the specific requirements of the dynamically changing environmental and behavioral context. In addition to changes of the spectro-temporal call features, the spatial focusing of the beam of the sonar emissions onto the target is a conspicuous feature during target tracking. The neural processes underlying the complex sensory-motor interactions during target tracking are not well understood. In this study, we used a two-tone-pulse paradigm with 81 combinations of inter-aural intensity differences and six inter-pulse intervals in a passive hearing task to tackle the question of how transient changes in the azimuthal position of successive sounds are encoded by neurons in the auditory cortex of the bat Phyllostomus discolor. In a population of cortical neurons (11%, 24 of 217), spatial receptive fields were focused to a small region of frontal azimuthal positions during dynamic stimulation with tone-pulse pairs at short inter-pulse intervals. The response of these neurons might be important for the behaviorally observed locking of the sonar beam onto a selected target during the later stages of target tracking. Most interestingly, the majority of these neurons (88%, 21 of 24) were located in the posterior dorsal part of the auditory cortex. This cortical subfield might thus be specifically involved in the analysis of dynamic acoustic scenes.

  5. An electrophysiological correlate of conflict processing in an auditory spatial Stroop task: the effect of individual differences in navigational style.

    PubMed

    Buzzell, George A; Roberts, Daniel M; Baldwin, Carryl L; McDonald, Craig G

    2013-11-01

    Recent work has identified an event-related potential (ERP) component, the incongruency negativity (N(inc)), which is sensitive to auditory Stroop conflict processing. Here, we investigated how this index of conflict processing is influenced by individual differences in cognitive style. There is evidence that individuals differ in the strategy they use to navigate through the environment; some use a predominantly verbal-egocentric strategy while others rely more heavily on a spatial-allocentric strategy. In addition, navigational strategy, assessed by a way-finding questionnaire, is predictive of performance on an auditory spatial Stroop task, in which either the semantic or spatial dimension of stimuli must be ignored. To explore the influence of individual differences in navigational style on conflict processing, participants took part in an auditory spatial Stroop task while the electroencephalogram (EEG) was recorded. Whereas behavioral performance only showed a main effect of congruency, we observed the predicted three-way interaction between congruency, task type and navigational style with respect to our physiological measure of Stroop conflict. Specifically, congruency-dependent modulation of the N(inc) was observed only when participants performed their non-dominant task (e.g., verbal navigators attempting to ignore semantic information). These results confirm that the N(inc) reliably indexes auditory Stroop conflict and extend previous results by demonstrating that the N(inc) is predictably modulated by individual differences in cognitive style.

  6. Potential for using visual, auditory, and olfactory cues to manage foraging behaviour and spatial distribution of rangeland livestock

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This paper reviews the literature and reports on the current state of knowledge regarding the potential for managers to use visual (VC), auditory (AC), and olfactory (OC) cues to manage foraging behavior and spatial distribution of rangeland livestock. We present evidence that free-ranging livestock...

  7. An electrophysiological correlate of conflict processing in an auditory spatial Stroop task: the effect of individual differences in navigational style.

    PubMed

    Buzzell, George A; Roberts, Daniel M; Baldwin, Carryl L; McDonald, Craig G

    2013-11-01

    Recent work has identified an event-related potential (ERP) component, the incongruency negativity (N(inc)), which is sensitive to auditory Stroop conflict processing. Here, we investigated how this index of conflict processing is influenced by individual differences in cognitive style. There is evidence that individuals differ in the strategy they use to navigate through the environment; some use a predominantly verbal-egocentric strategy while others rely more heavily on a spatial-allocentric strategy. In addition, navigational strategy, assessed by a way-finding questionnaire, is predictive of performance on an auditory spatial Stroop task, in which either the semantic or spatial dimension of stimuli must be ignored. To explore the influence of individual differences in navigational style on conflict processing, participants took part in an auditory spatial Stroop task while the electroencephalogram (EEG) was recorded. Whereas behavioral performance only showed a main effect of congruency, we observed the predicted three-way interaction between congruency, task type and navigational style with respect to our physiological measure of Stroop conflict. Specifically, congruency-dependent modulation of the N(inc) was observed only when participants performed their non-dominant task (e.g., verbal navigators attempting to ignore semantic information). These results confirm that the N(inc) reliably indexes auditory Stroop conflict and extend previous results by demonstrating that the N(inc) is predictably modulated by individual differences in cognitive style. PMID:23994425

  8. Spatial Learning and Computer Simulations in Science

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lindgren, Robb; Schwartz, Daniel L.

    2009-01-01

    Interactive simulations are entering mainstream science education. Their effects on cognition and learning are often framed by the legacy of information processing, which emphasized amodal problem solving and conceptual organization. In contrast, this paper reviews simulations from the vantage of research on perception and spatial learning,…

  9. Temporal Dynamics in Auditory Perceptual Learning: Impact of Sequencing and Incidental Learning

    PubMed Central

    Church, Barbara A.; Mercado, Eduardo; Wisniewski, Matthew G.; Liu, Estella H.

    2013-01-01

    Training can improve perceptual sensitivities. We examined whether the temporal dynamics and incidental versus intentional nature of training are important. Within the context of a birdsong rate discrimination task, we examined whether the sequencing of pre-testing exposure to the stimuli mattered. Easy-to-hard (progressive) sequencing of stimuli during pre-exposure led to more accurate performance with the critical difficult contrast and greater generalization to new contrasts in the task, compared to equally variable training in either a random or anti-progressive order. This greater accuracy was also evident when participants experienced the progressively-sequenced stimuli in a different incidental learning task that did not involve direct auditory training. The results clearly show the importance of temporal dynamics (sequencing) in learning, and that the progressive training advantages cannot be fully explained by direct associations between stimulus features and the corresponding responses. The current findings are consistent with a hierarchical account of perceptual learning among other possibilities, but not with explanations that focus on stimulus variability. PMID:22642235

  10. Computer-Based Auditory Training (CBAT): Benefits for Children with Language- and Reading-Related Learning Difficulties

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Loo, Jenny Hooi Yin; Bamiou, Doris-Eva; Campbell, Nicci; Luxon, Linda M.

    2010-01-01

    This article reviews the evidence for computer-based auditory training (CBAT) in children with language, reading, and related learning difficulties, and evaluates the extent it can benefit children with auditory processing disorder (APD). Searches were confined to studies published between 2000 and 2008, and they are rated according to the level…

  11. Active and passive contributions to spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Chrastil, Elizabeth R; Warren, William H

    2012-02-01

    It seems intuitively obvious that active exploration of a new environment will lead to better spatial learning than will passive exposure. However, the literature on this issue is decidedly mixed-in part, because the concept itself is not well defined. We identify five potential components of active spatial learning and review the evidence regarding their role in the acquisition of landmark, route, and survey knowledge. We find that (1) idiothetic information in walking contributes to metric survey knowledge, (2) there is little evidence as yet that decision making during exploration contributes to route or survey knowledge, (3) attention to place-action associations and relevant spatial relations contributes to route and survey knowledge, although landmarks and boundaries appear to be learned without effort, (4) route and survey information are differentially encoded in subunits of working memory, and (5) there is preliminary evidence that mental manipulation of such properties facilitates spatial learning. Idiothetic information appears to be necessary to reveal the influence of attention and, possibly, decision making in survey learning, which may explain the mixed results in desktop virtual reality. Thus, there is indeed an active advantage in spatial learning, which manifests itself in the task-dependent acquisition of route and survey knowledge.

  12. Mapping phonological information from auditory to written modality during foreign vocabulary learning.

    PubMed

    Kaushanskaya, Margarita; Marian, Viorica

    2008-12-01

    Learning to read in a foreign language often entails recognizing the printed form of words learned by sound. In the current study, the ability to map novel phonological information from the auditory modality onto the written modality was examined at different levels of overlap between the native language and an artificially constructed foreign language. In this study, monolingual English-speaking adults learned novel foreign words in the auditory modality. Recognition testing was first conducted in the auditory modality and then in the written modality. Participants who learned foreign words that matched English phonology showed similar accuracy rates when tested in either modality. Participants who learned foreign words that mismatched English phonology showed decreased recognition accuracy when tested in the written modality. Results indicate that cross-linguistic matching in phonology facilitated mapping of phonological information to the written modality. In addition, at different levels of cross-linguistic overlap, specific cognitive skills were found to correlate with the ability to map phonological information across modalities. This finding suggests that the cognitive skills required for acquisition of a foreign language may vary depending upon degree of cross-linguistic similarity.

  13. Early continuous white noise exposure alters auditory spatial sensitivity and expression of GAD65 and GABAA receptor subunits in rat auditory cortex.

    PubMed

    Xu, Jinghong; Yu, Liping; Cai, Rui; Zhang, Jiping; Sun, Xinde

    2010-04-01

    Sensory experiences have important roles in the functional development of the mammalian auditory cortex. Here, we show how early continuous noise rearing influences spatial sensitivity in the rat primary auditory cortex (A1) and its underlying mechanisms. By rearing infant rat pups under conditions of continuous, moderate level white noise, we found that noise rearing markedly attenuated the spatial sensitivity of A1 neurons. Compared with rats reared under normal conditions, spike counts of A1 neurons were more poorly modulated by changes in stimulus location, and their preferred locations were distributed over a larger area. We further show that early continuous noise rearing induced significant decreases in glutamic acid decarboxylase 65 and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)(A) receptor alpha1 subunit expression, and an increase in GABA(A) receptor alpha3 expression, which indicates a returned to the juvenile form of GABA(A) receptor, with no effect on the expression of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors. These observations indicate that noise rearing has powerful adverse effects on the maturation of cortical GABAergic inhibition, which might be responsible for the reduced spatial sensitivity. PMID:19620619

  14. Effects of auditory recognition learning on the perception of vocal features in European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris).

    PubMed

    Meliza, C Daniel

    2011-11-01

    Learning to recognize complex sensory signals can change the way they are perceived. European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) recognize other starlings by their song, which consists of a series of complex, stereotyped motifs. Song recognition learning is accompanied by plasticity in secondary auditory areas, suggesting that perceptual learning is involved. Here, to investigate whether perceptual learning can be observed behaviorally, a same-different operant task was used to measure how starlings perceived small differences in motif structure. Birds trained to recognize conspecific songs were better at detecting variations in motifs from the songs they learned, even though this variation was not directly necessary to learn the associative task. Discrimination also improved as the reference stimulus was repeated multiple times. Perception of the much larger differences between different motifs was unaffected by training. These results indicate that sensory representations of motifs are enhanced when starlings learn to recognize songs. PMID:22087940

  15. Effects of auditory recognition learning on the perception of vocal features in European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris)

    PubMed Central

    Daniel Meliza, C.

    2011-01-01

    Learning to recognize complex sensory signals can change the way they are perceived. European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) recognize other starlings by their song, which consists of a series of complex, stereotyped motifs. Song recognition learning is accompanied by plasticity in secondary auditory areas, suggesting that perceptual learning is involved. Here, to investigate whether perceptual learning can be observed behaviorally, a same–different operant task was used to measure how starlings perceived small differences in motif structure. Birds trained to recognize conspecific songs were better at detecting variations in motifs from the songs they learned, even though this variation was not directly necessary to learn the associative task. Discrimination also improved as the reference stimulus was repeated multiple times. Perception of the much larger differences between different motifs was unaffected by training. These results indicate that sensory representations of motifs are enhanced when starlings learn to recognize songs. PMID:22087940

  16. Statistical learning of recurring sound patterns encodes auditory objects in songbird forebrain

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Kai; Vicario, David S.

    2014-01-01

    Auditory neurophysiology has demonstrated how basic acoustic features are mapped in the brain, but it is still not clear how multiple sound components are integrated over time and recognized as an object. We investigated the role of statistical learning in encoding the sequential features of complex sounds by recording neuronal responses bilaterally in the auditory forebrain of awake songbirds that were passively exposed to long sound streams. These streams contained sequential regularities, and were similar to streams used in human infants to demonstrate statistical learning for speech sounds. For stimulus patterns with contiguous transitions and with nonadjacent elements, single and multiunit responses reflected neuronal discrimination of the familiar patterns from novel patterns. In addition, discrimination of nonadjacent patterns was stronger in the right hemisphere than in the left, and may reflect an effect of top-down modulation that is lateralized. Responses to recurring patterns showed stimulus-specific adaptation, a sparsening of neural activity that may contribute to encoding invariants in the sound stream and that appears to increase coding efficiency for the familiar stimuli across the population of neurons recorded. As auditory information about the world must be received serially over time, recognition of complex auditory objects may depend on this type of mnemonic process to create and differentiate representations of recently heard sounds. PMID:25246563

  17. Perceptual and cognitive spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Bedford, F L

    1993-06-01

    Ss were taught novel mappings between visual space and motor space with either a variant on a prism adaptation paradigm (Experiments 1 and 2) or a nonperceptual cognitive task (Experiments 3 and 4). First, discrimination training specified that 1 visual location required a new pointing response but another location did not. This led to unusual generalization unlike typical generalization decrement. Second, training at 9 locations specified that 1 location required a new response but that the remaining 8 did not. This simple isolation mapping was unlearnable and instead a flat function fit through all of space. In contrast, for the cognitive paradigm, not only was isolation of one region of space easily learned, it was the preferred pattern of generalization. Implications for perceptual learning, as well as the qualitative distinctions between perceptual and cognitive learning, are discussed.

  18. Test performance and classification statistics for the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test in selected clinical samples.

    PubMed

    Schoenberg, Mike R; Dawson, Kyra A; Duff, Kevin; Patton, Doyle; Scott, James G; Adams, Russell L

    2006-10-01

    The Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test [RAVLT; Rey, A. (1941). L'examen psychologique dans les cas d'encéphalopathie traumatique. Archives de Psychologie, 28, 21] is a commonly used neuropsychological measure that assesses verbal learning and memory. Normative data have been compiled [Schmidt, M. (1996). Rey Auditory and Verbal Learning Test: A handbook. Los Angeles, CA: Western Psychological Services]. When assessing an individual suspected of neurological dysfunction, useful comparisons include the extent that the patient deviates from healthy peers and also how closely the subject's performance matches those with known brain injury. This study provides the means and S.D.'s of 392 individuals with documented neurological dysfunction [closed head TBI (n=68), neoplasms (n=57), stroke (n=47), Dementia of the Alzheimer's type (n=158), and presurgical epilepsy left seizure focus (n=28), presurgical epilepsy right seizure focus (n=34)] and 122 patients with no known neurological dysfunction and psychiatric complaints. Patients were stratified into three age groups, 16-35, 36-59, and 60-88. Data were provided for trials I-V, List B, immediate recall, 30-min delayed recall, and recognition. Classification characteristics of the RAVLT using [Schmidt, M. (1996). Rey Auditory and Verbal Learning Test: A handbook. Los Angeles, CA: Western Psychological Services] meta-norms found the RAVLT to best distinguish patients suspected of Alzheimer's disease from the psychiatric comparison group. PMID:16987634

  19. A role for descending auditory cortical projections in songbird vocal learning

    PubMed Central

    Mandelblat-Cerf, Yael; Las, Liora; Denisenko, Natalia; Fee, Michale S

    2014-01-01

    Many learned motor behaviors are acquired by comparing ongoing behavior with an internal representation of correct performance, rather than using an explicit external reward. For example, juvenile songbirds learn to sing by comparing their song with the memory of a tutor song. At present, the brain regions subserving song evaluation are not known. In this study, we report several findings suggesting that song evaluation involves an avian 'cortical' area previously shown to project to the dopaminergic midbrain and other downstream targets. We find that this ventral portion of the intermediate arcopallium (AIV) receives inputs from auditory cortical areas, and that lesions of AIV result in significant deficits in vocal learning. Additionally, AIV neurons exhibit fast responses to disruptive auditory feedback presented during singing, but not during nonsinging periods. Our findings suggest that auditory cortical areas may guide learning by transmitting song evaluation signals to the dopaminergic midbrain and/or other subcortical targets. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.02152.001 PMID:24935934

  20. Spatial learning and goldfish telencephalon NMDA receptors.

    PubMed

    Gómez, Yolanda; Vargas, Juan Pedro; Portavella, Manuel; López, Juan Carlos

    2006-05-01

    Recent results have demonstrated that the mammalian hippocampus and the dorso-lateral telencephalon of ray-finned fishes share functional similarities in relation to spatial memory systems. In the present study, we investigated whether the physiological mechanisms of this hippocampus-dependent spatial memory system were also similar in mammals and ray-finned fishes, and therefore possibly conserved through evolution in vertebrates. In Experiment 1, we studied the effects of the intracranial administration of the noncompetitive NMDA receptor antagonist MK-801 during the acquisition of a spatial task. The results indicated dose-dependent drug-induced impairment of spatial memory. Experiment 2 evaluated if the MK-801 produced disruption of retrieval of a learned spatial response. Data showed that the administration of MK-801 did not impair the retrieval of the information previously stored. The last experiment analyzed the involvement of the telencephalic NMDA receptors in a spatial and in a cue task. Results showed a clear impairment in spatial learning but not in cue learning when NMDA receptors were blocked. As a whole, these results indicate that physiological mechanisms of this hippocampus-dependent system could be a general feature in vertebrate, and therefore phylogenetically conserved.

  1. Generalization of Auditory Sensory and Cognitive Learning in Typically Developing Children

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, Cristina F. B.; Moore, David R.; Schochat, Eliane

    2015-01-01

    Despite the well-established involvement of both sensory (“bottom-up”) and cognitive (“top-down”) processes in literacy, the extent to which auditory or cognitive (memory or attention) learning transfers to phonological and reading skills remains unclear. Most research has demonstrated learning of the trained task or even learning transfer to a closely related task. However, few studies have reported “far-transfer” to a different domain, such as the improvement of phonological and reading skills following auditory or cognitive training. This study assessed the effectiveness of auditory, memory or attention training on far-transfer measures involving phonological and reading skills in typically developing children. Mid-transfer was also assessed through untrained auditory, attention and memory tasks. Sixty 5- to 8-year-old children with normal hearing were quasi-randomly assigned to one of five training groups: attention group (AG), memory group (MG), auditory sensory group (SG), placebo group (PG; drawing, painting), and a control, untrained group (CG). Compliance, mid-transfer and far-transfer measures were evaluated before and after training. All trained groups received 12 x 45-min training sessions over 12 weeks. The CG did not receive any intervention. All trained groups, especially older children, exhibited significant learning of the trained task. On pre- to post-training measures (test-retest), most groups exhibited improvements on most tasks. There was significant mid-transfer for a visual digit span task, with highest span in the MG, relative to other groups. These results show that both sensory and cognitive (memory or attention) training can lead to learning in the trained task and to mid-transfer learning on a task (visual digit span) within the same domain as the trained tasks. However, learning did not transfer to measures of language (reading and phonological awareness), as the PG and CG improved as much as the other trained groups

  2. Generalization of Auditory Sensory and Cognitive Learning in Typically Developing Children.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Cristina F B; Moore, David R; Schochat, Eliane

    2015-01-01

    Despite the well-established involvement of both sensory ("bottom-up") and cognitive ("top-down") processes in literacy, the extent to which auditory or cognitive (memory or attention) learning transfers to phonological and reading skills remains unclear. Most research has demonstrated learning of the trained task or even learning transfer to a closely related task. However, few studies have reported "far-transfer" to a different domain, such as the improvement of phonological and reading skills following auditory or cognitive training. This study assessed the effectiveness of auditory, memory or attention training on far-transfer measures involving phonological and reading skills in typically developing children. Mid-transfer was also assessed through untrained auditory, attention and memory tasks. Sixty 5- to 8-year-old children with normal hearing were quasi-randomly assigned to one of five training groups: attention group (AG), memory group (MG), auditory sensory group (SG), placebo group (PG; drawing, painting), and a control, untrained group (CG). Compliance, mid-transfer and far-transfer measures were evaluated before and after training. All trained groups received 12 x 45-min training sessions over 12 weeks. The CG did not receive any intervention. All trained groups, especially older children, exhibited significant learning of the trained task. On pre- to post-training measures (test-retest), most groups exhibited improvements on most tasks. There was significant mid-transfer for a visual digit span task, with highest span in the MG, relative to other groups. These results show that both sensory and cognitive (memory or attention) training can lead to learning in the trained task and to mid-transfer learning on a task (visual digit span) within the same domain as the trained tasks. However, learning did not transfer to measures of language (reading and phonological awareness), as the PG and CG improved as much as the other trained groups. Further research

  3. Physical exercise, neuroplasticity, spatial learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Cassilhas, Ricardo C; Tufik, Sergio; de Mello, Marco Túlio

    2016-03-01

    There has long been discussion regarding the positive effects of physical exercise on brain activity. However, physical exercise has only recently begun to receive the attention of the scientific community, with major interest in its effects on the cognitive functions, spatial learning and memory, as a non-drug method of maintaining brain health and treating neurodegenerative and/or psychiatric conditions. In humans, several studies have shown the beneficial effects of aerobic and resistance exercises in adult and geriatric populations. More recently, studies employing animal models have attempted to elucidate the mechanisms underlying neuroplasticity related to physical exercise-induced spatial learning and memory improvement, even under neurodegenerative conditions. In an attempt to clarify these issues, the present review aims to discuss the role of physical exercise in the improvement of spatial learning and memory and the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in neuroplasticity. PMID:26646070

  4. Physical exercise, neuroplasticity, spatial learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Cassilhas, Ricardo C; Tufik, Sergio; de Mello, Marco Túlio

    2016-03-01

    There has long been discussion regarding the positive effects of physical exercise on brain activity. However, physical exercise has only recently begun to receive the attention of the scientific community, with major interest in its effects on the cognitive functions, spatial learning and memory, as a non-drug method of maintaining brain health and treating neurodegenerative and/or psychiatric conditions. In humans, several studies have shown the beneficial effects of aerobic and resistance exercises in adult and geriatric populations. More recently, studies employing animal models have attempted to elucidate the mechanisms underlying neuroplasticity related to physical exercise-induced spatial learning and memory improvement, even under neurodegenerative conditions. In an attempt to clarify these issues, the present review aims to discuss the role of physical exercise in the improvement of spatial learning and memory and the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in neuroplasticity.

  5. Developmental stress impairs performance on an association task in male and female songbirds, but impairs auditory learning in females only.

    PubMed

    Farrell, Tara M; Morgan, Amanda; MacDougall-Shackleton, Scott A

    2016-01-01

    In songbirds, early-life environments critically shape song development. Many studies have demonstrated that developmental stress impairs song learning and the development of song-control regions of the brain in males. However, song has evolved through signaller-receiver networks and the effect stress has on the ability to receive auditory signals is equally important, especially for females who use song as an indicator of mate quality. Female song preferences have been the metric used to evaluate how developmental stress affects auditory learning, but preferences are shaped by many non-cognitive factors and preclude the evaluation of auditory learning abilities in males. To determine whether developmental stress specifically affects auditory learning in both sexes, we subjected juvenile European starlings, Sturnus vulgaris, to either an ad libitum or an unpredictable food supply treatment from 35 to 115 days of age. In adulthood, we assessed learning of both auditory and visual discrimination tasks. Females reared in the experimental group were slower than females in the control group to acquire a relative frequency auditory task, and slower than their male counterparts to acquire an absolute frequency auditory task. There was no difference in auditory performance between treatment groups for males. However, on the colour association task, birds from the experimental group committed more errors per trial than control birds. There was no correlation in performance across the cognitive tasks. Developmental stress did not affect all cognitive processes equally across the sexes. Our results suggest that the male auditory system may be more robust to developmental stress than that of females.

  6. Auditory tuning for spatial cues in the barn owl basal ganglia.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Y E; Knudsen, E I

    1994-07-01

    1. The basal ganglia are known to contribute to spatially guided behavior. In this study, we investigated the auditory response properties of neurons in the barn owl paleostriatum augmentum (PA), the homologue of the mammalian striatum. The data suggest that the barn owl PA is specialized to process spatial cues and, like the mammalian striatum, is involved in spatial behavior. 2. Single- and multiunit sites were recorded extracellularly in ketamine-anesthetized owls. Spatial receptive fields were measured with a free-field sound source, and tuning for frequency and interaural differences in timing (ITD) and level (ILD) was assessed using digitally synthesized dichotic stimuli. 3. Spatial receptive fields measured at nine multiunit sites were tuned to restricted regions of space: tuning widths at half-maximum response averaged 22 +/- 9.6 degrees (mean +/- SD) in azimuth and 54 +/- 22 degrees in elevation. 4. PA sites responded strongly to broadband sounds. When frequency tuning could be measured (n = 145/201 sites), tuning was broad, averaging 2.7 kHz at half-maximum response, and tended to be centered near the high end of the owl's audible range. The mean best frequency was 6.2 kHz. 5. All PA sites (n = 201) were selective for both ITD and ILD. ITD tuning curves typically exhibited a single, large "primary" peak and often smaller, "secondary" peaks at ITDs ipsilateral and/or contralateral to the primary peak. Three indices quantified the selectivity of PA sites for ITD. The first index, which was the percent difference between the minimum and maximum response as a function of ITD, averaged 100 +/- 29%. The second index, which represented the size of the largest secondary peak relative to that of the primary peak, averaged 49 +/- 23%. The third index, which was the width of the primary ITD peak at half-maximum response, averaged only 66 +/- 35 microseconds. 6. The majority (96%; n = 192/201) of PA sites were tuned to a single "best" value of ILD. The widths of ILD

  7. Spatial Reference Frame of Incidentally Learned Attention

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jiang, Yuhong V.; Swallow, Khena M.

    2013-01-01

    Visual attention prioritizes information presented at particular spatial locations. These locations can be defined in reference frames centered on the environment or on the viewer. This study investigates whether incidentally learned attention uses a viewer-centered or environment-centered reference frame. Participants conducted visual search on a…

  8. Experimental Analysis of Spatial Learning in Goldfish

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saito, Kotaro; Watanabe, Shigeru

    2005-01-01

    The present study examined spatial learning in goldfish using a new apparatus that was an open-field circular pool with latticed holes. The subjects were motivated to reach the baited hole. We examined gustatory cues, intramaze cues, the possibility that the subject could see the food, etc. In Experiment 1, the position of the baited hole was…

  9. Multiplicative auditory spatial receptive fields created by a hierarchy of population codes.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Brian J; Anderson, Charles H; Peña, José Luis

    2009-01-01

    A multiplicative combination of tuning to interaural time difference (ITD) and interaural level difference (ILD) contributes to the generation of spatially selective auditory neurons in the owl's midbrain. Previous analyses of multiplicative responses in the owl have not taken into consideration the frequency-dependence of ITD and ILD cues that occur under natural listening conditions. Here, we present a model for the responses of ITD- and ILD-sensitive neurons in the barn owl's inferior colliculus which satisfies constraints raised by experimental data on frequency convergence, multiplicative interaction of ITD and ILD, and response properties of afferent neurons. We propose that multiplication between ITD- and ILD-dependent signals occurs only within frequency channels and that frequency integration occurs using a linear-threshold mechanism. The model reproduces the experimentally observed nonlinear responses to ITD and ILD in the inferior colliculus, with greater accuracy than previous models. We show that linear-threshold frequency integration allows the system to represent multiple sound sources with natural sound localization cues, whereas multiplicative frequency integration does not. Nonlinear responses in the owl's inferior colliculus can thus be generated using a combination of cellular and network mechanisms, showing that multiple elements of previous theories can be combined in a single system. PMID:19956693

  10. [Deficit of explicit memory in Parkinson's disease demonstrated by auditory-verbal and visual-design learning tasks].

    PubMed

    Maruyama, T

    1997-01-01

    This study is concerned with explicit memory in both auditory and visual modalities in patients with non-demented(on DSM-III-R) Parkinson's disease. On some explicit memory studies, Parkinsonian patients were compared with normal controls matched for age and education. For assessment of recollection, recall and recognition were assessed using two clinical test batteries, Rey's Auditory-Verbal Learning Test and Rey's Visual-Design Learning Test. In addition to a comparison of recall and recognition, the present research inquired into the serial position data in free recall, analysis by applying a signal detection theory to the recognition data, and metamemory by using self-assessment of recognition. The results showed that the Parkinsonian group was significantly impaired on both tests of free recall compared to the normal controls. By contrast, when given tests of recognition memory for the same lists, their performance was almost identical only in assessment of correct scores(hits). There was a significant correlations between performances on achieved categories of the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test and on free recalls of the auditory-verbal learning test in the patient group. In recall, no qualitative differences of the serial position curves were observed between the two groups, as an increasing pattern of primacy and recency effect was preserved. In addition, the two groups performed equally well on both auditory (digit span) and visual(spatial span) short-term memory assessment. Moreover, on the trial-recall curves, from the first trial to the last two groups showed no significant differences in their learning effect and forgetting. Irrespective of modalities, however, the Parkinsonian group recalled less than the controls in the first trials. The poor performance of recall in the patients could be explained in terms of diminished attentional resources of the central executive system processing information beyond their short-term memory span within the framework

  11. Auditory evoked potential: a proposal for further evaluation in children with learning disabilities.

    PubMed

    Frizzo, Ana C F

    2015-01-01

    The information presented in this paper demonstrates the author's experience in previews cross-sectional studies conducted in Brazil, in comparison with the current literature. Over the last 10 years, auditory evoked potential (AEP) has been used in children with learning disabilities. This method is critical to analyze the quality of the processing in time and indicates the specific neural demands and circuits of the sensorial and cognitive process in this clinical population. Some studies with children with dyslexia and learning disabilities were shown here to illustrate the use of AEP in this population.

  12. Learning to play a melody: an fMRI study examining the formation of auditory-motor associations.

    PubMed

    Chen, Joyce L; Rae, Charlotte; Watkins, Kate E

    2012-01-16

    Interactions between the auditory and motor systems are important for music and speech, and may be especially relevant when one learns to associate sounds with movements such as when learning to play a musical instrument. However, little is known about the neural substrates underlying auditory-motor learning. This study used fMRI to investigate the formation of auditory-motor associations while participants with no musical training learned to play a melody. Listening to melodies before and after training activated the superior temporal gyrus bilaterally, but neural activity in this region was significantly reduced on the right when participants listened to the trained melody. When playing melodies and random sequences, activity in the left dorsal premotor cortex (PMd) was reduced in the late compared to early phase of training; learning to play the melody was also associated with reduced neural activity in the left ventral premotor cortex (PMv). Participants with the highest performance scores for learning the melody showed more reduced neural activity in the left PMd and PMv. Learning to play a melody or random sequence involves acquiring conditional associations between key-presses and their corresponding musical pitches, and is related to activity in the PMd. Learning to play a melody additionally involves acquisition of a learned auditory-motor sequence and is related to activity in the PMv. Together, these findings demonstrate that auditory-motor learning is related to the reduction of neural activity in brain regions of the dorsal auditory action stream, which suggests increased efficiency in neural processing of a learned stimulus. PMID:21871571

  13. Absolute Pitch in Infant Auditory Learning: Evidence for Developmental Reorganization.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saffran, Jenny R.; Griepentrog, Gregory J.

    2001-01-01

    Two experiments examined 8-month-olds' use of absolute and relative pitch cues in a tone-sequence statistical learning task. Results suggest that, given unsegmented stimuli that do not conform to rules of musical composition, infants are more likely to track patterns of absolute pitches than of relative pitches. A third experiment found that adult…

  14. Brain dynamics that correlate with effects of learning on auditory distance perception.

    PubMed

    Wisniewski, Matthew G; Mercado, Eduardo; Church, Barbara A; Gramann, Klaus; Makeig, Scott

    2014-01-01

    Accuracy in auditory distance perception can improve with practice and varies for sounds differing in familiarity. Here, listeners were trained to judge the distances of English, Bengali, and backwards speech sources pre-recorded at near (2-m) and far (30-m) distances. Listeners' accuracy was tested before and after training. Improvements from pre-test to post-test were greater for forward speech, demonstrating a learning advantage for forward speech sounds. Independent component (IC) processes identified in electroencephalographic (EEG) data collected during pre- and post-testing revealed three clusters of ICs across subjects with stimulus-locked spectral perturbations related to learning and accuracy. One cluster exhibited a transient stimulus-locked increase in 4-8 Hz power (theta event-related synchronization; ERS) that was smaller after training and largest for backwards speech. For a left temporal cluster, 8-12 Hz decreases in power (alpha event-related desynchronization; ERD) were greatest for English speech and less prominent after training. In contrast, a cluster of IC processes centered at or near anterior portions of the medial frontal cortex showed learning-related enhancement of sustained increases in 10-16 Hz power (upper-alpha/low-beta ERS). The degree of this enhancement was positively correlated with the degree of behavioral improvements. Results suggest that neural dynamics in non-auditory cortical areas support distance judgments. Further, frontal cortical networks associated with attentional and/or working memory processes appear to play a role in perceptual learning for source distance.

  15. At the interface of the auditory and vocal motor systems: NIf and its role in vocal processing, production and learning.

    PubMed

    Lewandowski, Brian; Vyssotski, Alexei; Hahnloser, Richard H R; Schmidt, Marc

    2013-06-01

    Communication between auditory and vocal motor nuclei is essential for vocal learning. In songbirds, the nucleus interfacialis of the nidopallium (NIf) is part of a sensorimotor loop, along with auditory nucleus avalanche (Av) and song system nucleus HVC, that links the auditory and song systems. Most of the auditory information comes through this sensorimotor loop, with the projection from NIf to HVC representing the largest single source of auditory information to the song system. In addition to providing the majority of HVC's auditory input, NIf is also the primary driver of spontaneous activity and premotor-like bursting during sleep in HVC. Like HVC and RA, two nuclei critical for song learning and production, NIf exhibits behavioral-state dependent auditory responses and strong motor bursts that precede song output. NIf also exhibits extended periods of fast gamma oscillations following vocal production. Based on the converging evidence from studies of physiology and functional connectivity it would be reasonable to expect NIf to play an important role in the learning, maintenance, and production of song. Surprisingly, however, lesions of NIf in adult zebra finches have no effect on song production or maintenance. Only the plastic song produced by juvenile zebra finches during the sensorimotor phase of song learning is affected by NIf lesions. In this review, we carefully examine what is known about NIf at the anatomical, physiological, and behavioral levels. We reexamine conclusions drawn from previous studies in the light of our current understanding of the song system, and establish what can be said with certainty about NIf's involvement in song learning, maintenance, and production. Finally, we review recent theories of song learning integrating possible roles for NIf within these frameworks and suggest possible parallels between NIf and sensorimotor areas that form part of the neural circuitry for speech processing in humans.

  16. Sound Sequence Discrimination Learning Motivated by Reward Requires Dopaminergic D2 Receptor Activation in the Rat Auditory Cortex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kudoh, Masaharu; Shibuki, Katsuei

    2006-01-01

    We have previously reported that sound sequence discrimination learning requires cholinergic inputs to the auditory cortex (AC) in rats. In that study, reward was used for motivating discrimination behavior in rats. Therefore, dopaminergic inputs mediating reward signals may have an important role in the learning. We tested the possibility in the…

  17. Dorsal Hippocampus Function in Learning and Expressing a Spatial Discrimination

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    White, Norman M.; Gaskin, Stephane

    2006-01-01

    Learning to discriminate between spatial locations defined by two adjacent arms of a radial maze in the conditioned cue preference paradigm requires two kinds of information: latent spatial learning when the rats explore the maze with no food available, and learning about food availability in two spatial locations when the rats are then confined…

  18. Dissociation of Neural Networks for Predisposition and for Training-Related Plasticity in Auditory-Motor Learning.

    PubMed

    Herholz, Sibylle C; Coffey, Emily B J; Pantev, Christo; Zatorre, Robert J

    2016-07-01

    Skill learning results in changes to brain function, but at the same time individuals strongly differ in their abilities to learn specific skills. Using a 6-week piano-training protocol and pre- and post-fMRI of melody perception and imagery in adults, we dissociate learning-related patterns of neural activity from pre-training activity that predicts learning rates. Fronto-parietal and cerebellar areas related to storage of newly learned auditory-motor associations increased their response following training; in contrast, pre-training activity in areas related to stimulus encoding and motor control, including right auditory cortex, hippocampus, and caudate nuclei, was predictive of subsequent learning rate. We discuss the implications of these results for models of perceptual and of motor learning. These findings highlight the importance of considering individual predisposition in plasticity research and applications. PMID:26139842

  19. Direct social contacts override auditory information in the song-learning process in starlings (Sturnus vulgaris).

    PubMed

    Poirier, Colline; Henry, Laurence; Mathelier, Maryvonne; Lumineau, Sophie; Cousillas, Hugo; Hausberger, Martine

    2004-06-01

    Social influence on song acquisition was studied in 3 groups of young European starlings raised under different social conditions but with the same auditory experience of adult song. Attentional focusing on preferred partners appears the most likely explanation for differences found in song acquisition in relation to experience, sex, and song categories. Thus, pair-isolated birds learned from each other and not from broadcast live songs, females did not learn from the adult male tutors, and sharing occurred more between socially associated peers. On the contrary, single-isolated birds clearly copied the adult songs that may have been the only source of attention stimulation. Therefore, social preference appears as both a motor for song learning and a potential obstacle for acquisition from nonpreferred partners, including adults. PMID:15250805

  20. Attention Cueing and Activity Equally Reduce False Alarm Rate in Visual-Auditory Associative Learning through Improving Memory.

    PubMed

    Nikouei Mahani, Mohammad-Ali; Haghgoo, Hojjat Allah; Azizi, Solmaz; Nili Ahmadabadi, Majid

    2016-01-01

    In our daily life, we continually exploit already learned multisensory associations and form new ones when facing novel situations. Improving our associative learning results in higher cognitive capabilities. We experimentally and computationally studied the learning performance of healthy subjects in a visual-auditory sensory associative learning task across active learning, attention cueing learning, and passive learning modes. According to our results, the learning mode had no significant effect on learning association of congruent pairs. In addition, subjects' performance in learning congruent samples was not correlated with their vigilance score. Nevertheless, vigilance score was significantly correlated with the learning performance of the non-congruent pairs. Moreover, in the last block of the passive learning mode, subjects significantly made more mistakes in taking non-congruent pairs as associated and consciously reported lower confidence. These results indicate that attention and activity equally enhanced visual-auditory associative learning for non-congruent pairs, while false alarm rate in the passive learning mode did not decrease after the second block. We investigated the cause of higher false alarm rate in the passive learning mode by using a computational model, composed of a reinforcement learning module and a memory-decay module. The results suggest that the higher rate of memory decay is the source of making more mistakes and reporting lower confidence in non-congruent pairs in the passive learning mode. PMID:27314235

  1. Attention Cueing and Activity Equally Reduce False Alarm Rate in Visual-Auditory Associative Learning through Improving Memory

    PubMed Central

    Haghgoo, Hojjat Allah; Azizi, Solmaz; Nili Ahmadabadi, Majid

    2016-01-01

    In our daily life, we continually exploit already learned multisensory associations and form new ones when facing novel situations. Improving our associative learning results in higher cognitive capabilities. We experimentally and computationally studied the learning performance of healthy subjects in a visual-auditory sensory associative learning task across active learning, attention cueing learning, and passive learning modes. According to our results, the learning mode had no significant effect on learning association of congruent pairs. In addition, subjects’ performance in learning congruent samples was not correlated with their vigilance score. Nevertheless, vigilance score was significantly correlated with the learning performance of the non-congruent pairs. Moreover, in the last block of the passive learning mode, subjects significantly made more mistakes in taking non-congruent pairs as associated and consciously reported lower confidence. These results indicate that attention and activity equally enhanced visual-auditory associative learning for non-congruent pairs, while false alarm rate in the passive learning mode did not decrease after the second block. We investigated the cause of higher false alarm rate in the passive learning mode by using a computational model, composed of a reinforcement learning module and a memory-decay module. The results suggest that the higher rate of memory decay is the source of making more mistakes and reporting lower confidence in non-congruent pairs in the passive learning mode. PMID:27314235

  2. Primacy and recency effects in the assessment of memory using the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test.

    PubMed

    Crockett, D J; Hadjistavropoulos, T; Hurwitz, T

    1992-01-01

    The present study examined the manifestation of the primacy and recency effects in patients with anterior brain damage, posterior brain damage, and psychiatric inpatients with no known organic impairment. All three groups of patients demonstrated both a primacy and a recency effect on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT). Differences among the three groups with respect to the magnitude of primacy and recency as well as with other variables reflecting free recall were nonsignificant. These findings limit the use of primacy and recency for the differentiation of memory deficits due to organic and nonorganic causes.

  3. The Application of an Animal Auditory Training Method as an Interchangeable Auditory Processing Learning Method for Children with Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Adams, Deborah L.

    2012-01-01

    While the prevalence of autism continues to increase, there is a growing need for techniques that facilitate teaching this challenging population. The use of visual systems and prompting has been prevalent as well as effective; however, the use of auditory systems has been lacking in investigation. Ten children between the chronological ages of 4…

  4. Neural Changes Associated with Nonspeech Auditory Category Learning Parallel Those of Speech Category Acquisition

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Ran; Holt, Lori L.

    2010-01-01

    Native language experience plays a critical role in shaping speech categorization, but the exact mechanisms by which it does so are not well understood. Investigating category learning of nonspeech sounds with which listeners have no prior experience allows their experience to be systematically controlled in a way that is impossible to achieve by studying natural speech acquisition, and it provides a means of probing the boundaries and constraints that general auditory perception and cognition bring to the task of speech category learning. In this study, we used a multimodal, video-game-based implicit learning paradigm to train participants to categorize acoustically complex, nonlinguistic sounds. Mismatch negativity responses to the nonspeech stimuli were collected before and after training to investigate the degree to which neural changes supporting the learning of these nonspeech categories parallel those typically observed for speech category acquisition. Results indicate that changes in mismatch negativity resulting from the nonspeech category learning closely resemble patterns of change typically observed during speech category learning. This suggests that the often-observed “specialized” neural responses to speech sounds may result, at least in part, from the expertise we develop with speech categories through experience rathr than from properties unique to speech (e.g., linguistic or vocal tract gestural information). Furthermore, particular characteristics of the training paradigm may inform our understanding of mechanisms that support natural speech acquisition. PMID:19929331

  5. Auditory Same/Different Concept Learning and Generalization in Black-Capped Chickadees (Poecile atricapillus)

    PubMed Central

    Hoeschele, Marisa; Cook, Robert G.; Guillette, Lauren M.; Hahn, Allison H.; Sturdy, Christopher B.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract concept learning was thought to be uniquely human, but has since been observed in many other species. Discriminating same from different is one abstract relation that has been studied frequently. In the current experiment, using operant conditioning, we tested whether black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus) could discriminate sets of auditory stimuli based on whether all the sounds within a sequence were the same or different from one another. The chickadees were successful at solving this same/different relational task, and transferred their learning to same/different sequences involving novel combinations of training notes and novel notes within the range of pitches experienced during training. The chickadees showed limited transfer to pitches that was not used in training, suggesting that the processing of absolute pitch may constrain their relational performance. Our results indicate, for the first time, that black-capped chickadees readily form relational auditory same and different categories, adding to the list of perceptual, behavioural, and cognitive abilities that make this species an important comparative model for human language and cognition. PMID:23077660

  6. Auditory same/different concept learning and generalization in black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus).

    PubMed

    Hoeschele, Marisa; Cook, Robert G; Guillette, Lauren M; Hahn, Allison H; Sturdy, Christopher B

    2012-01-01

    Abstract concept learning was thought to be uniquely human, but has since been observed in many other species. Discriminating same from different is one abstract relation that has been studied frequently. In the current experiment, using operant conditioning, we tested whether black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus) could discriminate sets of auditory stimuli based on whether all the sounds within a sequence were the same or different from one another. The chickadees were successful at solving this same/different relational task, and transferred their learning to same/different sequences involving novel combinations of training notes and novel notes within the range of pitches experienced during training. The chickadees showed limited transfer to pitches that was not used in training, suggesting that the processing of absolute pitch may constrain their relational performance. Our results indicate, for the first time, that black-capped chickadees readily form relational auditory same and different categories, adding to the list of perceptual, behavioural, and cognitive abilities that make this species an important comparative model for human language and cognition.

  7. Spatial selective auditory attention in the presence of reverberant energy: individual differences in normal-hearing listeners.

    PubMed

    Ruggles, Dorea; Shinn-Cunningham, Barbara

    2011-06-01

    Listeners can selectively attend to a desired target by directing attention to known target source features, such as location or pitch. Reverberation, however, reduces the reliability of the cues that allow a target source to be segregated and selected from a sound mixture. Given this, it is likely that reverberant energy interferes with selective auditory attention. Anecdotal reports suggest that the ability to focus spatial auditory attention degrades even with early aging, yet there is little evidence that middle-aged listeners have behavioral deficits on tasks requiring selective auditory attention. The current study was designed to look for individual differences in selective attention ability and to see if any such differences correlate with age. Normal-hearing adults, ranging in age from 18 to 55 years, were asked to report a stream of digits located directly ahead in a simulated rectangular room. Simultaneous, competing masker digit streams were simulated at locations 15° left and right of center. The level of reverberation was varied to alter task difficulty by interfering with localization cues (increasing localization blur). Overall, performance was best in the anechoic condition and worst in the high-reverberation condition. Listeners nearly always reported a digit from one of the three competing streams, showing that reverberation did not render the digits unintelligible. Importantly, inter-subject differences were extremely large. These differences, however, were not significantly correlated with age, memory span, or hearing status. These results show that listeners with audiometrically normal pure tone thresholds differ in their ability to selectively attend to a desired source, a task important in everyday communication. Further work is necessary to determine if these differences arise from differences in peripheral auditory function or in more central function.

  8. Testing the Role of Dorsal Premotor Cortex in Auditory-Motor Association Learning Using Transcranical Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)

    PubMed Central

    Lega, Carlotta; Stephan, Marianne A.; Zatorre, Robert J.; Penhune, Virginia

    2016-01-01

    Interactions between the auditory and the motor systems are critical in music as well as in other domains, such as speech. The premotor cortex, specifically the dorsal premotor cortex (dPMC), seems to play a key role in auditory-motor integration, and in mapping the association between a sound and the movement used to produce it. In the present studies we tested the causal role of the dPMC in learning and applying auditory-motor associations using 1 Hz repetitive Transcranical Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS). In this paradigm, non-musicians learn a set of auditory-motor associations through melody training in two contexts: first when the sound to key-press mapping was in a conventional sequential order (low to high tones mapped onto keys from left to right), and then when it was in a novel scrambled order. Participant’s ability to match the four pitches to four computer keys was tested before and after the training. In both experiments, the group that received 1 Hz rTMS over the dPMC showed no significant improvement on the pitch-matching task following training, whereas the control group (who received rTMS to visual cortex) did. Moreover, in Experiment 2 where the pitch-key mapping was novel, rTMS over the dPMC also interfered with learning. These findings suggest that rTMS over dPMC disturbs the formation of auditory-motor associations, especially when the association is novel and must be learned rather explicitly. The present results contribute to a better understanding of the role of dPMC in auditory-motor integration, suggesting a critical role of dPMC in learning the link between an action and its associated sound. PMID:27684369

  9. Edouard Claparède and the auditory verbal learning test.

    PubMed

    Boake, C

    2000-04-01

    This paper describes the role of the Swiss psychologist Edouard Claparède (1873-1940) in developing the Test de mémoire des mots (Test of Memory for Words), a test consisting of one free-recall trial of a 15-word list that is the antecedent of the auditory verbal learning tests (AVLT) of Rey and others. The fact that Claparède's test has survived in modified form for 80 years makes it one of the oldest mental tests in continuous use. In addition to developing the AVLT, Claparède's pioneering contributions to neuropsychology include forensic assessment of cognitive deficits and research on implicit learning in amnesia. PMID:10779842

  10. Edouard Claparède and the auditory verbal learning test.

    PubMed

    Boake, C

    2000-04-01

    This paper describes the role of the Swiss psychologist Edouard Claparède (1873-1940) in developing the Test de mémoire des mots (Test of Memory for Words), a test consisting of one free-recall trial of a 15-word list that is the antecedent of the auditory verbal learning tests (AVLT) of Rey and others. The fact that Claparède's test has survived in modified form for 80 years makes it one of the oldest mental tests in continuous use. In addition to developing the AVLT, Claparède's pioneering contributions to neuropsychology include forensic assessment of cognitive deficits and research on implicit learning in amnesia.

  11. Spatial integration in human geometry learning.

    PubMed

    Prados, Jose; Alvarez, Beatriz; Reynolds, Glyn

    2011-10-31

    In a 2-D computer based search task, human participants were exposed to a compound stimulus containing both geometric and non-geometric information (a rectangle with colored walls) in such a way that a non-geometric cue, C1, was paired with a geometric cue, G1. Previous reinforcement of either kind of cue (geometric and non-geometric) resulted in second order conditioning (SOC) when the participants were tested with the cue that was never paired with reinforcement (Experiment 1). Similarly, if one of the cues was reinforced following the non-reinforced exposure to the compound, a sensory preconditioning (SPC) effect was observed (Experiment 3). These results show that associations can be formed between geometric and non-geometric cues, a finding that is incompatible with the concept of a geometric module impenetrable to non-geometric information. In Experiments 2 and 4, we found evidence for SOC and SPC using exclusively geometric cues, suggesting that the associative learning principles that apply to other domains also rule spatial geometry learning in humans. This research suggests that spatial representations can be enlarged by successively integrating information bits through the linkage of common elements.

  12. Spatial learning by mice in three dimensions

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Jonathan J.; Harding, Elizabeth; Fortier, Mathilde; James, Benjamin; Donnett, Megan; Kerslake, Alasdair; O’Leary, Alice; Zhang, Ningyu; Jeffery, Kate

    2015-01-01

    We tested whether mice can represent locations distributed throughout three-dimensional space, by developing a novel three-dimensional radial arm maze. The three-dimensional radial maze, or “radiolarian” maze, consists of a central spherical core from which arms project in all directions. Mice learn to retrieve food from the ends of the arms without omitting any arms or re-visiting depleted ones. We show here that mice can learn both a standard working memory task, in which all arms are initially baited, and also a reference memory version in which only a subset are ever baited. Comparison with a two-dimensional analogue of the radiolarian maze, the hexagon maze, revealed equally good working-memory performance in both mazes if all the arms were initially baited, but reduced working and reference memory in the partially baited radiolarian maze. This suggests intact three-dimensional spatial representation in mice over short timescales but impairment of the formation and/or use of long-term spatial memory of the maze. We discuss potential mechanisms for how mice solve the three-dimensional task, and reasons for the impairment relative to its two-dimensional counterpart, concluding with some speculations about how mammals may represent three-dimensional space. PMID:25930216

  13. Spatial learning by mice in three dimensions.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Jonathan J; Harding, Elizabeth; Fortier, Mathilde; James, Benjamin; Donnett, Megan; Kerslake, Alasdair; O'Leary, Alice; Zhang, Ningyu; Jeffery, Kate

    2015-08-01

    We tested whether mice can represent locations distributed throughout three-dimensional space, by developing a novel three-dimensional radial arm maze. The three-dimensional radial maze, or "radiolarian" maze, consists of a central spherical core from which arms project in all directions. Mice learn to retrieve food from the ends of the arms without omitting any arms or re-visiting depleted ones. We show here that mice can learn both a standard working memory task, in which all arms are initially baited, and also a reference memory version in which only a subset are ever baited. Comparison with a two-dimensional analogue of the radiolarian maze, the hexagon maze, revealed equally good working-memory performance in both mazes if all the arms were initially baited, but reduced working and reference memory in the partially baited radiolarian maze. This suggests intact three-dimensional spatial representation in mice over short timescales but impairment of the formation and/or use of long-term spatial memory of the maze. We discuss potential mechanisms for how mice solve the three-dimensional task, and reasons for the impairment relative to its two-dimensional counterpart, concluding with some speculations about how mammals may represent three-dimensional space.

  14. Auditory attention in childhood and adolescence: An event-related potential study of spatial selective attention to one of two simultaneous stories

    PubMed Central

    Karns, Christina M.; Isbell, Elif; Giuliano, Ryan J.; Neville, Helen J.

    2015-01-01

    Auditory selective attention is a critical skill for goal-directed behavior, especially where noisy distractions may impede focusing attention. To better understand the developmental trajectory of auditory spatial selective attention in an acoustically complex environment, in the current study we measured auditory event-related potentials (ERPs) in human children across five age groups: 3–5 years; 10 years; 13 years; 16 years; and young adults using a naturalistic dichotic listening paradigm, characterizing the ERP morphology for nonlinguistic and linguistic auditory probes embedded in attended and unattended stories. We documented robust maturational changes in auditory evoked potentials that were specific to the types of probes. Furthermore, we found a remarkable interplay between age and attention-modulation of auditory evoked potentials in terms of morphology and latency from the early years of childhood through young adulthood. The results are consistent with the view that attention can operate across age groups by modulating the amplitude of maturing auditory early-latency evoked potentials or by invoking later endogenous attention processes. Development of these processes is not uniform for probes with different acoustic properties within our acoustically dense speech-based dichotic listening task. In light of the developmental differences we demonstrate, researchers conducting future attention studies of children and adolescents should be wary of combining analyses across diverse ages. PMID:26002721

  15. Assessing spatial learning and memory in rodents.

    PubMed

    Vorhees, Charles V; Williams, Michael T

    2014-01-01

    Maneuvering safely through the environment is central to survival of almost all species. The ability to do this depends on learning and remembering locations. This capacity is encoded in the brain by two systems: one using cues outside the organism (distal cues), allocentric navigation, and one using self-movement, internal cues and nearby proximal cues, egocentric navigation. Allocentric navigation involves the hippocampus, entorhinal cortex, and surrounding structures; in humans this system encodes allocentric, semantic, and episodic memory. This form of memory is assessed in laboratory animals in many ways, but the dominant form of assessment is the Morris water maze (MWM). Egocentric navigation involves the dorsal striatum and connected structures; in humans this system encodes routes and integrated paths and, when overlearned, becomes procedural memory. In this article, several allocentric assessment methods for rodents are reviewed and compared with the MWM. MWM advantages (little training required, no food deprivation, ease of testing, rapid and reliable learning, insensitivity to differences in body weight and appetite, absence of nonperformers, control methods for proximal cue learning, and performance effects) and disadvantages (concern about stress, perhaps not as sensitive for working memory) are discussed. Evidence-based design improvements and testing methods are reviewed for both rats and mice. Experimental factors that apply generally to spatial navigation and to MWM specifically are considered. It is concluded that, on balance, the MWM has more advantages than disadvantages and compares favorably with other allocentric navigation tasks.

  16. Assessing Spatial Learning and Memory in Rodents

    PubMed Central

    Vorhees, Charles V.; Williams, Michael T.

    2014-01-01

    Maneuvering safely through the environment is central to survival of almost all species. The ability to do this depends on learning and remembering locations. This capacity is encoded in the brain by two systems: one using cues outside the organism (distal cues), allocentric navigation, and one using self-movement, internal cues and nearby proximal cues, egocentric navigation. Allocentric navigation involves the hippocampus, entorhinal cortex, and surrounding structures; in humans this system encodes allocentric, semantic, and episodic memory. This form of memory is assessed in laboratory animals in many ways, but the dominant form of assessment is the Morris water maze (MWM). Egocentric navigation involves the dorsal striatum and connected structures; in humans this system encodes routes and integrated paths and, when overlearned, becomes procedural memory. In this article, several allocentric assessment methods for rodents are reviewed and compared with the MWM. MWM advantages (little training required, no food deprivation, ease of testing, rapid and reliable learning, insensitivity to differences in body weight and appetite, absence of nonperformers, control methods for proximal cue learning, and performance effects) and disadvantages (concern about stress, perhaps not as sensitive for working memory) are discussed. Evidence-based design improvements and testing methods are reviewed for both rats and mice. Experimental factors that apply generally to spatial navigation and to MWM specifically are considered. It is concluded that, on balance, the MWM has more advantages than disadvantages and compares favorably with other allocentric navigation tasks. PMID:25225309

  17. Reduced Sensory Oscillatory Activity during Rapid Auditory Processing as a Correlate of Language-Learning Impairment

    PubMed Central

    Heim, Sabine; Friedman, Jennifer Thomas; Keil, Andreas; Benasich, April A.

    2010-01-01

    Successful language acquisition has been hypothesized to involve the ability to integrate rapidly presented, brief acoustic cues in sensory cortex. A body of work has suggested that this ability is compromised in language-learning impairment (LLI). The present research aimed to examine sensory integration during rapid auditory processing by means of electrophysiological measures of oscillatory brain activity using data from a larger longitudinal study. Twenty-nine children with LLI and control participants with typical language development (n=18) listened to tone doublets presented at a temporal interval that is essential for accurate speech processing (70-ms interstimulus interval). The children performed a deviant (pitch change of second tone) detection task, or listened passively. The electroencephalogram was recorded from 64 electrodes. Data were source-projected to the auditory cortices and submitted to wavelet analysis, resulting in time-frequency representations of electrocortical activity. Results show significantly reduced amplitude and phase-locking of early (45–75 ms) oscillations in the gamma-band range (29–52 Hz), specifically in the LLI group, for the second stimulus of the tone doublet. This suggests altered temporal organization of sensory oscillatory activity in LLI when processing rapid sequences. PMID:21822356

  18. Pharmacological specialization of learned auditory responses in the inferior colliculus of the barn owl.

    PubMed

    Feldman, D E; Knudsen, E I

    1998-04-15

    Neural tuning for interaural time difference (ITD) in the optic tectum of the owl is calibrated by experience-dependent plasticity occurring in the external nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICX). When juvenile owls are subjected to a sustained lateral displacement of the visual field by wearing prismatic spectacles, the ITD tuning of ICX neurons becomes systematically altered; ICX neurons acquire novel auditory responses, termed "learned responses," to ITD values outside their normal, pre-existing tuning range. In this study, we compared the glutamatergic pharmacology of learned responses with that of normal responses expressed by the same ICX neurons. Measurements were made in the ICX using iontophoretic application of glutamate receptor antagonists. We found that in early stages of ITD tuning adjustment, soon after learned responses had been induced by experience-dependent processes, the NMDA receptor antagonist D, L-2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid (AP-5) preferentially blocked the expression of learned responses of many ICX neurons compared with that of normal responses of the same neurons. In contrast, the non-NMDA receptor antagonist 6-cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione (CNQX) blocked learned and normal responses equally. After long periods of prism experience, preferential blockade of learned responses by AP-5 was no longer observed. These results indicate that NMDA receptors play a preferential role in the expression of learned responses soon after these responses have been induced by experience-dependent processes, whereas later in development or with additional prism experience (we cannot distinguish which), the differential NMDA receptor-mediated component of these responses disappears. This pharmacological progression resembles the changes that occur during maturation of glutamatergic synaptic currents during early development. PMID:9526024

  19. Auditory Learning Using a Portable Real-Time Vocoder: Preliminary Findings

    PubMed Central

    Pisoni, David B.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Although traditional study of auditory training has been in controlled laboratory settings, interest has been increasing in more interactive options. The authors examine whether such interactive training can result in short-term perceptual learning, and the range of perceptual skills it impacts. Method Experiments 1 (N = 37) and 2 (N = 21) used pre- and posttest measures of speech and nonspeech recognition to find evidence of learning (within subject) and to compare the effects of 3 kinds of training (between subject) on the perceptual abilities of adults with normal hearing listening to simulations of cochlear implant processing. Subjects were given interactive, standard lab-based, or control training experience for 1 hr between the pre- and posttest tasks (unique sets across Experiments 1 & 2). Results Subjects receiving interactive training showed significant learning on sentence recognition in quiet task (Experiment 1), outperforming controls but not lab-trained subjects following training. Training groups did not differ significantly on any other task, even those directly involved in the interactive training experience. Conclusions Interactive training has the potential to produce learning in 1 domain (sentence recognition in quiet), but the particulars of the present training method (short duration, high complexity) may have limited benefits to this single criterion task. PMID:25674884

  20. Spatial short-term memory in children with nonverbal learning disabilities: impairment in encoding spatial configuration.

    PubMed

    Narimoto, Tadamasa; Matsuura, Naomi; Takezawa, Tomohiro; Mitsuhashi, Yoshinori; Hiratani, Michio

    2013-01-01

    The authors investigated whether impaired spatial short-term memory exhibited by children with nonverbal learning disabilities is due to a problem in the encoding process. Children with or without nonverbal learning disabilities performed a simple spatial test that required them to remember 3, 5, or 7 spatial items presented simultaneously in random positions (i.e., spatial configuration) and to decide if a target item was changed or all items including the target were in the same position. The results showed that, even when the spatial positions in the encoding and probe phases were similar, the mean proportion correct of children with nonverbal learning disabilities was 0.58 while that of children without nonverbal learning disabilities was 0.84. The authors argue with the results that children with nonverbal learning disabilities have difficulty encoding relational information between spatial items, and that this difficulty is responsible for their impaired spatial short-term memory.

  1. Proteome rearrangements after auditory learning: high-resolution profiling of synapse-enriched protein fractions from mouse brain.

    PubMed

    Kähne, Thilo; Richter, Sandra; Kolodziej, Angela; Smalla, Karl-Heinz; Pielot, Rainer; Engler, Alexander; Ohl, Frank W; Dieterich, Daniela C; Seidenbecher, Constanze; Tischmeyer, Wolfgang; Naumann, Michael; Gundelfinger, Eckart D

    2016-07-01

    Learning and memory processes are accompanied by rearrangements of synaptic protein networks. While various studies have demonstrated the regulation of individual synaptic proteins during these processes, much less is known about the complex regulation of synaptic proteomes. Recently, we reported that auditory discrimination learning in mice is associated with a relative down-regulation of proteins involved in the structural organization of synapses in various brain regions. Aiming at the identification of biological processes and signaling pathways involved in auditory memory formation, here, a label-free quantification approach was utilized to identify regulated synaptic junctional proteins and phosphoproteins in the auditory cortex, frontal cortex, hippocampus, and striatum of mice 24 h after the learning experiment. Twenty proteins, including postsynaptic scaffolds, actin-remodeling proteins, and RNA-binding proteins, were regulated in at least three brain regions pointing to common, cross-regional mechanisms. Most of the detected synaptic proteome changes were, however, restricted to individual brain regions. For example, several members of the Septin family of cytoskeletal proteins were up-regulated only in the hippocampus, while Septin-9 was down-regulated in the hippocampus, the frontal cortex, and the striatum. Meta analyses utilizing several databases were employed to identify underlying cellular functions and biological pathways. Data are available via ProteomeExchange with identifier PXD003089. How does the protein composition of synapses change in different brain areas upon auditory learning? We unravel discrete proteome changes in mouse auditory cortex, frontal cortex, hippocampus, and striatum functionally implicated in the learning process. We identify not only common but also area-specific biological pathways and cellular processes modulated 24 h after training, indicating individual contributions of the regions to memory processing. PMID

  2. Selective importance of the rat anterior thalamic nuclei for configural learning involving distal spatial cues.

    PubMed

    Dumont, Julie R; Amin, Eman; Aggleton, John P

    2014-01-01

    To test potential parallels between hippocampal and anterior thalamic function, rats with anterior thalamic lesions were trained on a series of biconditional learning tasks. The anterior thalamic lesions did not disrupt learning two biconditional associations in operant chambers where a specific auditory stimulus (tone or click) had a differential outcome depending on whether it was paired with a particular visual context (spot or checkered wall-paper) or a particular thermal context (warm or cool). Likewise, rats with anterior thalamic lesions successfully learnt a biconditional task when they were reinforced for digging in one of two distinct cups (containing either beads or shredded paper), depending on the particular appearance of the local context on which the cup was placed (one of two textured floors). In contrast, the same rats were severely impaired at learning the biconditional rule to select a specific cup when in a particular location within the test room. Place learning was then tested with a series of go/no-go discriminations. Rats with anterior thalamic nuclei lesions could learn to discriminate between two locations when they were approached from a constant direction. They could not, however, use this acquired location information to solve a subsequent spatial biconditional task where those same places dictated the correct choice of digging cup. Anterior thalamic lesions produced a selective, but severe, biconditional learning deficit when the task incorporated distal spatial cues. This deficit mirrors that seen in rats with hippocampal lesions, so extending potential interdependencies between the two sites.

  3. Learning to match auditory and visual speech cues: social influences on acquisition of phonological categories.

    PubMed

    Altvater-Mackensen, Nicole; Grossmann, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Infants' language exposure largely involves face-to-face interactions providing acoustic and visual speech cues but also social cues that might foster language learning. Yet, both audiovisual speech information and social information have so far received little attention in research on infants' early language development. Using a preferential looking paradigm, 44 German 6-month olds' ability to detect mismatches between concurrently presented auditory and visual native vowels was tested. Outcomes were related to mothers' speech style and interactive behavior assessed during free play with their infant, and to infant-specific factors assessed through a questionnaire. Results show that mothers' and infants' social behavior modulated infants' preference for matching audiovisual speech. Moreover, infants' audiovisual speech perception correlated with later vocabulary size, suggesting a lasting effect on language development.

  4. Learning to match auditory and visual speech cues: social influences on acquisition of phonological categories.

    PubMed

    Altvater-Mackensen, Nicole; Grossmann, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Infants' language exposure largely involves face-to-face interactions providing acoustic and visual speech cues but also social cues that might foster language learning. Yet, both audiovisual speech information and social information have so far received little attention in research on infants' early language development. Using a preferential looking paradigm, 44 German 6-month olds' ability to detect mismatches between concurrently presented auditory and visual native vowels was tested. Outcomes were related to mothers' speech style and interactive behavior assessed during free play with their infant, and to infant-specific factors assessed through a questionnaire. Results show that mothers' and infants' social behavior modulated infants' preference for matching audiovisual speech. Moreover, infants' audiovisual speech perception correlated with later vocabulary size, suggesting a lasting effect on language development. PMID:25403424

  5. Jumpstarting auditory learning in children with cochlear implants through music experiences.

    PubMed

    Barton, Christine; Robbins, Amy McConkey

    2015-09-01

    Musical experiences are a valuable part of the lives of children with cochlear implants (CIs). In addition to the pleasure, relationships and emotional outlet provided by music, it serves to enhance or 'jumpstart' other auditory and cognitive skills that are critical for development and learning throughout the lifespan. Musicians have been shown to be 'better listeners' than non-musicians with regard to how they perceive and process sound. A heuristic model of music therapy is reviewed, including six modulating factors that may account for the auditory advantages demonstrated by those who participate in music therapy. The integral approach to music therapy is described along with the hybrid approach to pediatric language intervention. These approaches share the characteristics of placing high value on ecologically valid therapy experiences, i.e., engaging in 'real' music and 'real' communication. Music and language intervention techniques used by the authors are presented. It has been documented that children with CIs consistently have lower music perception scores than do their peers with normal hearing (NH). On the one hand, this finding matters a great deal because it provides parameters for setting reasonable expectations and highlights the work still required to improve signal processing with the devices so that they more accurately transmit music to CI listeners. On the other hand, the finding might not matter much if we assume that music, even in its less-than-optimal state, functions for CI children, as for NH children, as a developmental jumpstarter, a language-learning tool, a cognitive enricher, a motivator, and an attention enhancer.

  6. Jumpstarting auditory learning in children with cochlear implants through music experiences.

    PubMed

    Barton, Christine; Robbins, Amy McConkey

    2015-09-01

    Musical experiences are a valuable part of the lives of children with cochlear implants (CIs). In addition to the pleasure, relationships and emotional outlet provided by music, it serves to enhance or 'jumpstart' other auditory and cognitive skills that are critical for development and learning throughout the lifespan. Musicians have been shown to be 'better listeners' than non-musicians with regard to how they perceive and process sound. A heuristic model of music therapy is reviewed, including six modulating factors that may account for the auditory advantages demonstrated by those who participate in music therapy. The integral approach to music therapy is described along with the hybrid approach to pediatric language intervention. These approaches share the characteristics of placing high value on ecologically valid therapy experiences, i.e., engaging in 'real' music and 'real' communication. Music and language intervention techniques used by the authors are presented. It has been documented that children with CIs consistently have lower music perception scores than do their peers with normal hearing (NH). On the one hand, this finding matters a great deal because it provides parameters for setting reasonable expectations and highlights the work still required to improve signal processing with the devices so that they more accurately transmit music to CI listeners. On the other hand, the finding might not matter much if we assume that music, even in its less-than-optimal state, functions for CI children, as for NH children, as a developmental jumpstarter, a language-learning tool, a cognitive enricher, a motivator, and an attention enhancer. PMID:26561888

  7. Learning Hierarchical Spectral-Spatial Features for Hyperspectral Image Classification.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Yicong; Wei, Yantao

    2016-07-01

    This paper proposes a spectral-spatial feature learning (SSFL) method to obtain robust features of hyperspectral images (HSIs). It combines the spectral feature learning and spatial feature learning in a hierarchical fashion. Stacking a set of SSFL units, a deep hierarchical model called the spectral-spatial networks (SSN) is further proposed for HSI classification. SSN can exploit both discriminative spectral and spatial information simultaneously. Specifically, SSN learns useful high-level features by alternating between spectral and spatial feature learning operations. Then, kernel-based extreme learning machine (KELM), a shallow neural network, is embedded in SSN to classify image pixels. Extensive experiments are performed on two benchmark HSI datasets to verify the effectiveness of SSN. Compared with state-of-the-art methods, SSN with a deep hierarchical architecture obtains higher classification accuracy in terms of the overall accuracy, average accuracy, and kappa ( κ ) coefficient of agreement, especially when the number of the training samples is small.

  8. Spatial learning in men undergoing alcohol detoxification.

    PubMed

    Ceccanti, Mauro; Hamilton, Derek; Coriale, Giovanna; Carito, Valentina; Aloe, Luigi; Chaldakov, George; Romeo, Marina; Ceccanti, Marco; Iannitelli, Angela; Fiore, Marco

    2015-10-01

    Alcohol dependence is a major public health problem worldwide. Brain and behavioral disruptions including changes in cognitive abilities are common features of alcohol addiction. Thus, the present study was aimed to investigate spatial learning and memory in 29 alcoholic men undergoing alcohol detoxification by using a virtual Morris maze task. As age-matched controls we recruited 29 men among occasional drinkers without history of alcohol dependence and/or alcohol related diseases and with a negative blood alcohol level at the time of testing. We found that the responses to the virtual Morris maze are impaired in men undergoing alcohol detoxification. Notably they showed increased latencies in the first movement during the trials, increased latencies in retrieving the hidden platform and increased latencies in reaching the visible platform. These findings were associated with reduced swimming time in the target quadrant of the pool where the platform had been during the 4 hidden platform trials of the learning phase compared to controls. Such increasing latency responses may suggest motor control, attentional and motivational deficits due to alcohol detoxification. PMID:26143187

  9. Sensory Processing of Backward-Masking Signals in Children with Language-Learning Impairment as Assessed with the Auditory Brainstem Response.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marler, Jeffrey A.; Champlin, Craig A.

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the possible contribution of sensory mechanisms to an auditory processing deficit shown by some children with language-learning impairment (LLI). Auditory brainstem responses (ABRs) were measured from 2 groups of school-aged (8-10 years) children. One group consisted of 10 children with LLI, and the other…

  10. Modulation of auditory spatial attention by visual emotional cues: differential effects of attentional engagement and disengagement for pleasant and unpleasant cues.

    PubMed

    Harrison, Neil R; Woodhouse, Rob

    2016-05-01

    Previous research has demonstrated that threatening, compared to neutral pictures, can bias attention towards non-emotional auditory targets. Here we investigated which subcomponents of attention contributed to the influence of emotional visual stimuli on auditory spatial attention. Participants indicated the location of an auditory target, after brief (250 ms) presentation of a spatially non-predictive peripheral visual cue. Responses to targets were faster at the location of the preceding visual cue, compared to at the opposite location (cue validity effect). The cue validity effect was larger for targets following pleasant and unpleasant cues compared to neutral cues, for right-sided targets. For unpleasant cues, the crossmodal cue validity effect was driven by delayed attentional disengagement, and for pleasant cues, it was driven by enhanced engagement. We conclude that both pleasant and unpleasant visual cues influence the distribution of attention across modalities and that the associated attentional mechanisms depend on the valence of the visual cue. PMID:26842012

  11. Guidance of Spatial Attention by Incidental Learning and Endogenous Cuing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jiang, Yuhong V.; Swallow, Khena M.; Rosenbaum, Gail M.

    2013-01-01

    Our visual system is highly sensitive to regularities in the environment. Locations that were important in one's previous experience are often prioritized during search, even though observers may not be aware of the learning. In this study we characterized the guidance of spatial attention by incidental learning of a target's spatial probability,…

  12. Postural prioritization is differentially altered in healthy older compared to younger adults during visual and auditory coded spatial multitasking.

    PubMed

    Liston, Matthew B; Bergmann, Jeroen H; Keating, Niamh; Green, David A; Pavlou, Marousa

    2014-01-01

    Many daily activities require appropriate allocation of attention between postural and cognitive tasks (i.e. dual-tasking) to be carried out effectively. Processing multiple streams of spatial information is important for everyday tasks such as road crossing. Fifteen community-dwelling healthy older (mean age=78.3, male=1) and twenty younger adults (mean age=25.3, male=6) completed a novel bimodal spatial multi-task test providing contextually similar spatial information via separate sensory modalities to investigate effects on postural prioritization. Two tasks, a temporally random visually coded spatial step navigation task (VS) and a regular auditory-coded spatial congruency task (AS) were performed independently (single task) and in combination (multi-task). Response time, accuracy and dual-task costs (% change in multi-task condition) were determined. Results showed a significant 3-way interaction between task type (VS vs. AS), complexity (single vs. multi) and age group for both response time (p ≤ 0.01) and response accuracy (p ≤ 0.05) with older adults performing significantly worse than younger adults. Dual-task costs were significantly greater for older compared to younger adults in the VS step task for both response time (p ≤ 0.01) and accuracy (p ≤ 0.05) indicating prioritization of the AS over the VS stepping task in older adults. Younger adults display greater AS task response time dual task costs compared to older adults (p ≤ 0.05) indicating VS task prioritization in agreement with the posture first strategy. Findings suggest that novel dual modality spatial testing may lead to adoption of postural strategies that deviate from posture first, particularly in older people. Adoption of previously unreported postural prioritization strategies may influence balance control in older people.

  13. Neural responses in songbird forebrain reflect learning rates, acquired salience, and stimulus novelty after auditory discrimination training.

    PubMed

    Bell, Brittany A; Phan, Mimi L; Vicario, David S

    2015-03-01

    How do social interactions form and modulate the neural representations of specific complex signals? This question can be addressed in the songbird auditory system. Like humans, songbirds learn to vocalize by imitating tutors heard during development. These learned vocalizations are important in reproductive and social interactions and in individual recognition. As a model for the social reinforcement of particular songs, male zebra finches were trained to peck for a food reward in response to one song stimulus (GO) and to withhold responding for another (NoGO). After performance reached criterion, single and multiunit neural responses to both trained and novel stimuli were obtained from multiple electrodes inserted bilaterally into two songbird auditory processing areas [caudomedial mesopallium (CMM) and caudomedial nidopallium (NCM)] of awake, restrained birds. Neurons in these areas undergo stimulus-specific adaptation to repeated song stimuli, and responses to familiar stimuli adapt more slowly than to novel stimuli. The results show that auditory responses differed in NCM and CMM for trained (GO and NoGO) stimuli vs. novel song stimuli. When subjects were grouped by the number of training days required to reach criterion, fast learners showed larger neural responses and faster stimulus-specific adaptation to all stimuli than slow learners in both areas. Furthermore, responses in NCM of fast learners were more strongly left-lateralized than in slow learners. Thus auditory responses in these sensory areas not only encode stimulus familiarity, but also reflect behavioral reinforcement in our paradigm, and can potentially be modulated by social interactions.

  14. Prenatal complex rhythmic music sound stimulation facilitates postnatal spatial learning but transiently impairs memory in the domestic chick.

    PubMed

    Kauser, H; Roy, S; Pal, A; Sreenivas, V; Mathur, R; Wadhwa, S; Jain, S

    2011-01-01

    Early experience has a profound influence on brain development, and the modulation of prenatal perceptual learning by external environmental stimuli has been shown in birds, rodents and mammals. In the present study, the effect of prenatal complex rhythmic music sound stimulation on postnatal spatial learning, memory and isolation stress was observed. Auditory stimulation with either music or species-specific sounds or no stimulation (control) was provided to separate sets of fertilized eggs from day 10 of incubation. Following hatching, the chicks at age 24, 72 and 120 h were tested on a T-maze for spatial learning and the memory of the learnt task was assessed 24 h after training. In the posthatch chicks at all ages, the plasma corticosterone levels were estimated following 10 min of isolation. The chicks of all ages in the three groups took less (p < 0.001) time to navigate the maze over the three trials thereby showing an improvement with training. In both sound-stimulated groups, the total time taken to reach the target decreased significantly (p < 0.01) in comparison to the unstimulated control group, indicating the facilitation of spatial learning. However, this decline was more at 24 h than at later posthatch ages. When tested for memory after 24 h of training, only the music-stimulated chicks at posthatch age 24 h took a significantly longer (p < 0.001) time to traverse the maze, suggesting a temporary impairment in their retention of the learnt task. In both sound-stimulated groups at 24 h, the plasma corticosterone levels were significantly decreased (p < 0.001) and increased thereafter at 72 h (p < 0.001) and 120 h which may contribute to the differential response in spatial learning. Thus, prenatal auditory stimulation with either species-specific or complex rhythmic music sounds facilitates spatial learning, though the music stimulation transiently impairs postnatal memory.

  15. Transcriptome changes associated with instructed learning in the barn owl auditory localization pathway.

    PubMed

    Swofford, Janet A; DeBello, William M

    2007-09-15

    Owls reared wearing prismatic spectacles learn to make adaptive orienting movements. This instructed learning depends on re-calibration of the midbrain auditory space map, which in turn involves the formation of new synapses. Here we investigated whether these processes are associated with differential gene expression, using longSAGE. Newly fledged owls were reared for 8-36 days with prism or control lenses at which time the extent of learning was quantified by electrophysiological mapping. Transciptome profiles were obtained from the inferior colliculus (IC), the major site of synaptic plasticity, and the optic tectum (OT), which provides an instructive signal that controls the direction and extent of plasticity. Twenty-two differentially expressed sequence tags were identified in IC and 36 in OT, out of more than 35,000 unique tags. Of these, only four were regulated in both structures. These results indicate that regulation of two largely independent gene clusters is associated with synaptic remodeling (in IC) and generation of the instructive signal (in OT). Real-time PCR data confirmed the changes for two transcripts, ubiquitin/polyubiquitin and tyrosine 3-monooxgenase/tryotophan 5-monooxygenase activation protein, theta subunit (YWHAQ; also referred to as 14-3-3 protein). Ubiquitin was downregulated in IC, consistent with a model in which protein degradation pathways act as an inhibitory constraint on synaptogenesis. YWHAQ was up-regulated in OT, indicating a role in the synthesis or delivery of instructive information. In total, our results provide a path towards unraveling molecular cascades that link naturalistic experience with synaptic remodeling and, ultimately, with the expression of learned behavior. PMID:17526003

  16. Development of Critical Spatial Thinking through GIS Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kim, Minsung; Bednarz, Robert

    2013-01-01

    This study developed an interview-based critical spatial thinking oral test and used the test to investigate the effects of Geographic Information System (GIS) learning on three components of critical spatial thinking: evaluating data reliability, exercising spatial reasoning, and assessing problem-solving validity. Thirty-two students at a large…

  17. Auditory learning through active engagement with sound: biological impact of community music lessons in at-risk children.

    PubMed

    Kraus, Nina; Slater, Jessica; Thompson, Elaine C; Hornickel, Jane; Strait, Dana L; Nicol, Trent; White-Schwoch, Travis

    2014-01-01

    The young nervous system is primed for sensory learning, facilitating the acquisition of language and communication skills. Social and linguistic impoverishment can limit these learning opportunities, eventually leading to language-related challenges such as poor reading. Music training offers a promising auditory learning strategy by directing attention to meaningful acoustic elements of the soundscape. In light of evidence that music training improves auditory skills and their neural substrates, there are increasing efforts to enact community-based programs to provide music instruction to at-risk children. Harmony Project is a community foundation that has provided free music instruction to over 1000 children from Los Angeles gang-reduction zones over the past decade. We conducted an independent evaluation of biological effects of participating in Harmony Project by following a cohort of children for 1 year. Here we focus on a comparison between students who actively engaged with sound through instrumental music training vs. students who took music appreciation classes. All children began with an introductory music appreciation class, but midway through the year half of the children transitioned to the instrumental training. After the year of training, the children who actively engaged with sound through instrumental music training had faster and more robust neural processing of speech than the children who stayed in the music appreciation class, observed in neural responses to a speech sound /d/. The neurophysiological measures found to be enhanced in the instrumentally-trained children have been previously linked to reading ability, suggesting a gain in neural processes important for literacy stemming from active auditory learning. Despite intrinsic constraints on our study imposed by a community setting, these findings speak to the potential of active engagement with sound (i.e., music-making) to engender experience-dependent neuroplasticity and may inform the

  18. Auditory learning through active engagement with sound: biological impact of community music lessons in at-risk children

    PubMed Central

    Kraus, Nina; Slater, Jessica; Thompson, Elaine C.; Hornickel, Jane; Strait, Dana L.; Nicol, Trent; White-Schwoch, Travis

    2014-01-01

    The young nervous system is primed for sensory learning, facilitating the acquisition of language and communication skills. Social and linguistic impoverishment can limit these learning opportunities, eventually leading to language-related challenges such as poor reading. Music training offers a promising auditory learning strategy by directing attention to meaningful acoustic elements of the soundscape. In light of evidence that music training improves auditory skills and their neural substrates, there are increasing efforts to enact community-based programs to provide music instruction to at-risk children. Harmony Project is a community foundation that has provided free music instruction to over 1000 children from Los Angeles gang-reduction zones over the past decade. We conducted an independent evaluation of biological effects of participating in Harmony Project by following a cohort of children for 1 year. Here we focus on a comparison between students who actively engaged with sound through instrumental music training vs. students who took music appreciation classes. All children began with an introductory music appreciation class, but midway through the year half of the children transitioned to the instrumental training. After the year of training, the children who actively engaged with sound through instrumental music training had faster and more robust neural processing of speech than the children who stayed in the music appreciation class, observed in neural responses to a speech sound /d/. The neurophysiological measures found to be enhanced in the instrumentally-trained children have been previously linked to reading ability, suggesting a gain in neural processes important for literacy stemming from active auditory learning. Despite intrinsic constraints on our study imposed by a community setting, these findings speak to the potential of active engagement with sound (i.e., music-making) to engender experience-dependent neuroplasticity and may inform the

  19. Auditory learning through active engagement with sound: biological impact of community music lessons in at-risk children.

    PubMed

    Kraus, Nina; Slater, Jessica; Thompson, Elaine C; Hornickel, Jane; Strait, Dana L; Nicol, Trent; White-Schwoch, Travis

    2014-01-01

    The young nervous system is primed for sensory learning, facilitating the acquisition of language and communication skills. Social and linguistic impoverishment can limit these learning opportunities, eventually leading to language-related challenges such as poor reading. Music training offers a promising auditory learning strategy by directing attention to meaningful acoustic elements of the soundscape. In light of evidence that music training improves auditory skills and their neural substrates, there are increasing efforts to enact community-based programs to provide music instruction to at-risk children. Harmony Project is a community foundation that has provided free music instruction to over 1000 children from Los Angeles gang-reduction zones over the past decade. We conducted an independent evaluation of biological effects of participating in Harmony Project by following a cohort of children for 1 year. Here we focus on a comparison between students who actively engaged with sound through instrumental music training vs. students who took music appreciation classes. All children began with an introductory music appreciation class, but midway through the year half of the children transitioned to the instrumental training. After the year of training, the children who actively engaged with sound through instrumental music training had faster and more robust neural processing of speech than the children who stayed in the music appreciation class, observed in neural responses to a speech sound /d/. The neurophysiological measures found to be enhanced in the instrumentally-trained children have been previously linked to reading ability, suggesting a gain in neural processes important for literacy stemming from active auditory learning. Despite intrinsic constraints on our study imposed by a community setting, these findings speak to the potential of active engagement with sound (i.e., music-making) to engender experience-dependent neuroplasticity and may inform the

  20. Elevated yolk progesterone moderates prenatal heart rate and postnatal auditory learning in bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus).

    PubMed

    Herrington, Joshua A; Rodriguez, Yvette; Lickliter, Robert

    2016-09-01

    Previous studies have established that yolk hormones of maternal origin can influence physiology and behavior in birds. However, few studies have examined the effects of maternal gestagens, like progesterone, on chick behavior and physiology. We tested the effects of experimentally elevated egg yolk progesterone on embryonic heart rate and postnatal auditory learning in bobwhite quail hatchlings. Quail chicks were passively exposed to an individual maternal assembly call for 10 min/hr during the 24 hr following hatching. Preference for the familiarized call was tested at 48 hr following hatching in three experimental groups: chicks that received artificially elevated yolk progesterone (P) prior to incubation, vehicle-only controls (V), and non-manipulated controls (C). Resting heart rate of P, V, and C embryos were also measured on prenatal day 17. The resting heart rate of P embryos was significantly higher than both the V and C embryos. Chicks from the P group also showed an enhanced preference for the familiarized bobwhite maternal call when compared to chicks from the C and V groups. Our results indicate that elevated yolk progesterone in pre-incubated bobwhite quail eggs can influence arousal level in bobwhite embryos and postnatal perceptual learning in bobwhite neonates. PMID:27108924

  1. Transfer Effect of Speech-sound Learning on Auditory-motor Processing of Perceived Vocal Pitch Errors.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhaocong; Wong, Francis C K; Jones, Jeffery A; Li, Weifeng; Liu, Peng; Chen, Xi; Liu, Hanjun

    2015-08-17

    Speech perception and production are intimately linked. There is evidence that speech motor learning results in changes to auditory processing of speech. Whether speech motor control benefits from perceptual learning in speech, however, remains unclear. This event-related potential study investigated whether speech-sound learning can modulate the processing of feedback errors during vocal pitch regulation. Mandarin speakers were trained to perceive five Thai lexical tones while learning to associate pictures with spoken words over 5 days. Before and after training, participants produced sustained vowel sounds while they heard their vocal pitch feedback unexpectedly perturbed. As compared to the pre-training session, the magnitude of vocal compensation significantly decreased for the control group, but remained consistent for the trained group at the post-training session. However, the trained group had smaller and faster N1 responses to pitch perturbations and exhibited enhanced P2 responses that correlated significantly with their learning performance. These findings indicate that the cortical processing of vocal pitch regulation can be shaped by learning new speech-sound associations, suggesting that perceptual learning in speech can produce transfer effects to facilitating the neural mechanisms underlying the online monitoring of auditory feedback regarding vocal production.

  2. Transfer Effect of Speech-sound Learning on Auditory-motor Processing of Perceived Vocal Pitch Errors

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Zhaocong; Wong, Francis C. K.; Jones, Jeffery A.; Li, Weifeng; Liu, Peng; Chen, Xi; Liu, Hanjun

    2015-01-01

    Speech perception and production are intimately linked. There is evidence that speech motor learning results in changes to auditory processing of speech. Whether speech motor control benefits from perceptual learning in speech, however, remains unclear. This event-related potential study investigated whether speech-sound learning can modulate the processing of feedback errors during vocal pitch regulation. Mandarin speakers were trained to perceive five Thai lexical tones while learning to associate pictures with spoken words over 5 days. Before and after training, participants produced sustained vowel sounds while they heard their vocal pitch feedback unexpectedly perturbed. As compared to the pre-training session, the magnitude of vocal compensation significantly decreased for the control group, but remained consistent for the trained group at the post-training session. However, the trained group had smaller and faster N1 responses to pitch perturbations and exhibited enhanced P2 responses that correlated significantly with their learning performance. These findings indicate that the cortical processing of vocal pitch regulation can be shaped by learning new speech-sound associations, suggesting that perceptual learning in speech can produce transfer effects to facilitating the neural mechanisms underlying the online monitoring of auditory feedback regarding vocal production. PMID:26278337

  3. The Effects of Restricted Peripheral Field-of-View on Spatial Learning while Navigating

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Recent work with simulated reductions in visual acuity and contrast sensitivity has found decrements in survey spatial learning as well as increased attentional demands when navigating, compared to performance with normal vision. Given these findings, and previous work showing that peripheral field loss has been associated with impaired mobility and spatial memory for room-sized spaces, we investigated the role of peripheral vision during navigation using a large-scale spatial learning paradigm. First, we aimed to establish the magnitude of spatial memory errors at different levels of field restriction. Second, we tested the hypothesis that navigation under these different levels of restriction would use additional attentional resources. Normally sighted participants walked on novel real-world paths wearing goggles that restricted the field-of-view (FOV) to severe (15°, 10°, 4°, or 0°) or mild angles (60°) and then pointed to remembered target locations using a verbal reporting measure. They completed a concurrent auditory reaction time task throughout each path to measure cognitive load. Only the most severe restrictions (4° and blindfolded) showed impairment in pointing error compared to the mild restriction (within-subjects). The 10° and 4° conditions also showed an increase in reaction time on the secondary attention task, suggesting that navigating with these extreme peripheral field restrictions demands the use of limited cognitive resources. This comparison of different levels of field restriction suggests that although peripheral field loss requires the actor to use more attentional resources while navigating starting at a less extreme level (10°), spatial memory is not negatively affected until the restriction is very severe (4°). These results have implications for understanding of the mechanisms underlying spatial learning during navigation and the approaches that may be taken to develop assistance for navigation with visual impairment. PMID

  4. Hyperspecificity in Visual Implicit Learning: Learning of Spatial Layout Is Contingent on Item Identity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jiang, Yuhong; Song, Joo-Hyun

    2005-01-01

    Humans conduct visual search faster when the same display is presented for a 2nd time, showing implicit learning of repeated displays. This study examines whether learning of a spatial layout transfers to other layouts that are occupied by items of new shapes or colors. The authors show that spatial context learning is sometimes contingent on item…

  5. The contributions of onset and offset echo delays to auditory spatial perception in human listeners.

    PubMed

    Donovan, Jeff M; Nelson, Brian S; Takahashi, Terry T

    2012-12-01

    In echoic environments, direct sounds dominate perception even when followed by their reflections. As the delay between the direct (lead) source and the reflection (lag) increases, the reflection starts to become localizable. Although this phenomenon, which is part of the precedence effect, is typically studied with brief transients, leading and lagging sounds often overlap in time and are thus composed of three distinct segments: the "superposed" segment, when both sounds are present together, and the "lead-alone" and "lag-alone" segments, when leading and lagging sounds are present alone, respectively. Recently, it was shown that the barn owl (Tyto alba) localizes the lagging sound when the lag-alone segment, not the lead-alone segment, is lengthened. This was unexpected given the prevailing hypothesis that a leading sound may briefly desensitize the auditory system to sounds arriving later. The present study confirms this finding in humans under conditions that minimized the role of the superposed segment in the localization of either source. Just as lengthening the lag-alone segment caused the lagging sound to become more salient, lengthening the lead-alone segment caused the leading sound to become more salient. These results suggest that the neural representations of the lead and lag are independent of one another. PMID:23231121

  6. Utility of an airframe referenced spatial auditory display for general aviation operations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naqvi, M. Hassan; Wigdahl, Alan J.; Ranaudo, Richard J.

    2009-05-01

    The University of Tennessee Space Institute (UTSI) completed flight testing with an airframe-referenced localized audio cueing display. The purpose was to assess its affect on pilot performance, workload, and situational awareness in two scenarios simulating single-pilot general aviation operations under instrument meteorological conditions. Each scenario consisted of 12 test procedures conducted under simulated instrument meteorological conditions, half with the cue off, and half with the cue on. Simulated aircraft malfunctions were strategically inserted at critical times during each test procedure. Ten pilots participated in the study; half flew a moderate workload scenario consisting of point to point navigation and holding pattern operations and half flew a high workload scenario consisting of non precision approaches and missed approach procedures. Flight data consisted of aircraft and navigation state parameters, NASA Task Load Index (TLX) assessments, and post-flight questionnaires. With localized cues there was slightly better pilot technical performance, a reduction in workload, and a perceived improvement in situational awareness. Results indicate that an airframe-referenced auditory display has utility and pilot acceptance in general aviation operations.

  7. Repeated acquisition and performance chamber for mice: a paradigm for assessment of spatial learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Brooks, A I; Cory-Slechta, D A; Murg, S L; Federoff, H J

    2000-11-01

    Molecular genetic manipulation of the mouse offers the possibility of elucidating the function of individual gene products in neural systems underlying learning and memory. Many extant learning paradigms for mice rely on negative reinforcement, involve simple problems that are relatively rapidly acquired and thus preclude time-course assessment, and may impose the need to undertake additional experiments to determine the extent to which noncognitive behaviors influence the measures of learning. To overcome such limitations, a multiple schedule of repeated acquisition and performance was behaviorally engineered to assess learning vs rote performance within-behavioral test session and within-subject utilizing an apparatus modified from the rat (the repeated acquisition and performance chamber; RAPC). The multiple schedule required mice to learn a new sequence of door openings leading to saccharin availability in the learning component during each session, while the sequence of door openings for the performance component remained constant across sessions. The learning and performance components alternated over the course of each test session, with different auditory stimuli signaling which component was currently in effect. To validate this paradigm, learning vs performance was evaluated in two inbred strains of mice: C57BL/6J and 129/SvJ. The hippocampal dependence of this measure was examined in lesioned C57BL/6J mice. Both strains exhibited longer latencies and higher errors in the learning compared to the performance component and evidenced declines in both measures across the trials of each session, consistent with an acquisition phenomenon. These same measures showed little or no evidence of change in the performance component. Whereas three trials per session were utilized with C57BL/65 mice in each component, behavior of 129/SvJ mice could only be sustained for two trials per component per session, demonstrating differences in testing capabilities between

  8. Repeated acquisition and performance chamber for mice: a paradigm for assessment of spatial learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Brooks, A I; Cory-Slechta, D A; Murg, S L; Federoff, H J

    2000-11-01

    Molecular genetic manipulation of the mouse offers the possibility of elucidating the function of individual gene products in neural systems underlying learning and memory. Many extant learning paradigms for mice rely on negative reinforcement, involve simple problems that are relatively rapidly acquired and thus preclude time-course assessment, and may impose the need to undertake additional experiments to determine the extent to which noncognitive behaviors influence the measures of learning. To overcome such limitations, a multiple schedule of repeated acquisition and performance was behaviorally engineered to assess learning vs rote performance within-behavioral test session and within-subject utilizing an apparatus modified from the rat (the repeated acquisition and performance chamber; RAPC). The multiple schedule required mice to learn a new sequence of door openings leading to saccharin availability in the learning component during each session, while the sequence of door openings for the performance component remained constant across sessions. The learning and performance components alternated over the course of each test session, with different auditory stimuli signaling which component was currently in effect. To validate this paradigm, learning vs performance was evaluated in two inbred strains of mice: C57BL/6J and 129/SvJ. The hippocampal dependence of this measure was examined in lesioned C57BL/6J mice. Both strains exhibited longer latencies and higher errors in the learning compared to the performance component and evidenced declines in both measures across the trials of each session, consistent with an acquisition phenomenon. These same measures showed little or no evidence of change in the performance component. Whereas three trials per session were utilized with C57BL/65 mice in each component, behavior of 129/SvJ mice could only be sustained for two trials per component per session, demonstrating differences in testing capabilities between

  9. Auditory map plasticity: Diversity in causes and consequences

    PubMed Central

    Schreiner, Christoph E.; Polley, Daniel B.

    2014-01-01

    Auditory cortical maps have been a long-standing focus of studies that assess the expression, mechanisms, and consequences of sensory plasticity. Here we discuss recent progress in understanding how auditory experience transforms spatially organized sound representations at higher levels of the central auditory pathways. New insights into the mechanisms underlying map changes have been achieved and more refined interpretations of various map plasticity effects and their consequences in terms of behavioral corollaries and learning as well as other cognitive aspects have been offered. The systematic organizational principles of cortical sound processing remains a key-aspect in studying and interpreting the role of plasticity in hearing. PMID:24492090

  10. Costs of switching auditory spatial attention in following conversational turn-taking.

    PubMed

    Lin, Gaven; Carlile, Simon

    2015-01-01

    Following a multi-talker conversation relies on the ability to rapidly and efficiently shift the focus of spatial attention from one talker to another. The current study investigated the listening costs associated with shifts in spatial attention during conversational turn-taking in 16 normally-hearing listeners using a novel sentence recall task. Three pairs of syntactically fixed but semantically unpredictable matrix sentences, recorded from a single male talker, were presented concurrently through an array of three loudspeakers (directly ahead and +/-30° azimuth). Subjects attended to one spatial location, cued by a tone, and followed the target conversation from one sentence to the next using the call-sign at the beginning of each sentence. Subjects were required to report the last three words of each sentence (speech recall task) or answer multiple choice questions related to the target material (speech comprehension task). The reading span test, attention network test, and trail making test were also administered to assess working memory, attentional control, and executive function. There was a 10.7 ± 1.3% decrease in word recall, a pronounced primacy effect, and a rise in masker confusion errors and word omissions when the target switched location between sentences. Switching costs were independent of the location, direction, and angular size of the spatial shift but did appear to be load dependent and only significant for complex questions requiring multiple cognitive operations. Reading span scores were positively correlated with total words recalled, and negatively correlated with switching costs and word omissions. Task switching speed (Trail-B time) was also significantly correlated with recall accuracy. Overall, this study highlights (i) the listening costs associated with shifts in spatial attention and (ii) the important role of working memory in maintaining goal relevant information and extracting meaning from dynamic multi-talker conversations.

  11. Terminal feedback outperforms concurrent visual, auditory, and haptic feedback in learning a complex rowing-type task.

    PubMed

    Sigrist, Roland; Rauter, Georg; Riener, Robert; Wolf, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Augmented feedback, provided by coaches or displays, is a well-established strategy to accelerate motor learning. Frequent terminal feedback and concurrent feedback have been shown to be detrimental for simple motor task learning but supportive for complex motor task learning. However, conclusions on optimal feedback strategies have been mainly drawn from studies on artificial laboratory tasks with visual feedback only. Therefore, the authors compared the effectiveness of learning a complex, 3-dimensional rowing-type task with either concurrent visual, auditory, or haptic feedback to self-controlled terminal visual feedback. Results revealed that terminal visual feedback was most effective because it emphasized the internalization of task-relevant aspects. In contrast, concurrent feedback fostered the correction of task-irrelevant errors, which hindered learning. The concurrent visual and haptic feedback group performed much better during training with the feedback than in nonfeedback trials. Auditory feedback based on sonification of the movement error was not practical for training the 3-dimensional movement for most participants. Concurrent multimodal feedback in combination with terminal feedback may be most effective, especially if the feedback strategy is adapted to individual preferences and skill level.

  12. Auditory processing--speech, space and auditory objects.

    PubMed

    Scott, Sophie K

    2005-04-01

    There have been recent developments in our understanding of the auditory neuroscience of non-human primates that, to a certain extent, can be integrated with findings from human functional neuroimaging studies. This framework can be used to consider the cortical basis of complex sound processing in humans, including implications for speech perception, spatial auditory processing and auditory scene segregation. PMID:15831402

  13. Learning To Make Music Enhances Spatial Reasoning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hetland, Lois

    2000-01-01

    Examines whether active instruction in music enhances preschool and elementary school student performance on spatial tasks. Reports that music enhances the spatial-temporal performance of children during and up to two years following the instruction and that the effect is moderate and consistent. Includes references. (CMK)

  14. Spatial Ability Learning through Educational Robotics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Julià, Carme; Antolí, Juan Òscar

    2016-01-01

    Several authors insist on the importance of students' acquisition of spatial abilities and visualization in order to have academic success in areas such as science, technology or engineering. This paper proposes to discuss and analyse the use of educational robotics to develop spatial abilities in 12 year old students. First of all, a course to…

  15. The role of diffusive architectural surfaces on auditory spatial discrimination in performance venues.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Philip W; Pätynen, Jukka; Lokki, Tapio; Jang, Hyung Suk; Jeon, Jin Yong; Xiang, Ning

    2013-06-01

    In musical or theatrical performance, some venues allow listeners to individually localize and segregate individual performers, while others produce a well blended ensemble sound. The room acoustic conditions that make this possible, and the psycho-acoustic effects at work are not fully understood. This research utilizes auralizations from measured and simulated performance venues to investigate spatial discrimination of multiple acoustic sources in rooms. Signals were generated from measurements taken in a small theater, and listeners in the audience area were asked to distinguish pairs of speech sources on stage with various spatial separations. This experiment was repeated with the proscenium splay walls treated to be flat, diffusive, or absorptive. Similar experiments were conducted in a simulated hall, utilizing 11 early reflections with various characteristics, and measured late reverberation. The experiments reveal that discriminating the lateral arrangement of two sources is possible at narrower separation angles when reflections come from flat or absorptive rather than diffusive surfaces.

  16. Rectangular Array Model Supporting Students' Spatial Structuring in Learning Multiplication

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shanty, Nenden Octavarulia; Wijaya, Surya

    2012-01-01

    We examine how rectangular array model can support students' spatial structuring in learning multiplication. To begin, we define what we mean by spatial structuring as the mental operation of constructing an organization or form for an object or set of objects. For that reason, the eggs problem was chosen as the starting point in which the…

  17. Inhibition of nitric oxide synthase does not impair spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Bannerman, D M; Chapman, P F; Kelly, P A; Butcher, S P; Morris, R G

    1994-12-01

    Nitric oxide (NO), a putative intercellular messenger in the CNS, may be involved in certain forms of synaptic plasticity and learning. This article reports a series of experiments investigating the effects of N omega-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME) upon various forms of learning and memory in the watermaze. L-NAME (75 mg/kg, i.p., sufficient to bring about > 90% inhibition of NO synthesis in brain) produced an apparent impairment in spatial learning when given to naive rats during acquisition (3 d, six training trials per day). This impairment was dose related, stereoselective, and attenuated by coadministration of L-arginine. A second study showed that L-NAME did not affect the retention of a previously learned spatial task. In addition, in a visual discrimination task, the rate at which criterion levels of performance were reached was unaffected by L-NAME. Thus, inhibition of NO synthase may cause a selective impairment of spatial learning without effect upon retention. However, analysis of the early training trials of the visual discrimination task revealed significantly elevated escape latencies in the L-NAME-treated rats, suggesting that inhibition of NO synthase may have more general effects. As normal rats learn the spatial task very rapidly, the possibility arises that the apparent deficit in learning is due to a disruption of some process other than learning per se. A further series of experiments investigated this possibility. L-NAME was found not to impair the learning of a new platform position in the same spatial environment. Surprisingly, L-NAME also had no effect on spatial learning in a second watermaze located in a novel spatial environment by rats well practiced with all aspects of watermaze training. Finally, L-NAME had no effect on spatial learning in naive rats trained with just one trial per day. Thus, systemic injection of an NO synthase inhibitor impairs behavioral performance in two tasks during their initial acquisition, but the

  18. The Use of Music and Other Forms of Organized Sound as a Therapeutic Intervention for Students with Auditory Processing Disorder: Providing the Best Auditory Experience for Children with Learning Differences

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Faronii-Butler, Kishasha O.

    2013-01-01

    This auto-ethnographical inquiry used vignettes and interviews to examine the therapeutic use of music and other forms of organized sound in the learning environment of individuals with Central Auditory Processing Disorders. It is an investigation of the traditions of healing with sound vibrations, from its earliest cultural roots in shamanism and…

  19. Contributions of Spatial Working Memory to Visuomotor Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anguera, Joaquin A.; Reuter-Lorenz, Patricia A.; Willingham, Daniel T.; Seidler, Rachael D.

    2010-01-01

    Previous studies of motor learning have described the importance of cognitive processes during the early stages of learning; however, the precise nature of these processes and their neural correlates remains unclear. The present study investigated whether spatial working memory (SWM) contributes to visuomotor adaptation depending on the stage of…

  20. Interactive versus Observational Learning of Spatial Visualization of Geometric Transformat

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Glenn Gordon; Middleton, James A.

    2003-01-01

    This study compared interaction with a computer vs. observation as learning situations for low and high ability student's learning of spatial visualization and geometric transformations. Thirty-two fifth grade boys took the Differential Aptitude Test, Space Relations Subset (DAT), and then participated in the experiment. Pre-test and post-test…

  1. Exploring Visuospatial Thinking in Learning about Mineralogy: Spatial Orientation Ability and Spatial Visualization Ability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ozdemir, Gokhan

    2010-01-01

    This mixed-method research attempted to clarify the role of visuospatial abilities in learning about mineralogy. Various sources of data--including quantitative pre- and postmeasures of spatial visualization and spatial orientation tests and achievement scores on six measures and qualitative unstructured observations, interviews, and field trip…

  2. The Role of Right Inferior Parietal Cortex in Auditory Spatial Attention: A Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Study

    PubMed Central

    Karhson, Debra S.; Mock, Jeffrey R.; Golob, Edward J.

    2015-01-01

    Behavioral studies support the concept of an auditory spatial attention gradient by demonstrating that attentional benefits progressively diminish as distance increases from an attended location. Damage to the right inferior parietal cortex can induce a rightward attention bias, which implicates this region in the construction of attention gradients. This study used event-related potentials (ERPs) to define attention-related gradients before and after repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to the right inferior parietal cortex. Subjects (n = 16) listened to noise bursts at five azimuth locations (left to right: -90°, -45°, 0° midline, +45°, +90°) and responded to stimuli at one target location (-90°, +90°, separate blocks). ERPs as a function of non-target location were examined before (baseline) and after 0.9 Hz rTMS. Results showed that ERP attention gradients were observed in three time windows (frontal 230–340, parietal 400–460, frontal 550–750 ms). Significant transient rTMS effects were seen in the first and third windows. The first window had a voltage decrease at the farthest location when attending to either the left or right side. The third window had on overall increase in positivity, but only when attending to the left side. These findings suggest that rTMS induced a small contraction in spatial attention gradients within the first time window. The asymmetric effect of attended location on gradients in the third time window may relate to neglect of the left hemispace after right parietal injury. Together, these results highlight the role of the right inferior parietal cortex in modulating frontal lobe attention network activity. PMID:26636333

  3. The Role of Right Inferior Parietal Cortex in Auditory Spatial Attention: A Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Study.

    PubMed

    Karhson, Debra S; Mock, Jeffrey R; Golob, Edward J

    2015-01-01

    Behavioral studies support the concept of an auditory spatial attention gradient by demonstrating that attentional benefits progressively diminish as distance increases from an attended location. Damage to the right inferior parietal cortex can induce a rightward attention bias, which implicates this region in the construction of attention gradients. This study used event-related potentials (ERPs) to define attention-related gradients before and after repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to the right inferior parietal cortex. Subjects (n = 16) listened to noise bursts at five azimuth locations (left to right: -90°, -45°, 0° midline, +45°, +90°) and responded to stimuli at one target location (-90°, +90°, separate blocks). ERPs as a function of non-target location were examined before (baseline) and after 0.9 Hz rTMS. Results showed that ERP attention gradients were observed in three time windows (frontal 230-340, parietal 400-460, frontal 550-750 ms). Significant transient rTMS effects were seen in the first and third windows. The first window had a voltage decrease at the farthest location when attending to either the left or right side. The third window had on overall increase in positivity, but only when attending to the left side. These findings suggest that rTMS induced a small contraction in spatial attention gradients within the first time window. The asymmetric effect of attended location on gradients in the third time window may relate to neglect of the left hemispace after right parietal injury. Together, these results highlight the role of the right inferior parietal cortex in modulating frontal lobe attention network activity. PMID:26636333

  4. Divided multimodal attention sensory trace and context coding strategies in spatially congruent auditory and visual presentation.

    PubMed

    Kristjánsson, Tómas; Thorvaldsson, Tómas Páll; Kristjánsson, Arni

    2014-01-01

    Previous research involving both unimodal and multimodal studies suggests that single-response change detection is a capacity-free process while a discriminatory up or down identification is capacity-limited. The trace/context model assumes that this reflects different memory strategies rather than inherent differences between identification and detection. To perform such tasks, one of two strategies is used, a sensory trace or a context coding strategy, and if one is blocked, people will automatically use the other. A drawback to most preceding studies is that stimuli are presented at separate locations, creating the possibility of a spatial confound, which invites alternative interpretations of the results. We describe a series of experiments, investigating divided multimodal attention, without the spatial confound. The results challenge the trace/context model. Our critical experiment involved a gap before a change in volume and brightness, which according to the trace/context model blocks the sensory trace strategy, simultaneously with a roaming pedestal, which should block the context coding strategy. The results clearly show that people can use strategies other than sensory trace and context coding in the tasks and conditions of these experiments, necessitating changes to the trace/context model.

  5. Spatial parameters at the basis of social transfer of learning.

    PubMed

    Lugli, Luisa; Iani, Cristina; Milanese, Nadia; Sebanz, Natalie; Rubichi, Sandro

    2015-06-01

    Recent research indicates that practicing on a joint spatial compatibility task with an incompatible stimulus-response mapping affects subsequent joint Simon task performance, eliminating the social Simon effect. It has been well established that in individual contexts, for transfer of learning to occur, participants need to practice an incompatible association between stimulus and response positions. The mechanisms underlying transfer of learning in joint task performance are, however, less well understood. The present study was aimed at assessing the relative contribution of 3 different spatial relations characterizing the joint practice context: stimulus-response, stimulus-participant, and participant-response relations. In 3 experiments, the authors manipulated the stimulus-response, stimulus-participant, and response-participant associations. We found that learning from the practice task did not transfer to the subsequent task when during practice stimulus-response associations were spatially incompatible and stimulus-participant associations were compatible (Experiment 1). However, a transfer of learning was evident when stimulus-participant associations were spatially incompatible. This occurred both when response-participant associations were incompatible (Experiment 2) and when they were compatible (Experiment 3). These results seem to support an agent corepresentation account of correspondence effects emerging in joint settings since they suggest that, in social contexts, critical to obtain transfer-of-learning effects is the spatial relation between stimulus and participant positions while the spatial relation between stimulus and response positions is irrelevant.

  6. Altering spatial priority maps via reward-based learning.

    PubMed

    Chelazzi, Leonardo; Eštočinová, Jana; Calletti, Riccardo; Lo Gerfo, Emanuele; Sani, Ilaria; Della Libera, Chiara; Santandrea, Elisa

    2014-06-18

    Spatial priority maps are real-time representations of the behavioral salience of locations in the visual field, resulting from the combined influence of stimulus driven activity and top-down signals related to the current goals of the individual. They arbitrate which of a number of (potential) targets in the visual scene will win the competition for attentional resources. As a result, deployment of visual attention to a specific spatial location is determined by the current peak of activation (corresponding to the highest behavioral salience) across the map. Here we report a behavioral study performed on healthy human volunteers, where we demonstrate that spatial priority maps can be shaped via reward-based learning, reflecting long-lasting alterations (biases) in the behavioral salience of specific spatial locations. These biases exert an especially strong influence on performance under conditions where multiple potential targets compete for selection, conferring competitive advantage to targets presented in spatial locations associated with greater reward during learning relative to targets presented in locations associated with lesser reward. Such acquired biases of spatial attention are persistent, are nonstrategic in nature, and generalize across stimuli and task contexts. These results suggest that reward-based attentional learning can induce plastic changes in spatial priority maps, endowing these representations with the "intelligent" capacity to learn from experience.

  7. Metabolic correlates of Rey auditory verbal learning test in elderly subjects with memory complaints.

    PubMed

    Brugnolo, Andrea; Morbelli, Silvia; Arnaldi, Dario; De Carli, Fabrizio; Accardo, Jennifer; Bossert, Irene; Dessi, Barbara; Famà, Francesco; Ferrara, Michela; Girtler, Nicola; Picco, Agnese; Rodriguez, Guido; Sambuceti, Gianmario; Nobili, Flavio

    2014-01-01

    We evaluated the brain metabolic correlates of main indexes of a widely used word list learning test, the Rey Auditory Verbal Memory Test (RAVLT), in a group of elderly subjects with memory complaints. Fifty-four subjects (age: 72.02 ± 7.45; Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) score: 28.9 ± 1.24) presenting at a memory clinic complaining of memory deficit, but not demented, and thirty controls (age: 71.87 ± 7.08; MMSE score: 29.1 ± 1.1) were included. Subjects with memory complaints included both patients with (amnestic mild cognitive impairment, aMCI) and without (subjective memory complaints, SMC) impairment on memory tests. All subjects underwent 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET), analyzed with statistical parametric. Patients with aMCI but not those with SMC showed the expected posterior cingulate-precuneus and parietal hypometabolism as compared to controls. Correlation was determined for between four indexes of the RAVLT and brain metabolism. The results show a significant correlation between the delayed recall score and metabolism in posterior cingulate gyrus of both hemispheres and in left precuneus, as well as between a score of long-term percent retention and metabolism in left posterior cingulate gyrus, precuneus, and orbitofrontal areas. These correlations survived correction for age, education, and MMSE score. No correlation was found between immediate or total recall scores and glucose metabolism. These data show the relevant role of posterior cingulate-precuneus and orbitofrontal cortices in retention and retrieval of de-contextualized verbal memory material in a group of elderly subjects with memory complaints and shed light on the topography of synaptic dysfunction in these subjects, overlapping that found in the earliest stages of Alzheimer-type neurodegeneration. PMID:24150105

  8. DISCRIMINATION OF SCHIZOPHRENIA AUDITORY HALLUCINATORS BY MACHINE LEARNING OF RESTING-STATE FUNCTIONAL MRI

    PubMed Central

    CHYZHYK, DARYA; GRAÑA, MANUEL; ÖNGÜR, DÖST; SHINN, ANN K

    2016-01-01

    Auditory hallucinations (AH) are a symptom that is most often associated with schizophrenia, but patients with other neuropsychiatric conditions, and even a small percentage of healthy individuals, may also experience AH. Elucidating the neural mechanisms underlying AH in schizophrenia may offer insight into the pathophysiology associated with AH more broadly across multiple neuropsychiatric disease conditions. In this paper, we address the problem of classifying schizophrenia patients with and without a history of AH, and healthy control subjects. To this end, we performed feature extraction from resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rsfMRI) data and applied machine learning classifiers, testing two kinds of neuroimaging features: (a) functional connectivity measures computed by lattice auto-associative memories (LAAM), and (b) local activity measures, including regional homogeneity (ReHo) and fractional amplitude of low frequency fluctuations (fALFF). We show that it is possible to perform classification within each pair of subject groups with high accuracy. Discrimination between patients with and without lifetime AH was highest, while discrimination between schizophrenia patients and healthy control participants was worst, suggesting that classification according to the symptom dimension of AH may be more valid than discrimination on the basis of traditional diagnostic categories. Functional connectivity measures seeded in right Heschl’s gyrus consistently showed stronger discriminative power than those seeded in left Heschl’s gyrus, a finding that appears to support AH models focusing on right hemisphere abnormalities. The cortical brain localizations derived from the features with strong classification performance are consistent with proposed AH models, and include left inferior frontal gyrus, parahippocampal gyri, the cingulate cortex, as well as several temporal and prefrontal cortical brain regions. Overall, the observed findings suggest

  9. Culturally inconsistent spatial structure reduces learning.

    PubMed

    McCrink, Koleen; Shaki, Samuel

    2016-09-01

    Human adults tend to use a spatial continuum to organize any information they consider to be well-ordered, with a sense of initial and final position. The directionality of this spatial mapping is mediated by the culture of the subject, largely as a function of the prevailing reading and writing habits (for example, from left-to-right for English speakers or right-to-left for Hebrew speakers). In the current study, we tasked American and Israeli subjects with encoding and recalling a set of arbitrary pairings, consisting of frequently ordered stimuli (letters with shapes: Experiment 1) or infrequently ordered stimuli (color terms with shapes: Experiment 2), that were serially presented in a left-to-right, right-to-left, or central-only manner. The subjects were better at recalling information that contained ordinal stimuli if the spatial flow of presentation during encoding matched the dominant directionality of the subjects' culture, compared to information encoded in the non-dominant direction. This phenomenon did not extend to infrequently ordered stimuli (e.g., color terms). These findings suggest that adults implicitly harness spatial organization to support memory, and this harnessing process is culturally mediated in tandem with our spatial biases. PMID:27208418

  10. Experimental evidence for spatial learning on octopuses (octopus bimaculoides).

    PubMed

    Boal, J G; Dunham, A W; Williams, K T; Hanlon, R T

    2000-09-01

    Octopuses forage far from temporary home dens to which they return for shelter. Spatial tasks may assess learning. Octopuses (Octopus bimaculoides) were placed in a novel arena, and their movements were tracked for 72 hr. Movements around the arena decreased across time, consistent with exploratory learning. Next, octopuses were given 23 hr to move around an arena; after a 24-hr delay, their memory of a burrow location was tested. Most remembered the location of the open burrow, demonstrating learning in 1 day. Finally, octopuses were trained to locate a single open escape burrow among 6 possible locations. Retention was tested after a week and was immediately followed by reversal training (location rotated 180 degrees ). Octopuses learned the original location of the burrow, remembering it for a week. Path lengths increased significantly after reversal, gradually improving and showing relearning. Octopuses show exploratory behavior, learning, and retention of spatial information.

  11. Structural and functional neuroplasticity in human learning of spatial routes.

    PubMed

    Keller, Timothy A; Just, Marcel Adam

    2016-01-15

    Recent findings with both animals and humans suggest that decreases in microscopic movements of water in the hippocampus reflect short-term neuroplasticity resulting from learning. Here we examine whether such neuroplastic structural changes concurrently alter the functional connectivity between hippocampus and other regions involved in learning. We collected both diffusion-weighted images and fMRI data before and after humans performed a 45min spatial route-learning task. Relative to a control group with equal practice time, there was decreased diffusivity in the posterior-dorsal dentate gyrus of the left hippocampus in the route-learning group accompanied by increased synchronization of fMRI-measured BOLD signal between this region and cortical areas, and by changes in behavioral performance. These concurrent changes characterize the multidimensionality of neuroplasticity as it enables human spatial learning.

  12. Acquiring new spatial intuitions: learning to reason about rotations.

    PubMed

    Pani, John R; Chariker, Julia H; Dawson, Thomas E; Johnson, Nathan

    2005-12-01

    There are certain simple rotations of objects that most people cannot reason about accurately. Reliable gaps in the understanding of a fundamental physical domain raise the question of how learning to reason in that domain might proceed. Using virtual reality techniques, this project investigated the nature of learning to reason across the domain of simple rotations. Learning consisted of the acquisition of spatial intuitions: there was encoding of useful spatiotemporal information in specific problem types and a gradual accumulation of this understanding across the domain. This pattern of learning through the accumulation of intuitions is especially interesting for rotational motion, in which an elegant domain-wide kinematics is available to support insightful learning. Individual ability to reason about rotations correlated highly with mastery motivation, skill in fluid reasoning, and skill in reasoning about spatial transformations. Thus, general cognitive advantages aided the understanding of individual rotations without guaranteeing immediate generalization across the domain.

  13. Optimal Spatial Prediction Using Ensemble Machine Learning.

    PubMed

    Davies, Molly Margaret; van der Laan, Mark J

    2016-05-01

    Spatial prediction is an important problem in many scientific disciplines. Super Learner is an ensemble prediction approach related to stacked generalization that uses cross-validation to search for the optimal predictor amongst all convex combinations of a heterogeneous candidate set. It has been applied to non-spatial data, where theoretical results demonstrate it will perform asymptotically at least as well as the best candidate under consideration. We review these optimality properties and discuss the assumptions required in order for them to hold for spatial prediction problems. We present results of a simulation study confirming Super Learner works well in practice under a variety of sample sizes, sampling designs, and data-generating functions. We also apply Super Learner to a real world dataset. PMID:27130244

  14. Nicotine attenuates spatial learning deficits induced by sodium metavanadate.

    PubMed

    Azami, Kian; Tabrizian, Kaveh; Hosseini, Rohollah; Seyedabadi, Mohammad; Shariatpanahi, Marjan; Noorbakhsh, Farshid; Kebriaeezadeh, Abbas; Ostad, Seyed Nasser; Sharifzadeh, Mohammad

    2012-01-01

    Learning can be severely impaired as a consequence of exposure to environmental pollutants. Vanadium (V), a metalloid which is widely distributed in the environment, has been shown to exert toxic effects on a variety of biological systems including the nervous system. However, studies exploring the impact of vanadium on learning are limited. Herein, we investigated the effects of oral administration of sodium metavanadate (SMV) (15, 20 and 25mg/kg/day for 2weeks) on spatial learning using Morris water maze (MWM). Our results showed that pre-training administration of sodium metavanadate impaired learning in Morris water maze. Analyzing the role of cholinergic system in SMV-induced learning deficit, we found that bilateral intra-hippocampal infusion of nicotine (1μg/side) during training could significantly diminish the SMV-induced learning impairment. We next examined the expression of choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) and vesicular acetylcholine transporter (VAChT) as cholinergic markers in CA1 region of hippocampus as well as in medial septal area (MSA). Our molecular analyses showed that vanadium administration decreased ChAT and VAChT protein expression, an effect that was attenuated by nicotine. Altogether, our results confirmed the toxic effects of SMV on spatial acquisition, while also pointing to the neuroprotective effects of nicotine on SMV-induced impairments in learning capabilities. These findings might open a new avenue for the prevention of vanadium adverse effects on spatial learning and memory through activation of cholinergic signaling pathway.

  15. Mice with deficient BK channel function show impaired prepulse inhibition and spatial learning, but normal working and spatial reference memory.

    PubMed

    Typlt, Marei; Mirkowski, Magdalena; Azzopardi, Erin; Ruettiger, Lukas; Ruth, Peter; Schmid, Susanne

    2013-01-01

    Genetic variations in the large-conductance, voltage- and calcium activated potassium channels (BK channels) have been recently implicated in mental retardation, autism and schizophrenia which all come along with severe cognitive impairments. In the present study we investigate the effects of functional BK channel deletion on cognition using a genetic mouse model with a knock-out of the gene for the pore forming α-subunit of the channel. We tested the F1 generation of a hybrid SV129/C57BL6 mouse line in which the slo1 gene was deleted in both parent strains. We first evaluated hearing and motor function to establish the suitability of this model for cognitive testing. Auditory brain stem responses to click stimuli showed no threshold differences between knockout mice and their wild-type littermates. Despite of muscular tremor, reduced grip force, and impaired gait, knockout mice exhibited normal locomotion. These findings allowed for testing of sensorimotor gating using the acoustic startle reflex, as well as of working memory, spatial learning and memory in the Y-maze and the Morris water maze, respectively. Prepulse inhibition on the first day of testing was normal, but the knockout mice did not improve over the days of testing as their wild-type littermates did. Spontaneous alternation in the y-maze was normal as well, suggesting that the BK channel knock-out does not impair working memory. In the Morris water maze knock-out mice showed significantly slower acquisition of the task, but normal memory once the task was learned. Thus, we propose a crucial role of the BK channels in learning, but not in memory storage or recollection.

  16. Length and orientation constancy learning in 2-dimensions with auditory sensory substitution: the importance of self-initiated movement.

    PubMed

    Stiles, Noelle R B; Zheng, Yuqian; Shimojo, Shinsuke

    2015-01-01

    A subset of sensory substitution (SS) devices translate images into sounds in real time using a portable computer, camera, and headphones. Perceptual constancy is the key to understanding both functional and phenomenological aspects of perception with SS. In particular, constancies enable object externalization, which is critical to the performance of daily tasks such as obstacle avoidance and locating dropped objects. In order to improve daily task performance by the blind, and determine if constancies can be learned with SS, we trained blind (N = 4) and sighted (N = 10) individuals on length and orientation constancy tasks for 8 days at about 1 h per day with an auditory SS device. We found that blind and sighted performance at the constancy tasks significantly improved, and attained constancy performance that was above chance. Furthermore, dynamic interactions with stimuli were critical to constancy learning with the SS device. In particular, improved task learning significantly correlated with the number of spontaneous left-right head-tilting movements while learning length constancy. The improvement from previous head-tilting trials even transferred to a no-head-tilt condition. Therefore, not only can SS learning be improved by encouraging head movement while learning, but head movement may also play an important role in learning constancies in the sighted. In addition, the learning of constancies by the blind and sighted with SS provides evidence that SS may be able to restore vision-like functionality to the blind in daily tasks.

  17. Length and orientation constancy learning in 2-dimensions with auditory sensory substitution: the importance of self-initiated movement

    PubMed Central

    Stiles, Noelle R. B.; Zheng, Yuqian; Shimojo, Shinsuke

    2015-01-01

    A subset of sensory substitution (SS) devices translate images into sounds in real time using a portable computer, camera, and headphones. Perceptual constancy is the key to understanding both functional and phenomenological aspects of perception with SS. In particular, constancies enable object externalization, which is critical to the performance of daily tasks such as obstacle avoidance and locating dropped objects. In order to improve daily task performance by the blind, and determine if constancies can be learned with SS, we trained blind (N = 4) and sighted (N = 10) individuals on length and orientation constancy tasks for 8 days at about 1 h per day with an auditory SS device. We found that blind and sighted performance at the constancy tasks significantly improved, and attained constancy performance that was above chance. Furthermore, dynamic interactions with stimuli were critical to constancy learning with the SS device. In particular, improved task learning significantly correlated with the number of spontaneous left-right head-tilting movements while learning length constancy. The improvement from previous head-tilting trials even transferred to a no-head-tilt condition. Therefore, not only can SS learning be improved by encouraging head movement while learning, but head movement may also play an important role in learning constancies in the sighted. In addition, the learning of constancies by the blind and sighted with SS provides evidence that SS may be able to restore vision-like functionality to the blind in daily tasks. PMID:26136719

  18. Rey-Auditory Verbal Learning and Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Design performance in Alzheimer's disease and closed head injury.

    PubMed

    Bigler, E D; Rosa, L; Schultz, F; Hall, S; Harris, J

    1989-03-01

    Performance on the Rey-Auditory Verbal Learning (R-AVL) and Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Design (R-O CFD) tests was examined in patients (N = 94) with dementia of the Alzheimer's type (DAT) and closed head injury (CHI). On the R-AVL, DAT patients demonstrated considerably greater impairment than CHI patients, along with a flat learning/retention curve that showed negligible improvement with repeated trials, recency effects only, and an excessive number of word intrusions (confabulation) on the recognition trial. CHI patients demonstrated both a recency and primacy effect along with improvement over repeated trials (positive slope learning curve). Both groups demonstrated impairment R-O CFD recall; the DAT group again displayed substantially greater copying and recall deficits. Clinical guidelines are given for the use of the R-AVL and R-O CFD for these two patient populations.

  19. Engineering genders: A spatial analysis of engineering, gender, and learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weidler-Lewis, Joanna R.

    This three article dissertation is an investigation into the ontology of learning insofar as learning is a process of becoming. In each article I explore the general questions of who is learning, in what ways, and with what consequences. The context for this research is undergraduate engineering education with particular attention to the construction of gender in this context. The first article is an examination of the organization of freshman engineering design. The second article draws on Lefebvre's spatial triad as both a theory and method for studying learning. The third article is an interview study of LGBTQA students creating their futures as engineers.

  20. Landscapes, Spatial Justice and Learning Communities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Armstrong, Felicity

    2012-01-01

    This paper draws on a study of a community-based adult education initiative, "Cumbria Credits," which took place during the period of serious economic decline which hit sections of the farming and the wider community in Cumbria during 2001. It draws on the principles underpinning Edward Soja's notion of "spatial justice" to explore transformations…

  1. Visual and Spatial Modes in Science Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ramadas, Jayashree

    2009-01-01

    This paper surveys some major trends from research on visual and spatial thinking coming from cognitive science, developmental psychology, science literacy, and science studies. It explores the role of visualisation in creativity, in building mental models, and in the communication of scientific ideas, in order to place these findings in the…

  2. Estradiol differentially affects auditory recognition and learning according to photoperiodic state in the adult male songbird, European starling (Sturnus vulgaris).

    PubMed

    Calisi, Rebecca M; Knudsen, Daniel P; Krause, Jesse S; Wingfield, John C; Gentner, Timothy Q

    2013-01-01

    Changes in hormones can affect many types of learning in vertebrates. Adults experience fluctuations in a multitude of hormones over a temporal scale, from local, rapid action to more long-term, seasonal changes. Endocrine changes during development can affect behavioral outcomes in adulthood, but how learning is affected in adults by hormone fluctuations experienced during adulthood is less understood. Previous reports have implicated the sex steroid hormone estradiol (E2) in both male and female vertebrate cognitive functioning. Here, we examined the effects of E2 on auditory recognition and learning in male European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris). European starlings are photoperiodic, seasonally breeding songbirds that undergo different periods of reproductive activity according to annual changes in day length. We simulated these reproductive periods, specifically 1. photosensitivity, 2. photostimulation, and 3. photorefractoriness in captive birds by altering day length. During each period, we manipulated circulating E2 and examined multiple measures of learning. To manipulate circulating E2, we used subcutaneous implants containing either 17-β E2 and/or fadrozole (FAD), a highly specific aromatase inhibitor that suppresses E2 production in the body and the brain, and measured the latency for birds to learn and respond to short, male conspecific song segments (motifs). We report that photostimulated birds given E2 had higher response rates and responded with better accuracy than those given saline controls or FAD. Conversely, photosensitive, animals treated with E2 responded with less accuracy than those given FAD. These results demonstrate how circulating E2 and photoperiod can interact to shape auditory recognition and learning in adults, driving it in opposite directions in different states. PMID:24058881

  3. Estradiol differentially affects auditory recognition and learning according to photoperiodic state in the adult male songbird, European starling (Sturnus vulgaris)

    PubMed Central

    Knudsen, Daniel P.; Krause, Jesse S.; Wingfield, John C.; Gentner, Timothy Q.

    2013-01-01

    Changes in hormones can affect many types of learning in vertebrates. Adults experience fluctuations in a multitude of hormones over a temporal scale, from local, rapid action to more long-term, seasonal changes. Endocrine changes during development can affect behavioral outcomes in adulthood, but how learning is affected in adults by hormone fluctuations experienced during adulthood is less understood. Previous reports have implicated the sex steroid hormone estradiol (E2) in both male and female vertebrate cognitive functioning. Here, we examined the effects of E2 on auditory recognition and learning in male European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris). European starlings are photoperiodic, seasonally breeding songbirds that undergo different periods of reproductive activity according to annual changes in day length. We simulated these reproductive periods, specifically 1. photosensitivity, 2. photostimulation, and 3. photorefractoriness in captive birds by altering day length. During each period, we manipulated circulating E2 and examined multiple measures of learning. To manipulate circulating E2, we used subcutaneous implants containing either 17-β E2 and/or fadrozole (FAD), a highly specific aromatase inhibitor that suppresses E2 production in the body and the brain, and measured the latency for birds to learn and respond to short, male conspecific song segments (motifs). We report that photostimulated birds given E2 had higher response rates and responded with better accuracy than those given saline controls or FAD. Conversely, photosensitive, animals treated with E2 responded with less accuracy than those given FAD. These results demonstrate how circulating E2 and photoperiod can interact to shape auditory recognition and learning in adults, driving it in opposite directions in different states. PMID:24058881

  4. Language Development Activities through the Auditory Channel.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fitzmaurice, Peggy, Comp.; And Others

    Presented primarily for use with educable mentally retarded and learning disabled children are approximately 100 activities for language development through the auditory channel. Activities are grouped under the following three areas: receptive skills (auditory decoding, auditory memory, and auditory discrimination); expressive skills (auditory…

  5. Chronic exposure to broadband noise at moderate sound pressure levels spatially shifts tone-evoked responses in the rat auditory midbrain.

    PubMed

    Lau, Condon; Pienkowski, Martin; Zhang, Jevin W; McPherson, Bradley; Wu, Ed X

    2015-11-15

    Noise-induced hearing disorders are a significant public health concern. One cause of such disorders is exposure to high sound pressure levels (SPLs) above 85 dBA for eight hours/day. High SPL exposures occur in occupational and recreational settings and affect a substantial proportion of the population. However, an even larger proportion is exposed to more moderate SPLs for longer durations. Therefore, there is significant need to better understand the impact of chronic, moderate SPL exposures on auditory processing, especially in the absence of hearing loss. In this study, we applied functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) with tonal acoustic stimulation on an established broadband rat exposure model (65 dB SPL, 30 kHz low-pass, 60 days). The auditory midbrain response of exposed subjects to 7 kHz stimulation (within exposure bandwidth) shifts dorsolaterally to regions that typically respond to lower stimulation frequencies. This shift is quantified by a region of interest analysis that shows that fMRI signals are higher in the dorsolateral midbrain of exposed subjects and in the ventromedial midbrain of control subjects (p<0.05). Also, the center of the responsive region in exposed subjects shifts dorsally relative to that of controls (p<0.05). A similar statistically significant shift (p<0.01) is observed using 40 kHz stimulation (above exposure bandwidth). The results suggest that high frequency midbrain regions above the exposure bandwidth spatially expand due to exposure. This expansion shifts lower frequency regions dorsolaterally. Similar observations have previously been made in the rat auditory cortex. Therefore, moderate SPL exposures affect auditory processing at multiple levels, from the auditory cortex to the midbrain. PMID:26232718

  6. Chronic exposure to broadband noise at moderate sound pressure levels spatially shifts tone-evoked responses in the rat auditory midbrain.

    PubMed

    Lau, Condon; Pienkowski, Martin; Zhang, Jevin W; McPherson, Bradley; Wu, Ed X

    2015-11-15

    Noise-induced hearing disorders are a significant public health concern. One cause of such disorders is exposure to high sound pressure levels (SPLs) above 85 dBA for eight hours/day. High SPL exposures occur in occupational and recreational settings and affect a substantial proportion of the population. However, an even larger proportion is exposed to more moderate SPLs for longer durations. Therefore, there is significant need to better understand the impact of chronic, moderate SPL exposures on auditory processing, especially in the absence of hearing loss. In this study, we applied functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) with tonal acoustic stimulation on an established broadband rat exposure model (65 dB SPL, 30 kHz low-pass, 60 days). The auditory midbrain response of exposed subjects to 7 kHz stimulation (within exposure bandwidth) shifts dorsolaterally to regions that typically respond to lower stimulation frequencies. This shift is quantified by a region of interest analysis that shows that fMRI signals are higher in the dorsolateral midbrain of exposed subjects and in the ventromedial midbrain of control subjects (p<0.05). Also, the center of the responsive region in exposed subjects shifts dorsally relative to that of controls (p<0.05). A similar statistically significant shift (p<0.01) is observed using 40 kHz stimulation (above exposure bandwidth). The results suggest that high frequency midbrain regions above the exposure bandwidth spatially expand due to exposure. This expansion shifts lower frequency regions dorsolaterally. Similar observations have previously been made in the rat auditory cortex. Therefore, moderate SPL exposures affect auditory processing at multiple levels, from the auditory cortex to the midbrain.

  7. Spatial context learning survives interference from working memory load

    PubMed Central

    Vickery, Timothy J.; Sussman, Rachel S.; Jiang, Yuhong V.

    2010-01-01

    The human visual system is constantly confronted with an overwhelming amount of information, only a subset of which can be processed in complete detail. Attention and implicit learning are two important mechanisms that optimize vision. This study addresses the relationship between these two mechanisms. Specifically we ask: Is implicit learning of spatial context affected by the amount of working memory load devoted to an irrelevant task? We tested observers in visual search tasks where search displays occasionally repeated. Observers became faster searching repeated displays than unrepeated ones, showing contextual cueing. We found that the size of contextual cueing was unaffected by whether observers learned repeated displays under unitary attention or when their attention was divided using working memory manipulations. These results held when working memory was loaded by colors, dot patterns, individual dot locations, or multiple potential targets. We conclude that spatial context learning is robust to interference from manipulations that limit the availability of attention and working memory. PMID:20853996

  8. Cued and spatial learning in the water maze: equivalent learning in male and female mice.

    PubMed

    Baldan Ramsey, Lissandra C; Pittenger, Christopher

    2010-10-11

    Mammals navigate a complex environment using a variety of strategies, which can operate in parallel and even compete with one another. We have recently described a variant water maze task in which two of these strategies, hippocampus-dependent spatial learning and striatum-dependent cued learning, can be dissociated. Male rodents perform better at some spatial learning tasks, while female rodents more readily learn certain striatum-dependent behavioral strategies. We therefore predicted that sex would differentially influence spatial and cued learning in the water maze. We trained adult male and female C57Bl/6 mice for 7 days in the two-cue variant of the water maze, with probe trials on days 5 and 7. In two independent experiments, males and females performed similarly, with both groups showing good spatial learning after 5 and 7 days of training, and both groups showing trend-level cued learning after 5 days and robust learning after 7. Therefore, contrary to our hypothesis, sex does not significantly affect cued or spatial learning in this task.

  9. Computer-based auditory training (CBAT): benefits for children with language- and reading-related learning difficulties.

    PubMed

    Loo, Jenny Hooi Yin; Bamiou, Doris-Eva; Campbell, Nicci; Luxon, Linda M

    2010-08-01

    This article reviews the evidence for computer-based auditory training (CBAT) in children with language, reading, and related learning difficulties, and evaluates the extent it can benefit children with auditory processing disorder (APD). Searches were confined to studies published between 2000 and 2008, and they are rated according to the level of evidence hierarchy proposed by the American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA) in 2004. We identified 16 studies of two commercially available CBAT programs (13 studies of Fast ForWord (FFW) and three studies of Earobics) and five further outcome studies of other non-speech and simple speech sounds training, available for children with language, learning, and reading difficulties. The results suggest that, apart from the phonological awareness skills, the FFW and Earobics programs seem to have little effect on the language, spelling, and reading skills of children. Non-speech and simple speech sounds training may be effective in improving children's reading skills, but only if it is delivered by an audio-visual method. There is some initial evidence to suggest that CBAT may be of benefit for children with APD. Further research is necessary, however, to substantiate these preliminary findings.

  10. Spatial context learning in pigeons (Columba livia).

    PubMed

    Gibson, Brett M; Leber, Andrew B; Mehlman, Max L

    2015-10-01

    In a seminal paper in the cognitive sciences, Chun and Jiang (1998) described the contextual cueing paradigm in which they used artificial stimuli and showed that people became faster to locate a target when the background predicted the location of a target compared to when it did not. Here we examined contextual cueing in pigeons for the first time using artificial stimuli and procedures similar to those of Chun and Jiang. In the first test, we had pigeons search for a target among a display of seven distractors; during one condition, the position of the distractors predicted the location of the target, and in the second condition, there was no relationship between the two. In a second test, we presented the pigeons with the predictive displays from Test 1 and a second set of displays that also predicted the location of a target to see if learning about one set of predictive backgrounds disrupted learning about a second set. The pigeons were quick to acquire context-based knowledge and retain that information when faced with additional contexts. The results suggest that contextual cueing can occur for a variety of stimuli in nonhuman animals and that it may be a common mechanism for processing visual information across a wide variety of species.

  11. Effects of Lips and Hands on Auditory Learning of Second-Language Speech Sounds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hirata, Yukari; Kelly, Spencer D.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: Previous research has found that auditory training helps native English speakers to perceive phonemic vowel length contrasts in Japanese, but their performance did not reach native levels after training. Given that multimodal information, such as lip movement and hand gesture, influences many aspects of native language processing, the…

  12. Finding faults: analogical comparison supports spatial concept learning in geoscience.

    PubMed

    Jee, Benjamin D; Uttal, David H; Gentner, Dedre; Manduca, Cathy; Shipley, Thomas F; Sageman, Bradley

    2013-05-01

    A central issue in education is how to support the spatial thinking involved in learning science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). We investigated whether and how the cognitive process of analogical comparison supports learning of a basic spatial concept in geoscience, fault. Because of the high variability in the appearance of faults, it may be difficult for students to learn the category-relevant spatial structure. There is abundant evidence that comparing analogous examples can help students gain insight into important category-defining features (Gentner in Cogn Sci 34(5):752-775, 2010). Further, comparing high-similarity pairs can be especially effective at revealing key differences (Sagi et al. 2012). Across three experiments, we tested whether comparison of visually similar contrasting examples would help students learn the fault concept. Our main findings were that participants performed better at identifying faults when they (1) compared contrasting (fault/no fault) cases versus viewing each case separately (Experiment 1), (2) compared similar as opposed to dissimilar contrasting cases early in learning (Experiment 2), and (3) viewed a contrasting pair of schematic block diagrams as opposed to a single block diagram of a fault as part of an instructional text (Experiment 3). These results suggest that comparison of visually similar contrasting cases helped distinguish category-relevant from category-irrelevant features for participants. When such comparisons occurred early in learning, participants were more likely to form an accurate conceptual representation. Thus, analogical comparison of images may provide one powerful way to enhance spatial learning in geoscience and other STEM disciplines. PMID:23436210

  13. Finding faults: analogical comparison supports spatial concept learning in geoscience.

    PubMed

    Jee, Benjamin D; Uttal, David H; Gentner, Dedre; Manduca, Cathy; Shipley, Thomas F; Sageman, Bradley

    2013-05-01

    A central issue in education is how to support the spatial thinking involved in learning science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). We investigated whether and how the cognitive process of analogical comparison supports learning of a basic spatial concept in geoscience, fault. Because of the high variability in the appearance of faults, it may be difficult for students to learn the category-relevant spatial structure. There is abundant evidence that comparing analogous examples can help students gain insight into important category-defining features (Gentner in Cogn Sci 34(5):752-775, 2010). Further, comparing high-similarity pairs can be especially effective at revealing key differences (Sagi et al. 2012). Across three experiments, we tested whether comparison of visually similar contrasting examples would help students learn the fault concept. Our main findings were that participants performed better at identifying faults when they (1) compared contrasting (fault/no fault) cases versus viewing each case separately (Experiment 1), (2) compared similar as opposed to dissimilar contrasting cases early in learning (Experiment 2), and (3) viewed a contrasting pair of schematic block diagrams as opposed to a single block diagram of a fault as part of an instructional text (Experiment 3). These results suggest that comparison of visually similar contrasting cases helped distinguish category-relevant from category-irrelevant features for participants. When such comparisons occurred early in learning, participants were more likely to form an accurate conceptual representation. Thus, analogical comparison of images may provide one powerful way to enhance spatial learning in geoscience and other STEM disciplines.

  14. Cartographical Imaginations: Spatiality, Adult Education and Lifelong Learning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Edwards, Richard; Cervero, Ron; Clarke, Julia; Morgan-Klein, Brenda; Usher, Robin; Wilson, Arthur

    Recent empirical and theoretical literature in cultural geography, feminist and postcolonial philosophy, cultural studies, and political economy, was explored in an examination of the significance of spatiality to the changes taking place in the policy, practice, and study of adult education and lifelong learning. The following were among the key…

  15. Learning in Authentic Contexts: Projects Integrating Spatial Technologies and Fieldwork

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huang, Kuo-Hung

    2011-01-01

    In recent years, professional practice has been an issue of concern in higher education. The purpose of this study is to design students' projects to facilitate collaborative learning in authentic contexts. Ten students majoring in Management Information Systems conducted fieldwork with spatial technologies to collect data and provided information…

  16. Visual Spatial Skill: A Consequence of Learning to Read?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McBride-Chang, Catherine; Zhou, Yanling; Cho, Jeung-Ryeul; Aram, Dorit; Levin, Iris; Tolchinsky, Liliana

    2011-01-01

    Does learning to read influence one's visual skill? In Study 1, kindergartners from Hong Kong, Korea, Israel, and Spain were tested on word reading and a task of visual spatial skill. Chinese and Korean kindergartners significantly outperformed Israeli and Spanish readers on the visual task. Moreover, in all cultures except Korea, good readers…

  17. Learning Anatomy: Do New Computer Models Improve Spatial Understanding?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garg, Amit; Norman, Geoff; Spero, Lawrence; Taylor, Ian

    1999-01-01

    Assesses desktop-computer models that rotate in virtual three-dimensional space. Compares spatial learning with a computer carpal-bone model horizontally rotating at 10-degree views with the same model rotating at 90-degree views. (Author/CCM)

  18. Retrosplenial Cortex Is Required for the Retrieval of Remote Memory for Auditory Cues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Todd, Travis P.; Mehlman, Max L.; Keene, Christopher S.; DeAngeli, Nicole E.; Bucci, David J.

    2016-01-01

    The retrosplenial cortex (RSC) has a well-established role in contextual and spatial learning and memory, consistent with its known connectivity with visuo-spatial association areas. In contrast, RSC appears to have little involvement with delay fear conditioning to an auditory cue. However, all previous studies have examined the contribution of…

  19. Implicit transfer of spatial structure in visuomotor sequence learning.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Kanji; Watanabe, Katsumi

    2014-11-01

    Implicit learning and transfer in sequence learning are essential in daily life. Here, we investigated the implicit transfer of visuomotor sequences following a spatial transformation. In the two experiments, participants used trial and error to learn a sequence consisting of several button presses, known as the m×n task (Hikosaka et al., 1995). After this learning session, participants learned another sequence in which the button configuration was spatially transformed in one of the following ways: mirrored, rotated, and random arrangement. Our results showed that even when participants were unaware of the transformation rules, accuracy of transfer session in the mirrored and rotated groups was higher than that in the random group (i.e., implicit transfer occurred). Both those who noticed the transformation rules and those who did not (i.e., explicit and implicit transfer instances, respectively) showed faster performance in the mirrored sequences than in the rotated sequences. Taken together, the present results suggest that people can use their implicit visuomotor knowledge to spatially transform sequences and that implicit transfers are modulated by a transformation cost, similar to that in explicit transfer.

  20. Direct current induced short-term modulation of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex while learning auditory presented nouns

    PubMed Central

    Elmer, Stefan; Burkard, Marcel; Renz, Basil; Meyer, Martin; Jancke, Lutz

    2009-01-01

    Background Little is known about the contribution of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to the exploration of memory functions. The aim of the present study was to examine the behavioural effects of right or left-hemisphere frontal direct current delivery while committing to memory auditory presented nouns on short-term learning and subsequent long-term retrieval. Methods Twenty subjects, divided into two groups, performed an episodic verbal memory task during anodal, cathodal and sham current application on the right or left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). Results Our results imply that only cathodal tDCS elicits behavioural effects on verbal memory performance. In particular, left-sided application of cathodal tDCS impaired short-term verbal learning when compared to the baseline. We did not observe tDCS effects on long-term retrieval. Conclusion Our results imply that the left DLPFC is a crucial area involved in short-term verbal learning mechanisms. However, we found further support that direct current delivery with an intensity of 1.5 mA to the DLPFC during short-term learning does not disrupt longer lasting consolidation processes that are mainly known to be related to mesial temporal lobe areas. In the present study, we have shown that the tDCS technique has the potential to modulate short-term verbal learning mechanism. PMID:19604352

  1. Under the hood of statistical learning: A statistical MMN reflects the magnitude of transitional probabilities in auditory sequences

    PubMed Central

    Koelsch, Stefan; Busch, Tobias; Jentschke, Sebastian; Rohrmeier, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Within the framework of statistical learning, many behavioural studies investigated the processing of unpredicted events. However, surprisingly few neurophysiological studies are available on this topic, and no statistical learning experiment has investigated electroencephalographic (EEG) correlates of processing events with different transition probabilities. We carried out an EEG study with a novel variant of the established statistical learning paradigm. Timbres were presented in isochronous sequences of triplets. The first two sounds of all triplets were equiprobable, while the third sound occurred with either low (10%), intermediate (30%), or high (60%) probability. Thus, the occurrence probability of the third item of each triplet (given the first two items) was varied. Compared to high-probability triplet endings, endings with low and intermediate probability elicited an early anterior negativity that had an onset around 100 ms and was maximal at around 180 ms. This effect was larger for events with low than for events with intermediate probability. Our results reveal that, when predictions are based on statistical learning, events that do not match a prediction evoke an early anterior negativity, with the amplitude of this mismatch response being inversely related to the probability of such events. Thus, we report a statistical mismatch negativity (sMMN) that reflects statistical learning of transitional probability distributions that go beyond auditory sensory memory capabilities. PMID:26830652

  2. Spatial relational learning in rufous hummingbirds (Selasphorus rufus).

    PubMed

    Henderson, Jonathan; Hurly, T Andrew; Healy, Susan D

    2006-07-01

    There is increasing evidence that animals can learn abstract spatial relationships, and successfully transfer this knowledge to novel situations. In this study, rufous hummingbirds (Selasphorus rufus) were trained to feed from either the lower or the higher of two flowers. When presented with a test pair of flowers, one of which was at a novel height, they chose the flower in the appropriate spatial position rather than the flower at the correct height. This response may also have been influenced by a preference for taller flowers as acquisition of the task during experimental training occurred more readily when the reward flower was the taller of the pair. Thus, it appears that although learning abstract relationships may be a general phenomenon across contexts, and perhaps across species, the ease with which they are learned and the context in which they are subsequently used may not be the same.

  3. Facilitation of learning spatial relations among locations by visual cues: implications for theoretical accounts of spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Sturz, Bradley R; Brown, Michael F; Kelly, Debbie M

    2009-04-01

    Human participants searched in a real environment or interactive 3-D virtual environment open field for four hidden goal locations arranged in a 2 x 2 square configuration in a 5 x 5 matrix of raised bins. The participants were randomly assigned to one of two groups: cues + pattern or pattern only. The participants experienced a training phase, followed by a testing phase. Visual cues specified the goal locations during training only for the cues + pattern group. Both groups were then tested in the absence of visual cues. The results in both environments indicated that the participants learned the spatial relations among goal locations. However, visual cues during training facilitated learning of the spatial relations among goal locations: In both environments, the participants trained with the visual cues made fewer errors during testing than did those trained only with the pattern. The results suggest that learning based on the spatial relations among locations may not be susceptible to cue competition effects and have implications for standard associative and dual-system accounts of spatial learning. PMID:19293099

  4. Auditory discrimination predicts linguistic outcome in Italian infants with and without familial risk for language learning impairment.

    PubMed

    Cantiani, Chiara; Riva, Valentina; Piazza, Caterina; Bettoni, Roberta; Molteni, Massimo; Choudhury, Naseem; Marino, Cecilia; Benasich, April A

    2016-08-01

    Infants' ability to discriminate between auditory stimuli presented in rapid succession and differing in fundamental frequency (Rapid Auditory Processing [RAP] abilities) has been shown to be anomalous in infants at familial risk for Language Learning Impairment (LLI) and to predict later language outcomes. This study represents the first attempt to investigate RAP in Italian infants at risk for LLI (FH+), examining two critical acoustic features: frequency and duration, both embedded in a rapidly-presented acoustic environment. RAP skills of 24 FH+ and 32 control (FH-) Italian 6-month-old infants were characterized via EEG/ERP using a multi-feature oddball paradigm. Outcome measures of expressive vocabulary were collected at 20 months. Group differences favoring FH- infants were identified: in FH+ infants, the latency of the N2* peak was delayed and the mean amplitude of the positive mismatch response was reduced, primarily for frequency discrimination and within the right hemisphere. Moreover, both EEG measures were correlated with language scores at 20 months. Results indicate that RAP abilities are atypical in Italian infants with a first-degree relative affected by LLI and that this impacts later linguistic skills. These findings provide a compelling cross-linguistic comparison with previous research on American infants, supporting the biological unity hypothesis of LLI. PMID:27295127

  5. Deterioration of spatial learning performances in lipopolysaccharide-treated mice.

    PubMed

    Arai, K; Matsuki, N; Ikegaya, Y; Nishiyama, N

    2001-11-01

    It is well demonstrated that acute or chronic stress leads to reduction of learning ability. Lipopolysaccharide (LPS), a component of the outer membrane of gram-negative bacteria, induces profound physiological and behavioral changes, including fever, decrease in food motivation, and decrease in social behavior. These changes might be interpreted as an acute stress reaction to the LPS. In the present study, therefore, we investigated the effects of LPS (400-800 microg/kg, i.p.) on spatial learning performances using C57BL/6J male mice. In the Morris water-maze task, spatial learning performances were examined in six trials of training for two consecutive days. LPS-treated mice took a longer time to reach the hidden platform than control mice (F(1,60)=4.80801, P<0.05 at 600 microg/kg). In addition, injection of LPS decreased the percent of correct choices in the Y-maze test (P<0.05 at 800 microg/kg). LPS, however, did not alter the body weight, grip tone, motor activity or swimming speed. Taken together, these results indicate that LPS treatment specifically impaired spatial learning performances.

  6. Increased yolk progesterone interferes with prenatal auditory learning and elevates emotional reactivity in bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus) chicks.

    PubMed

    Herrington, Joshua; Vallin, Claudia; Lickliter, Robert

    2015-03-01

    Avian eggs contain maternally derived hormones, including testosterone and progesterone. Little is currently known about the effects of these hormones on early behavioral development. We assessed the effects of elevated levels of progesterone levels on prenatal perceptual learning and postnatal emotional reactivity in Northern bobwhite quail. Prior to incubation, eggs received an injection of either progesterone (P) or oil vehicle (V). In P eggs, levels of progesterone were elevated two standard deviations above the mean based on ELISA analysis of progesterone yolk concentrations from a previous study. A third group of eggs served as controls and received no injection (C). Chicks hatched from P eggs displayed elevated levels of emotional reactivity compared to V and C chicks in a tonic immobility task and a hole-in-the-wall emergence task. Chicks from P eggs also failed to demonstrate a preference for a familiarized bobwhite maternal call that had been presented prenatally. In contrast, the V and C chicks demonstrated a significant preference for the familiarized maternal call following hatching, indicating prenatal auditory learning. Our results are consistent with previous findings from precocial birds demonstrating that hormones of maternal origin can influence prenatal perceptual learning as well as emotional reactivity in the period following hatching..

  7. Retrosplenial cortex is required for the retrieval of remote memory for auditory cues.

    PubMed

    Todd, Travis P; Mehlman, Max L; Keene, Christopher S; DeAngeli, Nicole E; Bucci, David J

    2016-06-01

    The restrosplenial cortex (RSC) has a well-established role in contextual and spatial learning and memory, consistent with its known connectivity with visuo-spatial association areas. In contrast, RSC appears to have little involvement with delay fear conditioning to an auditory cue. However, all previous studies have examined the contribution of the RSC to recently acquired auditory fear memories. Since neocortical regions have been implicated in the permanent storage of remote memories, we examined the contribution of the RSC to remotely acquired auditory fear memories. In Experiment 1, retrieval of a remotely acquired auditory fear memory was impaired when permanent lesions (either electrolytic or neurotoxic) were made several weeks after initial conditioning. In Experiment 2, using a chemogenetic approach, we observed impairments in the retrieval of remote memory for an auditory cue when the RSC was temporarily inactivated during testing. In Experiment 3, after injection of a retrograde tracer into the RSC, we observed labeled cells in primary and secondary auditory cortices, as well as the claustrum, indicating that the RSC receives direct projections from auditory regions. Overall our results indicate the RSC has a critical role in the retrieval of remotely acquired auditory fear memories, and we suggest this is related to the quality of the memory, with less precise memories being RSC dependent.

  8. Retrosplenial cortex is required for the retrieval of remote memory for auditory cues.

    PubMed

    Todd, Travis P; Mehlman, Max L; Keene, Christopher S; DeAngeli, Nicole E; Bucci, David J

    2016-06-01

    The restrosplenial cortex (RSC) has a well-established role in contextual and spatial learning and memory, consistent with its known connectivity with visuo-spatial association areas. In contrast, RSC appears to have little involvement with delay fear conditioning to an auditory cue. However, all previous studies have examined the contribution of the RSC to recently acquired auditory fear memories. Since neocortical regions have been implicated in the permanent storage of remote memories, we examined the contribution of the RSC to remotely acquired auditory fear memories. In Experiment 1, retrieval of a remotely acquired auditory fear memory was impaired when permanent lesions (either electrolytic or neurotoxic) were made several weeks after initial conditioning. In Experiment 2, using a chemogenetic approach, we observed impairments in the retrieval of remote memory for an auditory cue when the RSC was temporarily inactivated during testing. In Experiment 3, after injection of a retrograde tracer into the RSC, we observed labeled cells in primary and secondary auditory cortices, as well as the claustrum, indicating that the RSC receives direct projections from auditory regions. Overall our results indicate the RSC has a critical role in the retrieval of remotely acquired auditory fear memories, and we suggest this is related to the quality of the memory, with less precise memories being RSC dependent. PMID:27194795

  9. More Feedback Is Better than Less: Learning a Novel Upper Limb Joint Coordination Pattern with Augmented Auditory Feedback.

    PubMed

    Fujii, Shinya; Lulic, Tea; Chen, Joyce L

    2016-01-01

    Motor learning is a process whereby the acquisition of new skills occurs with practice, and can be influenced by the provision of feedback. An important question is what frequency of feedback facilitates motor learning. The guidance hypothesis assumes that the provision of less augmented feedback is better than more because a learner can use his/her own inherent feedback. However, it is unclear whether this hypothesis holds true for all types of augmented feedback, including for example sonified information about performance. Thus, we aimed to test what frequency of augmented sonified feedback facilitates the motor learning of a novel joint coordination pattern. Twenty healthy volunteers first reached to a target with their arm (baseline phase). We manipulated this baseline kinematic data for each individual to create a novel target joint coordination pattern. Participants then practiced to learn the novel target joint coordination pattern, receiving either feedback on every trial i.e., 100% feedback (n = 10), or every other trial, i.e., 50% feedback (n = 10; acquisition phase). We created a sonification system to provide the feedback. This feedback was a pure tone that varied in intensity in proportion to the error of the performed joint coordination relative to the target pattern. Thus, the auditory feedback contained information about performance in real-time (i.e., "concurrent, knowledge of performance feedback"). Participants performed the novel joint coordination pattern with no-feedback immediately after the acquisition phase (immediate retention phase), and on the next day (delayed retention phase). The root-mean squared error (RMSE) and variable error (VE) of joint coordination were significantly reduced during the acquisition phase in both 100 and 50% feedback groups. There was no significant difference in VE between the groups at immediate and delayed retention phases. However, at both these retention phases, the 100% feedback group showed significantly

  10. More Feedback Is Better than Less: Learning a Novel Upper Limb Joint Coordination Pattern with Augmented Auditory Feedback

    PubMed Central

    Fujii, Shinya; Lulic, Tea; Chen, Joyce L.

    2016-01-01

    Motor learning is a process whereby the acquisition of new skills occurs with practice, and can be influenced by the provision of feedback. An important question is what frequency of feedback facilitates motor learning. The guidance hypothesis assumes that the provision of less augmented feedback is better than more because a learner can use his/her own inherent feedback. However, it is unclear whether this hypothesis holds true for all types of augmented feedback, including for example sonified information about performance. Thus, we aimed to test what frequency of augmented sonified feedback facilitates the motor learning of a novel joint coordination pattern. Twenty healthy volunteers first reached to a target with their arm (baseline phase). We manipulated this baseline kinematic data for each individual to create a novel target joint coordination pattern. Participants then practiced to learn the novel target joint coordination pattern, receiving either feedback on every trial i.e., 100% feedback (n = 10), or every other trial, i.e., 50% feedback (n = 10; acquisition phase). We created a sonification system to provide the feedback. This feedback was a pure tone that varied in intensity in proportion to the error of the performed joint coordination relative to the target pattern. Thus, the auditory feedback contained information about performance in real-time (i.e., “concurrent, knowledge of performance feedback”). Participants performed the novel joint coordination pattern with no-feedback immediately after the acquisition phase (immediate retention phase), and on the next day (delayed retention phase). The root-mean squared error (RMSE) and variable error (VE) of joint coordination were significantly reduced during the acquisition phase in both 100 and 50% feedback groups. There was no significant difference in VE between the groups at immediate and delayed retention phases. However, at both these retention phases, the 100% feedback group showed

  11. Word Learning in Deaf Children with Cochlear Implants: Effects of Early Auditory Experience

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Houston, Derek M.; Stewart, Jessica; Moberly, Aaron; Hollich, George; Miyamoto, Richard T.

    2012-01-01

    Word-learning skills were tested in normal-hearing 12- to 40-month-olds and in deaf 22- to 40-month-olds 12 to 18 months after cochlear implantation. Using the Intermodal Preferential Looking Paradigm (IPLP), children were tested for their ability to learn two novel-word/novel-object pairings. Normal-hearing children demonstrated learning on this…

  12. Individual Differences in Learning and Remembering Music: Auditory versus Visual Presentation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Korenman, Lisa M.; Peynircioglu, Zebra F.

    2007-01-01

    We examined the effects of presentation modality and learning style preference on people's ability to learn and remember unfamiliar melodies and sentences. In Experiment 1, we gauged musicians' and nonmusicians' learning efficiency for meaningful and less meaningful melodies as well as sentences when presented visually or auditorily. In Experiment…

  13. Learning Visual Spatial Pooling by Strong PCA Dimension Reduction.

    PubMed

    Hosoya, Haruo; Hyvärinen, Aapo

    2016-07-01

    In visual modeling, invariance properties of visual cells are often explained by a pooling mechanism, in which outputs of neurons with similar selectivities to some stimulus parameters are integrated so as to gain some extent of invariance to other parameters. For example, the classical energy model of phase-invariant V1 complex cells pools model simple cells preferring similar orientation but different phases. Prior studies, such as independent subspace analysis, have shown that phase-invariance properties of V1 complex cells can be learned from spatial statistics of natural inputs. However, those previous approaches assumed a squaring nonlinearity on the neural outputs to capture energy correlation; such nonlinearity is arguably unnatural from a neurobiological viewpoint but hard to change due to its tight integration into their formalisms. Moreover, they used somewhat complicated objective functions requiring expensive computations for optimization. In this study, we show that visual spatial pooling can be learned in a much simpler way using strong dimension reduction based on principal component analysis. This approach learns to ignore a large part of detailed spatial structure of the input and thereby estimates a linear pooling matrix. Using this framework, we demonstrate that pooling of model V1 simple cells learned in this way, even with nonlinearities other than squaring, can reproduce standard tuning properties of V1 complex cells. For further understanding, we analyze several variants of the pooling model and argue that a reasonable pooling can generally be obtained from any kind of linear transformation that retains several of the first principal components and suppresses the remaining ones. In particular, we show how the classic Wiener filtering theory leads to one such variant. PMID:27171856

  14. Nucleus incertus inactivation impairs spatial learning and memory in rats.

    PubMed

    Nategh, Mohsen; Nikseresht, Sara; Khodagholi, Fariba; Motamedi, Fereshteh

    2015-02-01

    Nucleus incertus (NI) is a pontine nucleus which releases mainly GABA and relaxin-3 in rats. Its suggested functions include response to stress, arousal, and modulation of hippocampal theta rhythm. Since the role of NI in learning and memory has not been well characterized, therefore the involvement of this nucleus in spatial learning and memory and the aftermath hippocampal levels of c-fos and pCREB were evaluated. NI was targeted by implanting cannula in male rats. For reference memory, NI was inactivated by lidocaine (0.4 μl, 4%) at three stages of acquisition, consolidation and retrieval in Morris water maze paradigm. For working memory, NI was inactivated in acquisition and retrieval phases. Injection of lidocaine prior to the first training session of reference memory significantly increased the distance moved, suggesting that inactivation of NI delays acquisition in this spatial task. Inactivation also interfered with the retrieval phase of spatial reference memory, as the time in target quadrant for lidocaine group was less, and the escape latency was higher compared to the control group. However, no difference was observed in the consolidation phase. In the working memory task, with inter-trial intervals of 75 min, the escape latency was higher when NI was inactivated in the retrieval phase. In addition, c-fos and pCREB/CREB levels decreased in NI-inhibited rats. This study suggests that nucleus incertus might participate in acquisition of spatial reference, and retrieval of both spatial reference and working memory. Further studies should investigate possible roles of NI in the hippocampal plasticity.

  15. Implicit learning of predictable sound sequences modulates human brain responses at different levels of the auditory hierarchy

    PubMed Central

    Lecaignard, Françoise; Bertrand, Olivier; Gimenez, Gérard; Mattout, Jérémie; Caclin, Anne

    2015-01-01

    Deviant stimuli, violating regularities in a sensory environment, elicit the mismatch negativity (MMN), largely described in the Event-Related Potential literature. While it is widely accepted that the MMN reflects more than basic change detection, a comprehensive description of mental processes modulating this response is still lacking. Within the framework of predictive coding, deviance processing is part of an inference process where prediction errors (the mismatch between incoming sensations and predictions established through experience) are minimized. In this view, the MMN is a measure of prediction error, which yields specific expectations regarding its modulations by various experimental factors. In particular, it predicts that the MMN should decrease as the occurrence of a deviance becomes more predictable. We conducted a passive oddball EEG study and manipulated the predictability of sound sequences by means of different temporal structures. Importantly, our design allows comparing mismatch responses elicited by predictable and unpredictable violations of a simple repetition rule and therefore departs from previous studies that investigate violations of different time-scale regularities. We observed a decrease of the MMN with predictability and interestingly, a similar effect at earlier latencies, within 70 ms after deviance onset. Following these pre-attentive responses, a reduced P3a was measured in the case of predictable deviants. We conclude that early and late deviance responses reflect prediction errors, triggering belief updating within the auditory hierarchy. Beside, in this passive study, such perceptual inference appears to be modulated by higher-level implicit learning of sequence statistical structures. Our findings argue for a hierarchical model of auditory processing where predictive coding enables implicit extraction of environmental regularities. PMID:26441602

  16. Learning drives differential clustering of axodendritic contacts in the barn owl auditory system.

    PubMed

    McBride, Thomas J; Rodriguez-Contreras, Adrian; Trinh, Angela; Bailey, Robert; Debello, William M

    2008-07-01

    Computational models predict that experience-driven clustering of coactive synapses is a mechanism for information storage. This prediction has remained untested, because it is difficult to approach through time-lapse analysis. Here, we exploit a unique feature of the barn owl auditory localization pathway that permits retrospective analysis of prelearned and postlearned circuitry: owls reared wearing prismatic spectacles develop an adaptive microcircuit that coexists with the native one but can be analyzed independently based on topographic location. To visualize the clustering of axodendritic contacts (potential synapses) within these zones, coactive axons were labeled by focal injection of fluorescent tracer and their target dendrites labeled with an antibody directed against CaMKII (calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase type II, alpha subunit). Using high-resolution confocal imaging, we measured the distance from each contact to its nearest neighbor on the same branch of dendrite. We found that the distribution of intercontact distances for the adaptive zone was shifted dramatically toward smaller values compared with distributions for either the maladaptive zone of the same animals or the adaptive zone of normal juveniles, which indicates that a dynamic clustering of contacts had occurred. Moreover, clustering in the normal zone was greater in normal juveniles than in prism-adapted owls, indicative of declustering. These data demonstrate that clustering is bidirectionally adjustable and tuned by behaviorally relevant experience. The microanatomical configurations in all zones of both experimental groups matched the functional circuit strengths that were assessed by in vivo electrophysiological mapping. Thus, the observed changes in clustering are appropriately positioned to contribute to the adaptive strengthening and weakening of auditory-driven responses. PMID:18596170

  17. Traveling waves on the organ of Corti of the chinchilla cochlea: spatial trajectories of inner hair cell depolarization inferred from responses of auditory-nerve fibers

    PubMed Central

    Temchin, Andrei N.; Recio-Spinoso, Alberto; Cai, Hongxue; Ruggero, Mario A.

    2012-01-01

    Spatial magnitude and phase profiles for inner hair cell depolarization throughout the chinchilla cochlea were inferred from responses of auditory-nerve fibers to threshold- and moderate-level tones and tone complexes. Firing-rate profiles for frequencies ≤ 2 kHz are bimodal, with the major peak at the characteristic place and a secondary peak at 3–5 mm from the extreme base. Response-phase trajectories are synchronous with peak outward stapes displacement at the extreme cochlear base and accumulate 1.5-period lags at the characteristic places. High-frequency phase trajectories are very similar to the trajectories of basilar-membrane peak velocity toward scala tympani. Low-frequency phase trajectories undergo a polarity flip in a region, 6.5–9 mm from the cochlear base, where traveling-wave phase velocity attains a local minimum and a local maximum and where the onset latencies of near-threshold impulse responses computed from responses to near-threshold white noise exhibit a local minimum. That region is the same where frequency-threshold tuning curves of auditory-nerve fibers undergo a shape transition. Since depolarization of inner hair cells presumably indicates the mechanical stimulus to their stereocilia, the present results suggest that distinct low-frequency forward waves of organ of Corti vibration are launched simultaneously at the extreme base of the cochlea and at the 6.5–9 mm transition region, from where antiphasic reflections arise. PMID:22855802

  18. Genetic mapping of variation in spatial learning in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Steinberger, Daniela; Reynolds, David S; Ferris, Pushpindar; Lincoln, Rachael; Datta, Susmita; Stanley, Joanna; Paterson, Andrea; Dawson, Gerard R; Flint, Jonathan

    2003-03-15

    Inbred strains of mice are known to differ in their performance in the Morris water maze task, a test of spatial discrimination and place navigation in rodents, but the genetic basis of individual variation in spatial learning is unknown. We have mapped genetic effects that contribute to the difference between two strains, DBA/2 and C57BL6/J, using an F2 intercross and methods to detect quantitative trait loci (QTL). We found two QTL, one on chromosome 4 and one on chromosome 12, that influence behavior in the probe trial of the water maze (genome-wide significance p = 0.017 and 0.015, respectively). By including tests of avoidance conditioning and behavior in a novel environment, we show that the QTL on chromosomes 4 and 12 specifically influence variation in spatial learning. QTL that influence differences in fearful behavior (on chromosomes 1, 3, 7, 15, and 19) operate while mice are trained in the water maze apparatus. PMID:12657702

  19. Topological Schemas of Cognitive Maps and Spatial Learning

    PubMed Central

    Babichev, Andrey; Cheng, Sen; Dabaghian, Yuri A.

    2016-01-01

    Spatial navigation in mammals is based on building a mental representation of their environment—a cognitive map. However, both the nature of this cognitive map and its underpinning in neural structures and activity remains vague. A key difficulty is that these maps are collective, emergent phenomena that cannot be reduced to a simple combination of inputs provided by individual neurons. In this paper we suggest computational frameworks for integrating the spiking signals of individual cells into a spatial map, which we call schemas. We provide examples of four schemas defined by different types of topological relations that may be neurophysiologically encoded in the brain and demonstrate that each schema provides its own large-scale characteristics of the environment—the schema integrals. Moreover, we find that, in all cases, these integrals are learned at a rate which is faster than the rate of complete training of neural networks. Thus, the proposed schema framework differentiates between the cognitive aspect of spatial learning and the physiological aspect at the neural network level. PMID:27014045

  20. Implicit Learning of Viewpoint-Independent Spatial Layouts

    PubMed Central

    Tsuchiai, Taiga; Matsumiya, Kazumichi; Kuriki, Ichiro; Shioiri, Satoshi

    2012-01-01

    We usually perceive things in our surroundings as unchanged despite viewpoint changes caused by self-motion. The visual system therefore must have a function to process objects independently of viewpoint. In this study, we examined whether viewpoint-independent spatial layout can be obtained implicitly. For this purpose, we used a contextual cueing effect, a learning effect of spatial layout in visual search displays known to be an implicit effect. We investigated the transfer of the contextual cueing effect to images from a different viewpoint by using visual search displays of 3D objects. For images from a different viewpoint, the contextual cueing effect was maintained with self-motion but disappeared when the display changed without self-motion. This indicates that there is an implicit learning effect in environment-centered coordinates and suggests that the spatial representation of object layouts can be obtained and updated implicitly. We also showed that binocular disparity plays an important role in the layout representations. PMID:22740837

  1. Topological Schemas of Cognitive Maps and Spatial Learning.

    PubMed

    Babichev, Andrey; Cheng, Sen; Dabaghian, Yuri A

    2016-01-01

    Spatial navigation in mammals is based on building a mental representation of their environment-a cognitive map. However, both the nature of this cognitive map and its underpinning in neural structures and activity remains vague. A key difficulty is that these maps are collective, emergent phenomena that cannot be reduced to a simple combination of inputs provided by individual neurons. In this paper we suggest computational frameworks for integrating the spiking signals of individual cells into a spatial map, which we call schemas. We provide examples of four schemas defined by different types of topological relations that may be neurophysiologically encoded in the brain and demonstrate that each schema provides its own large-scale characteristics of the environment-the schema integrals. Moreover, we find that, in all cases, these integrals are learned at a rate which is faster than the rate of complete training of neural networks. Thus, the proposed schema framework differentiates between the cognitive aspect of spatial learning and the physiological aspect at the neural network level.

  2. Spatial Generalization in Operant Learning: Lessons from Professional Basketball

    PubMed Central

    Neiman, Tal; Loewenstein, Yonatan

    2014-01-01

    In operant learning, behaviors are reinforced or inhibited in response to the consequences of similar actions taken in the past. However, because in natural environments the “same” situation never recurs, it is essential for the learner to decide what “similar” is so that he can generalize from experience in one state of the world to future actions in different states of the world. The computational principles underlying this generalization are poorly understood, in particular because natural environments are typically too complex to study quantitatively. In this paper we study the principles underlying generalization in operant learning of professional basketball players. In particular, we utilize detailed information about the spatial organization of shot locations to study how players adapt their attacking strategy in real time according to recent events in the game. To quantify this learning, we study how a make \\ miss from one location in the court affects the probabilities of shooting from different locations. We show that generalization is not a spatially-local process, nor is governed by the difficulty of the shot. Rather, to a first approximation, players use a simplified binary representation of the court into 2 pt and 3 pt zones. This result indicates that rather than using low-level features, generalization is determined by high-level cognitive processes that incorporate the abstract rules of the game. PMID:24853373

  3. Spatial generalization in operant learning: lessons from professional basketball.

    PubMed

    Neiman, Tal; Loewenstein, Yonatan

    2014-05-01

    In operant learning, behaviors are reinforced or inhibited in response to the consequences of similar actions taken in the past. However, because in natural environments the "same" situation never recurs, it is essential for the learner to decide what "similar" is so that he can generalize from experience in one state of the world to future actions in different states of the world. The computational principles underlying this generalization are poorly understood, in particular because natural environments are typically too complex to study quantitatively. In this paper we study the principles underlying generalization in operant learning of professional basketball players. In particular, we utilize detailed information about the spatial organization of shot locations to study how players adapt their attacking strategy in real time according to recent events in the game. To quantify this learning, we study how a make\\miss from one location in the court affects the probabilities of shooting from different locations. We show that generalization is not a spatially-local process, nor is governed by the difficulty of the shot. Rather, to a first approximation, players use a simplified binary representation of the court into 2 pt and 3 pt zones. This result indicates that rather than using low-level features, generalization is determined by high-level cognitive processes that incorporate the abstract rules of the game. PMID:24853373

  4. Spatial generalization in operant learning: lessons from professional basketball.

    PubMed

    Neiman, Tal; Loewenstein, Yonatan

    2014-05-01

    In operant learning, behaviors are reinforced or inhibited in response to the consequences of similar actions taken in the past. However, because in natural environments the "same" situation never recurs, it is essential for the learner to decide what "similar" is so that he can generalize from experience in one state of the world to future actions in different states of the world. The computational principles underlying this generalization are poorly understood, in particular because natural environments are typically too complex to study quantitatively. In this paper we study the principles underlying generalization in operant learning of professional basketball players. In particular, we utilize detailed information about the spatial organization of shot locations to study how players adapt their attacking strategy in real time according to recent events in the game. To quantify this learning, we study how a make\\miss from one location in the court affects the probabilities of shooting from different locations. We show that generalization is not a spatially-local process, nor is governed by the difficulty of the shot. Rather, to a first approximation, players use a simplified binary representation of the court into 2 pt and 3 pt zones. This result indicates that rather than using low-level features, generalization is determined by high-level cognitive processes that incorporate the abstract rules of the game.

  5. Auditory agnosia.

    PubMed

    Slevc, L Robert; Shell, Alison R

    2015-01-01

    Auditory agnosia refers to impairments in sound perception and identification despite intact hearing, cognitive functioning, and language abilities (reading, writing, and speaking). Auditory agnosia can be general, affecting all types of sound perception, or can be (relatively) specific to a particular domain. Verbal auditory agnosia (also known as (pure) word deafness) refers to deficits specific to speech processing, environmental sound agnosia refers to difficulties confined to non-speech environmental sounds, and amusia refers to deficits confined to music. These deficits can be apperceptive, affecting basic perceptual processes, or associative, affecting the relation of a perceived auditory object to its meaning. This chapter discusses what is known about the behavioral symptoms and lesion correlates of these different types of auditory agnosia (focusing especially on verbal auditory agnosia), evidence for the role of a rapid temporal processing deficit in some aspects of auditory agnosia, and the few attempts to treat the perceptual deficits associated with auditory agnosia. A clear picture of auditory agnosia has been slow to emerge, hampered by the considerable heterogeneity in behavioral deficits, associated brain damage, and variable assessments across cases. Despite this lack of clarity, these striking deficits in complex sound processing continue to inform our understanding of auditory perception and cognition.

  6. Allocentric spatial learning and memory deficits in Down syndrome.

    PubMed

    Lavenex, Pamela Banta; Bostelmann, Mathilde; Brandner, Catherine; Costanzo, Floriana; Fragnière, Emilie; Klencklen, Giuliana; Lavenex, Pierre; Menghini, Deny; Vicari, Stefano

    2015-01-01

    Studies have shown that persons with Down syndrome (DS) exhibit relatively poor language capacities, and impaired verbal and visuoperceptual memory, whereas their visuospatial memory capacities appear comparatively spared. Individuals with DS recall better where an object was previously seen than what object was previously seen. However, most of the evidence concerning preserved visuospatial memory comes from tabletop or computerized experiments which are biased toward testing egocentric (viewpoint-dependent) spatial representations. Accordingly, allocentric (viewpoint-independent) spatial learning and memory capacities may not be necessary to perform these tasks. Thus, in order to more fully characterize the spatial capacities of individuals with DS, allocentric processes underlying real-world navigation must also be investigated. We tested 20 participants with DS and 16 mental age-matched, typically developing (TD) children in a real-world, allocentric spatial (AS) memory task. During local cue (LC) trials, participants had to locate three rewards marked by local color cues, among 12 locations distributed in a 4 m × 4 m arena. During AS trials, participants had to locate the same three rewards, in absence of LCs, based on their relations to distal environmental cues. All TD participants chose rewarded locations in LC and AS trials at above chance level. In contrast, although all but one of the participants with DS exhibited a preference for the rewarded locations in LC trials, only 50% of participants with DS chose the rewarded locations at above chance level in AS trials. As a group, participants with DS performed worse than TD children on all measures of task performance. These findings demonstrate that individuals with DS are impaired at using an AS representation to learn and remember discrete locations in a controlled environment, suggesting persistent and pervasive deficits in hippocampus-dependent memory in DS. PMID:25762946

  7. Allocentric spatial learning and memory deficits in Down syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Lavenex, Pamela Banta; Bostelmann, Mathilde; Brandner, Catherine; Costanzo, Floriana; Fragnière, Emilie; Klencklen, Giuliana; Lavenex, Pierre; Menghini, Deny; Vicari, Stefano

    2015-01-01

    Studies have shown that persons with Down syndrome (DS) exhibit relatively poor language capacities, and impaired verbal and visuoperceptual memory, whereas their visuospatial memory capacities appear comparatively spared. Individuals with DS recall better where an object was previously seen than what object was previously seen. However, most of the evidence concerning preserved visuospatial memory comes from tabletop or computerized experiments which are biased toward testing egocentric (viewpoint-dependent) spatial representations. Accordingly, allocentric (viewpoint-independent) spatial learning and memory capacities may not be necessary to perform these tasks. Thus, in order to more fully characterize the spatial capacities of individuals with DS, allocentric processes underlying real-world navigation must also be investigated. We tested 20 participants with DS and 16 mental age-matched, typically developing (TD) children in a real-world, allocentric spatial (AS) memory task. During local cue (LC) trials, participants had to locate three rewards marked by local color cues, among 12 locations distributed in a 4 m × 4 m arena. During AS trials, participants had to locate the same three rewards, in absence of LCs, based on their relations to distal environmental cues. All TD participants chose rewarded locations in LC and AS trials at above chance level. In contrast, although all but one of the participants with DS exhibited a preference for the rewarded locations in LC trials, only 50% of participants with DS chose the rewarded locations at above chance level in AS trials. As a group, participants with DS performed worse than TD children on all measures of task performance. These findings demonstrate that individuals with DS are impaired at using an AS representation to learn and remember discrete locations in a controlled environment, suggesting persistent and pervasive deficits in hippocampus-dependent memory in DS. PMID:25762946

  8. Piglets Learn to Use Combined Human-Given Visual and Auditory Signals to Find a Hidden Reward in an Object Choice Task

    PubMed Central

    Bensoussan, Sandy; Cornil, Maude; Meunier-Salaün, Marie-Christine; Tallet, Céline

    2016-01-01

    Although animals rarely use only one sense to communicate, few studies have investigated the use of combinations of different signals between animals and humans. This study assessed for the first time the spontaneous reactions of piglets to human pointing gestures and voice in an object-choice task with a reward. Piglets (Sus scrofa domestica) mainly use auditory signals–individually or in combination with other signals—to communicate with their conspecifics. Their wide hearing range (42 Hz to 40.5 kHz) fits the range of human vocalisations (40 Hz to 1.5 kHz), which may induce sensitivity to the human voice. However, only their ability to use visual signals from humans, especially pointing gestures, has been assessed to date. The current study investigated the effects of signal type (visual, auditory and combined visual and auditory) and piglet experience on the piglets’ ability to locate a hidden food reward over successive tests. Piglets did not find the hidden reward at first presentation, regardless of the signal type given. However, they subsequently learned to use a combination of auditory and visual signals (human voice and static or dynamic pointing gestures) to successfully locate the reward in later tests. This learning process may result either from repeated presentations of the combination of static gestures and auditory signals over successive tests, or from transitioning from static to dynamic pointing gestures, again over successive tests. Furthermore, piglets increased their chance of locating the reward either if they did not go straight to a bowl after entering the test area or if they stared at the experimenter before visiting it. Piglets were not able to use the voice direction alone, indicating that a combination of signals (pointing and voice direction) is necessary. Improving our communication with animals requires adapting to their individual sensitivity to human-given signals. PMID:27792731

  9. The combination of appetitive and aversive reinforcers and the nature of their interaction during auditory learning.

    PubMed

    Ilango, A; Wetzel, W; Scheich, H; Ohl, F W

    2010-03-31

    Learned changes in behavior can be elicited by either appetitive or aversive reinforcers. It is, however, not clear whether the two types of motivation, (approaching appetitive stimuli and avoiding aversive stimuli) drive learning in the same or different ways, nor is their interaction understood in situations where the two types are combined in a single experiment. To investigate this question we have developed a novel learning paradigm for Mongolian gerbils, which not only allows rewards and punishments to be presented in isolation or in combination with each other, but also can use these opposite reinforcers to drive the same learned behavior. Specifically, we studied learning of tone-conditioned hurdle crossing in a shuttle box driven by either an appetitive reinforcer (brain stimulation reward) or an aversive reinforcer (electrical footshock), or by a combination of both. Combination of the two reinforcers potentiated speed of acquisition, led to maximum possible performance, and delayed extinction as compared to either reinforcer alone. Additional experiments, using partial reinforcement protocols and experiments in which one of the reinforcers was omitted after the animals had been previously trained with the combination of both reinforcers, indicated that appetitive and aversive reinforcers operated together but acted in different ways: in this particular experimental context, punishment appeared to be more effective for initial acquisition and reward more effective to maintain a high level of conditioned responses (CRs). The results imply that learning mechanisms in problem solving were maximally effective when the initial punishment of mistakes was combined with the subsequent rewarding of correct performance.

  10. Active and Passive Spatial Learning in Human Navigation: Acquisition of Graph Knowledge

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chrastil, Elizabeth R.; Warren, William H.

    2015-01-01

    It is known that active exploration of a new environment leads to better spatial learning than does passive visual exposure. We ask whether specific components of active learning differentially contribute to particular forms of spatial knowledge--the "exploration-specific learning hypothesis". Previously, we found that idiothetic…

  11. Contributions of Sensory Coding and Attentional Control to Individual Differences in Performance in Spatial Auditory Selective Attention Tasks

    PubMed Central

    Dai, Lengshi; Shinn-Cunningham, Barbara G.

    2016-01-01

    Listeners with normal hearing thresholds (NHTs) differ in their ability to steer attention to whatever sound source is important. This ability depends on top-down executive control, which modulates the sensory representation of sound in the cortex. Yet, this sensory representation also depends on the coding fidelity of the peripheral auditory system. Both of these factors may thus contribute to the individual differences in performance. We designed a selective auditory attention paradigm in which we could simultaneously measure envelope following responses (EFRs, reflecting peripheral coding), onset event-related potentials (ERPs) from the scalp (reflecting cortical responses to sound) and behavioral scores. We performed two experiments that varied stimulus conditions to alter the degree to which performance might be limited due to fine stimulus details vs. due to control of attentional focus. Consistent with past work, in both experiments we find that attention strongly modulates cortical ERPs. Importantly, in Experiment I, where coding fidelity limits the task, individual behavioral performance correlates with subcortical coding strength (derived by computing how the EFR is degraded for fully masked tones compared to partially masked tones); however, in this experiment, the effects of attention on cortical ERPs were unrelated to individual subject performance. In contrast, in Experiment II, where sensory cues for segregation are robust (and thus less of a limiting factor on task performance), inter-subject behavioral differences correlate with subcortical coding strength. In addition, after factoring out the influence of subcortical coding strength, behavioral differences are also correlated with the strength of attentional modulation of ERPs. These results support the hypothesis that behavioral abilities amongst listeners with NHTs can arise due to both subcortical coding differences and differences in attentional control, depending on stimulus characteristics

  12. Learning from Heterogeneous Data Sources: An Application in Spatial Proteomics

    PubMed Central

    Breckels, Lisa M.; Holden, Sean B.; Wojnar, David; Mulvey, Claire M.; Christoforou, Andy; Groen, Arnoud; Trotter, Matthew W. B.; Kohlbacher, Oliver; Lilley, Kathryn S.; Gatto, Laurent

    2016-01-01

    Sub-cellular localisation of proteins is an essential post-translational regulatory mechanism that can be assayed using high-throughput mass spectrometry (MS). These MS-based spatial proteomics experiments enable us to pinpoint the sub-cellular distribution of thousands of proteins in a specific system under controlled conditions. Recent advances in high-throughput MS methods have yielded a plethora of experimental spatial proteomics data for the cell biology community. Yet, there are many third-party data sources, such as immunofluorescence microscopy or protein annotations and sequences, which represent a rich and vast source of complementary information. We present a unique transfer learning classification framework that utilises a nearest-neighbour or support vector machine system, to integrate heterogeneous data sources to considerably improve on the quantity and quality of sub-cellular protein assignment. We demonstrate the utility of our algorithms through evaluation of five experimental datasets, from four different species in conjunction with four different auxiliary data sources to classify proteins to tens of sub-cellular compartments with high generalisation accuracy. We further apply the method to an experiment on pluripotent mouse embryonic stem cells to classify a set of previously unknown proteins, and validate our findings against a recent high resolution map of the mouse stem cell proteome. The methodology is distributed as part of the open-source Bioconductor pRoloc suite for spatial proteomics data analysis. PMID:27175778

  13. Learning from Heterogeneous Data Sources: An Application in Spatial Proteomics.

    PubMed

    Breckels, Lisa M; Holden, Sean B; Wojnar, David; Mulvey, Claire M; Christoforou, Andy; Groen, Arnoud; Trotter, Matthew W B; Kohlbacher, Oliver; Lilley, Kathryn S; Gatto, Laurent

    2016-05-01

    Sub-cellular localisation of proteins is an essential post-translational regulatory mechanism that can be assayed using high-throughput mass spectrometry (MS). These MS-based spatial proteomics experiments enable us to pinpoint the sub-cellular distribution of thousands of proteins in a specific system under controlled conditions. Recent advances in high-throughput MS methods have yielded a plethora of experimental spatial proteomics data for the cell biology community. Yet, there are many third-party data sources, such as immunofluorescence microscopy or protein annotations and sequences, which represent a rich and vast source of complementary information. We present a unique transfer learning classification framework that utilises a nearest-neighbour or support vector machine system, to integrate heterogeneous data sources to considerably improve on the quantity and quality of sub-cellular protein assignment. We demonstrate the utility of our algorithms through evaluation of five experimental datasets, from four different species in conjunction with four different auxiliary data sources to classify proteins to tens of sub-cellular compartments with high generalisation accuracy. We further apply the method to an experiment on pluripotent mouse embryonic stem cells to classify a set of previously unknown proteins, and validate our findings against a recent high resolution map of the mouse stem cell proteome. The methodology is distributed as part of the open-source Bioconductor pRoloc suite for spatial proteomics data analysis.

  14. The detection of faked deficits on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test: the effect of serial position.

    PubMed

    Bernard, L C

    1991-01-01

    The ability of subjects to fake deficits on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (AVLT) was evaluated. Subjects were randomly assigned to one of two malingering groups - one with a financial incentive (N = 30) and one without (N = 28) - or a control group (C) (N = 28), and a group of closed head injury patients (CHI) (N = 18) was matched on age, sex, and education level. The two malingering groups did not differ significantly and were combined into a single malingering group (M) (N = 57). There was a significant serial position (the pattern of "recency" and "primacy" effects in recall) by group interaction effect, which may be the most promising indicator of deliberate distortion. When only level of performance was examined, the M group could fake believable deficits, but when the serial position effect was examined, it revealed that this was accomplished by suppression of recall from the first third of the word list (reducing the "primacy effect"), a recall pattern which did not occur in either the C or CHI group and may be an indication of malingering.

  15. Learning multisensory representations for auditory-visual transfer of sequence category knowledge: a probabilistic language of thought approach.

    PubMed

    Yildirim, Ilker; Jacobs, Robert A

    2015-06-01

    If a person is trained to recognize or categorize objects or events using one sensory modality, the person can often recognize or categorize those same (or similar) objects and events via a novel modality. This phenomenon is an instance of cross-modal transfer of knowledge. Here, we study the Multisensory Hypothesis which states that people extract the intrinsic, modality-independent properties of objects and events, and represent these properties in multisensory representations. These representations underlie cross-modal transfer of knowledge. We conducted an experiment evaluating whether people transfer sequence category knowledge across auditory and visual domains. Our experimental data clearly indicate that we do. We also developed a computational model accounting for our experimental results. Consistent with the probabilistic language of thought approach to cognitive modeling, our model formalizes multisensory representations as symbolic "computer programs" and uses Bayesian inference to learn these representations. Because the model demonstrates how the acquisition and use of amodal, multisensory representations can underlie cross-modal transfer of knowledge, and because the model accounts for subjects' experimental performances, our work lends credence to the Multisensory Hypothesis. Overall, our work suggests that people automatically extract and represent objects' and events' intrinsic properties, and use these properties to process and understand the same (and similar) objects and events when they are perceived through novel sensory modalities.

  16. The combination of appetitive and aversive reinforcers and the nature of their interaction during auditory learning.

    PubMed

    Ilango, A; Wetzel, W; Scheich, H; Ohl, F W

    2010-03-31

    Learned changes in behavior can be elicited by either appetitive or aversive reinforcers. It is, however, not clear whether the two types of motivation, (approaching appetitive stimuli and avoiding aversive stimuli) drive learning in the same or different ways, nor is their interaction understood in situations where the two types are combined in a single experiment. To investigate this question we have developed a novel learning paradigm for Mongolian gerbils, which not only allows rewards and punishments to be presented in isolation or in combination with each other, but also can use these opposite reinforcers to drive the same learned behavior. Specifically, we studied learning of tone-conditioned hurdle crossing in a shuttle box driven by either an appetitive reinforcer (brain stimulation reward) or an aversive reinforcer (electrical footshock), or by a combination of both. Combination of the two reinforcers potentiated speed of acquisition, led to maximum possible performance, and delayed extinction as compared to either reinforcer alone. Additional experiments, using partial reinforcement protocols and experiments in which one of the reinforcers was omitted after the animals had been previously trained with the combination of both reinforcers, indicated that appetitive and aversive reinforcers operated together but acted in different ways: in this particular experimental context, punishment appeared to be more effective for initial acquisition and reward more effective to maintain a high level of conditioned responses (CRs). The results imply that learning mechanisms in problem solving were maximally effective when the initial punishment of mistakes was combined with the subsequent rewarding of correct performance. PMID:20080152

  17. Contact call-driven Zenk protein induction and habituation in telencephalic auditory pathways in the Budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus): implications for understanding vocal learning processes.

    PubMed

    Brauth, Steven; Liang, Wenru; Roberts, Todd F; Scott, Lindsey L; Quinlan, Elizabeth M

    2002-01-01

    Expression of the immediate early gene protein Zenk (zif 268, egr-1, NGF1A, Krox24) was induced in forebrain auditory nuclei in a vocal learning parrot species, the budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus), when the subjects either listened to playbacks of an unfamiliar contact call or to a contact call with which they had been familiarized previously. Auditory nuclei included the Field L complex (L1, L2a, and L3), the neostriatum intermedium pars ventrolateralis (NIVL), the neostriatum adjacent to caudal nucleus basalis (peri-basalis or pBas), an area in the frontal lateral neostriatum (NFl), the supracentral nucleus of the lateral neostriatum (NLs), and the ventromedial hyperstriatum ventrale (HVvm). The latter three nuclei are main sources of auditory input to the vocal system. Two patterns of nuclear staining were induced by contact call stimulation-staining throughout cell nuclei, which was exhibited by at least some neurons in all areas examined except L2a and perinucleolar staining, which was the only kind of staining exhibited in field L2a. The different patterns of Zenk staining indicate that auditory stimulation may regulate the Zenk-dependent transcription of different subsets of genes in different auditory nuclei. The numbers of neurons expressing Zenk staining increased from seven- to 43-fold over control levels when the birds listened to a repeating unfamiliar call. Familiarization of the subjects with the call stimulus, through repeated playbacks, greatly reduced the induction of Zenk expression to the call when it was presented again after an intervening 24-h interval. To determine if neurons exhibiting contact call-driven Zenk expression project to the vocal control system, call stimulation was coupled with dextran amines pathway tracing. The results indicated that tracer injections in the vocal nucleus HVo (oval nucleus of the hyperstriatum ventrale), in fields lateral to HVo and in NLs labeled many Zenk-positive neurons in HVvm, NFl, and NLs. These

  18. Age and education adjusted normative data and discriminative validity for Rey's Auditory Verbal Learning Test in the elderly Greek population.

    PubMed

    Messinis, Lambros; Nasios, Grigorios; Mougias, Antonios; Politis, Antonis; Zampakis, Petros; Tsiamaki, Eirini; Malefaki, Sonia; Gourzis, Phillipos; Papathanasopoulos, Panagiotis

    2016-01-01

    Rey's Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT) is a widely used neuropsychological test to assess episodic memory. In the present study we sought to establish normative and discriminative validity data for the RAVLT in the elderly population using previously adapted learning lists for the Greek adult population. We administered the test to 258 cognitively healthy elderly participants, aged 60-89 years, and two patient groups (192 with amnestic mild cognitive impairment, aMCI, and 65 with Alzheimer's disease, AD). From the statistical analyses, we found that age and education contributed significantly to most trials of the RAVLT, whereas the influence of gender was not significant. Younger elderly participants with higher education outperformed the older elderly with lower education levels. Moreover, both clinical groups performed significantly worse on most RAVLT trials and composite measures than matched cognitively healthy controls. Furthermore, the AD group performed more poorly than the aMCI group on most RAVLT variables. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis was used to examine the utility of the RAVLT trials to discriminate cognitively healthy controls from aMCI and AD patients. Area under the curve (AUC), an index of effect size, showed that most of the RAVLT measures (individual and composite) included in this study adequately differentiated between the performance of healthy elders and aMCI/AD patients. We also provide cutoff scores in discriminating cognitively healthy controls from aMCI and AD patients, based on the sensitivity and specificity of the prescribed scores. Moreover, we present age- and education-specific normative data for individual and composite scores for the Greek adapted RAVLT in elderly subjects aged between 60 and 89 years for use in clinical and research settings.

  19. Age and education adjusted normative data and discriminative validity for Rey's Auditory Verbal Learning Test in the elderly Greek population.

    PubMed

    Messinis, Lambros; Nasios, Grigorios; Mougias, Antonios; Politis, Antonis; Zampakis, Petros; Tsiamaki, Eirini; Malefaki, Sonia; Gourzis, Phillipos; Papathanasopoulos, Panagiotis

    2016-01-01

    Rey's Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT) is a widely used neuropsychological test to assess episodic memory. In the present study we sought to establish normative and discriminative validity data for the RAVLT in the elderly population using previously adapted learning lists for the Greek adult population. We administered the test to 258 cognitively healthy elderly participants, aged 60-89 years, and two patient groups (192 with amnestic mild cognitive impairment, aMCI, and 65 with Alzheimer's disease, AD). From the statistical analyses, we found that age and education contributed significantly to most trials of the RAVLT, whereas the influence of gender was not significant. Younger elderly participants with higher education outperformed the older elderly with lower education levels. Moreover, both clinical groups performed significantly worse on most RAVLT trials and composite measures than matched cognitively healthy controls. Furthermore, the AD group performed more poorly than the aMCI group on most RAVLT variables. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis was used to examine the utility of the RAVLT trials to discriminate cognitively healthy controls from aMCI and AD patients. Area under the curve (AUC), an index of effect size, showed that most of the RAVLT measures (individual and composite) included in this study adequately differentiated between the performance of healthy elders and aMCI/AD patients. We also provide cutoff scores in discriminating cognitively healthy controls from aMCI and AD patients, based on the sensitivity and specificity of the prescribed scores. Moreover, we present age- and education-specific normative data for individual and composite scores for the Greek adapted RAVLT in elderly subjects aged between 60 and 89 years for use in clinical and research settings. PMID:26588427

  20. Learning to Match Auditory and Visual Speech Cues: Social Influences on Acquisition of Phonological Categories

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Altvater-Mackensen, Nicole; Grossmann, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Infants' language exposure largely involves face-to-face interactions providing acoustic and visual speech cues but also social cues that might foster language learning. Yet, both audiovisual speech information and social information have so far received little attention in research on infants' early language development. Using a preferential…

  1. Neural Changes Associated with Nonspeech Auditory Category Learning Parallel Those of Speech Category Acquisition

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liu, Ran; Holt, Lori L.

    2011-01-01

    Native language experience plays a critical role in shaping speech categorization, but the exact mechanisms by which it does so are not well understood. Investigating category learning of nonspeech sounds with which listeners have no prior experience allows their experience to be systematically controlled in a way that is impossible to achieve by…

  2. Spatial Abilities at Different Scales: Individual Differences in Aptitude-Test Performance and Spatial-Layout Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hegarty, Mary; Montello, Daniel R.; Richardson, Anthony E.; Ishikawa, Toru; Lovelace, Kristin

    2006-01-01

    Most psychometric tests of spatial ability are paper-and-pencil tasks at the ''figural'' scale of space, in that they involve inspecting, imagining or mentally transforming small shapes or manipulable objects. Environmental spatial tasks, such as wayfinding or learning the layout of a building or city, are carried out in larger spaces that…

  3. How do spatial learning and memory occur in the brain? Coordinated learning of entorhinal grid cells and hippocampal place cells.

    PubMed

    Pilly, Praveen K; Grossberg, Stephen

    2012-05-01

    Spatial learning and memory are important for navigation and formation of episodic memories. The hippocampus and medial entorhinal cortex (MEC) are key brain areas for spatial learning and memory. Place cells in hippocampus fire whenever an animal is located in a specific region in the environment. Grid cells in the superficial layers of MEC provide inputs to place cells and exhibit remarkable regular hexagonal spatial firing patterns. They also exhibit a gradient of spatial scales along the dorsoventral axis of the MEC, with neighboring cells at a given dorsoventral location having different spatial phases. A neural model shows how a hierarchy of self-organizing maps, each obeying the same laws, responds to realistic rat trajectories by learning grid cells with hexagonal grid firing fields of multiple spatial scales and place cells with unimodal firing fields that fit neurophysiological data about their development in juvenile rats. The hippocampal place fields represent much larger spaces than the grid cells to support navigational behaviors. Both the entorhinal and hippocampal self-organizing maps amplify and learn to categorize the most energetic and frequent co-occurrences of their inputs. Top-down attentional mechanisms from hippocampus to MEC help to dynamically stabilize these spatial memories in both the model and neurophysiological data. Spatial learning through MEC to hippocampus occurs in parallel with temporal learning through lateral entorhinal cortex to hippocampus. These homologous spatial and temporal representations illustrate a kind of "neural relativity" that may provide a substrate for episodic learning and memory.

  4. Teachers' Spatial Anxiety Relates to 1st-and 2nd-Graders' Spatial Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gunderson, Elizabeth A.; Ramirez, Gerardo; Beilock, Sian L.; Levine, Susan C.

    2013-01-01

    Teachers' anxiety about an academic domain, such as math, can impact students' learning in that domain. We asked whether this relation held in the domain of spatial skill, given the importance of spatial skill for success in math and science and its malleability at a young age. We measured 1st-and 2nd-grade teachers' spatial anxiety…

  5. Performance of four age groups of normal elderly on the Rey Auditory-Verbal Learning Test.

    PubMed

    Mitrushina, M; Satz, P; Chervinsky, A; D'Elia, L

    1991-05-01

    This study explored effect of age on encoding, retention, and retrieval components of memory functioning in a sample of 156 healthy, elderly subjects between the ages of 57 and 85, partitioned into four age groups. Memory assessment was based on subjects' performance on the RAVLT, which consisted of five free-recall trials, recall after interference, and recognition trial. Significant group differences in recall were found on all five learning trials, whereas rates of learning, forgetting, and recognition did not differ for four age groups. In addition, primacy/recency effect was equally strong for all groups. Results suggest faulty retrieval mechanisms, whereas encoding and retention processes did not prove to be affected by aging.

  6. Perceptual learning and generalization resulting from training on an auditory amplitude-modulation detection task.

    PubMed

    Fitzgerald, Matthew B; Wright, Beverly A

    2011-02-01

    Fluctuations in sound amplitude provide important cues to the identity of many sounds including speech. Of interest here was whether the ability to detect these fluctuations can be improved with practice, and if so whether this learning generalizes to untrained cases. To address these issues, normal-hearing adults (n = 9) were trained to detect sinusoidal amplitude modulation (SAM; 80-Hz rate, 3-4 kHz bandpass carrier) 720 trials/day for 6-7 days and were tested before and after training on related SAM-detection and SAM-rate-discrimination conditions. Controls (n = 9) only participated in the pre- and post-tests. The trained listeners improved more than the controls on the trained condition between the pre- and post-tests, but different subgroups of trained listeners required different amounts of practice to reach asymptotic performance, ranging from 1 (n = 6) to 4-6 (n = 3) sessions. This training-induced learning did not generalize to detection with two untrained carrier spectra (5 kHz low-pass and 0.5-1.5 kHz bandpass) or to rate discrimination with the trained rate and carrier spectrum, but there was some indication that it generalized to detection with two untrained rates (30 and 150 Hz). Thus, practice improved the ability to detect amplitude modulation, but the generalization of this learning to untrained cases was somewhat limited.

  7. Dissociable effects of selective lesions to hippocampal subsystems on exploratory behavior, contextual learning, and spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Good, M; Honey, R C

    1997-06-01

    Rats received excitotoxic lesions of different subsystems within the hippocampal system--either the hippocampus proper (cornu ammonis and dentate gyrus; hippocampal lesions) or the entorhinal cortex-subicular region (entorhinal lesions). Subsequently, their activity in an operant chamber was monitored both before and after footshock had been delivered (Experiment 1). Rats with hippocampal lesions showed enhanced activity before the delivery of footshock and reduced freezing after the delivery of shock. Rats with entorhinal lesions showed control levels of activity before the delivery of footshock and control levels of freezing after the delivery of footshock. Both types of lesion impaired spatial learning in a water maze (Experiment 2). These results suggest that the deficits arising from damage to the hippocampal system in contextual and spatial learning have different origins. PMID:9189263

  8. Changing Auditory Time with Prismatic Goggles

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Magnani, Barbara; Pavani, Francesco; Frassinetti, Francesca

    2012-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to explore the spatial organization of auditory time and the effects of the manipulation of spatial attention on such a representation. In two experiments, we asked 28 adults to classify the duration of auditory stimuli as "short" or "long". Stimuli were tones of high or low pitch, delivered left or right of the…

  9. Baclofen infused in rat hippocampal formation impairs spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Arolfo, M P; Zanudio, M A; Ramirez, O A

    1998-01-01

    Recent studies show that baclofen, a selective GABA(B) agonist, impairs different kinds of learning. In the present study we investigated the effect of microinfused baclofen into the hippocampus of male Wistar rats, on the performance in the Morris water maze. Rats of 8-10 weeks of age were implanted with cannulae aimed bilaterally at the hippocampal formation. Baclofen (1 microl of 0.2 mM, 2.0 mM, and 20.0 mM) or sterilized saline was microinfused 1 h before each daily session (3 trials/session, 1 session/day) for 4 days. On the fifth day, the animals did not receive drug or saline injections and the retention of the location of the escape platform was tested in a 30 s free swim trial. Results from the free swim trial indicate that the doses of baclofen used during training affected the ability of the rats to swim to the target quadrant. Although no significant difference compared with the saline group was observed, the experimental rats showed a more generalized swim trajectory in the area of the target and both adjacent quadrants. Moreover, 1 microl of 20.0 mM baclofen also impaired the acquisition. We suggest that baclofen has an impairing action on spatial learning, although more studies should be conducted to reach a more precise conclusion.

  10. Place field repetition and spatial learning in a multicompartment environment

    PubMed Central

    Grieves, Roddy M.; Jenkins, Bryan W.; Harland, Bruce C.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Recent studies have shown that place cells in the hippocampus possess firing fields that repeat in physically similar, parallel environments. These results imply that it should be difficult for animals to distinguish parallel environments at a behavioral level. To test this, we trained rats on a novel odor‐location task in an environment with four parallel compartments which had previously been shown to yield place field repetition. A second group of animals was trained on the same task, but with the compartments arranged in different directions, an arrangement we hypothesised would yield less place field repetition. Learning of the odor‐location task in the parallel compartments was significantly impaired relative to learning in the radially arranged compartments. Fewer animals acquired the full discrimination in the parallel compartments compared to those trained in the radial compartments, and the former also required many more sessions to reach criterion compared to the latter. To confirm that the arrangement of compartments yielded differences in place cell repetition, in a separate group of animals we recorded from CA1 place cells in both environments. We found that CA1 place cells exhibited repeated fields across four parallel local compartments, but did not do so when the same compartments were arranged radially. To confirm that the differences in place field repetition across the parallel and radial compartments depended on their angular arrangement, and not incidental differences in access to an extra‐maze visual landmark, we repeated the recordings in a second set of rats in the absence of the orientation landmark. We found, once again, that place fields showed repetition in parallel compartments, and did not do so in radially arranged compartments. Thus place field repetition, or lack thereof, in these compartments was not dependent on extra‐maze cues. Together, these results imply that place field repetition constrains spatial learning

  11. Place field repetition and spatial learning in a multicompartment environment.

    PubMed

    Grieves, Roddy M; Jenkins, Bryan W; Harland, Bruce C; Wood, Emma R; Dudchenko, Paul A

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies have shown that place cells in the hippocampus possess firing fields that repeat in physically similar, parallel environments. These results imply that it should be difficult for animals to distinguish parallel environments at a behavioral level. To test this, we trained rats on a novel odor-location task in an environment with four parallel compartments which had previously been shown to yield place field repetition. A second group of animals was trained on the same task, but with the compartments arranged in different directions, an arrangement we hypothesised would yield less place field repetition. Learning of the odor-location task in the parallel compartments was significantly impaired relative to learning in the radially arranged compartments. Fewer animals acquired the full discrimination in the parallel compartments compared to those trained in the radial compartments, and the former also required many more sessions to reach criterion compared to the latter. To confirm that the arrangement of compartments yielded differences in place cell repetition, in a separate group of animals we recorded from CA1 place cells in both environments. We found that CA1 place cells exhibited repeated fields across four parallel local compartments, but did not do so when the same compartments were arranged radially. To confirm that the differences in place field repetition across the parallel and radial compartments depended on their angular arrangement, and not incidental differences in access to an extra-maze visual landmark, we repeated the recordings in a second set of rats in the absence of the orientation landmark. We found, once again, that place fields showed repetition in parallel compartments, and did not do so in radially arranged compartments. Thus place field repetition, or lack thereof, in these compartments was not dependent on extra-maze cues. Together, these results imply that place field repetition constrains spatial learning.

  12. Situated student learning and spatial informational analysis for environmental problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olsen, Timothy Paul

    Ninth and tenth grade high school Biology student research teams used spatial information analysis tools to site a prairie restoration plot on a 55 acre campus during a four-week environment unit. Students made use of innovative technological practices by applying geographic information systems (GIS) approaches to solving environmental and land use problems. Student learning was facilitated by starting with the students' initial conceptions of computing, local landscape and biological environment, and then by guiding them through a problem-based science project process. The project curriculum was framed by the perspective of legitimate peripheral participation (Lave & Wenger, 1991) where students were provided with learning opportunities designed to allow them to act like GIS practitioners. Sociocultural lenses for learning were employed to create accounts of human mental processes that recognize the essential relationship between these processes and their cultural, historical, and institutional settings (Jacob, 1997; Wertsch, 1991). This research investigated how student groups' meaning-making actions were mediated by GIS tools on the periphery of a scientific community of practice. Research observations focused on supporting interpretations of learners' socially constructed actions and the iterative building of assertions from multiple sources. These included the artifacts students produced, the tools they used, the cultural contexts that constrained their activity, and how people begin to adopt ways of speaking (speech genres) of the referent community to negotiate meanings and roles. Students gathered field observations and interpreted attributes of landscape entities from the GIS data to advocate for an environmental decision. However, even while gaining proficiencies with GIS tools, most students did not begin to appropriate roles from the GIS community of practice. Students continued to negotiate their project actions simply as school exercises motivated by

  13. A reinforcement learning approach to model interactions between landmarks and geometric cues during spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Sheynikhovich, Denis; Arleo, Angelo

    2010-12-13

    In contrast to predictions derived from the associative learning theory, a number of behavioral studies suggested the absence of competition between geometric cues and landmarks in some experimental paradigms. In parallel to these studies, neurobiological experiments suggested the existence of separate independent memory systems which may not always interact according to classic associative principles. In this paper we attempt to combine these two lines of research by proposing a model of spatial learning that is based on the theory of multiple memory systems. In our model, a place-based locale strategy uses activities of modeled hippocampal place cells to drive navigation to a hidden goal, while a stimulus-response taxon strategy, presumably mediated by the dorso-lateral striatum, learns landmark-approaching behavior. A strategy selection network, proposed to reside in the prefrontal cortex, implements a simple reinforcement learning rule to switch behavioral strategies. The model is used to reproduce the results of a behavioral experiment in which an interaction between a landmark and geometric cues was studied. We show that this model, built on the basis of neurobiological data, can explain the lack of competition between the landmark and geometry, potentiation of geometry learning by the landmark, and blocking. Namely, we propose that the geometry potentiation is a consequence of cooperation between memory systems during learning, while blocking is due to competition between the memory systems during action selection.

  14. Measurements of temporal-spatial change in blood flow and volume in exposed cortex of guinea pig evoked by auditory stimulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakayama, Haruka; Sakaguchi, Koichiro; Matsuo, Satoshi; Sakashita, Naotaka; Katsura, Takushige; Yamazaki, Kyoko; Tanaka, Naoki; Kawaguchi, Hideo; Maki, Atsushi; Okada, Eiji

    2009-07-01

    The changes in cortical blood flow and blood volume of guinea pigs during auditory stimulation are measured by optical imaging systems. In this study, the change in blood flow distribution was measured by the laser speckle method and the change in blood volume was measured by the multi-spectral imaging system. The significant increase in blood flow and volume was observed around one side of the auditory area just after the onset of the stimulation. The decrease in blood volume around the other side of the auditory area was observed whereas the blood flow surrounding the auditory area is decreased during the post-resting period.

  15. Spatial Learning Depends on Both the Addition and Removal of New Hippocampal Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Dupret, David; Fabre, Annabelle; Döbrössy, Màtè Dàniel; Panatier, Aude; Rodríguez, José Julio; Lamarque, Stéphanie; Lemaire, Valerie; Oliet, Stephane H. R

    2007-01-01

    The role of adult hippocampal neurogenesis in spatial learning remains a matter of debate. Here, we show that spatial learning modifies neurogenesis by inducing a cascade of events that resembles the selective stabilization process characterizing development. Learning promotes survival of relatively mature neurons, apoptosis of more immature cells, and finally, proliferation of neural precursors. These are three interrelated events mediating learning. Thus, blocking apoptosis impairs memory and inhibits learning-induced cell survival and cell proliferation. In conclusion, during learning, similar to the selective stabilization process, neuronal networks are sculpted by a tightly regulated selection and suppression of different populations of newly born neurons. PMID:17683201

  16. Spiking Neurons Learning Phase Delays: How Mammals May Develop Auditory Time-Difference Sensitivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leibold, Christian; van Hemmen, J. Leo

    2005-04-01

    Time differences between the two ears are an important cue for animals to azimuthally locate a sound source. The first binaural brainstem nucleus, in mammals the medial superior olive, is generally believed to perform the necessary computations. Its cells are sensitive to variations of interaural time differences of about 10 μs. The classical explanation of such a neuronal time-difference tuning is based on the physical concept of delay lines. Recent data, however, are inconsistent with a temporal delay and rather favor a phase delay. By means of a biophysical model we show how spike-timing-dependent synaptic learning explains precise interplay of excitation and inhibition and, hence, accounts for a physical realization of a phase delay.

  17. The Encoding of Auditory Objects in Auditory Cortex: Insights from Magnetoencephalography

    PubMed Central

    Simon, Jonathan Z.

    2014-01-01

    Auditory objects, like their visual counterparts, are perceptually defined constructs, but nevertheless must arise from underlying neural circuitry. Using magnetoencephalography (MEG) recordings of the neural responses of human subjects listening to complex auditory scenes, we review studies that demonstrate that auditory objects are indeed neurally represented in auditory cortex. The studies use neural responses obtained from different experiments in which subjects selectively listen to one of two competing auditory streams embedded in a variety of auditory scenes. The auditory streams overlap spatially and often spectrally. In particular, the studies demonstrate that selective attentional gain does not act globally on the entire auditory scene, but rather acts differentially on the separate auditory streams. This stream-based attentional gain is then used as a tool to individually analyze the different neural representations of the competing auditory streams. The neural representation of the attended stream, located in posterior auditory cortex, dominates the neural responses. Critically, when the intensities of the attended and background streams are separately varied over a wide intensity range, the neural representation of the attended speech adapts only to the intensity of that speaker, irrespective of the intensity of the background speaker. This demonstrates object-level intensity gain control in addition to the above object-level selective attentional gain. Overall, these results indicate that concurrently streaming auditory objects, even if spectrally overlapping and not resolvable at the auditory periphery, are individually neurally encoded in auditory cortex, as separate objects. PMID:24841996

  18. A Cognitive Component Analysis Approach for Developing Game-Based Spatial Learning Tools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hung, Pi-Hsia; Hwang, Gwo-Jen; Lee, Yueh-Hsun; Su, I-Hsiang

    2012-01-01

    Spatial ability has been recognized as one of the most important factors affecting the mathematical performance of students. Previous studies on spatial learning have mainly focused on developing strategies to shorten the problem-solving time of learners for very specific learning tasks. Such an approach usually has limited effects on improving…

  19. Active and Passive Spatial Learning in Human Navigation: Acquisition of Survey Knowledge

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chrastil, Elizabeth R.; Warren, William H.

    2013-01-01

    It seems intuitively obvious that active exploration of a new environment would lead to better spatial learning than would passive visual exposure. It is unclear, however, which components of active learning contribute to spatial knowledge, and previous literature is decidedly mixed. This experiment tests the contributions of 4 components to…

  20. Auditory neglect and related disorders.

    PubMed

    Gutschalk, Alexander; Dykstra, Andrew

    2015-01-01

    Neglect is a neurologic disorder, typically associated with lesions of the right hemisphere, in which patients are biased towards their ipsilesional - usually right - side of space while awareness for their contralesional - usually left - side is reduced or absent. Neglect is a multimodal disorder that often includes deficits in the auditory domain. Classically, auditory extinction, in which left-sided sounds that are correctly perceived in isolation are not detected in the presence of synchronous right-sided stimulation, has been considered the primary sign of auditory neglect. However, auditory extinction can also be observed after unilateral auditory cortex lesions and is thus not specific for neglect. Recent research has shown that patients with neglect are also impaired in maintaining sustained attention, on both sides, a fact that is reflected by an impairment of auditory target detection in continuous stimulation conditions. Perhaps the most impressive auditory symptom in full-blown neglect is alloacusis, in which patients mislocalize left-sided sound sources to their right, although even patients with less severe neglect still often show disturbance of auditory spatial perception, most commonly a lateralization bias towards the right. We discuss how these various disorders may be explained by a single model of neglect and review emerging interventions for patient rehabilitation.

  1. Auditory hallucinations.

    PubMed

    Blom, Jan Dirk

    2015-01-01

    Auditory hallucinations constitute a phenomenologically rich group of endogenously mediated percepts which are associated with psychiatric, neurologic, otologic, and other medical conditions, but which are also experienced by 10-15% of all healthy individuals in the general population. The group of phenomena is probably best known for its verbal auditory subtype, but it also includes musical hallucinations, echo of reading, exploding-head syndrome, and many other types. The subgroup of verbal auditory hallucinations has been studied extensively with the aid of neuroimaging techniques, and from those studies emerges an outline of a functional as well as a structural network of widely distributed brain areas involved in their mediation. The present chapter provides an overview of the various types of auditory hallucination described in the literature, summarizes our current knowledge of the auditory networks involved in their mediation, and draws on ideas from the philosophy of science and network science to reconceptualize the auditory hallucinatory experience, and point out directions for future research into its neurobiologic substrates. In addition, it provides an overview of known associations with various clinical conditions and of the existing evidence for pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic treatments.

  2. Using the Spatial Learning Index to Evaluate Performance on the Water Maze

    PubMed Central

    Pereira, Inês Tomás; Burwell, Rebecca D.

    2016-01-01

    The Morris Water Maze was developed in 1981, and quickly became the standard task for assessing spatial memory and spatial navigation. Twenty years ago, (Gallagher, Burwell, & Burchinal, 1993) reported new variables and measures, including a spatial learning index, that greatly enhanced the utility of the Morris Water Maze for assessing subtle differences in performance on the task. The learning index provided a single number that could be used to elucidate neurobiological measures of hippocampal dysfunction, for example correlation of learning performance with a biomarker of aging. In this review, as part of the commemoration of the 30th anniversary of Behavioral Neuroscience, we describe how the spatial learning index has contributed to the field of learning and memory, how it has advanced our understanding of normal and pathological cognitive aging, and how it has contributed to translation of findings into other species. Finally, we provide instruction into how the learning index can be extended to other tasks and datasets. PMID:26214218

  3. Using the spatial learning index to evaluate performance on the water maze.

    PubMed

    Tomás Pereira, Inês; Burwell, Rebecca D

    2015-08-01

    The Morris water maze was developed in 1981 and quickly became the standard task for assessing spatial memory and spatial navigation. Twenty years ago, Gallagher, Burwell, and Burchinal (1993) reported new variables and measures, including a spatial learning index, that greatly enhanced the utility of the Morris water maze for assessing subtle differences in performance on the task. The learning index provided a single number that could be used to elucidate neurobiological measures of hippocampal dysfunction, for example, correlation of learning performance with a biomarker of aging. In this review, as part of the commemoration of the 30th anniversary of Behavioral Neuroscience, we describe how the spatial learning index has contributed to the field of learning and memory, how it has advanced our understanding of normal and pathological cognitive aging, and how it has contributed to translation of findings into other species. Finally, we provide instruction into how the learning index can be extended to other tasks and data sets.

  4. Chronic difluoromethylornithine treatment impairs spatial learning and memory in rats.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Neeraj; Zhang, Hu; Liu, Ping

    2012-01-01

    Recent evidence suggests that polyamines putrescine, spermidine and spermine are essential in maintaining normal cellular function. The present study investigated the effects of chronic treatment of difluoromethylornithine (DFMO, 3% in drinking water), a potent inhibitor of putrescine synthesis, for 54 consecutive days on animals'behavior and neurochemical levels in the CA1, CA2/3 and dentate gyrus sub-regions of the hippocampus and the prefrontal cortex. The DFMO group showed performance impairments in the place navigation and the probe test conducted 24 h after the training in the reference memory version of the water maze task, but not in the elevated plus maze, open field, object recognition, cued navigation and the working memory version of the water maze task when compared to the control group (drinking water only). DFMO treatment resulted in approximately 80-90% and 20% of reductions in the putrescine and spermidine levels, respectively, in the four brain regions examined, and a small reduction in agmatine level in the CA2/3, with no effects on spermine, glutamate and γ-aminobutyrate. The DFMO group showed decreased body weight relative to the control one. However, there were no significant differences between groups in the normalized brain, kidney and liver weights. The present study demonstrates that chronic treatment of DFMO depletes putrescine and decreases spermidine levels in the brain, inhibits growth, and impairs spatial learning and memory in the reference memory version of the water maze specifically. These findings merit further investigation to fully understand the functional role of endogenous polyamines in learning and memory.

  5. Spatial Visualization Learning in Engineering: Traditional Methods vs. a Web-Based Tool

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pedrosa, Carlos Melgosa; Barbero, Basilio Ramos; Miguel, Arturo Román

    2014-01-01

    This study compares an interactive learning manager for graphic engineering to develop spatial vision (ILMAGE_SV) to traditional methods. ILMAGE_SV is an asynchronous web-based learning tool that allows the manipulation of objects with a 3D viewer, self-evaluation, and continuous assessment. In addition, student learning may be monitored, which…

  6. The anterior claustrum and spatial reversal learning in rats.

    PubMed

    Grasby, Katrina; Talk, Andrew

    2013-03-01

    The claustrum is a small structure of poorly understood function situated subcortically in the basal forebrain. The fact that it is extensively and reciprocally connected with the cerebral cortex has led to suggestions that it is involved in coordination of cortical activity. In this study, we created excitotoxic lesions to the anterior claustrum of rats and tested performance on three tasks that involve neural processing in one or more frontal and limbic cortical structures. We tested reversal learning and spatial working memory in a water maze and tested latent inhibition using conditioned taste aversion. Lesioned rats were not impaired at acquiring the initial location of the platform in a water maze, but were impaired at acquiring a switched location in the reversal phase. The lesioned rats also exhibited an increased rate of perseverance errors compared to control rats during reversal. Lesioned rats were not impaired in the working memory task or latent inhibition. These results indicate that cell loss in the claustrum may lead to deficits in behavioral flexibility, and are consistent with theories of claustral function that suggest it may help coordinate information necessary for at least some cortical-dependent tasks.

  7. Audiovisual spoken word training can promote or impede auditory-only perceptual learning: prelingually deafened adults with late-acquired cochlear implants versus normal hearing adults

    PubMed Central

    Bernstein, Lynne E.; Eberhardt, Silvio P.; Auer, Edward T.

    2014-01-01

    Training with audiovisual (AV) speech has been shown to promote auditory perceptual learning of vocoded acoustic speech by adults with normal hearing. In Experiment 1, we investigated whether AV speech promotes auditory-only (AO) perceptual learning in prelingually deafened adults with late-acquired cochlear implants. Participants were assigned to learn associations between spoken disyllabic C(=consonant)V(=vowel)CVC non-sense words and non-sense pictures (fribbles), under AV and then AO (AV-AO; or counter-balanced AO then AV, AO-AV, during Periods 1 then 2) training conditions. After training on each list of paired-associates (PA), testing was carried out AO. Across all training, AO PA test scores improved (7.2 percentage points) as did identification of consonants in new untrained CVCVC stimuli (3.5 percentage points). However, there was evidence that AV training impeded immediate AO perceptual learning: During Period-1, training scores across AV and AO conditions were not different, but AO test scores were dramatically lower in the AV-trained participants. During Period-2 AO training, the AV-AO participants obtained significantly higher AO test scores, demonstrating their ability to learn the auditory speech. Across both orders of training, whenever training was AV, AO test scores were significantly lower than training scores. Experiment 2 repeated the procedures with vocoded speech and 43 normal-hearing adults. Following AV training, their AO test scores were as high as or higher than following AO training. Also, their CVCVC identification scores patterned differently than those of the cochlear implant users. In Experiment 1, initial consonants were most accurate, and in Experiment 2, medial consonants were most accurate. We suggest that our results are consistent with a multisensory reverse hierarchy theory, which predicts that, whenever possible, perceivers carry out perceptual tasks immediately based on the experience and biases they bring to the task. We

  8. Auditory perception of objects by blind persons, using a bioacoustic high resolution air sonar.

    PubMed

    Kay, L

    2000-06-01

    A high-resolution octave band air sonar for spatial sensing and object imaging by blind persons is described. The system has wide-angle overlapping peripheral fields of view with a narrow central field superposed. It is noninvasively coupled to the auditory system for neural processing and spatial imaging. Blind persons learn to comprehend the auditory cortical multiple-object image that is created. The real-time synchronous relationship between hearing a change in the sensor sounds and the sensed motor actions causing the change seems to aid the learning process. Computer based testing of the sensor system is described so as to relate the physical system performance with the time-varying human auditory perception. This is so that the basic psychometric experiments studying the sensor bio-acoustic spatial resolution, resulting from the superposition of two wide-angle peripheral fields with one central narrow field, may be better understood. These tests confirm that the auditory ability of subjects to resolve close objects using the combined fields is significantly improved relative to using the peripheral fields alone. These measurements are supported by blind children learning to use the sensor system. PMID:10875372

  9. Auditory perception of objects by blind persons, using a bioacoustic high resolution air sonar.

    PubMed

    Kay, L

    2000-06-01

    A high-resolution octave band air sonar for spatial sensing and object imaging by blind persons is described. The system has wide-angle overlapping peripheral fields of view with a narrow central field superposed. It is noninvasively coupled to the auditory system for neural processing and spatial imaging. Blind persons learn to comprehend the auditory cortical multiple-object image that is created. The real-time synchronous relationship between hearing a change in the sensor sounds and the sensed motor actions causing the change seems to aid the learning process. Computer based testing of the sensor system is described so as to relate the physical system performance with the time-varying human auditory perception. This is so that the basic psychometric experiments studying the sensor bio-acoustic spatial resolution, resulting from the superposition of two wide-angle peripheral fields with one central narrow field, may be better understood. These tests confirm that the auditory ability of subjects to resolve close objects using the combined fields is significantly improved relative to using the peripheral fields alone. These measurements are supported by blind children learning to use the sensor system.

  10. Cardiovascular Fitness and Cognitive Spatial Learning in Rodents and in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Barak, Boaz; Feldman, Noa

    2015-01-01

    The association between cardiovascular fitness and cognitive functions in both animals and humans is intensely studied. Research in rodents shows that a higher cardiovascular fitness has beneficial effects on hippocampus-dependent spatial abilities, and the underlying mechanisms were largely teased out. Research into the impact of cardiovascular fitness on spatial learning in humans, however, is more limited, and involves mostly behavioral and imaging studies. Herein, we point out the state of the art in the field of spatial learning and cardiovascular fitness. The differences between the methodologies utilized to study spatial learning in humans and rodents are emphasized along with the neuronal basis of these tasks. Critical gaps in the study of spatial learning in the context of cardiovascular fitness between the two species are discussed. PMID:25227128

  11. Formation of spatial and nonspatial memory in different condensed versions of short-term learning in Morris water maze.

    PubMed

    Zots, M A; Ivashkina, O I; Ivanova, A A; Anokhin, K V

    2014-03-01

    We studied the formation of spatial and nonspatial memory in mice during learning in three different condensed versions of Morris water maze task. Learning in combined version caused the formation of both spatial and nonspatial memory, whereas learning in condensed versions (spatial and nonspatial) led to memory formation specific for the version.

  12. Spatial Conditions: An Unheeded Medium in Teaching and Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Keiding, Tina Bering

    2011-01-01

    This article addresses spatiality as an educational category by asking how spatiality influences students' experiences of interactions in project-based teaching. It examines students' experiences with two different spatial conditions--namely, separate rooms, each accommodating a single group, or a much larger open space hosting multiple groups. It…

  13. How spatial abilities and dynamic visualizations interplay when learning functional anatomy with 3D anatomical models.

    PubMed

    Berney, Sandra; Bétrancourt, Mireille; Molinari, Gaëlle; Hoyek, Nady

    2015-01-01

    The emergence of dynamic visualizations of three-dimensional (3D) models in anatomy curricula may be an adequate solution for spatial difficulties encountered with traditional static learning, as they provide direct visualization of change throughout the viewpoints. However, little research has explored the interplay between learning material presentation formats, spatial abilities, and anatomical tasks. First, to understand the cognitive challenges a novice learner would be faced with when first exposed to 3D anatomical content, a six-step cognitive task analysis was developed. Following this, an experimental study was conducted to explore how presentation formats (dynamic vs. static visualizations) support learning of functional anatomy, and affect subsequent anatomical tasks derived from the cognitive task analysis. A second aim was to investigate the interplay between spatial abilities (spatial visualization and spatial relation) and presentation formats when the functional anatomy of a 3D scapula and the associated shoulder flexion movement are learned. Findings showed no main effect of the presentation formats on performances, but revealed the predictive influence of spatial visualization and spatial relation abilities on performance. However, an interesting interaction between presentation formats and spatial relation ability for a specific anatomical task was found. This result highlighted the influence of presentation formats when spatial abilities are involved as well as the differentiated influence of spatial abilities on anatomical tasks.

  14. Interaction between Locale and Taxon Strategies in Human Spatial Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Redhead, Edward S.; Hamilton, Derek A.

    2007-01-01

    Three computer-based experiments which tested human participants in a non-immersive virtual watermaze task sought to determine factors which dictate whether the presence of a visual platform disrupts locale learning and taxon learning. In Experiment 1, the visible platform disrupted locale but not taxon learning based on viewpoint-independent and…

  15. Auditory synesthesias.

    PubMed

    Afra, Pegah

    2015-01-01

    Synesthesia is experienced when sensory stimulation of one sensory modality (the inducer) elicits an involuntary or automatic sensation in another sensory modality or different aspect of the same sensory modality (the concurrent). Auditory synesthesias (AS) occur when auditory stimuli trigger a variety of concurrents, or when non-auditory sensory stimulations trigger auditory synesthetic perception. The AS are divided into three types: developmental, acquired, and induced. Developmental AS are not a neurologic disorder but a different way of experiencing one's environment. They are involuntary and highly consistent experiences throughout one's life. Acquired AS have been reported in association with neurologic diseases that cause deafferentation of anterior optic pathways, with pathologic lesions affecting the central nervous system (CNS) outside of the optic pathways, as well as non-lesional cases associated with migraine, and epilepsy. It also has been reported with mood disorders as well as a single idiopathic case. Induced AS has been reported in experimental and postsurgical blindfolding, as well as intake of hallucinogenics or psychedelics. In this chapter the three different types of synesthesia, their characteristics, and phenomologic differences, as well as their possible neural mechanisms are discussed. PMID:25726281

  16. Auditory system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ades, H. W.

    1973-01-01

    The physical correlations of hearing, i.e. the acoustic stimuli, are reported. The auditory system, consisting of external ear, middle ear, inner ear, organ of Corti, basilar membrane, hair cells, inner hair cells, outer hair cells, innervation of hair cells, and transducer mechanisms, is discussed. Both conductive and sensorineural hearing losses are also examined.

  17. Efficient coding of spectrotemporal binaural sounds leads to emergence of the auditory space representation

    PubMed Central

    Młynarski, Wiktor

    2014-01-01

    To date a number of studies have shown that receptive field shapes of early sensory neurons can be reproduced by optimizing coding efficiency of natural stimulus ensembles. A still unresolved question is whether the efficient coding hypothesis explains formation of neurons which explicitly represent environmental features of different functional importance. This paper proposes that the spatial selectivity of higher auditory neurons emerges as a direct consequence of learning efficient codes for natural binaural sounds. Firstly, it is demonstrated that a linear efficient coding transform—Independent Component Analysis (ICA) trained on spectrograms of naturalistic simulated binaural sounds extracts spatial information present in the signal. A simple hierarchical ICA extension allowing for decoding of sound position is proposed. Furthermore, it is shown that units revealing spatial selectivity can be learned from a binaural recording of a natural auditory scene. In both cases a relatively small subpopulation of learned spectrogram features suffices to perform accurate sound localization. Representation of the auditory space is therefore learned in a purely unsupervised way by maximizing the coding efficiency and without any task-specific constraints. This results imply that efficient coding is a useful strategy for learning structures which allow for making behaviorally vital inferences about the environment. PMID:24639644

  18. Spatial tuning and brain state account for dorsal hippocampal CA1 activity in a non-spatial learning task

    PubMed Central

    Shan, Kevin Q; Lubenov, Evgueniy V; Papadopoulou, Maria; Siapas, Athanassios G

    2016-01-01

    The hippocampus is a brain area crucial for episodic memory in humans. In contrast, studies in rodents have highlighted its role in spatial learning, supported by the discovery of place cells. Efforts to reconcile these views have found neurons in the rodent hippocampus that respond to non-spatial events but have not unequivocally dissociated the spatial and non-spatial influences on these cells. To disentangle these influences, we trained freely moving rats in trace eyeblink conditioning, a hippocampally dependent task in which the animal learns to blink in response to a tone. We show that dorsal CA1 pyramidal neurons are all place cells, and do not respond to the tone when the animal is moving. When the animal is inactive, the apparent tone-evoked responses reflect an arousal-mediated resumption of place-specific firing. These results suggest that one of the main output stages of the hippocampus transmits only spatial information, even in this non-spatial task. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.14321.001 PMID:27487561

  19. Auditory cues support place navigation in rats when associated with a visual cue.

    PubMed

    Rossier, J; Haeberli, C; Schenk, F

    2000-12-20

    Rats, like other crepuscular animals, have excellent auditory capacities and they discriminate well between different sounds [Heffner HE, Heffner RS, Hearing in two cricetid rodents: wood rats (Neotoma floridana) and grasshopper mouse (Onychomys leucogaster). J Comp Psychol 1985;99(3):275-88]. However, most experimental literature concerning spatial orientation almost exclusively emphasizes the use of visual landmarks [Cressant A, Muller RU, Poucet B. Failure of centrally placed objects to control the firing fields of hippocampal place cells. J Neurosci 1997;17(7):2531-42; and Goodridge JP, Taube JS. Preferential use of the landmark navigational system by head direction cells in rats. Behav Neurosci 1995;109(1):49-61]. To address the important issue of whether rats are able to achieve a place navigation task relative to auditory beacons, we designed a place learning task in the water maze. We controlled cue availability by conducting the experiment in total darkness. Three auditory cues did not allow place navigation whereas three visual cues in the same positions did support place navigation. One auditory beacon directly associated with the goal location did not support taxon navigation (a beacon strategy allowing the animal to find the goal just by swimming toward the cue). Replacing the auditory beacons by one single visual beacon did support taxon navigation. A multimodal configuration of two auditory cues and one visual cue allowed correct place navigation. The deletion of the two auditory or of the one visual cue did disrupt the spatial performance. Thus rats can combine information from different sensory modalities to achieve a place navigation task. In particular, auditory cues support place navigation when associated with a visual one.

  20. Learning through EC directive based SEA in spatial planning? Evidence from the Brunswick Region in Germany

    SciTech Connect

    Fischer, Thomas B.; Kidd, Sue; Jha-Thakur, Urmila; Gazzola, Paola; Peel, Deborah

    2009-11-15

    This paper presents results of an international comparative research project, funded by the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Academy for Sustainable Communities (ASC) on the 'learning potential of appraisal (strategic environmental assessment - SEA) in spatial planning'. In this context, aspects of 'single-loop' and 'double-loop' learning, as well as of individual, organisational and social learning are discussed for emerging post-EC Directive German practice in the planning region (Zweckverband) of Brunswick (Braunschweig), focusing on four spatial plan SEAs from various administrative levels in the region. It is found that whilst SEA is able to lead to plan SEA specific knowledge acquisition, comprehension, application and analysis ('single-loop learning'), it is currently resulting only occasionally in wider synthesis and evaluation ('double-loop learning'). Furthermore, whilst there is evidence that individual and occasionally organisational learning may be enhanced through SEA, most notably in small municipalities, social learning appears to be happening only sporadically.

  1. Spatial and nonspatial implicit motor learning in Korsakoff's amnesia: evidence for selective deficits.

    PubMed

    Van Tilborg, Ilse A D A; Kessels, Roy P C; Kruijt, Pauline; Wester, Arie J; Hulstijn, Wouter

    2011-10-01

    Patients with amnesia have deficits in declarative memory but intact memory for motor and perceptual skills, which suggests that explicit memory and implicit memory are distinct. However, the evidence that implicit motor learning is intact in amnesic patients is contradictory. This study investigated implicit sequence learning in amnesic patients with Korsakoff's syndrome (N = 20) and matched controls (N = 14), using the classical Serial Reaction Time Task and a newly developed Pattern Learning Task in which the planning and execution of the responses are more spatially demanding. Results showed that implicit motor learning occurred in both groups of participants; however, on the Pattern Learning Task, the percentage of errors did not increase in the Korsakoff group in the random test phase, which is indicative of less implicit learning. Thus, our findings show that the performance of patients with Korsakoff's syndrome is compromised on an implicit learning task with a strong spatial response component.

  2. Mineralocorticoid receptors guide spatial and stimulus-response learning in mice.

    PubMed

    Arp, J Marit; ter Horst, Judith P; Kanatsou, Sofia; Fernández, Guillén; Joëls, Marian; Krugers, Harm J; Oitzl, Melly S

    2014-01-01

    Adrenal corticosteroid hormones act via mineralocorticoid (MR) and glucocorticoid receptors (GR) in the brain, influencing learning and memory. MRs have been implicated in the initial behavioral response in novel situations, which includes behavioral strategies in learning tasks. Different strategies can be used to solve navigational tasks, for example hippocampus-dependent spatial or striatum-dependent stimulus-response strategies. Previous studies suggested that MRs are involved in spatial learning and induce a shift between learning strategies when animals are allowed a choice between both strategies. In the present study, we further explored the role of MRs in spatial and stimulus-response learning in two separate circular holeboard tasks using female mice with forebrain-specific MR deficiency and MR overexpression and their wildtype control littermates. In addition, we studied sex-specific effects using male and female MR-deficient mice. First, we found that MR-deficient compared to control littermates and MR-overexpressing mice display altered exploratory and searching behavior indicative of impaired acquisition of novel information. Second, female (but not male) MR-deficient mice were impaired in the spatial task, while MR-overexpressing female mice showed improved performance in the spatial task. Third, MR-deficient mice were also impaired in the stimulus-response task compared to controls and (in the case of females) MR-overexpressing mice. We conclude that MRs are important for coordinating the processing of information relevant for spatial as well as stimulus-response learning.

  3. The Joint Role of Spatial Ability and Imagery Strategy in Sustaining the Learning of Spatial Descriptions under Spatial Interference

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meneghetti, Chiara; De Beni, Rossana; Gyselinck, Valerie; Pazzaglia, Francesca

    2013-01-01

    The present study investigates the joint role of spatial ability, imagery strategy and visuospatial working memory (VSWM) in spatial text processing. A set of 180 participants, half of them trained on the use of imagery strategy (training vs no-training groups), was further divided according to participants' high or low mental rotation ability…

  4. Rhesus Monkeys (Macaca Mulatta) Maintain Learning Set Despite Second-Order Stimulus-Response Spatial Discontiguity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beran, Michael J.; Washburn, David A.; Rumbaugh, Duane M.

    2007-01-01

    In many discrimination-learning tests, spatial separation between stimuli and response loci disrupts performance in rhesus macaques. However, monkeys are unaffected by such stimulus-response spatial discontiguity when responses occur through joystick-based computerized movement of a cursor. To examine this discrepancy, five monkeys were tested on…

  5. Spatial Abilities in an Elective Course of Applied Anatomy after a Problem-Based Learning Curriculum

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Langlois, Jean; Wells, George A.; Lecourtois, Marc; Bergeron, Germain; Yetisir, Elizabeth; Martin, Marcel

    2009-01-01

    A concern on the level of anatomy knowledge reached after a problem-based learning curriculum has been documented in the literature. Spatial anatomy, arguably the highest level in anatomy knowledge, has been related to spatial abilities. Our first objective was to test the hypothesis that residents are interested in a course of applied anatomy…

  6. Probing the Relationship between Process of Spatial Problems Solving and Science Learning: An Eye Tracking Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, Yi-Chun; Yang, Fang-Ying

    2014-01-01

    There were two purposes in the study. One was to explore the cognitive activities during spatial problem solving and the other to probe the relationship between spatial ability and science concept learning. Twenty university students participated in the study. The Purdue Visualization of Rotations Test (PVRT) was used to assess the spatial…

  7. Learning to Think Spatially: What Do Students "See" in Numeracy Test Items?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Diezmann, Carmel M.; Lowrie, Tom

    2012-01-01

    Learning to think spatially in mathematics involves developing proficiency with graphics. This paper reports on 2 investigations of spatial thinking and graphics. The first investigation explored the importance of graphics as 1 of 3 communication systems (i.e. text, symbols, graphics) used to provide information in numeracy test items. The results…

  8. Early gamma oscillations during rapid auditory processing in children with a language-learning impairment: Changes in neural mass activity after training

    PubMed Central

    Heim, Sabine; Keil, Andreas; Choudhury, Naseem; Friedman, Jennifer Thomas; Benasich, April A.

    2013-01-01

    Children with language-learning impairment (LLI) have consistently shown difficulty with tasks requiring precise, rapid auditory processing. Remediation based on neural plasticity assumes that the temporal precision of neural coding can be improved by intensive training protocols. Here, we examined the extent to which early oscillatory responses in auditory cortex change after audio-visual training, using combined source modeling and time-frequency analysis of the human electroencephalogram (EEG). Twenty-one elementary school students diagnosed with LLI underwent the intervention for an average of 32 days. Pre- and post-training assessments included standardized language/literacy tests and EEG recordings in response to fast-rate tone doublets. Twelve children with typical language development were also tested twice, with no intervention given. Behaviorally, improvements on measures of language were observed in the LLI group following completion of training. During the first EEG assessment, we found reduced amplitude and phase-locking of early (45–75 ms) oscillations in the gamma-band range (29–52 Hz), specifically in the LLI group, for the second stimulus of the tone doublet. Amplitude reduction for the second tone was no longer evident for the LLI children post-intervention, although these children still exhibited attenuated phase-locking. Our findings suggest that specific aspects of inefficient sensory cortical processing in LLI are ameliorated after training. PMID:23352997

  9. Early gamma oscillations during rapid auditory processing in children with a language-learning impairment: changes in neural mass activity after training.

    PubMed

    Heim, Sabine; Keil, Andreas; Choudhury, Naseem; Thomas Friedman, Jennifer; Benasich, April A

    2013-04-01

    Children with language-learning impairment (LLI) have consistently shown difficulty with tasks requiring precise, rapid auditory processing. Remediation based on neural plasticity assumes that the temporal precision of neural coding can be improved by intensive training protocols. Here, we examined the extent to which early oscillatory responses in auditory cortex change after audio-visual training, using combined source modeling and time-frequency analysis of the human electroencephalogram (EEG). Twenty-one elementary school students diagnosed with LLI underwent the intervention for an average of 32 days. Pre- and post-training assessments included standardized language/literacy tests and EEG recordings in response to fast-rate tone doublets. Twelve children with typical language development were also tested twice, with no intervention given. Behaviorally, improvements on measures of language were observed in the LLI group following completion of training. During the first EEG assessment, we found reduced amplitude and phase-locking of early (45-75 ms) oscillations in the gamma-band range (29-52 Hz), specifically in the LLI group, for the second stimulus of the tone doublet. Amplitude reduction for the second tone was no longer evident for the LLI children post-intervention, although these children still exhibited attenuated phase-locking. Our findings suggest that specific aspects of inefficient sensory cortical processing in LLI are ameliorated after training. PMID:23352997

  10. How Spatial Abilities and Dynamic Visualizations Interplay When Learning Functional Anatomy with 3D Anatomical Models

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berney, Sandra; Bétrancourt, Mireille; Molinari, Gaëlle; Hoyek, Nady

    2015-01-01

    The emergence of dynamic visualizations of three-dimensional (3D) models in anatomy curricula may be an adequate solution for spatial difficulties encountered with traditional static learning, as they provide direct visualization of change throughout the viewpoints. However, little research has explored the interplay between learning material…

  11. Comparison of Visual-Spatial Performance Strategy Training in Children with Turner Syndrome and Learning Disabilities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williams, Janet K.; And Others

    1992-01-01

    Thirteen females with Turner syndrome, 13 females with nonverbal learning disabilities, and 14 males with nonverbal learning disabilities, ages 7-14, were taught via a cognitive behavioral modification approach to verbally mediate a spatial matching task. All three groups showed significant task improvement after the training, with no significant…

  12. How Do Biases in Spatial Memory Change as Children and Adults Are Learning Locations?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Recker, Kara M.; Plumert, Jodie M.; Hund, Alycia M.; Reimer, Rachel

    2007-01-01

    This investigation tracked changes in categorical bias (i.e., placing objects belonging to the same spatial group closer together than they really are) while 7-, 9-, and 11-year-olds and adults were learning a set of locations. Participants learned the locations of 20 objects marked by dots on the floor of an open square box divided into…

  13. A critical review of chronic stress effects on spatial learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Conrad, Cheryl D

    2010-06-30

    The purpose of this review is to evaluate the effects of chronic stress on hippocampal-dependent function, based primarily upon studies using young, adult male rodents and spatial navigation tasks. Despite this restriction, variability amongst the findings was evident and how or even whether chronic stress influenced spatial ability depended upon the type of task, the dependent variable measured and how the task was implemented, the type and duration of the stressors, housing conditions of the animals that include accessibility to food and cage mates, and duration from the end of the stress to the start of behavioral assessment. Nonetheless, patterns emerged as follows: For spatial memory, chronic stress impairs spatial reference memory and has transient effects on spatial working memory. For spatial learning, however, chronic stress effects appear to be task-specific: chronic stress impairs spatial learning on appetitively motivated tasks, such as the radial arm maze or holeboard, tasks that evoke relatively mild to low arousal components from fear. But under testing conditions that evoke moderate to strong arousal components from fear, such as during radial arm water maze testing, chronic stress appears to have minimal impairing effects or may even facilitate spatial learning. Chronic stress clearly impacts nearly every brain region and thus, how chronic stress alters hippocampal spatial ability likely depends upon the engagement of other brain structures during behavioral training and testing.

  14. The effects of telencephalic pallial lesions on spatial, temporal, and emotional learning in goldfish.

    PubMed

    Portavella, M; Vargas, J P; Torres, B; Salas, C

    In mammals, the pallial amygdala is implicated in emotional learning and memory, whereas the hippocampus is involved in spatial, contextual, or relational memory. This review presents a set of experiments aimed to study the involvement of the dorsomedial and dorsolateral telencephalon of goldfish in spatial and active avoidance learning. Results showed that (1) medial lesions impaired both acquisition and retention of conditioned avoidance response in two-way active avoidance learning experiments with stimuli overlapping (emotional factor) and with an interstimuli gap (temporal and emotional factors), and (2) the medial lesion did not affect spatial learning (spatial, contextual, or relational factors). In contrast, lateral lesions did not impair conditioned avoidance response with stimuli overlapping, but affected conditioned avoidance response with an interstimuli gap and spatial learning. These results support the presence of two differentiated memory systems in teleost fish based on discrete pallial regions: emotional (dorsomedial telencephalon) and spatial/temporal or relational (dorsolateral telencephalon). Furthermore, these functional data support the homology between the medial pallium of the teleost and the pallial amygdala of land vertebrates, and between the teleost lateral pallium and the mammalian hippocampus.

  15. Modulation of spatial attention by goals, statistical learning, and monetary reward.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Yuhong V; Sha, Li Z; Remington, Roger W

    2015-10-01

    This study documented the relative strength of task goals, visual statistical learning, and monetary reward in guiding spatial attention. Using a difficult T-among-L search task, we cued spatial attention to one visual quadrant by (i) instructing people to prioritize it (goal-driven attention), (ii) placing the target frequently there (location probability learning), or (iii) associating that quadrant with greater monetary gain (reward-based attention). Results showed that successful goal-driven attention exerted the strongest influence on search RT. Incidental location probability learning yielded a smaller though still robust effect. Incidental reward learning produced negligible guidance for spatial attention. The 95 % confidence intervals of the three effects were largely nonoverlapping. To understand these results, we simulated the role of location repetition priming in probability cuing and reward learning. Repetition priming underestimated the strength of location probability cuing, suggesting that probability cuing involved long-term statistical learning of how to shift attention. Repetition priming provided a reasonable account for the negligible effect of reward on spatial attention. We propose a multiple-systems view of spatial attention that includes task goals, search habit, and priming as primary drivers of top-down attention.

  16. Segregation of neural circuits involved in spatial learning in reaching and navigational space.

    PubMed

    Nemmi, Federico; Boccia, Maddalena; Piccardi, Laura; Galati, Gaspare; Guariglia, Cecilia

    2013-07-01

    Recent behavioral and neuropsychological studies suggest that visuo-spatial memory for reaching and navigational space is dissociated. In the present fMRI study, we investigated the hypothesis that learning spatial sequences in reaching and navigational space is processed by partially segregated neural systems. To this aim, we adapted the Corsi block tapping test (CBT) and the walking Corsi test (WalCT); the latter is a modification of the CBT in which subjects observe and reproduce spatial sequences by walking in a room instead of tapping wooden blocks on a table. Subjects were scanned while learning supra-span sequences of spatial locations through observation of video clips in which an actor tapped the blocks within reaching space (CBT) or walked on tiles placed on a carpet (WalCT). A large cerebral network spanning from visual occipital to parietal to frontal areas was activated during learning of both the CBT and the WalCT sequences. Within this network right lingual gyrus, calcarine sulcus and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex were specifically associated with learning in navigational space, whereas left inferior temporal gyrus, lingual and fusiform gyrus and middle occipital gyrus were associated with learning sequences in reaching space. These results support the idea of a partial segregation between neural circuits for reaching and navigational space not only in the domain of perception and action planning but also in spatial learning and long-term memory. PMID:23615031

  17. Modulation of spatial attention by goals, statistical learning, and monetary reward

    PubMed Central

    Sha, Li Z.; Remington, Roger W.

    2015-01-01

    This study documented the relative strength of task goals, visual statistical learning, and monetary reward in guiding spatial attention. Using a difficult T-among-L search task, we cued spatial attention to one visual quadrant by (i) instructing people to prioritize it (goal-driven attention), (ii) placing the target frequently there (location probability learning), or (iii) associating that quadrant with greater monetary gain (reward-based attention). Results showed that successful goal-driven attention exerted the strongest influence on search RT. Incidental location probability learning yielded a smaller though still robust effect. Incidental reward learning produced negligible guidance for spatial attention. The 95 % confidence intervals of the three effects were largely nonoverlapping. To understand these results, we simulated the role of location repetition priming in probability cuing and reward learning. Repetition priming underestimated the strength of location probability cuing, suggesting that probability cuing involved long-term statistical learning of how to shift attention. Repetition priming provided a reasonable account for the negligible effect of reward on spatial attention. We propose a multiple-systems view of spatial attention that includes task goals, search habit, and priming as primary drivers of top-down attention. PMID:26105657

  18. Near or far: The effect of spatial distance and vocabulary knowledge on word learning.

    PubMed

    Axelsson, Emma L; Perry, Lynn K; Scott, Emilly J; Horst, Jessica S

    2016-01-01

    The current study investigated the role of spatial distance in word learning. Two-year-old children saw three novel objects named while the objects were either in close proximity to each other or spatially separated. Children were then tested on their retention for the name-object associations. Keeping the objects spatially separated from each other during naming was associated with increased retention for children with larger vocabularies. Children with a lower vocabulary size demonstrated better retention if they saw objects in close proximity to each other during naming. This demonstrates that keeping a clear view of objects during naming improves word learning for children who have already learned many words, but keeping objects within close proximal range is better for children at earlier stages of vocabulary acquisition. The effect of distance is therefore not equal across varying vocabulary sizes. The influences of visual crowding, cognitive load, and vocabulary size on word learning are discussed.

  19. Medial Auditory Thalamus Is Necessary for Acquisition and Retention of Eyeblink Conditioning to Cochlear Nucleus Stimulation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Halverson, Hunter E.; Poremba, Amy; Freeman, John H.

    2015-01-01

    Associative learning tasks commonly involve an auditory stimulus, which must be projected through the auditory system to the sites of memory induction for learning to occur. The cochlear nucleus (CN) projection to the pontine nuclei has been posited as the necessary auditory pathway for cerebellar learning, including eyeblink conditioning.…

  20. Plasticity in the neural coding of auditory space in the mammalian brain

    PubMed Central

    King, Andrew J.; Parsons, Carl H.; Moore, David R.

    2000-01-01

    Sound localization relies on the neural processing of monaural and binaural spatial cues that arise from the way sounds interact with the head and external ears. Neurophysiological studies of animals raised with abnormal sensory inputs show that the map of auditory space in the superior colliculus is shaped during development by both auditory and visual experience. An example of this plasticity is provided by monaural occlusion during infancy, which leads to compensatory changes in auditory spatial tuning that tend to preserve the alignment between the neural representations of visual and auditory space. Adaptive changes also take place in sound localization behavior, as demonstrated by the fact that ferrets raised and tested with one ear plugged learn to localize as accurately as control animals. In both cases, these adjustments may involve greater use of monaural spectral cues provided by the other ear. Although plasticity in the auditory space map seems to be restricted to development, adult ferrets show some recovery of sound localization behavior after long-term monaural occlusion. The capacity for behavioral adaptation is, however, task dependent, because auditory spatial acuity and binaural unmasking (a measure of the spatial contribution to the “cocktail party effect”) are permanently impaired by chronically plugging one ear, both in infancy but especially in adulthood. Experience-induced plasticity allows the neural circuitry underlying sound localization to be customized to individual characteristics, such as the size and shape of the head and ears, and to compensate for natural conductive hearing losses, including those associated with middle ear disease in infancy. PMID:11050215

  1. Hippocampal α-adrenoceptors involve in the effect of histamine on spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Torkaman-Boutorabi, Anahita; Danyali, Fatemeh; Oryan, Shahrbanoo; Ebrahimi-Ghiri, Mohaddeseh; Zarrindast, Mohammad-Reza

    2014-04-22

    Spatial learning is a model of higher human cognitive functions which is used for studying animal behavior. Histaminergic and noradrenergic systems play a modulatory role in learning and memory. The present study aimed to test the effects of α-adrenoceptor agonist/antagonist microinjection into the CA1 region of dorsal hippocampus on histamine-induced spatial learning facilitation in the water maze task. Pre-training intra-CA1 microinjection of α1- or α2-adrenergic agonist, phenylephrine (0.0025μg/rat) or clonidine (0.05μg/rat) decreased traveled distance and escape latency at the start of the training phase, suggesting a spatial learning facilitation; while the higher dose of the drugs (phenylephrine 0.005μg/rat, clonidine 0.2 and 0.5μg/rat) increased the performance level at the end of the training phase, indicating a water maze spatial acquisition impairment. However, α1-receptor antagonist, prazosin (1μg/rat) impaired spatial learning; α2-receptor antagonist, yohimbine (0.25μg/rat) facilitated spatial acquisition. Moreover, pre-training intra-CA1 microinjection of a subthreshold dose of phenylephrine (0.001μg/rat) reversed histamine response, while ineffective dose co-administration of clonidine (0.1μg/rat) potentiated histamine (0.01μg/rat) response. Subthreshold dose of prazosin or yohimbine did not alter histamine response. Bilateral infusion of histamine (0.05μg/rat) facilitated spatial learning by itself. Furthermore, the drug's injections had no effect on swimming speed on the training days of MWM. These results suggest that α-adrenergic receptors of the dorsal hippocampal CA1 regions may play an important role in histamine-induced facilitation of spatial acquisition.

  2. Developing Linguistic Auditory Memory Patterns.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Valett, Robert E.

    1983-01-01

    For learning handicapped children with impaired language associations, patterns, and expressions, this paper summarizes relevant linguistic research and instructional strategies. Linguistic auditory memory pattern exercises and examples are then presented as an integrated multisensory approach which has been found useful by special educators.…

  3. Evolution of learning strategies in temporally and spatially variable environments: A review of theory

    PubMed Central

    Aoki, Kenichi; Feldman, Marcus W.

    2013-01-01

    The theoretical literature from 1985 to the present on the evolution of learning strategies in variable environments is reviewed, with the focus on deterministic dynamical models that are amenable to local stability analysis, and on deterministic models yielding evolutionarily stable strategies. Individual learning, unbiased and biased social learning, mixed learning, and learning schedules are considered. A rapidly changing environment or frequent migration in a spatially heterogeneous environment favors individual learning over unbiased social learning. However, results are not so straightforward in the context of learning schedules or when biases in social learning are introduced. The three major methods of modeling temporal environmental change – coevolutionary, two-timescale, and information decay – are compared and shown to sometimes yield contradictory results. The so-called Rogers’ paradox is inherent in the two-timescale method as originally applied to the evolution of pure strategies, but is often eliminated when the other methods are used. Moreover, Rogers’ paradox is not observed for the mixed learning strategies and learning schedules that we review. We believe that further theoretical work is necessary on learning schedules and biased social learning, based on models that are logically consistent and empirically pertinent. PMID:24211681

  4. Evolution of learning strategies in temporally and spatially variable environments: A review of theory.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Kenichi; Feldman, Marcus W

    2013-09-23

    The theoretical literature from 1985 to the present on the evolution of learning strategies in variable environments is reviewed, with the focus on deterministic dynamical models that are amenable to local stability analysis, and on deterministic models yielding evolutionarily stable strategies. Individual learning, unbiased and biased social learning, mixed learning, and learning schedules are considered. A rapidly changing environment or frequent migration in a spatially heterogeneous environment favors individual learning over unbiased social learning. However, results are not so straightforward in the context of learning schedules or when biases in social learning are introduced. The three major methods of modeling temporal environmental change-coevolutionary, two-timescale, and information decay-are compared and shown to sometimes yield contradictory results. The so-called Rogers' paradox is inherent in the two-timescale method as originally applied to the evolution of pure strategies, but is often eliminated when the other methods are used. Moreover, Rogers' paradox is not observed for the mixed learning strategies and learning schedules that we review. We believe that further theoretical work is necessary on learning schedules and biased social learning, based on models that are logically consistent and empirically pertinent.

  5. Evolution of learning strategies in temporally and spatially variable environments: a review of theory.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Kenichi; Feldman, Marcus W

    2014-02-01

    The theoretical literature from 1985 to the present on the evolution of learning strategies in variable environments is reviewed, with the focus on deterministic dynamical models that are amenable to local stability analysis, and on deterministic models yielding evolutionarily stable strategies. Individual learning, unbiased and biased social learning, mixed learning, and learning schedules are considered. A rapidly changing environment or frequent migration in a spatially heterogeneous environment favors individual learning over unbiased social learning. However, results are not so straightforward in the context of learning schedules or when biases in social learning are introduced. The three major methods of modeling temporal environmental change--coevolutionary, two-timescale, and information decay--are compared and shown to sometimes yield contradictory results. The so-called Rogers' paradox is inherent in the two-timescale method as originally applied to the evolution of pure strategies, but is often eliminated when the other methods are used. Moreover, Rogers' paradox is not observed for the mixed learning strategies and learning schedules that we review. We believe that further theoretical work is necessary on learning schedules and biased social learning, based on models that are logically consistent and empirically pertinent.

  6. LAMP: 100+ Systematic Exercise Lessons for Developing Linguistic Auditory Memory Patterns in Beginning Readers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Valett, Robert E.

    Research findings on auditory sequencing and auditory blending and fusion, auditory-visual integration, and language patterns are presented in support of the Linguistic Auditory Memory Patterns (LAMP) program. LAMP consists of 100 developmental lessons for young students with learning disabilities or language problems. The lessons are included in…

  7. Interprofessional learning at work: what spatial theory can tell us about workplace learning in an acute care ward.

    PubMed

    Gregory, Linda Rosemary; Hopwood, Nick; Boud, David

    2014-05-01

    It is widely recognized that every workplace potentially provides a rich source of learning. Studies focusing on health care contexts have shown that social interaction within and between professions is crucial in enabling professionals to learn through work, address problems and cope with challenges of clinical practice. While hospital environments are beginning to be understood in spatial terms, the links between space and interprofessional learning at work have not been explored. This paper draws on Lefebvre's tri-partite theoretical framework of perceived, conceived and lived space to enrich understandings of interprofessional learning on an acute care ward in an Australian teaching hospital. Qualitative analysis was undertaken using data from observations of Registered Nurses at work and semi-structured interviews linked to observed events. The paper focuses on a ward round, the medical workroom and the Registrar's room, comparing and contrasting the intended (conceived), practiced (perceived) and pedagogically experienced (lived) spatial dimensions. The paper concludes that spatial theory has much to offer understandings of interprofessional learning in work, and the features of work environments and daily practices that produce spaces that enable or constrain learning. PMID:24404847

  8. Interprofessional learning at work: what spatial theory can tell us about workplace learning in an acute care ward.

    PubMed

    Gregory, Linda Rosemary; Hopwood, Nick; Boud, David

    2014-05-01

    It is widely recognized that every workplace potentially provides a rich source of learning. Studies focusing on health care contexts have shown that social interaction within and between professions is crucial in enabling professionals to learn through work, address problems and cope with challenges of clinical practice. While hospital environments are beginning to be understood in spatial terms, the links between space and interprofessional learning at work have not been explored. This paper draws on Lefebvre's tri-partite theoretical framework of perceived, conceived and lived space to enrich understandings of interprofessional learning on an acute care ward in an Australian teaching hospital. Qualitative analysis was undertaken using data from observations of Registered Nurses at work and semi-structured interviews linked to observed events. The paper focuses on a ward round, the medical workroom and the Registrar's room, comparing and contrasting the intended (conceived), practiced (perceived) and pedagogically experienced (lived) spatial dimensions. The paper concludes that spatial theory has much to offer understandings of interprofessional learning in work, and the features of work environments and daily practices that produce spaces that enable or constrain learning.

  9. Spatial learning of the water maze: progression of brain circuits mapped with cytochrome oxidase histochemistry.

    PubMed

    Conejo, N M; González-Pardo, H; Gonzalez-Lima, F; Arias, J L

    2010-03-01

    The progression of brain circuits involved in spatial learning tasks is still a matter of debate. In addition, the participation of individual regions at different stages of spatial learning remains a controversial issue. In order to address these questions, we used quantitative cytochrome oxidase histochemistry as a metabolic brain mapping method applied to rats (Rattus norvegicus) trained in a water maze for 1, 3 or 5 days of training. Sustained changes throughout training were found in the lateral septal nucleus and anteroventral thalamic nucleus. As compared to naïve or habituation groups, rats with 1 day of training in the spatial learning task showed involvement of the lateral mammillary nucleus, basolateral amygdala and anterodorsal thalamic nucleus. By 5 days of training, there were mean changes in the hippocampal CA3 field and the prefrontal cortex. The regions involved and their pattern of network interactions changed progressively over days of training. At 1-day there was an open serial network of pairwise correlations. At 3-days there was a more closed reciprocal network of intercorrelations. At 5-days there were three separate parallel networks. In addition, brain-behavior correlations showed that CA1 and CA3 hippocampal fields together with the parietal cortex are related to the mastery of the spatial learning task. The present study extends previous findings on the progressive contribution of neural networks to spatial learning. PMID:19969098

  10. Hippocampus-dependent place learning enables spatial flexibility in C57BL6/N mice

    PubMed Central

    Kleinknecht, Karl R.; Bedenk, Benedikt T.; Kaltwasser, Sebastian F.; Grünecker, Barbara; Yen, Yi-Chun; Czisch, Michael; Wotjak, Carsten T.

    2012-01-01

    Spatial navigation is a fundamental capability necessary in everyday life to locate food, social partners, and shelter. It results from two very different strategies: (1) place learning which enables for flexible way finding and (2) response learning that leads to a more rigid “route following.” Despite the importance of knockout techniques that are only available in mice, little is known about mice' flexibility in spatial navigation tasks. Here we demonstrate for C57BL6/N mice in a water-cross maze (WCM) that only place learning enables spatial flexibility and relearning of a platform position, whereas response learning does not. This capability depends on an intact hippocampal formation, since hippocampus lesions by ibotenic acid (IA) disrupted relearning. In vivo manganese-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging revealed a volume loss of ≥60% of the hippocampus as a critical threshold for relearning impairments. In particular the changes in the left ventral hippocampus were indicative of relearning deficits. In summary, our findings establish the importance of hippocampus-dependent place learning for spatial flexibility and provide a first systematic analysis on spatial flexibility in mice. PMID:23293591

  11. Understanding the Correlations Among Undergraduates’ Spatial Reasoning Skills and Their Ability to Learn Astronomy Concepts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heyer, Inge

    2012-01-01

    We tacitly assume that astronomy is a conceptual domain deeply entrenched in three dimensions and that learners need to utilize spatial thinking to develop understanding of the field. In particular, cognitive science generally views students’ spatial thinking abilities as something that can be enhanced through purposeful instruction, whereas aptitude and ability to learn complex ideas might be immutable. Yet, precise investigations into the underlying relationship between students’ spatial reasoning ability and their ability to learn astronomy content in college science classes are beginning to reveal insight into how students cognitively engage in learning astronomy. In support, researchers at the CAPER Center for Astronomy and Physics Education Research conducted a first-steps correlational study of 148 non-science majoring undergraduate students. Using a single group, multiple-measures, longitudinal study design, students’ cognition was measured for pretest and posttest gains in astronomy understanding using established assessment tools, including the Test Of Astronomy STandards (TOAST) over the duration of instruction. In the middle of the semester they were tested for spatial reasoning ability using a subset of reliable spatial thinking assessment tools from the Spatial Intelligence and Learning Center (SILC). Results suggest some instructional techniques can be predicted as successful a priori while others are as yet unresolved. This work was supported, in part, by the Wyoming Excellence in Higher Education Endowment.

  12. [Impairment effects of tail suspension stress on spatial memory and its reversal learning in mice].

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiao-Qin; Wang, Gong-Wu; Duan, Qiu-Yan; Teng, Shi-Tong

    2011-08-01

    Present work investigated the effects of tail suspension stress (TSS) on spatial memory acquisition, consolidation, and its reversal learning in mice. Eighty-one adult male KM mice were divided into four groups (each group including a TSS subgroup and its control subgroup): absolute spatial memory acquisition and consolidation groups (group AA and CA); relative spatial memory acquisition and consolidation groups (group AR and CR). TSS (20 min) was performed immediately before (acquisition) or after (consolidation) a daily training. Results showed that there was no significant difference between control animals and TSS animals in each group in early spatial memory training days (5-8 d of training). Along with training, the performance of control animals improved significantly, but the performance of TSS animals improved slightly (group AA, CA and AR) or even did not change (group CR) (P<0.01). Reversal learning was also impaired in TSS animals (P<0.01). The results indicated that TSS could impair spatial memory acquisition, consolidation and reversal learning (especially the relative spatial memory consolidation and its reversal learning) in mice.

  13. Hyperspectral imagery super-resolution by compressive sensing inspired dictionary learning and spatial-spectral regularization.

    PubMed

    Huang, Wei; Xiao, Liang; Liu, Hongyi; Wei, Zhihui

    2015-01-19

    Due to the instrumental and imaging optics limitations, it is difficult to acquire high spatial resolution hyperspectral imagery (HSI). Super-resolution (SR) imagery aims at inferring high quality images of a given scene from degraded versions of the same scene. This paper proposes a novel hyperspectral imagery super-resolution (HSI-SR) method via dictionary learning and spatial-spectral regularization. The main contributions of this paper are twofold. First, inspired by the compressive sensing (CS) framework, for learning the high resolution dictionary, we encourage stronger sparsity on image patches and promote smaller coherence between the learned dictionary and sensing matrix. Thus, a sparsity and incoherence restricted dictionary learning method is proposed to achieve higher efficiency sparse representation. Second, a variational regularization model combing a spatial sparsity regularization term and a new local spectral similarity preserving term is proposed to integrate the spectral and spatial-contextual information of the HSI. Experimental results show that the proposed method can effectively recover spatial information and better preserve spectral information. The high spatial resolution HSI reconstructed by the proposed method outperforms reconstructed results by other well-known methods in terms of both objective measurements and visual evaluation.

  14. Visual Priming Enhances the Effects of Non-Spatial Cognitive Rehabilitation Training on Spatial Learning after Experimental Traumatic Brain Injury

    PubMed Central

    Edwards, Clarice M.; Kumar, Krishma; Koesarie, Kathleen; Brough, Elizabeth; Ritter, Anne C.; Brayer, Samuel W.; Thiels, Edda; Skidmore, Elizabeth R.; Wagner, Amy K.

    2015-01-01

    Previous work demonstrates that spatial (explicit) and non-spatial (implicit) elements of place learning in the Morris water maze (MWM) task can be dissociated and examined in the context of experimental traumatic brain injury (TBI). Providing non-spatial cognitive training (CT) after injury can improve place learning compared to untrained controls. In the present study, we hypothesized that brief exposure to extra-maze cues, in conjunction with CT, may further improve MWM performance and extra-maze cue utilization compared to CT alone. Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats (n=66) received controlled cortical impact (CCI) injury or sham surgery. Beginning D8 post-surgery, CCI and Sham rats received 6 days to no training (NT) or cognitive training with/without brief, non-contextualized exposure to extra-maze cues (BE and CT, respectively). Acquisition (D14-D18), Visible Platform (VP; D19), Carryover (CO; D20-D26), and periodic probe trials were performed. Platform latencies, peripheral and target zone time allocation, and search strategies were assessed. CCI/BE rats had shorter acquisition trial latencies than CCI/NT (p<0.001) and tended to have shorter latencies than CCI/CT rats (p<0.10). Both BE and CT reduced peripheral zone swimming for CCI rats vs. CCI/NT. CCI/BE animals increased spatial swim strategies from D14 to D18 relative to CCI/CT and showed similar swim strategy selection to the Sham/NT group. These data suggest that visual priming improves initial place learning in the MWM. These results support the visual priming response as another clinically relevant experimental rehabilitation construct, to use when assessing injury and treatment effects of behavioral and pharmacological therapies on cognition after TBI. PMID:25665829

  15. Sleep Enhances a Spatially Mediated Generalization of Learned Values

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Javadi, Amir-Homayoun; Tolat, Anisha; Spiers, Hugo J.

    2015-01-01

    Sleep is thought to play an important role in memory consolidation. Here we tested whether sleep alters the subjective value associated with objects located in spatial clusters that were navigated to in a large-scale virtual town. We found that sleep enhances a generalization of the value of high-value objects to the value of locally clustered…

  16. Women and Spatial Change: Learning Resources for Social Science Courses.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rengert, Arlene C., Ed.; Monk, Janice J., Ed.

    Six units focusing on the effects of spatial change on women are designed to supplement college introductory courses in geography and the social sciences. Unit 1, Woman and Agricultural Landscapes, focuses on how women contributed to landscape change in prehistory, women's impact on the environment, and the hypothesis that women developed…

  17. Spatial Constraints on Learning in Visual Search: Modeling Contextual Cuing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brady, Timothy F.; Chun, Marvin M.

    2007-01-01

    Predictive visual context facilitates visual search, a benefit termed contextual cuing (M. M. Chun & Y. Jiang, 1998). In the original task, search arrays were repeated across blocks such that the spatial configuration (context) of all of the distractors in a display predicted an embedded target location. The authors modeled existing results using…

  18. Sex and boldness explain individual differences in spatial learning in a lizard.

    PubMed

    Carazo, Pau; Noble, Daniel W A; Chandrasoma, Dani; Whiting, Martin J

    2014-05-01

    Understanding individual differences in cognitive performance is a major challenge to animal behaviour and cognition studies. We used the Eastern water skink (Eulamprus quoyii) to examine associations between exploration, boldness and individual variability in spatial learning, a dimension of lizard cognition with important bearing on fitness. We show that males perform better than females in a biologically relevant spatial learning task. This is the first evidence for sex differences in learning in a reptile, and we argue that it is probably owing to sex-specific selective pressures that may be widespread in lizards. Across the sexes, we found a clear association between boldness after a simulated predatory attack and the probability of learning the spatial task. In contrast to previous studies, we found a nonlinear association between boldness and learning: both 'bold' and 'shy' behavioural types were more successful learners than intermediate males. Our results do not fit with recent predictions suggesting that individual differences in learning may be linked with behavioural types via high-low-risk/reward trade-offs. We suggest the possibility that differences in spatial cognitive performance may arise in lizards as a consequence of the distinct environmental variability and complexity experienced by individuals as a result of their sex and social tactics.

  19. Using the Morris water maze to assess spatial learning and memory in weanling mice.

    PubMed

    Barnhart, Christopher D; Yang, Dongren; Lein, Pamela J

    2015-01-01

    Mouse models have been indispensable for elucidating normal and pathological processes that influence learning and memory. A widely used method for assessing these cognitive processes in mice is the Morris water maze, a classic test for examining spatial learning and memory. However, Morris water maze studies with mice have principally been performed using adult animals, which preclude studies of critical neurodevelopmental periods when the cellular and molecular substrates of learning and memory are formed. While weanling rats have been successfully trained in the Morris water maze, there have been few attempts to test weanling mice in this behavioral paradigm even though mice offer significant experimental advantages because of the availability of many genetically modified strains. Here, we present experimental evidence that weanling mice can be trained in the Morris water maze beginning on postnatal day 24. Maze-trained weanling mice exhibit significant improvements in spatial learning over the training period and results of the probe trial indicate the development of spatial memory. There were no sex differences in the animals' performance in these tasks. In addition, molecular biomarkers of synaptic plasticity are upregulated in maze-trained mice at the transcript level. These findings demonstrate that the Morris water maze can be used to assess spatial learning and memory in weanling mice, providing a potentially powerful experimental approach for examining the influence of genes, environmental factors and their interactions on the development of learning and memory.

  20. Circadian activity associated with spatial learning and memory in aging rhesus monkeys.

    PubMed

    Haley, G E; Landauer, N; Renner, L; Weiss, A; Hooper, K; Urbanski, H F; Kohama, S G; Neuringer, M; Raber, J

    2009-05-01

    In rodents, spatial learning and memory tests require navigation, whereas in nonhuman primates these tests generally do not involve a navigational component, thus assessing nonhomologous neural systems. To allow closer parallels between rodent and primate studies, we developed a navigational spatial learning and memory task for nonhuman primates and assessed the performance of elderly (19-25 years) female rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta). The animals were allowed to navigate in a room containing a series of food ports. After they learned to retrieve food from the ports, a single port was repeatedly baited and the animals were tested until they learned the correct location. The location of the baited port was then changed (shift position). We also determined whether test performance was associated with circadian activity measured with accelerometers. Performance measures included trials to criterion, search strategies, and several indices of circadian activity. Animals learned the task as reflected in their search strategies. Correlations were found between the number of initial or shift trials and circadian activity parameters including day activity, dark:light activity ratio, sleep latency, and wake bouts. Thus, disruptions in circadian rhythms in nonhuman primates are associated with poorer performance on this novel test. These data support the usefulness of this spatial navigational test to assess spatial learning and memory in rhesus monkeys and the importance of circadian activity in performance.

  1. Spatial Learning Requires mGlu5 Signalling in the Dorsal Hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Tan, Shawn Zheng Kai; Ganella, Despina E; Dick, Alec Lindsay Ward; Duncan, Jhodie R; Ong-Palsson, Emma; Bathgate, Ross A D; Kim, Jee Hyun; Lawrence, Andrew J

    2015-06-01

    We examined the role of hippocampal metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGlu5) in spatial learning and memory. Although it has been shown that mGlu5 signalling is required for certain forms of learning and memory, its role in spatial learning is unclear since studies using pharmacological or knockout mice models provide inconsistent findings. Additionally, the location in the brain where mGlu5 signalling may modulate such learning is yet to be precisely delineated. We stereotaxically injected rAAV-Cre into the dorsal hippocampus of mGlu5(loxP/loxP) mice to knockdown mGlu5 in that region. We show for the first time that knockdown of mGlu5 in the dorsal hippocampus is sufficient to impair spatial learning in Morris Water Maze. Locomotor activity and memory retrieval were unaffected by the mGlu5 knockdown. Taken together, these findings support a key role for dorsal hippocampal mGlu5 signalling in spatial learning.

  2. Location-Aware Mobile Learning of Spatial Algorithms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Karavirta, Ville

    2013-01-01

    Learning an algorithm--a systematic sequence of operations for solving a problem with given input--is often difficult for students due to the abstract nature of the algorithms and the data they process. To help students understand the behavior of algorithms, a subfield in computing education research has focused on algorithm…

  3. Spatial Learning Deficits in Adult Children of Alcoholic Parents.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schandler, Steven L.; And Others

    1991-01-01

    Investigated whether visuospatial deficits displayed by chronic alcoholics are present in persons at risk for alcoholism. Compared 17 social drinkers who were children of alcoholics and 17 who had no family alcoholism history. Visuospatial learning of children of alcoholics was significantly poorer than that of subjects with no family alcoholism…

  4. Spatial Context Learning Survives Interference from Working Memory Load

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vickery, Timothy J.; Sussman, Rachel S.; Jiang, Yuhong V.

    2010-01-01

    The human visual system is constantly confronted with an overwhelming amount of information, only a subset of which can be processed in complete detail. Attention and implicit learning are two important mechanisms that optimize vision. This study addressed the relationship between these two mechanisms. Specifically we asked, Is implicit learning…

  5. Hippocampal 5-HT1A Receptor and Spatial Learning and Memory

    PubMed Central

    Glikmann-Johnston, Yifat; Saling, Michael M.; Reutens, David C.; Stout, Julie C.

    2015-01-01

    Spatial cognition is fundamental for survival in the topographically complex environments inhabited by humans and other animals. The hippocampus, which has a central role in spatial cognition, is characterized by high concentration of serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine; 5-HT) receptor binding sites, particularly of the 1A receptor (5-HT1A) subtype. This review highlights converging evidence for the role of hippocampal 5-HT1A receptors in spatial learning and memory. We consider studies showing that activation or blockade of the 5-HT1A receptors using agonists or antagonists, respectively, lead to changes in spatial learning and memory. For example, pharmacological manipulation to induce 5-HT release, or to block 5-HT uptake, have indicated that increased extracellular 5-HT concentrations maintain or improve memory performance. In contrast, reduced levels of 5-HT have been shown to impair spatial memory. Furthermore, the lack of 5-HT1A receptor subtype in single gene knockout mice is specifically associated with spatial memory impairments. These findings, along with evidence from recent cognitive imaging studies using positron emission tomography (PET) with 5-HT1A receptor ligands, and studies of individual genetic variance in 5-HT1A receptor availability, strongly suggests that 5-HT, mediated by the 5-HT1A receptor subtype, plays a key role in spatial learning and memory. PMID:26696889

  6. Contributions of Medial Temporal Lobe and Striatal Memory Systems to Learning and Retrieving Overlapping Spatial Memories

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Thackery I.; Stern, Chantal E.

    2014-01-01

    Many life experiences share information with other memories. In order to make decisions based on overlapping memories, we need to distinguish between experiences to determine the appropriate behavior for the current situation. Previous work suggests that the medial temporal lobe (MTL) and medial caudate interact to support the retrieval of overlapping navigational memories in different contexts. The present study used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in humans to test the prediction that the MTL and medial caudate play complementary roles in learning novel mazes that cross paths with, and must be distinguished from, previously learned routes. During fMRI scanning, participants navigated virtual routes that were well learned from prior training while also learning new mazes. Critically, some routes learned during scanning shared hallways with those learned during pre-scan training. Overlap between mazes required participants to use contextual cues to select between alternative behaviors. Results demonstrated parahippocampal cortex activity specific for novel spatial cues that distinguish between overlapping routes. The hippocampus and medial caudate were active for learning overlapping spatial memories, and increased their activity for previously learned routes when they became context dependent. Our findings provide novel evidence that the MTL and medial caudate play complementary roles in the learning, updating, and execution of context-dependent navigational behaviors. PMID:23448868

  7. Spatial Visualization Tasks to Support Students' Spatial Structuring in Learning Volume Measurement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Revina, Shintia; Zulkardi; Darmawijoyo; van Galen, Frans

    2011-01-01

    Many prior researches found that most of students in grade five tended to have difficulty in fully grasping the concept of volume measurement because they have to build their competence in spatial structuring. The unit of volume "packing" measurement must be integrated and coordinated in three-dimension. On the other hand, it is revealed…

  8. Sleep enhances a spatially mediated generalization of learned values

    PubMed Central

    Tolat, Anisha; Spiers, Hugo J.

    2015-01-01

    Sleep is thought to play an important role in memory consolidation. Here we tested whether sleep alters the subjective value associated with objects located in spatial clusters that were navigated to in a large-scale virtual town. We found that sleep enhances a generalization of the value of high-value objects to the value of locally clustered objects, resulting in an impaired memory for the value of high-valued objects. Our results are consistent with (a) spatial context helping to bind items together in long-term memory and serve as a basis for generalizing across memories and (b) sleep mediating memory effects on salient/reward-related items. PMID:26373834

  9. Sleep enhances a spatially mediated generalization of learned values.

    PubMed

    Javadi, Amir-Homayoun; Tolat, Anisha; Spiers, Hugo J

    2015-10-01

    Sleep is thought to play an important role in memory consolidation. Here we tested whether sleep alters the subjective value associated with objects located in spatial clusters that were navigated to in a large-scale virtual town. We found that sleep enhances a generalization of the value of high-value objects to the value of locally clustered objects, resulting in an impaired memory for the value of high-valued objects. Our results are consistent with (a) spatial context helping to bind items together in long-term memory and serve as a basis for generalizing across memories and (b) sleep mediating memory effects on salient/reward-related items. PMID:26373834

  10. Spatial vision meets spatial cognition: examining the effect of visual blur on human visually guided route learning.

    PubMed

    Therrien, Megan E; Collin, Charles A

    2010-01-01

    Visual navigation is a task that involves processing two-dimensional light patterns on the retinas to obtain knowledge of how to move through a three-dimensional environment. Therefore, modifying the basic characteristics of the two-dimensional information provided to navigators should have important and informative effects on how they navigate. Despite this, few basic research studies have examined the effects of systematically modifying the available levels of spatial visual detail on navigation performance. In this study, we tested the effects of a range of visual blur levels--approximately equivalent to various degrees of low-pass spatial frequency filtering--on participants' visually guided route-learning performance using desktop virtual renderings of the Hebb-Williams mazes. Our findings show that the function of blur and time to finish the mazes follows a sigmoidal pattern, with the inflection point around +2 D of experienced defocus. This suggests that visually guided route learning is fairly robust to blur, with the threshold level being just above the limit for legal blindness. These findings have implications for models of route learning, as well as for practical situations in which humans must navigate under conditions of blur.

  11. Role of intraamygdaloid acylated-ghrelin in spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Tóth, Krisztián; László, Kristóf; Lénárd, László

    2010-01-15

    According to recently published papers acylated-ghrelin (A-Ghr) modifies memory and learning. The basolateral nucleus of amygdala (ABL) participates in the regulation of memory and learning mechanisms. Previously we verified A-Ghr responsive neurons in the ABL by electrophysiological methods. In male Wistar rats effects of bilateral intraamygdaloid microinfusion of 50 ng, 100 ng A-Ghr, 15 ng Ghr receptor antagonist d-Lys3-GHRP-6 (ANT) or ANT+50 ng A-Ghr [dissolved in 0.15M sterile saline], or vehicle in 0.4 microl volume were investigated in Morris water maze paradigm. 50 ng A-Ghr significantly reduced latency to find the platform located in one of the quadrants of the maze. Effect of 50 ng A-Ghr was blocked by ANT pretreatment. ANT alone had no effect. Our results show that place learning linked memory processes are facilitated by A-Ghr in the rat ABL. It is a specific effect, because it could be eliminated by ANT pretreatment.

  12. Visual modulation of auditory responses in the owl inferior colliculus.

    PubMed

    Bergan, Joseph F; Knudsen, Eric I

    2009-06-01

    The barn owl's central auditory system creates a map of auditory space in the external nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICX). Although the crucial role visual experience plays in the formation and maintenance of this auditory space map is well established, the mechanism by which vision influences ICX responses remains unclear. Surprisingly, previous experiments have found that in the absence of extensive pharmacological manipulation, visual stimuli do not drive neural responses in the ICX. Here we investigated the influence of dynamic visual stimuli on auditory responses in the ICX. We show that a salient visual stimulus, when coincident with an auditory stimulus, can modulate auditory responses in the ICX even though the same visual stimulus may elicit no neural responses when presented alone. For each ICX neuron, the most effective auditory and visual stimuli were located in the same region of space. In addition, the magnitude of the visual modulation of auditory responses was dependent on the context of the stimulus presentation with novel visual stimuli eliciting consistently larger response modulations than frequently presented visual stimuli. Thus the visual modulation of ICX responses is dependent on the characteristics of the visual stimulus as well as on the spatial and temporal correspondence of the auditory and visual stimuli. These results demonstrate moment-to-moment visual enhancements of auditory responsiveness that, in the short-term, increase auditory responses to salient bimodal stimuli and in the long-term could serve to instruct the adaptive auditory plasticity necessary to maintain accurate auditory orienting behavior. PMID:19321633

  13. A Spatial Modality Effect in Serial Memory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tremblay, Sebastien; Parmentier, Fabrice B. R.; Guerard, Katherine; Nicholls, Alastair P.; Jones, Dylan M.

    2006-01-01

    In 2 experiments, the authors tested whether the classical modality effect--that is, the stronger recency effect for auditory items relative to visual items--can be extended to the spatial domain. An order reconstruction task was undertaken with four types of material: visual-spatial, auditory-spatial, visual-verbal, and auditory-verbal.…

  14. Learning the spatial features of a locomotor task is slowed after stroke

    PubMed Central

    Tyrell, Christine M.; Helm, Erin

    2014-01-01

    The capacity for humans to learn a new walking pattern has been explored with a split-belt treadmill during single sessions of adaptation, but the split-belt treadmill can also be used to study longer-term motor learning. Although the literature provides some information about motor learning after stroke, existing studies have primarily involved the upper extremity and the results are mixed. The purpose of this study was to characterize learning of a novel locomotor task in stroke survivors. We hypothesized that the presence of neurological dysfunction from stroke would result in slower learning of a locomotor task and decreased retention of what was learned and that these deficits would be related to level of sensorimotor impairment. Sixteen participants with stroke and sixteen neurologically intact participants walked on a split-belt treadmill for 15 min on 5 consecutive days and during a retention test. Step length and limb phase were measured to capture learning of the spatial and temporal aspects of walking. Learning the spatial pattern of split-belt treadmill walking was slowed after stroke compared with neurologically intact subjects, whereas there were no differences between these two groups in learning the temporal pattern. During the retention test, poststroke participants demonstrated equal retention of the split-belt treadmill walking pattern compared with those who were neurologically intact. The results suggest that although stroke survivors are slower to learn a new spatial pattern of gait, if given sufficient time they are able to do so to the same extent as those who are neurologically intact. PMID:24790172

  15. Perceptual Load Influences Auditory Space Perception in the Ventriloquist Aftereffect

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eramudugolla, Ranmalee; Kamke, Marc. R.; Soto-Faraco, Salvador; Mattingley, Jason B.

    2011-01-01

    A period of exposure to trains of simultaneous but spatially offset auditory and visual stimuli can induce a temporary shift in the perception of sound location. This phenomenon, known as the "ventriloquist aftereffect", reflects a realignment of auditory and visual spatial representations such that they approach perceptual alignment despite their…

  16. Spatial learning deficits after the development of dorsomedial telencephalon lesions in goldfish.

    PubMed

    Saito, Kotaro; Watanabe, Shigeru

    2004-12-22

    The effects of lesions in the dorsal area of the caudal telencephalon (Carassius auratus) on the retention of spatial learning in goldfish were examined. The experimental paradigm was similar to the dry version of the Morris water maze for rodents. After being trained to reach a criterion, goldfish underwent surgery and were then retrained. In the retraining, dorsomedial lesions resulted in poor performance, while dorsolateral lesions did not. In a landmark task in which a small circular colored cue was set at a food location, dorsomedial lesions did not produce impairment during retraining. These results suggest that dorsomedial lesions selectively caused impairment in the retention of spatial learning.

  17. Telencephalic neurocircuitry and synaptic plasticity in rodent spatial learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Pooters, Tine; Van der Jeugd, Ann; Callaerts-Vegh, Zsuzsanna; D'Hooge, Rudi

    2015-09-24

    Spatial learning and memory in rodents represent close equivalents of human episodic declarative memory, which is especially sensitive to cerebral aging, neurodegeneration, and various neuropsychiatric disorders. Many tests and protocols are available for use in laboratory rodents, but Morris water maze and radial-arm maze remain the most widely used as well as the most valid and reliable spatial tests. Telencephalic neurocircuitry that plays functional roles in spatial learning and memory includes hippocampus, dorsal striatum and medial prefrontal cortex. Prefrontal-hippocampal circuitry comprises the major associative system in the rodent brain, and is critical for navigation in physical space, whereas interconnections between prefrontal cortex and dorsal striatum are probably more important for motivational or goal-directed aspects of spatial learning. Two major forms of synaptic plasticity, namely long-term potentiation, a lasting increase in synaptic strength between simultaneously activated neurons, and long-term depression, a decrease in synaptic strength, have been found to occur in hippocampus, dorsal striatum and medial prefrontal cortex. These and other phenomena of synaptic plasticity are probably crucial for the involvement of telencephalic neurocircuitry in spatial learning and memory. They also seem to play a role in the pathophysiology of two brain pathologies with episodic declarative memory impairments as core symptoms, namely Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia. Further research emphasis on rodent telencephalic neurocircuitry could be relevant to more valid and reliable preclinical research on these most devastating brain disorders. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Brain and Memory.

  18. Maze model to study spatial learning and memory in freely moving monkeys.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Bo; Tan, Hua; Sun, Ning-Lei; Wang, Jian-Hong; Meng, Zhi-Qiang; Li, Chuan-Yu; Fraser, Wilson A W; Hu, Xin-Tian; Carlson, Synnöve; Ma, Yuan-Ye

    2008-05-15

    Many types of mazes have been used in cognitive brain research and data obtained from those experiments, especially those from rodents' studies, support the idea that the hippocampus is related to spatial learning and memory. But the results from non-human primates researches regarding the role of the hippocampus in spatial learning and memory are controversial and inconsistent with those obtained in rodents. This might be due to the differences of the methods used in non-human primates and rodents. Several kinds of maze models including two-dimensional computerized visual maze models and three-dimensional maze models have been developed for non-human primates, but they all have some defects. Therefore, development of a maze model for non-human primates that is comparable with those used in rodents is necessary to solve the controversy. This paper describes a large-scale, three-dimensional outdoor maze model for non-human primates which can be used to study spatial learning and memory. Monkeys learn to use the maze quickly compared with two-dimensional computerized visual mazes. It has many advantages which could make up the limits of the existing three-dimensional mazes in non-human primates, and can be comparable with radial arm mazes used in rodents. Based on the results, we believe that the new maze model will be valuable in many research areas, especially in studies involving spatial learning and memory in freely moving monkeys.

  19. Treadmill exercise ameliorates disturbance of spatial learning ability in scopolamine-induced amnesia rats.

    PubMed

    Heo, Yu-Mi; Shin, Mal-Soon; Kim, Su-Hyun; Kim, Tae-Wook; Baek, Sang-Bin; Baek, Seung-Soo

    2014-06-01

    Alzheimer's disease is the most common neurodegenerative disease and this disease induces progressive loss of memory function Scopolamine is a non-selective muscarinic cholinergic receptor antagonist and it induces impairment of learning ability. Exercise is known to ameliorate memory deficits induced by various brain diseases. In the present study, we investigated the effect of treadmill exercise on spatial learning ability in relation with cell proliferation in the hippocampus using the scopolamine-induced amnesia mice. For the induction of amnesia, 1 mg/kg scopolamine hydrobromide was administered intraperitoneally once a day for 14 days. Morris water maze test for spatial learning ability was conducted. Immonofluorescence for 5-bromo-2-deoxyuri-dine (BrdU) and western blot for brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and its receptor tyrosine kinase B (TrkB) were performed. In the present results, scopolamine-induced amnesia mice showed deterioration of spatial learning ability. Inhibition of cell proliferation and suppression of BDNF and TrkB expressions were observed in the scopolamine-induced amnesia mice. Treadmill exercise improved spatial learning ability and increased cell proliferation through activating of BDNF-TrkB pathway in the amnesia mice. These findings offer a possibility that treadmill exercise may provide preventive or therapeutic value for the memory loss induced by variable neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease.

  20. Adaptive information processing in auditory cortex. Annual report, 1 June 1987-31 May 1988

    SciTech Connect

    Weinberger, N.M.

    1988-05-31

    The fact that learning induces frequency-specific modification of receptive fields in auditory cortex implies that the functional organization of auditory (and perhaps other sensory) cortex comprises an adaptively-constituted information base. This project initiates the first systematic investigation of adaptive information processing in cerebral cortex. A major goal is to determine the circumstances under which adaptive information processing is induced by experience. This project also addresses central hypotheses about rules that govern adaptive information processing, at three levels of spatial scale: (a) parallel processing in different auditory fields: (b) modular processing in different cortical lamina within fields; (c) local processing in different neurons within the same locus within lamina. The author emphasized determining the learning circumstances under which adaptive information processing is invoked by the brain. Current studies reveal that the frequency receptive fields of neurons in the auditory cortex, and the physiologically plastic magnocellular medial geniculate nucleus, develop frequency-specific modification such that maximal shifts in tuning are at or adjacent to the signal frequency. Further, this adaptive re-tuning of neurons develops rapidly during habituation, classical conditioning, and instrumental avoidance conditioning. The generality of re-tuning has established that AIP during learning represents a general brain strategy for the acquisition and subsequent processing of information.

  1. Impaired spatial learning and reduced adult hippocampal neurogenesis in histamine H1-receptor knockout mice.

    PubMed

    Ambrée, Oliver; Buschert, Jens; Zhang, Weiqi; Arolt, Volker; Dere, Ekrem; Zlomuzica, Armin

    2014-08-01

    The histamine H1-receptor (H1R) is expressed in wide parts of the brain including the hippocampus, which is involved in spatial learning and memory. Previous studies in H1R knockout (H1R-KO) mice revealed deficits in a variety of learning and memory tasks. It was also proposed that H1R activation is crucial for neuronal differentiation of neural progenitors. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate negatively reinforced spatial learning in the water-maze and to assess survival and neuronal differentiation of newborn cells in the adult hippocampus of H1R-KO mice. H1R-KO and wild-type (WT) mice were subjected to the following sequence of tests: (a) cued version, (b) place learning, (c) spatial probe, (d) long-term retention and (e) reversal learning. Furthermore hippocampal neurogenesis in terms of survival and differentiation was assessed in H1R-KO and WT mice. H1R-KO mice showed normal cued learning, but impaired place and reversal learning as well as impaired long-term retention performance. In addition, a marked reduction of newborn neurons in the hippocampus but no changes in differentiation of neural progenitors into neuronal and glial lineage was found in H1R-KO mice. Our data suggest that H1R deficiency in mice is associated with pronounced deficits in hippocampus-dependent spatial learning and memory. Furthermore, we herein provide first evidence that H1R deficiency in the mouse leads to a reduced neurogenesis. However, the exact mechanisms for the reduced number of cells in H1R-KO mice remain elusive and might be due to a reduced survival of newborn hippocampal neurons and/or a reduction in cell proliferation.

  2. Can zebrafish learn spatial tasks? An empirical analysis of place and single CS-US associative learning

    PubMed Central

    Karnik, Indraneel; Gerlai, Robert

    2012-01-01

    The zebrafish may be an ideal tool with which genes underlying learning and memory can be identified and functionally investigated. From a translational viewpoint, relational learning and episodic memory are particularly important as their impairment is the hallmark of prevalent human neurodegenerative diseases. Recent reports suggest that zebrafish are capable of solving complex relational-type associative learning tasks, namely spatial learning tasks. However, it is not known whether good performance in these tasks was truly based upon relational learning or upon a single CS-US association. Here we study whether zebrafish can find a rewarding stimulus (sight of conspecifics) based upon a single associative cue or/and upon the location of the reward using a method conceptually similar to ‘context and cue dependent fear conditioning’ employed with rodents. Our results confirm that zebrafish can form an association between a salient visual cue and the rewarding stimulus and at the same time they can also learn where the reward is presented. Although our results do not prove that zebrafish form a dynamic spatial map of their surroundings and use this map to locate their reward, they do show that these fish perform similarly to rodents whose hippocampal function is unimpaired. These results further strengthen the notion that complex cognitive abilities exist in the zebrafish and thus they may be analyzed using the excellent genetic tool set developed for this simple vertebrate. PMID:22633962

  3. Early Visual Deprivation Severely Compromises the Auditory Sense of Space in Congenitally Blind Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vercillo, Tiziana; Burr, David; Gori, Monica

    2016-01-01

    A recent study has shown that congenitally blind adults, who have never had visual experience, are impaired on an auditory spatial bisection task (Gori, Sandini, Martinoli, & Burr, 2014). In this study we investigated how thresholds for auditory spatial bisection and auditory discrimination develop with age in sighted and congenitally blind…

  4. Speech perception as complex auditory categorization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holt, Lori L.

    2002-05-01

    Despite a long and rich history of categorization research in cognitive psychology, very little work has addressed the issue of complex auditory category formation. This is especially unfortunate because the general underlying cognitive and perceptual mechanisms that guide auditory category formation are of great importance to understanding speech perception. I will discuss a new methodological approach to examining complex auditory category formation that specifically addresses issues relevant to speech perception. This approach utilizes novel nonspeech sound stimuli to gain full experimental control over listeners' history of experience. As such, the course of learning is readily measurable. Results from this methodology indicate that the structure and formation of auditory categories are a function of the statistical input distributions of sound that listeners hear, aspects of the operating characteristics of the auditory system, and characteristics of the perceptual categorization system. These results have important implications for phonetic acquisition and speech perception.

  5. Learning Novel Phonological Representations in Developmental Dyslexia: Associations with Basic Auditory Processing of Rise Time and Phonological Awareness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thomson, Jennifer M.; Goswami, Usha

    2010-01-01

    Across languages, children with developmental dyslexia are known to have impaired lexical phonological representations. Here, we explore associations between learning new phonological representations, phonological awareness, and sensitivity to amplitude envelope onsets (rise time). We show that individual differences in learning novel phonological…

  6. Adaptive social learning strategies in temporally and spatially varying environments : how temporal vs. spatial variation, number of cultural traits, and costs of learning influence the evolution of conformist-biased transmission, payoff-biased transmission, and individual learning.

    PubMed

    Nakahashi, Wataru; Wakano, Joe Yuichiro; Henrich, Joseph

    2012-12-01

    Long before the origins of agriculture human ancestors had expanded across the globe into an immense variety of environments, from Australian deserts to Siberian tundra. Survival in these environments did not principally depend on genetic adaptations, but instead on evolved learning strategies that permitted the assembly of locally adaptive behavioral repertoires. To develop hypotheses about these learning strategies, we have modeled the evolution of learning strategies to assess what conditions and constraints favor which kinds of strategies. To build on prior work, we focus on clarifying how spatial variability, temporal variability, and the number of cultural traits influence the evolution of four types of strategies: (1) individual learning, (2) unbiased social learning, (3) payoff-biased social learning, and (4) conformist transmission. Using a combination of analytic and simulation methods, we show that spatial-but not temporal-variation strongly favors the emergence of conformist transmission. This effect intensifies when migration rates are relatively high and individual learning is costly. We also show that increasing the number of cultural traits above two favors the evolution of conformist transmission, which suggests that the assumption of only two traits in many models has been conservative. We close by discussing how (1) spatial variability represents only one way of introducing the low-level, nonadaptive phenotypic trait variation that so favors conformist transmission, the other obvious way being learning errors, and (2) our findings apply to the evolution of conformist transmission in social interactions. Throughout we emphasize how our models generate empirical predictions suitable for laboratory testing.

  7. The effect of subacute supplementation of taurine on spatial learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Ito, Koichi; Arko, Matevz; Kawaguchi, Tomohiro; Kuwahara, Masayoshi; Tsubone, Hirokazu

    2009-04-01

    Although the effect of taurine on the heart and liver is well studied, there has been no direct observation concerning the effect of taurine on spatial learning and memory at the behavior level. In this study, we tested the effect of subacute taurine supplementation with evaluation by the Morris water maze method. Although swim distance to find the platform of taurine-supplemented rats was significantly longer than that of control rats due to increase of swimming velocity, escape latency and the efficacy of learning and memory was comparable in both groups. These results suggest that taurine supplemented orally does not affect the learning and memory function.

  8. Dynamics of auditory working memory

    PubMed Central

    Kaiser, Jochen

    2015-01-01

    Working memory denotes the ability to retain stimuli in mind that are no longer physically present and to perform mental operations on them. Electro- and magnetoencephalography allow investigating the short-term maintenance of acoustic stimuli at a high temporal resolution. Studies investigating working memory for non-spatial and spatial auditory information have suggested differential roles of regions along the putative auditory ventral and dorsal streams, respectively, in the processing of the different sound properties. Analyses of event-related potentials have shown sustained, memory load-dependent deflections over the retention periods. The topography of these waves suggested an involvement of modality-specific sensory storage regions. Spectral analysis has yielded information about the temporal dynamics of auditory working memory processing of individual stimuli, showing activation peaks during the delay phase whose timing was related to task performance. Coherence at different frequencies was enhanced between frontal and sensory cortex. In summary, auditory working memory seems to rely on the dynamic interplay between frontal executive systems and sensory representation regions. PMID:26029146

  9. Chlorpheniramine impairs spatial choice learning in telencephalon-ablated fish.

    PubMed

    Romaguera, Fernanda; Mattioli, Rosana

    2008-01-01

    This work investigated the effect of the H1 receptor blockade in the forebrain of ablated Carassius auratus in a simple stimulus-response learning task using a T-maze test with positive reinforcement. The goldfish were submitted to surgery for removal of both telencephalic lobes five days before beginning the experiment. A T-shaped glass aquarium was employed, with two feeders located at the extremities of the long arm. One of the two feeders was blocked. The experimental trials were performed in nine consecutive days. Each fish was individually placed in the short arm and confined there for thirty seconds, then it was allowed to swim through the aquarium to search for food for ten minutes (maximum period). Time to find food was analysed in seconds. Animals were injected intraperitoneally with chlorpheniramine (CPA) at 16 mg/kg of body weight or saline after every trial, ten minutes after being placed back in the home aquarium. The results show that all the training latencies of the A-SAL group were higher than the latencies of the S-SAL group. The S-SAL group had decreased latencies from the second trial on, while the S-CPA group showed decreased latencies after the fourth trial. The A-SAL group showed reduced latencies after the fifth trial, but the A-CPA group maintained the latencies throughout the experiment. This suggests that CPA impairs the consolidation of learning both on telencephalon ablated animals and in sham-operated ones through its action on mesencephalic structures of the brain and/or on the cerebellum in teleost fish.

  10. SEIZURES IN EARLY-LIFE SUPPRESS HIPPOCAMPAL DENDRITE GROWTH WHILE IMPAIRING SPATIAL LEARNING

    PubMed Central

    Nishimura, Masataka; Gu, Xue; Swann, John W.

    2011-01-01

    Impaired learning and memory are common in epilepsy syndromes of childhood. Clinical investigations suggest that the developing brain may be particularly vulnerable to the effects of intractable seizure disorders. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies have demonstrated reduced volumes in brain regions involved in learning and memory. The earlier the onset of an epilepsy the larger the effects seem to be on both brain anatomy and cognition. Thus, childhood epilepsy has been proposed to interfere in some unknown way with brain development. Experiments reported here explore these ideas by examining the effects of seizures in infant mice on learning and memory and on the growth of CA1 hippocampal pyramidal cell dendrites. Fifteen brief seizures were induced by flurothyl between postnatal days 7 and 11 in mice that express green fluorescent protein (GFP) in hippocampal pyramidal cells. One to 44 days later, dendritic arbors were reconstructed to measure growth. Spatial learning and memory were also assessed in a water maze. Our results show that recurrent seizures produced marked deficits in learning and memory. Seizures also dramatically slowed the growth of basilar dendrites while neurons in litter-mate control mice continued to add new dendritic branches and lengthen existing branches. When experiments were performed in older mice, seizures had no measureable effects on either dendrite arbor complexity or spatial learning and memory. Our results suggest that the recurring seizures of intractable childhood epilepsy contribute to associated learning and memory deficits by suppressing dendrite growth. PMID:21777677

  11. Failure to learn a new spatial format in children with developmental dyslexia

    PubMed Central

    Pontillo, Maria; De Luca, Maria; Ellis, Andrew W.; Marinelli, Chiara Valeria; Spinelli, Donatella; Zoccolotti, Pierluigi

    2014-01-01

    A general problem in studying children with developmental dyslexia is how to separate inefficiency in learning on the one hand from exposure to written texts on the other. To evaluate dyslexic children's learning abilities with graphemic materials, we tested their improvement in a condition that minimized previous experience with words (i.e., “novel words”) and with the standard, horizontal spatial letter array (i.e., a non-canonical “zigzag” format). We selected five pairs of children with dyslexia and (younger) typically developing readers matched for reading speed and accuracy in these specific conditions. Reading performance on novel words in the zigzag format was measured in 23 sessions; learning curves were fitted by power functions. Similar to typically developing readers, children with dyslexia improved their reading of novel words presented in the new format; however, their rate of learning was slower than that of typically developing readers. Furthermore, their learning to read in the new format did not generalize to novel untrained items, whereas significant generalization was present in typically developing readers. As the failure to generalize learning of the spatial format could not be attributed to reduced experience, it indicates a genuine disability and points to impaired perceptual learning as a factor in developmental dyslexia. PMID:24785494

  12. Plasticity of spatial hearing: behavioural effects of cortical inactivation

    PubMed Central

    Nodal, Fernando R; Bajo, Victoria M; King, Andrew J

    2012-01-01

    The contribution of auditory cortex to spatial information processing was explored behaviourally in adult ferrets by reversibly deactivating different cortical areas by subdural placement of a polymer that released the GABAA agonist muscimol over a period of weeks. The spatial extent and time course of cortical inactivation were determined electrophysiologically. Muscimol-Elvax was placed bilaterally over the anterior (AEG), middle (MEG) or posterior ectosylvian gyrus (PEG), so that different regions of the auditory cortex could be deactivated in different cases. Sound localization accuracy in the horizontal plane was assessed by measuring both the initial head orienting and approach-to-target responses made by the animals. Head orienting behaviour was unaffected by silencing any region of the auditory cortex, whereas the accuracy of approach-to-target responses to brief sounds (40 ms noise bursts) was reduced by muscimol-Elvax but not by drug-free implants. Modest but significant localization impairments were observed after deactivating the MEG, AEG or PEG, although the largest deficits were produced in animals in which the MEG, where the primary auditory fields are located, was silenced. We also examined experience-induced spatial plasticity by reversibly plugging one ear. In control animals, localization accuracy for both approach-to-target and head orienting responses was initially impaired by monaural occlusion, but recovered with training over the next few days. Deactivating any part of the auditory cortex resulted in less complete recovery than in controls, with the largest deficits observed after silencing the higher-level cortical areas in the AEG and PEG. Although suggesting that each region of auditory cortex contributes to spatial learning, differences in the localization deficits and degree of adaptation between groups imply a regional specialization in the processing of spatial information across the auditory cortex. PMID:22547635

  13. Fluoxetine Restores Spatial Learning but Not Accelerated Forgetting in Mesial Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barkas, Lisa; Redhead, Edward; Taylor, Matthew; Shtaya, Anan; Hamilton, Derek A.; Gray, William P.

    2012-01-01

    Learning and memory dysfunction is the most common neuropsychological effect of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy, and because the underlying neurobiology is poorly understood, there are no pharmacological strategies to help restore memory function in these patients. We have demonstrated impairments in the acquisition of an allocentric spatial task,…

  14. Semantic Features, Perceptual Expectations, and Frequency as Factors in the Learning of Polar Spatial Adjective Concepts.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dunckley, Candida J. Lutes; Radtke, Robert C.

    Two semantic theories of word learning, a perceptual complexity hypothesis (H. Clark, 1970) and a quantitative complexity hypothesis (E. Clark, 1972) were tested by teaching 24 preschoolers and 16 college students CVC labels for five polar spatial adjective concepts having single word representations in English, and for three having no direct…

  15. Learning to Think Spatially: GIS as a Support System in the K-12 Curriculum

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Academies Press, 2006

    2006-01-01

    Spatial thinking is a cognitive skill that can be used in everyday life, the workplace, and science to structure problems, find answers, and express solutions using the properties of space. It can be learned and taught formally to students using appropriately designed tools, technologies, and curricula. This report explains the nature and…

  16. Neurobiological and Endocrine Correlates of Individual Differences in Spatial Learning Ability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sandi, Carmen; Cordero, M. Isabel; Merino, Jose J.; Kruyt, Nyika D.; Regan, Ciaran M.; Murphy, Keith J.

    2004-01-01

    The polysialylated neural cell adhesion molecule (PSA-NCAM) has been implicated in activity-dependent synaptic remodeling and memory formation. Here, we questioned whether training-induced modulation of PSA-NCAM expression might be related to individual differences in spatial learning abilities. At 12 h posttraining, immunohistochemical analyses…

  17. User Control and Task Authenticity for Spatial Learning in 3D Environments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dalgarno, Barney; Harper, Barry

    2004-01-01

    This paper describes two empirical studies which investigated the importance for spatial learning of view control and object manipulation within 3D environments. A 3D virtual chemistry laboratory was used as the research instrument. Subjects, who were university undergraduate students (34 in the first study and 80 in the second study), undertook…

  18. Incidental Learning of Links during Navigation: The Role of Visuo-Spatial Capacity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rouet, Jean-Francois; Voros, Zsofia; Pleh, Csaba

    2012-01-01

    We investigated the impact of readers' visuo-spatial (VS) capacity on their incidental learning of page links during the exploration of simple hierarchical hypertextual documents. Forty-three university students were asked to explore a series of hypertexts for a limited period of time. Then the participants were asked to recall the layout and the…

  19. Does Spatial Ability Help the Learning of Anatomy in a Biomedical Science Course?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sweeney, Kevin; Hayes, Jennifer A.; Chiavaroli, Neville

    2014-01-01

    A three-dimensional appreciation of the human body is the cornerstone of clinical anatomy. Spatial ability has previously been found to be associated with students' ability to learn anatomy and their examination performance. The teaching of anatomy has been the subject of major change over the last two decades with the reduction in time spent…

  20. Real-Time Data Display, Spatial Visualization Ability, and Learning Force and Motion Concepts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kozhevnikov, Maria; Thornton, Ronald

    2006-01-01

    In this study, we examined how students' levels of spatial visualization ability interact with learning physics in a microcomputer-based laboratory (MBL) environment. Undergraduate students who had taken an introductory physics course based on MBL tools were pre- and posttested at the beginning and at the end of the semester on spatial…

  1. Fractal dimensions: A new paradigm to assess spatial memory and learning using Morris water maze.

    PubMed

    Singh, Surjeet; Kaur, Harpreet; Sandhir, Rajat

    2016-02-15

    Morris water maze has been widely used for analysis of cognitive functions and relies on the time taken by animal to find the platform i.e. escape latency as a parameter to quantify spatial memory and learning. However, escape latency is confounded by swimming speed which is not necessarily a cognitive factor. Rather, path length may be a more appropriate and reliable parameter to assess spatial learning. This paper presents fractal dimension as a new paradigm to assess spatial memory and learning in animals. Male wistar rats were administrated with pentylenetetrazole and scopolamine to induce chronic epilepsy and dementia respectively. Fractal dimension of the random path followed by the animals on Morris water maze was analyzed and statistically compared among different experimental groups; the results suggest that fractal dimension is more reliable and accurate parameter to assess cognitive deficits compared to escape latency. Thus, the present study suggests that fractal dimensions could be used as an independent parameter to assess spatial memory and learning in animals using Morris water maze.

  2. Increasing Content-Area Learning: A Comparison of Mnemonic and Visual-Spatial Direct Instruction.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scruggs, Thomas E.; And Others

    In two experiments, learning disabled (LD) students were taught attributes of North American minerals via mnemonic instruction, free study, or a visual-spatial display condition similar to that proposed by Engelmann and Carnine (1982). In the first experiement, 36 junior high school-age LD students were taught specific attribute values (hardness =…

  3. Knockdown of Nurr1 in the Rat Hippocampus: Implications to Spatial Discrimination Learning and Memory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Colon-Cesario, Wanda I.; Martinez-Montemayor, Michelle M.; Morales, Sohaira; Felix, Jahaira; Cruz, Juan; Adorno, Monique; Pereira, Lixmar; Colon, Nydia; Maldonado-Vlaar, Carmen S.; Pena de Ortiz, Sandra

    2006-01-01

    Nurr1 expression is up-regulated in the brain following associative learning experiences, but its relevance to cognitive processes remains unclear. In these studies, rats initially received bilateral hippocampal infusions of control or antisense oligodeoxynucleotides (ODNs) 1 hour prior to training in a holeboard spatial discrimination task. Such…

  4. Showercap Mindmap: A Spatial Activity for Learning Physiology Terminology and Location

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vanags, Thea; Budimlic, Mira; Herbert, Elissa; Montgomery, Melena M.; Vickers, Tracy

    2012-01-01

    Students struggle with the volume and complexity of physiology terminology. We compared first-year undergraduate psychology students' learning of physiological terms using two teaching methods: one verbal (control group; n = 16) and one spatial and multisensory (experimental group; n = 19). The experimental group used clear plastic shower caps to…

  5. Variable impact of chronic stress on spatial learning and memory in BXD mice.

    PubMed

    Shea, Chloe J A; Carhuatanta, Kimberly A K; Wagner, Jessica; Bechmann, Naomi; Moore, Raquel; Herman, James P; Jankord, Ryan

    2015-10-15

    The effects of chronic stress on learning are highly variable across individuals. This variability stems from gene-environment interactions. However, the mechanisms by which stress affects genetic predictors of learning are unclear. Thus, we aim to determine whether the genetic pathways that predict spatial memory performance are altered by previous exposure to chronic stress. Sixty-two BXD recombinant inbred strains of mice, as well as parent strains C57BL/6J and DBA/2J, were randomly assigned as behavioral control or to a chronic variable stress paradigm and then underwent behavioral testing to assess spatial memory and learning performance using the Morris water maze. Quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping was completed for average escape latency times for both control and stress animals. Loci on chromosomes 5 and 10 were found in both control and stress environmental populations; eight additional loci were found to be unique to either the control or stress environment. In sum, results indicate that certain genetic loci predict spatial memory performance regardless of prior stress exposure, while exposure to stress also reveals unique genetic predictors of training during the memory task. Thus, we find that genetic predictors contributing to spatial learning and memory are susceptible to the presence of chronic stress.

  6. Who Benefits from Learning with 3D Models?: The Case of Spatial Ability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huk, T.

    2006-01-01

    Empirical studies that focus on the impact of three-dimensional (3D) visualizations on learning are to date rare and inconsistent. According to the ability-as-enhancer hypothesis, high spatial ability learners should benefit particularly as they have enough cognitive capacity left for mental model construction. In contrast, the…

  7. Unexpected improvements of spatial learning and memory abilities in chronic rotenone intoxicated mice.

    PubMed

    Jia, Fengju; Song, Ning; Zhao, Chenyang; Xie, Junxia; Jiang, Hong

    2014-01-01

    The liposoluble insecticide rotenone is commonly used as a mitochondrial complex I inhibitor to replicate Parkinson's disease (PD) pathological features. However, there was no assessment of the spatial learning and memory abilities in chronic rotenone-induced PD models. In the present study, by rotarod test and Thioflavine T staining, we first noted the impairment of motor coordination in rotenone-treated group for 3 months, as well as alpha-synuclein inclusions in the nigral dopaminergic neurons in C57BL/6 mice with intragastrical delivery of rotenone (5 mg/Kg) for 3 months rather than 1 month. We then evaluated spatial learning and memory abilities by Morris water maze task in this model. The results showed escape latency reduced in rotenone-intoxicated mice for 3 months, indicating an improvement of learning ability. However, it was delayed slightly but not significantly in rotenone-intoxicated mice for 1 month. Similarly, we demonstrated that spatial memory ability was enhanced in 3-month-treatment group, but impaired in 1-month-treatment group. There were no proliferating cell nuclear antigen and doublecortin positive cells in the hippocampus by double immunofluorescent staining, indicating the absence of hippocampal neurogenesis in rotenone-intoxicated mice. These results suggest that spatial learning and memory abilities are disturbed in chronic rotenone-intoxicated PD model.

  8. Roles of oxytocin in spatial learning and memory in the nucleus basalis of Meynert in rats.

    PubMed

    Wu, Wei; Yu, Long-Chuan

    2004-08-15

    The present study was performed to explore the role of oxytocin (OT) in spatial learning and memory in the nucleus basalis of Meynert (NBM) of rats. The latency, distance and swimming path to find the platform were tested by Morris water maze and recorded by a video camera connected to a computer. Intra-NBM injections of 2 or 10 nmol of OT, but not 0.2 nmol of OT, induced significant increase on the latency of spatial learning. Rats receiving intra-NBM administrations of 2 or 10 nmol of OT showed a more random search pattern. There were no significant changes in the swimming speed in Morris water maze test after the injection of OT. Furthermore, the impaired effect of OT on the latency of spatial learning was blocked by intra-NBM injection of the selective OT antagonist Atosiban, indicating that the effect of OT was mediated by OT receptor in the NBM of rats. Moreover, there were no influences of OT or Atosiban on the retention performance in rats. The results suggest that OT plays an inhibitory role in spatial learning in the NBM; the effect is mediated by OT receptor.

  9. Spatial Visualization as Mediating between Mathematics Learning Strategy and Mathematics Achievement among 8th Grade Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rabab'h, Belal; Veloo, Arsaythamby

    2015-01-01

    Jordanian 8th grade students revealed low achievement in mathematics through four periods (1999, 2003, 2007 & 2011) of Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS). This study aimed to determine whether spatial visualization mediates the affect of Mathematics Learning Strategies (MLS) factors namely mathematics attitude,…

  10. The Effects of Spatial Configuration on Preschoolers' Attention Strategies, Selective Attention, and Incidental Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Blumberg, Fran C.; Torenberg, Meira

    2005-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of spatial arrangement on preschool children's selective attention and incidental learning. Three- and four-year old children were shown a multi-coloured box designated as a "special place" containing miniature chairs and models of animals. One category of objects were designated as relevant and one as…

  11. Blocking of Spatial Learning between Enclosure Geometry and a Local Landmark

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Paul N.; Alexander, Tim

    2008-01-01

    In a virtual environment, blocking of spatial learning to locate an invisible target was found reciprocally between a distinctively shaped enclosure and a local landmark within its walls. The blocking effect was significantly stronger when the shape of the enclosure rather than the landmark served as the blocking cue. However, the extent to which…

  12. A Computer-Based Spatial Learning Strategy Approach That Improves Reading Comprehension and Writing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ponce, Hector R.; Mayer, Richard E.; Lopez, Mario J.

    2013-01-01

    This article explores the effectiveness of a computer-based spatial learning strategy approach for improving reading comprehension and writing. In reading comprehension, students received scaffolded practice in translating passages into graphic organizers. In writing, students received scaffolded practice in planning to write by filling in graphic…

  13. Spatial learning-induced egr-1 expression in telencephalon of gold fish Carassius auratus.

    PubMed

    Rajan, K Emmanuvel; Ganesh, A; Dharaneedharan, S; Radhakrishnan, K

    2011-03-01

    The immediate-early gene (egr-1) expression was used to examine the neuron's response in telencephalon of goldfish during spatial learning in small space. Fishes were pre-exposed in the experimental apparatus and trained to pick food from the tray in a rectangular-shaped arena. The apparatus was divided into identical compartments comprising three gates to provide different spatial tasks. After the fish learned to pass through the gate one, two more gates were introduced one by one. Fish made more number of attempts and took longer time (P < 0.05) to pass through the first gate than the gate two or three. This active learning induces the expression of egr-1 in telencephalon as established by western blot analysis. Subsequently, the fish learn quickly to cross the similar type of second and third gate and make fewer errors with a corresponding decline in the level of egr-1 expression. As the fish learned to pass through all the three gates, third gate was replaced by modified gate three. Interestingly, the level of egr-1 expression increased again, when the fish exhibit a high exploratory behavior to cross the modified gate three. The present study shows that egr-1 expression is induced in the telencephalon of goldfish while intensively acquiring geometric spatial information to pass through the gates. PMID:20714804

  14. Disruption of ripple-associated hippocampal activity during rest impairs spatial learning in the rat.

    PubMed

    Ego-Stengel, Valérie; Wilson, Matthew A

    2010-01-01

    The hippocampus plays a key role in the acquisition of new memories for places and events. Evidence suggests that the consolidation of these memories is enhanced during sleep. At the neuronal level, reactivation of awake experience in the hippocampus during sharp-wave ripple events, characteristic of slow-wave sleep, has been proposed as a neural mechanism for sleep-dependent memory consolidation. However, a causal relation between sleep reactivation and memory consolidation has not been established. Here we show that disrupting neuronal activity during ripple events impairs spatial learning. We trained rats daily in two identical spatial navigation tasks followed each by a 1-hour rest period. After one of the tasks, stimulation of hippocampal afferents selectively disrupted neuronal activity associated with ripple events without changing the sleep-wake structure. Rats learned the control task significantly faster than the task followed by rest stimulation, indicating that interfering with hippocampal processing during sleep led to decreased learning.

  15. Dusky damselfish Stegastes fuscus relational learning: evidences from associative and spatial tasks.

    PubMed

    Silveira, M M; Oliveira, J J; Luchiari, A C

    2015-03-01

    This study investigated the ability of the dusky damselfish Stegastes fuscus to associate conditioned and unconditioned stimuli (single CS-US) and to find a specific place in a clueless ambiece (spatial learning). After tested for colour preference and showing no specific colour attractively, the fish were trained to associate a colour cue with a stimulus fish (conspecific). Fish were then challenged to locate the exact place where the stimulus fish was presented. Stegastes fuscus spent most time close to the zone where stimulus was presented, even without obvious marks for orientation. The results confirm that S. fuscus show single CS-US learning and suggest the fish ability for spatial orientation. Stegastes fuscus appears to use multiple senses (sight and lateral line) for cues association and recall, and appear to perform relational learning similar to mammals. These data suggest the importance of cognitive skill for reef fishes that may have contributed to their establishment and evolutionary success in such complex environment.

  16. Treadmill exercise enhances spatial learning ability through suppressing hippocampal apoptosis in Huntington's disease rats.

    PubMed

    Ji, Eun-Sang; Kim, You-Mi; Shin, Mal-Soon; Kim, Chang-Ju; Lee, Kwang-Sik; Kim, Kijeong; Ha, Jonglin; Chung, Yong-Rak

    2015-06-01

    Huntington's disease is a chronic neurodegenerative disorder inherited in an autosomal dominant fashion, and characterized as involuntary movement. Quinolinic acid has been used to produce an animal model of Huntington's disease. In the present study, the effect of treadmill exercise on spatial-learning ability and motor coordination focusing on the apoptosis in the hippocampus was investigated using quinolinic acid-induced Huntington's disease rats. Huntington's disease was induced by unilateral intrastriatal injection of quinolinic acid (2 μL of 100 nmol) using stereotaxic instrument. The rats in the treadmill exercise groups were subjected to run on a treadmill for 30 min once a day during 14 days. Spatial learning ability and motor coordination were determined by radial 8-arm maze test and rota-rod test. Immunohistochemistry for caspase-3 and western blot for Bax and Bcl-2 were also conducted for the detection of apoptosis. In the present results, spatial learning ability and motor coordination were deteriorated by intrastriatal injection of quinolinic acid. In contrast, treadmill exercise exerted ameliorating effect on quinolinic acid-induced deterioration of spatial learning ability and motor coordination. Bcl-2 expression in the hippocampus was de-creased and expressions of casepase-3 and Bax in the hippocampus were increased in the quinolinic acid-induced Huntington's disease rats. Treadmill exercise increased Bcl-2 expression and decreased expressions of casepase-3 and Bax in the Huntington's disease rats. The present results showed that treadmill exercise might ameliorate quinolinic acid-induced loss of spatial learning ability and motor coordination by suppressing apoptosis in the hippocampus. PMID:26171378

  17. The role of the entorhinal cortex in two forms of spatial learning and memory.

    PubMed

    Bannerman, D M; Yee, B K; Lemaire, M; Wilbrecht, L; Jarrard, L; Iversen, S D; Rawlins, J N; Good, M A

    2001-12-01

    It is generally acknowledged that the rodent hippocampus plays an important role in spatial learning and memory. The importance of the entorhinal cortex (ERC), an area that is closely interconnected anatomically with the hippocampus, in these forms of learning is less clear cut. Recent studies using selective, fibre-sparing cytotoxic lesions have generated conflicting results, with some studies showing that spatial learning can proceed normally without the ERC, suggesting that this area is not required for normal hippocampal function. The present study compared cytotoxic and aspiration ERC lesions with both fimbria fornix (FFX) lesions and sham-operated controls on two spatial learning tasks which have repeatedly been shown to depend on the hippocampus. Both groups of ERC lesions were impaired during non-matching-to-place testing (rewarded alternation) on the elevated T-maze. However, neither of these lesions subsequently had any effect on the acquisition of a standard spatial reference memory task in the water maze. FFX lesions produced a robust and reliable impairment on both of these tasks. A second experiment confirmed that cytotoxic ERC lesions spared water maze learning but disrupted rewarded alternation on the T-maze, when the order of behavioural testing was reversed. These results confirm previous reports that ERC-lesioned animals are capable of spatial navigation in the water maze, suggesting that the ERC is not a prerequisite for normal hippocampal function in this task. The present demonstration that ERC lesions disrupt non-matching-to-place performance may, however, be consistent with the possibility that ERC lesions affect attentional mechanisms, for example, by increasing the sensitivity to recent reward history.

  18. Uncertain spatial reasoning of environmental risks in GIS using genetic learning algorithms.

    PubMed

    Shad, Rouzbeh; Shad, Arefeh

    2012-10-01

    Modeling the impact of air pollution is one of the most important approaches for managing damages to the ecosystem. This problem can be solved by sensing and modeling uncertain spatial behaviors, defining topological rules, and using inference and learning capabilities in a spatial reasoning system. Reasoning, which is the main component of such complex systems, requires that proper rules be defined through expert judgments in the knowledge-based part. Use of genetic fuzzy capabilities enables the algorithm to learn and be tuned to proper rules in a flexible manner and increases the preciseness and robustness of operations. The main objective of this paper was to design and evaluate a spatial genetic fuzzy system, with the goal of assessing environmental risks of air pollution due to oil well fires during the Persian Gulf War. Dynamic areas were extracted and monitored through images from NOAA, and the data were stored in an efficient spatial database. Initial spatial knowledge was determined by expert consideration of the application characteristics, and the inference engine was performed with genetic learning (GL) algorithms. Finally, GL (0.7 and 0.03), GL (0.7 and 0.08), GL (0.98 and 0.03), GL (0.98 and 0.08), and Cordon learning methods were evaluated with test and training data related to samples extracted from Landsat thematic mapper satellite images. Results of the implementation showed that GL (0.98, 0.03) was more precise than the other methods for learning and tuning rules in the concerned application. PMID:22068317

  19. Spatial learning associated with stimulus response in goldfish Carassius auratus: relationship to activation of CREB signalling.

    PubMed

    Rajan, Koilmani Emmanuvel; Thangaleela, Subramanian; Balasundaram, Chellam

    2015-06-01

    Earlier, we reported spatial learning ability in goldfish (Carassius auratus) by using spatial paradigm with food reward. Therefore, we hypothesized that goldfish may use associated cue to integrate "where" and "what" for spatial memory. To test our hypothesis, we first trained goldfish to learn to cross the gate1, which is associated with spatial task. Subsequently, they were trained to learn to enter the task chamber and to identify the food reward chamber associated with visual cue (red/green light). Red and green lights were positioned randomly for each trial but always the food reward was kept in green chamber. In addition, to elucidate the role of the signalling cascade in spatial memory associated with visual cue, nicotinamide (NAM, 1000 mg/kg, i.p), a NAD(+) precursor, was used to inhibit the Sirtuin 1 (SIRT1) cyclic AMP response element binding protein (CREB) pathway. Fishes were trained for 5 days in a maze after treating with either vehicle (VEH, DD H2O) or NAM, and then, they were individually tested for memory. We found that VEH-treated fish learned and recalled the task successfully by showing less latency and making more correct choices than NAM-treated group. Subsequent analysis showed that NAM treatment significantly down-regulated the phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK1/2), CREB, expression of SirT1 and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (Bdnf) in telencephalon. Taken together, our results provide behavioural evidence of spatial memory associated with visual cue in C. auratus, which could be regulated by ERK1/2-CREB-SirT1-Bdnf pathway.

  20. Exposure to radiation accelerates normal brain aging and produces deficits in spatial learning and memory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shukitt-Hale, B.; Casadesus, G.; Carey, A.; Rabin, B. M.; Joseph, J. A.

    Previous studies have shown that radiation exposure, particularly to particles of high energy and charge (HZE particles), produces deficits in spatial learning and memory. These adverse behavioral effects are similar to those seen in aged animals. It is possible that these shared effects may be produced by the same mechanism; oxidative stress damage to the central nervous system caused by an increased release of reactive oxygen species is likely responsible for the deficits seen in aging and following irradiation. Both aged and irradiated rats display cognitive impairment in tests of spatial learning and memory such as the Morris water maze and the radial arm maze. These rats have decrements in the ability to build spatial representations of the environment and they utilize non-spatial strategies to solve tasks. Furthermore, they show a lack of spatial preference, due to a decline in the ability to process or retain place (position of a goal with reference to a "map" provided by the configuration of numerous cues in the environment) information. These declines in spatial memory occur in measures dependent on both reference and working memory, and in the flexibility to reset mental images. These results show that irradiation with high-energy particles produces age-like decrements in cognitive behavior that may impair the ability of astronauts to perform critical tasks during long-term space travel beyond the magnetosphere. Supported by NASA Grants NAG9-1190 and NAG9-1529

  1. Acute stress differentially affects spatial configuration learning in high and low cortisol-responding healthy adults

    PubMed Central

    Meyer, Thomas; Smeets, Tom; Giesbrecht, Timo; Quaedflieg, Conny W. E. M.; Merckelbach, Harald

    2013-01-01

    Background Stress and stress hormones modulate memory formation in various ways that are relevant to our understanding of stress-related psychopathology, such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Particular relevance is attributed to efficient memory formation sustained by the hippocampus and parahippocampus. This process is thought to reduce the occurrence of intrusions and flashbacks following trauma, but may be negatively affected by acute stress. Moreover, recent evidence suggests that the efficiency of visuo-spatial processing and learning based on the hippocampal area is related to PTSD symptoms. Objective The current study investigated the effect of acute stress on spatial configuration learning using a spatial contextual cueing task (SCCT) known to heavily rely on structures in the parahippocampus. Method Acute stress was induced by subjecting participants (N = 34) to the Maastricht Acute Stress Test (MAST). Following a counterbalanced within-subject approach, the effects of stress and the ensuing hormonal (i.e., cortisol) activity on subsequent SCCT performance were compared to SCCT performance following a no-stress control condition. Results Acute stress did not impact SCCT learning overall, but opposing effects emerged for high versus low cortisol responders to the MAST. Learning scores following stress were reduced in low cortisol responders, while high cortisol-responding participants showed improved learning. Conclusions The effects of stress on spatial configuration learning were moderated by the magnitude of endogenous cortisol secretion. These findings suggest a possible mechanism by which cortisol responses serve an adaptive function during stress and trauma, and this may prove to be a promising route for future research in this area. PMID:23671762

  2. A revised spatial serial learning and memory procedure using Corsi's Block-tapping apparatus.

    PubMed

    Crawford, S M; Dickson, A L; Baños, J H

    2000-10-01

    The purpose of this study was to use Corsi's Block Tapping Test as a spatial analog of Benton's Serial Digit Learning Test, using the cognitive neuroscience approach utilized in the California Verbal Learning Test. 60 normal participants, ages 19-52 years, were included and administered an 8-block sequence for 9 trials or until they recalled the entire sequence for 3 consecutive errorless trials. The score was the number of blocks tapped in the correct serial order. An interference trial was administered. Following a 10-min. delay, free recall of the original sequence, cued recall, and recognition measures were obtained. Retroactive interference was significant, but no proactive interference emerged. Scores showed a strong primacy effect. Most participants who learned the sequence to the criterion of three successive errorless trials recalled the sequence after the 10-min. delay. Scores on the cued recall and recognition trials tended to support their validity as less demanding retrieval tasks. The use of this spatial learning and memory procedure allows finer discriminations among nonverbal memory deficits and may facilitate direct comparisons with scores on verbal memory tasks such as Serial Digit Learning and the California Verbal Learning Test.

  3. Active and passive spatial learning in human navigation: acquisition of graph knowledge.

    PubMed

    Chrastil, Elizabeth R; Warren, William H

    2015-07-01

    It is known that active exploration of a new environment leads to better spatial learning than does passive visual exposure. We ask whether specific components of active learning differentially contribute to particular forms of spatial knowledge-the exploration-specific learning hypothesis. Previously, we found that idiothetic information during walking is the primary active contributor to metric survey knowledge (Chrastil & Warren, 2013). In this study, we test the contributions of 3 components to topological graph and route knowledge: visual information, idiothetic information, and cognitive decision making. Four groups of participants learned the locations of 8 objects in a virtual hedge maze by (a) walking or (b) watching a video, crossed with (1) either making decisions about their path or (2) being guided through the maze. Route and graph knowledge were assessed by walking in the maze corridors from a starting object to the remembered location of a test object, with frequent detours. Decision making during exploration significantly contributed to subsequent route finding in the walking condition, whereas idiothetic information did not. Participants took novel routes and the metrically shortest routes on the majority of both direct and barrier trials, indicating that labeled graph knowledge-not merely route knowledge-was acquired. We conclude that, consistent with the exploration-specific learning hypothesis, decision making is the primary component of active learning for the acquisition of topological graph knowledge, whereas idiothetic information is the primary component for metric survey knowledge.

  4. Active and passive spatial learning in human navigation: acquisition of graph knowledge.

    PubMed

    Chrastil, Elizabeth R; Warren, William H

    2015-07-01

    It is known that active exploration of a new environment leads to better spatial learning than does passive visual exposure. We ask whether specific components of active learning differentially contribute to particular forms of spatial knowledge-the exploration-specific learning hypothesis. Previously, we found that idiothetic information during walking is the primary active contributor to metric survey knowledge (Chrastil & Warren, 2013). In this study, we test the contributions of 3 components to topological graph and route knowledge: visual information, idiothetic information, and cognitive decision making. Four groups of participants learned the locations of 8 objects in a virtual hedge maze by (a) walking or (b) watching a video, crossed with (1) either making decisions about their path or (2) being guided through the maze. Route and graph knowledge were assessed by walking in the maze corridors from a starting object to the remembered location of a test object, with frequent detours. Decision making during exploration significantly contributed to subsequent route finding in the walking condition, whereas idiothetic information did not. Participants took novel routes and the metrically shortest routes on the majority of both direct and barrier trials, indicating that labeled graph knowledge-not merely route knowledge-was acquired. We conclude that, consistent with the exploration-specific learning hypothesis, decision making is the primary component of active learning for the acquisition of topological graph knowledge, whereas idiothetic information is the primary component for metric survey knowledge. PMID:25419818

  5. Chronic BDNF deficiency leads to an age-dependent impairment in spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Petzold, Anne; Psotta, Laura; Brigadski, Tanja; Endres, Thomas; Lessmann, Volkmar

    2015-04-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a crucial mediator of neural plasticity and, consequently, of memory formation. In hippocampus-dependent learning tasks BDNF also seems to play an essential role. However, there are conflicting results concerning the spatial learning ability of aging BDNF(+/-) mice in the Morris water maze paradigm. To evaluate the effect of chronic BDNF deficiency in the hippocampus on spatial learning throughout life, we conducted a comprehensive study to test differently aged BDNF(+/-) mice and their wild type littermates in the Morris water maze and to subsequently quantify their hippocampal BDNF protein levels as well as expression levels of TrkB receptors. We observed an age-dependent learning deficit in BDNF(+/-) animals, starting at seven months of age, despite stable hippocampal BDNF protein expression and continual decline of TrkB receptor expression throughout aging. Furthermore, we detected a positive correlation between hippocampal BDNF protein levels and learning performance during the probe trial in animals that showed a good learning performance during the long-term memory test.

  6. Effects of an Auditory Lateralization Training in Children Suspected to Central Auditory Processing Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Lotfi, Yones; Moosavi, Abdollah; Bakhshi, Enayatollah; Sadjedi, Hamed

    2016-01-01

    Background and Objectives Central auditory processing disorder [(C)APD] refers to a deficit in auditory stimuli processing in nervous system that is not due to higher-order language or cognitive factors. One of the problems in children with (C)APD is spatial difficulties which have been overlooked despite their significance. Localization is an auditory ability to detect sound sources in space and can help to differentiate between the desired speech from other simultaneous sound sources. Aim of this research was investigating effects of an auditory lateralization training on speech perception in presence of noise/competing signals in children suspected to (C)APD. Subjects and Methods In this analytical interventional study, 60 children suspected to (C)APD were selected based on multiple auditory processing assessment subtests. They were randomly divided into two groups: control (mean age 9.07) and training groups (mean age 9.00). Training program consisted of detection and pointing to sound sources delivered with interaural time differences under headphones for 12 formal sessions (6 weeks). Spatial word recognition score (WRS) and monaural selective auditory attention test (mSAAT) were used to follow the auditory lateralization training effects. Results This study showed that in the training group, mSAAT score and spatial WRS in noise (p value≤0.001) improved significantly after the auditory lateralization training. Conclusions We used auditory lateralization training for 6 weeks and showed that auditory lateralization can improve speech understanding in noise significantly. The generalization of this results needs further researches. PMID:27626084

  7. Effects of an Auditory Lateralization Training in Children Suspected to Central Auditory Processing Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Lotfi, Yones; Moosavi, Abdollah; Bakhshi, Enayatollah; Sadjedi, Hamed

    2016-01-01

    Background and Objectives Central auditory processing disorder [(C)APD] refers to a deficit in auditory stimuli processing in nervous system that is not due to higher-order language or cognitive factors. One of the problems in children with (C)APD is spatial difficulties which have been overlooked despite their significance. Localization is an auditory ability to detect sound sources in space and can help to differentiate between the desired speech from other simultaneous sound sources. Aim of this research was investigating effects of an auditory lateralization training on speech perception in presence of noise/competing signals in children suspected to (C)APD. Subjects and Methods In this analytical interventional study, 60 children suspected to (C)APD were selected based on multiple auditory processing assessment subtests. They were randomly divided into two groups: control (mean age 9.07) and training groups (mean age 9.00). Training program consisted of detection and pointing to sound sources delivered with interaural time differences under headphones for 12 formal sessions (6 weeks). Spatial word recognition score (WRS) and monaural selective auditory attention test (mSAAT) were used to follow the auditory lateralization training effects. Results This study showed that in the training group, mSAAT score and spatial WRS in noise (p value≤0.001) improved significantly after the auditory lateralization training. Conclusions We used auditory lateralization training for 6 weeks and showed that auditory lateralization can improve speech understanding in noise significantly. The generalization of this results needs further researches.

  8. Forebrain pathway for auditory space processing in the barn owl.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Y E; Miller, G L; Knudsen, E I

    1998-02-01

    The forebrain plays an important role in many aspects of sound localization behavior. Yet, the forebrain pathway that processes auditory spatial information is not known for any species. Using standard anatomic labeling techniques, we used a "top-down" approach to trace the flow of auditory spatial information from an output area of the forebrain sound localization pathway (the auditory archistriatum, AAr), back through the forebrain, and into the auditory midbrain. Previous work has demonstrated that AAr units are specialized for auditory space processing. The results presented here show that the AAr receives afferent input from Field L both directly and indirectly via the caudolateral neostriatum. Afferent input to Field L originates mainly in the auditory thalamus, nucleus ovoidalis, which, in turn, receives input from the central nucleus of the inferior colliculus. In addition, we confirmed previously reported projections of the AAr to the basal ganglia, the external nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICX), the deep layers of the optic tectum, and various brain stem nuclei. A series of inactivation experiments demonstrated that the sharp tuning of AAr sites for binaural spatial cues depends on Field L input but not on input from the auditory space map in the midbrain ICX: pharmacological inactivation of Field L eliminated completely auditory responses in the AAr, whereas bilateral ablation of the midbrain ICX had no appreciable effect on AAr responses. We conclude, therefore, that the forebrain sound localization pathway can process auditory spatial information independently of the midbrain localization pathway. PMID:9463450

  9. Auditory connections and functions of prefrontal cortex

    PubMed Central

    Plakke, Bethany; Romanski, Lizabeth M.

    2014-01-01

    The functional auditory system extends from the ears to the frontal lobes with successively more complex functions occurring as one ascends the hierarchy of the nervous system. Several areas of the frontal lobe receive afferents from both early and late auditory processing regions within the temporal lobe. Afferents from the early part of the cortical auditory system, the auditory belt cortex, which are presumed to carry information regarding auditory features of sounds, project to only a few prefrontal regions and are most dense in the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC). In contrast, projections from the parabelt and the rostral superior temporal gyrus (STG) most likely convey more complex information and target a larger, widespread region of the prefrontal cortex. Neuronal responses reflect these anatomical projections as some prefrontal neurons exhibit responses to features in acoustic stimuli, while other neurons display task-related responses. For example, recording studies in non-human primates indicate that VLPFC is responsive to complex sounds including vocalizations and that VLPFC neurons in area 12/47 respond to sounds with similar acoustic morphology. In contrast, neuronal responses during auditory working memory involve a wider region of the prefrontal cortex. In humans, the frontal lobe is involved in auditory detection, discrimination, and working memory. Past research suggests that dorsal and ventral subregions of the prefrontal cortex process different types of information with dorsal cortex processing spatial/visual information and ventral cortex processing non-spatial/auditory information. While this is apparent in the non-human primate and in some neuroimaging studies, most research in humans indicates that specific task conditions, stimuli or previous experience may bias the recruitment of specific prefrontal regions, suggesting a more flexible role for the frontal lobe during auditory cognition. PMID:25100931

  10. Genistein improves spatial learning and memory in male rats with elevated glucose level during memory consolidation.

    PubMed

    Kohara, Yumi; Kawaguchi, Shinichiro; Kuwahara, Rika; Uchida, Yutaro; Oku, Yushi; Yamashita, Kimihiro

    2015-03-01

    Cognitive dysfunction due to higher blood glucose level has been reported previously. Genistein (GEN) is a phytoestrogen that we hypothesized might lead to improved memory, despite elevated blood glucose levels at the time of memory consolidation. To investigate this hypothesis, we compared the effects of orally administered GEN on the central nervous system in normal versus glucose-loaded adult male rats. A battery of behavioral assessments was carried out. In the MAZE test, which measured spatial learning and memory, the time of normal rats was shortened by GEN treatment compared to the vehicle group, but only in the early stages of testing. In the glucose-loaded group, GEN treatment improved performance as mazes were advanced. In the open-field test, GEN treatment delayed habituation to the new environment in normal rats, and increased the exploratory behaviors of glucose-loaded rats. There were no significant differences observed for emotionality or fear-motivated learning and memory. Together, these results indicate that GEN treatment improved spatial learning and memory only in the early stages of testing in the normal state, but improved spatial learning and memory when glucose levels increased during memory consolidation.

  11. Cortical dynamics of contextually cued attentive visual learning and search: spatial and object evidence accumulation.

    PubMed

    Huang, Tsung-Ren; Grossberg, Stephen

    2010-10-01

    How do humans use target-predictive contextual information to facilitate visual search? How are consistently paired scenic objects and positions learned and used to more efficiently guide search in familiar scenes? For example, humans can learn that a certain combination of objects may define a context for a kitchen and trigger a more efficient search for a typical object, such as a sink, in that context. The ARTSCENE Search model is developed to illustrate the neural mechanisms of such memory-based context learning and guidance and to explain challenging behavioral data on positive-negative, spatial-object, and local-distant cueing effects during visual search, as well as related neuroanatomical, neurophysiological, and neuroimaging data. The model proposes how global scene layout at a first glance rapidly forms a hypothesis about the target location. This hypothesis is then incrementally refined as a scene is scanned with saccadic eye movements. The model simulates the interactive dynamics of object and spatial contextual cueing and attention in the cortical What and Where streams starting from early visual areas through medial temporal lobe to prefrontal cortex. After learning, model dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (area 46) primes possible target locations in posterior parietal cortex based on goal-modulated percepts of spatial scene gist that are represented in parahippocampal cortex. Model ventral prefrontal cortex (area 47/12) primes possible target identities in inferior temporal cortex based on the history of viewed objects represented in perirhinal cortex.

  12. Spatial learning-related changes in metabolic activity of limbic structures at different posttask delays.

    PubMed

    Méndez-López, M; Méndez, M; Sampedro-Piquero, P; Arias, J L

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the functional contribution of brain limbic system regions at different moments after the acquisition of a short-term spatial memory task performed in the Morris water maze. Adult male Wistar rats were submitted to a matching-to-sample procedure with a hidden platform. The trials were made up of two daily identical visits to the platform, sample (swim-1) and retention (swim-2). To study oxidative metabolic activity, we applied cytochrome oxidase (COx) histochemistry. Densitometric measurements were taken at 1.5, 6, 24, and 48 hr posttask. An untrained group was added to explore the COx changes not specific to the learning process. The brain regions studied showed a different pattern of metabolic activity at different time points after the spatial memory task. Specifically, a significant increase of COx was found in the septal dentate gyrus, anteromedial thalamus, medial mammillary nucleus, and entorhinal cortex at early moments after learning. The entorhinal cortex maintained an increase of COx at later stages of the posttask period. In addition, an increase of COx activity was found in the supramammillary nucleus and the retrosplenial, perirhinal, and parietal cortices a long time after learning. These findings suggest that diencephalic and cortical regions are involved in this spatial learning and contribute at different moments to process this information.

  13. 4SPPIces: A Case Study of Factors in a Scripted Collaborative-Learning Blended Course across Spatial Locations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perez-Sanagustin, Mar; Santos, Patricia; Hernandez-Leo, Davinia; Blat, Josep

    2012-01-01

    Computer-Supported Collaborative Blended Learning (CSCBL) scripts are complex learning situations in which formal and informal activities conducted at different spatial locations are coordinated and integrated into one unique learning setting through the use of technology. We define a conceptual model identifying four factors to be considered when…

  14. Repeated Sleep Restriction in Adolescent Rats Altered Sleep Patterns and Impaired Spatial Learning/Memory Ability

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Su-Rong; Sun, Hui; Huang, Zhi-Li; Yao, Ming-Hui; Qu, Wei-Min

    2012-01-01

    Study Objectives: To investigate possible differences in the effect of repeated sleep restriction (RSR) during adolescence and adulthood on sleep homeostasis and spatial learning and memory ability. Design: The authors examined electroencephalograms of rats as they were subjected to 4-h daily sleep deprivation that continued for 7 consecutive days and assessed the spatial learning and memory by Morris water maze test (WMT). Participants: Adolescent and adult rats. Measurements and Results: Adolescent rats exhibited a similar amount of rapid eye movement (REM) and nonrapid eye movement (NREM) sleep with higher slow wave activity (SWA, 0.5-4 Hz) and fewer episodes and conversions with prolonged durations, indicating they have better sleep quality than adult rats. After RSR, adult rats showed strong rebound of REM sleep by 31% on sleep deprivation day 1; this value was 37% on sleep deprivation day 7 in adolescents compared with 20-h baseline level. On sleep deprivation day 7, SWA in adult and adolescent rats increased by 47% and 33%, and such elevation lasted for 5 h and 7 h, respectively. Furthermore, the authors investigated the effects of 4-h daily sleep deprivation immediately after the water maze training sessions on spatial cognitive performance. Adolescent rats sleep-restricted for 7 days traveled a longer distance to find the hidden platform during the acquisition training and had fewer numbers of platform crossings in the probe trial than those in the control group, something that did not occur in the sleep-deprived adult rats. Conclusions: Repeated sleep restriction (RSR) altered sleep profiles and mildly impaired spatial learning and memory capability in adolescent rats. Citation: Yang SR; Sun H; Huang ZL; Yao MH; Qu WM. Repeated sleep restriction in adolescent rats altered sleep patterns and impaired spatial learning/memory ability. SLEEP 2012;35(6):849-859. PMID:22654204

  15. The impact of symbolic and non-symbolic quantity on spatial learning.

    PubMed

    McCrink, Koleen; Galamba, Jennifer

    2015-01-01

    An implicit mapping of number to space via a "mental number line" occurs automatically in adulthood. Here, we systematically explore the influence of differing representations of quantity (no quantity, non-symbolic magnitudes, and symbolic numbers) and directional flow of stimuli (random flow, left-to-right, or right-to-left) on learning and attention via a match-to-sample working memory task. When recalling a cognitively demanding string of spatial locations, subjects performed best when information was presented right-to-left. When non-symbolic or symbolic numerical arrays were embedded in these spatial locations, and mental number line congruency prompted, this effect was attenuated and in some cases reversed. In particular, low-performing female participants who viewed increasing non-symbolic number arrays paired with the spatial locations exhibited better recall for left-to-right directional flow information relative to right-to-left, and better processing for the left side of space relative to the right side of space. The presence of symbolic number during spatial learning enhanced recall to a greater degree than non-symbolic number--especially for female participants, and especially when cognitive load is high--and this difference was independent of directional flow of information. We conclude that quantity representations have the potential to scaffold spatial memory, but this potential is subtle, and mediated by the nature of the quantity and the gender and performance level of the learner. PMID:25748826

  16. Acceleration of visually cued conditioned fear through the auditory pathway.

    PubMed

    Newton, Jessica R; Ellsworth, Charlene; Miyakawa, Tsuyoshi; Tonegawa, Susumu; Sur, Mriganka

    2004-09-01

    Defensive responses elicited by sensory experiences are critical for survival. Mice acquire a conditioned fear response rapidly to an auditory cue but slowly to a visual cue, a difference in learned behavior that is likely to be mediated by direct projections to the lateral amygdala from the auditory thalamus but mainly indirect ones from the visual thalamus. Here, we show that acquisition of visually cued conditioned fear is accelerated in 'rewired' mice that have retinal projections routed to the auditory thalamus. Visual stimuli induce expression of the immediate early gene Fos (also known as c-fos) in the auditory thalamus and the lateral amygdala in rewired mice, similar to the way auditory stimuli do in control mice. Thus, the rewired auditory pathway conveys visual information and mediates rapid activity-dependent plasticity in central structures that influence learned behavior.

  17. Knockdown of Nurr1 in the rat hippocampus: Implications to spatial discrimination learning and memory

    PubMed Central

    Colón-Cesario, Wanda I.; Martínez-Montemayor, Michelle M.; Morales, Sohaira; Félix, Jahaira; Cruz, Juan; Adorno, Monique; Pereira, Lixmar; Colón, Nydia; Maldonado-Vlaar, Carmen S.; Peña de Ortiz, Sandra

    2006-01-01

    Nurr1 expression is up-regulated in the brain following associative learning experiences, but its relevance to cognitive processes remains unclear. In these studies, rats initially received bilateral hippocampal infusions of control or antisense oligodeoxynucleotides (ODNs) 1 h prior to training in a holeboard spatial discrimination task. Such pre-training infusions of nurr1 antisense ODNs caused a moderate effect in learning the task and also impaired LTM tested 7 d later. In a second experiment, ODN infusions were given immediately after the animals had received two sessions of training, during which all animals showed normal learning. Although antisense treated rats were significantly impaired during the post-infusion stages of acquisition of the task, no group differences were observed during the LTM test given 7 d later. These animals were subjected 3 d later to reversal training in the same maze in the absence of any additional treatments. Remarkably, rats previously treated with antisense ODNs displayed perseveration: The animals were fixated with the previously learned pattern of baited holes, causing them to be significantly impaired in the extinction of acquired spatial preferences and future learning. We postulate that Nurr1 function in the hippocampus is important for normal cognitive processes. PMID:17142303

  18. Active sensing associated with spatial learning reveals memory-based attention in an electric fish.

    PubMed

    Jun, James J; Longtin, André; Maler, Leonard

    2016-05-01

    Active sensing behaviors reveal what an animal is attending to and how it changes with learning. Gymnotus sp, a gymnotiform weakly electric fish, generates an electric organ discharge (EOD) as discrete pulses to actively sense its surroundings. We monitored freely behaving gymnotid fish in a large dark "maze" and extracted their trajectories and EOD pulse pattern and rate while they learned to find food with electrically detectable landmarks as cues. After training, they more rapidly found food using shorter, more stereotyped trajectories and spent more time near the food location. We observed three forms of active sensing: sustained high EOD rates per unit distance (sampling density), transient large increases in EOD rate (E-scans) and stereotyped scanning movements (B-scans) were initially strong at landmarks and food, but, after learning, intensified only at the food location. During probe (no food) trials, after learning, the fish's search area and intense active sampling was still centered on the missing food location, but now also increased near landmarks. We hypothesize that active sensing is a behavioral manifestation of attention and essential for spatial learning; the fish use spatial memory of landmarks and path integration to reach the expected food location and confine their attention to this region. PMID:26961107

  19. Hippocampal lesions impair rapid learning of a continuous spatial alternation task.

    PubMed

    Kim, Steve M; Frank, Loren M

    2009-01-01

    The hippocampus is essential for the formation of memories for events, but the specific features of hippocampal neural activity that support memory formation are not yet understood. The ideal experiment to explore this issue would be to monitor changes in hippocampal neural coding throughout the entire learning process, as subjects acquire and use new episodic memories to guide behavior. Unfortunately, it is not clear whether established hippocampally-dependent learning paradigms are suitable for this kind of experiment. The goal of this study was to determine whether learning of the W-track continuous alternation task depends on the hippocampal formation. We tested six rats with NMDA lesions of the hippocampal formation and four sham-operated controls. Compared to controls, rats with hippocampal lesions made a significantly higher proportion of errors and took significantly longer to reach learning criterion. The effect of hippocampal lesion was not due to a deficit in locomotion or motivation, because rats with hippocampal lesions ran well on a linear track for food reward. Rats with hippocampal lesions also exhibited a pattern of perseverative errors during early task experience suggestive of an inability to suppress behaviors learned during pretraining on a linear track. Our findings establish the W-track continuous alternation task as a hippocampally-dependent learning paradigm which may be useful for identifying changes in the neural representation of spatial sequences and reward contingencies as rats learn and apply new task rules.

  20. Auditory Imagery: Empirical Findings

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hubbard, Timothy L.

    2010-01-01

    The empirical literature on auditory imagery is reviewed. Data on (a) imagery for auditory features (pitch, timbre, loudness), (b) imagery for complex nonverbal auditory stimuli (musical contour, melody, harmony, tempo, notational audiation, environmental sounds), (c) imagery for verbal stimuli (speech, text, in dreams, interior monologue), (d)…

  1. Auditory-induced neural dynamics in sensory-motor circuitry predict learned temporal and sequential statistics of birdsong

    PubMed Central

    Bouchard, Kristofer E.; Brainard, Michael S.

    2016-01-01

    Predicting future events is a critical computation for both perception and behavior. Despite the essential nature of this computation, there are few studies demonstrating neural activity that predicts specific events in learned, probabilistic sequences. Here, we test the hypotheses that the dynamics of internally generated neural activity are predictive of future events and are structured by the learned temporal–sequential statistics of those events. We recorded neural activity in Bengalese finch sensory-motor area HVC in response to playback of sequences from individuals’ songs, and examined the neural activity that continued after stimulus offset. We found that the strength of response to a syllable in the sequence depended on the delay at which that syllable was played, with a maximal response when the delay matched the intersyllable gap normally present for that specific syllable during song production. Furthermore, poststimulus neural activity induced by sequence playback resembled the neural response to the next syllable in the sequence when that syllable was predictable, but not when the next syllable was uncertain. Our results demonstrate that the dynamics of internally generated HVC neural activity are predictive of the learned temporal–sequential structure of produced song and that the strength of this prediction is modulated by uncertainty. PMID:27506786

  2. Auditory Training for Central Auditory Processing Disorder.

    PubMed

    Weihing, Jeffrey; Chermak, Gail D; Musiek, Frank E

    2015-11-01

    Auditory training (AT) is an important component of rehabilitation for patients with central auditory processing disorder (CAPD). The present article identifies and describes aspects of AT as they relate to applications in this population. A description of the types of auditory processes along with information on relevant AT protocols that can be used to address these specific deficits is included. Characteristics and principles of effective AT procedures also are detailed in light of research that reflects on their value. Finally, research investigating AT in populations who show CAPD or present with auditory complaints is reported. Although efficacy data in this area are still emerging, current findings support the use of AT for treatment of auditory difficulties. PMID:27587909

  3. Auditory Training for Central Auditory Processing Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Weihing, Jeffrey; Chermak, Gail D.; Musiek, Frank E.

    2015-01-01

    Auditory training (AT) is an important component of rehabilitation for patients with central auditory processing disorder (CAPD). The present article identifies and describes aspects of AT as they relate to applications in this population. A description of the types of auditory processes along with information on relevant AT protocols that can be used to address these specific deficits is included. Characteristics and principles of effective AT procedures also are detailed in light of research that reflects on their value. Finally, research investigating AT in populations who show CAPD or present with auditory complaints is reported. Although efficacy data in this area are still emerging, current findings support the use of AT for treatment of auditory difficulties. PMID:27587909

  4. Finding the right motivation: genotype-dependent differences in effective reinforcements for spatial learning.

    PubMed

    Youn, Jiun; Ellenbroek, Bart A; van Eck, Inti; Roubos, Sandra; Verhage, Matthijs; Stiedl, Oliver

    2012-01-15

    Memory impairments of DBA/2J mice have been frequently reported in spatial and emotional behavior tests. However, in some memory tests involving food reward, DBA/2J mice perform equally well to C57BL/6J mice or even outperform them. Thus, it is conceivable that motivational factors differentially affect cognitive performance of different mouse strains. Therefore, spatial memory of DBA/2J and C57BL/6J mice was investigated in a modified version of the Barnes maze (mBM) test with increased complexity. The modified Barnes maze test allowed using either aversive or appetitive reinforcement, but with identical spatial cues and motor requirements. Both mouse strains acquired spatial learning in mBM tests with either reinforcement. However, DBA/2J mice learned slower than C57BL/6J mice when aversive reinforcement was used. In contrast, the two strains performed equally well when appetitive reinforcement was used. The superior performance in C57BL/6J mice in the aversive version of the mBM test was accompanied by a more frequent use of the spatial strategy. In the appetitive version of the mBM test, both strains used the spatial strategy to a similar extent. The present results demonstrate that the cognitive performance of mice depends heavily on motivational factors. Our findings underscore the importance of an effective experimental design when assessing spatial memory and challenges interpretations of impaired hippocampal function in DBA/2J mice drawn on the basis of behavior tests depending on aversive reinforcement.

  5. Feature Assignment in Perception of Auditory Figure

    PubMed Central

    Gregg, Melissa K.; Samuel, Arthur G.

    2012-01-01

    Because the environment often includes multiple sounds that overlap in time, listeners must segregate a sound of interest (the auditory figure) from other co-occurring sounds (the unattended auditory ground). We conducted a series of experiments to clarify the principles governing the extraction of auditory figures. We distinguish between auditory “objects” (relatively punctate events, such as a dog's bark) and auditory “streams” (sounds involving a pattern over time, such as a galloping rhythm). In Experiments 1 and 2, on each trial two sounds -- an object (a vowel) and a stream (a series of tones) – were presented with one target feature that could be perceptually grouped with either source. In each block of these experiments, listeners were required to attend to one of the two sounds, and report its perceived category. Across several experimental manipulations, listeners were more likely to allocate the feature to an impoverished object if the result of the grouping was a good, identifiable object. Perception of objects was quite sensitive to feature variation (noise masking), whereas perception of streams was more robust to feature variation. In Experiment 3, the number of sound sources competing for the feature was increased to three. This produced a shift toward relying more on spatial cues than on the potential contribution of the feature to an object's perceptual quality. The results support a distinction between auditory objects and streams, and provide new information about the way that the auditory world is parsed. PMID:22288691

  6. Auditory-somatosensory integration and cortical plasticity in musical training.

    PubMed

    Pantev, Christo; Lappe, Claudia; Herholz, Sibylle C; Trainor, Laurel

    2009-07-01

    Learning to play a musical instrument requires complex multimodal skills involving simultaneous perception of several sensory modalities: auditory, visual, and somatosensory as well as the motor system. Musical training thus provides an adequate neuroscientific model to study multimodal integration and plasticity in musical training. The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of short-term uni- and multimodal musical training on auditory-somatosensory integration and plasticity. Two groups of nonmusicians were musically trained. The first group (sensorimotor-auditory group, SA) learned to play a musical sequence on the piano, whereas the second one (auditory group, A) actively listened to and made judgments about the correctness of the music. The training-induced cortical plasticity effect was assessed by recording musically elicited mismatch negativity (MMN) from magnetoencephalographic (MEG) measurements before and after training. The SA group showed significant enlargement of MMN after training compared to the A group, reflecting greater enhancement of musical representations in auditory cortex after sensorimotor-auditory training compared to mere auditory training. This study demonstrates that the sensorimotor and auditory systems integrate and that this multimodal training causes cortical reorganizational changes in the auditory cortex over and above the changes introduced by auditory training alone.

  7. Qualitative differences in tactuo-spatial motor learning by left-handers.

    PubMed

    Ward, J P; Alvis, G R; Sanford, C G; Dodson, D L; Pusakulich, R L

    1989-01-01

    Tactuo-spatial performance was studied as a function of subject handedness and hand employed in learning and transfer. Seventy-eight dextral and 75 sinistral blindfolded subjects learned a finger-maze with either dominant or nondominant hand. Transfer to the untrained hand was assessed with either an identical or a mirror-image version of the maze. Left hand acquisition required fewer trials; latencies were shorter when the dominant hand was used. All dextrals and those sinistral subjects who used the right hand in acquisition showed superior transfer to the identical maze. Sinistral subjects who used the left hand in acquisition demonstrated facilitated transfer to the mirror image maze. Results are suggested to provide evidence of two qualitatively different hemispheric strategies for encoding tactuo-spatial information. PMID:2797416

  8. Postnatal exposure to predator odor (TMT) enhances spatial learning in mice adulthood.

    PubMed

    Hacquemand, R; Jacquot, L; Brand, G

    2012-04-01

    Adult behavioral and physiological responses are partly dependent on neonatal experiences. In several animal species, enriched/aprovished environments and stressful/appeasing events are crucial in the setting of adaptative behaviors. However, little is known about the effects of postnatal exposure to predator odor (as unconditioned fear-related stimulus) on spatial learning at adulthood. Thus, the aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of a postnatal exposure to 2,4,5-trimethylthiazoline (TMT, as a predator odor) on radial arm maze (RAM), Tolman maze (TM) and Morris water maze (MWM) in mice at adulthood. The results showed that a TMT group constituted by mice exposed postnatally during 3 weeks to TMT presented significantly better spatial learning achievements in adulthood compared to a water group, postnatally exposed to water only, as well as compared to a butanol group (butanol used as an odor without ecological significance) exposed postnatally to butanol during 3 weeks. PMID:22245526

  9. The importance of spatial ability and mental models in learning anatomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chatterjee, Allison K.

    As a foundational course in medical education, gross anatomy serves to orient medical and veterinary students to the complex three-dimensional nature of the structures within the body. Understanding such spatial relationships is both fundamental and crucial for achievement in gross anatomy courses, and is essential for success as a practicing professional. Many things contribute to learning spatial relationships; this project focuses on a few key elements: (1) the type of multimedia resources, particularly computer-aided instructional (CAI) resources, medical students used to study and learn; (2) the influence of spatial ability on medical and veterinary students' gross anatomy grades and their mental models; and (3) how medical and veterinary students think about anatomy and describe the features of their mental models to represent what they know about anatomical structures. The use of computer-aided instruction (CAI) by gross anatomy students at Indiana University School of Medicine (IUSM) was assessed through a questionnaire distributed to the regional centers of the IUSM. Students reported using internet browsing, PowerPoint presentation software, and email on a daily bases to study gross anatomy. This study reveals that first-year medical students at the IUSM make limited use of CAI to study gross anatomy. Such studies emphasize the importance of examining students' use of CAI to study gross anatomy prior to development and integration of electronic media into the curriculum and they may be important in future decisions regarding the development of alternative learning resources. In order to determine how students think about anatomical relationships and describe the features of their mental models, personal interviews were conducted with select students based on students' ROT scores. Five typologies of the characteristics of students' mental models were identified and described: spatial thinking, kinesthetic approach, identification of anatomical structures

  10. Representation of reward feedback in primate auditory cortex.

    PubMed

    Brosch, Michael; Selezneva, Elena; Scheich, Henning

    2011-01-01

    It is well established that auditory cortex is plastic on different time scales and that this plasticity is driven by the reinforcement that is used to motivate subjects to learn or to perform an auditory task. Motivated by these findings, we study in detail properties of neuronal firing in auditory cortex that is related to reward feedback. We recorded from the auditory cortex of two monkeys while they were performing an auditory categorization task. Monkeys listened to a sequence of tones and had to signal when the frequency of adjacent tones stepped in downward direction, irrespective of the tone frequency and step size. Correct identifications were rewarded with either a large or a small amount of water. The size of reward depended on the monkeys' performance in the previous trial: it was large after a correct trial and small after an incorrect trial. The rewards served to maintain task performance. During task performance we found three successive periods of neuronal firing in auditory cortex that reflected (1) the reward expectancy for each trial, (2) the reward-size received, and (3) the mismatch between the expected and delivered reward. These results, together with control experiments suggest that auditory cortex receives reward feedback that could be used to adapt auditory cortex to task requirements. Additionally, the results presented here extend previous observations of non-auditory roles of auditory cortex and shows that auditory cortex is even more cognitively influenced than lately recognized.

  11. Optogenetic stimulation of the auditory pathway

    PubMed Central

    Hernandez, Victor H.; Gehrt, Anna; Reuter, Kirsten; Jing, Zhizi; Jeschke, Marcus; Mendoza Schulz, Alejandro; Hoch, Gerhard; Bartels, Matthias; Vogt, Gerhard; Garnham, Carolyn W.; Yawo, Hiromu; Fukazawa, Yugo; Augustine, George J.; Bamberg, Ernst; Kügler, Sebastian; Salditt, Tim; de Hoz, Livia; Strenzke, Nicola; Moser, Tobias

    2014-01-01

    Auditory prostheses can partially restore speech comprehension when hearing fails. Sound coding with current prostheses is based on electrical stimulation of auditory neurons and has limited frequency resolution due to broad current spread within the cochlea. In contrast, optical stimulation can be spatially confined, which may improve frequency resolution. Here, we used animal models to characterize optogenetic stimulation, which is the optical stimulation of neurons genetically engineered to express the light-gated ion channel channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2). Optogenetic stimulation of spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs) activated the auditory pathway, as demonstrated by recordings of single neuron and neuronal population responses. Furthermore, optogenetic stimulation of SGNs restored auditory activity in deaf mice. Approximation of the spatial spread of cochlear excitation by recording local field potentials (LFPs) in the inferior colliculus in response to suprathreshold optical, acoustic, and electrical stimuli indicated that optogenetic stimulation achieves better frequency resolution than monopolar electrical stimulation. Virus-mediated expression of a ChR2 variant with greater light sensitivity in SGNs reduced the amount of light required for responses and allowed neuronal spiking following stimulation up to 60 Hz. Our study demonstrates a strategy for optogenetic stimulation of the auditory pathway in rodents and lays the groundwork for future applications of cochlear optogenetics in auditory research and prosthetics. PMID:24509078

  12. Inflammation During Gestation Induced Spatial Memory and Learning Deficits: Attenuated by Physical Exercise in Juvenile Rats

    PubMed Central

    Thangarajan, Rajesh; Rai, Kiranmai. S.; Gopalakrishnan, Sivakumar; Perumal, Vivek

    2015-01-01

    Background Gestational infections induced inflammation (GIII) is a cause of various postnatal neurological deficits in developing countries. Such intra uterine insults could result in persistent learning-memory disabilities. There are no studies elucidating the efficacy of adolescence exercise on spatial learning- memory abilities of young adult rats pre-exposed to inflammatory insult during fetal life. Aims and Objectives The present study addresses the efficacy of physical (running) exercise during adolescent period in attenuating spatial memory deficits induced by exposure to GIII in rats. Materials and Methods Pregnant Wistar dams were randomly divided into control and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) groups, injected intra peritoneally (i.p) with saline (0.5ml) or lipopolysaccharide (LPS) (0.5mg/kg) on alternate days from gestation day 14 (GD 14) till delivery. After parturition, pups were divided into 3 groups (n=6/group) a) Sham control and LPS group divided into 2 subgroups- b) LPS and c) LPS exercise group. Running exercise was given only to LPS exercise group during postnatal days (PNDs) 30 to 60 (15min/day). Spatial learning and memory performance was assessed by Morris water maze test (MWM), on postnatal day 61 to 67 in all groups. Results Young rats pre-exposed to GIII and subjected to running exercise through juvenile period displayed significant decrease in latency to reach escape platform and spent significant duration in target quadrant in MWM test, compared to age matched LPS group. Results of the current study demonstrated that exercise through juvenile/adolescent period effectively mitigates gestational inflammation-induced cognitive deficits in young adult rats. Conclusion Inflammation during gestation impairs offspring’s spatial memory and learning abilities. Whereas, early postnatal physical exercise attenuates, to higher extent, cognitive impairment resulted from exposure to LPS induced inflammation during intrauterine growth period. PMID:26266117

  13. Between-task transfer of learning from spatial compatibility to a color stroop task.

    PubMed

    Marini, Maddalena; Iani, Cristina; Nicoletti, Roberto; Rubichi, Sandro

    2011-01-01

    Responses to a relevant stimulus dimension are faster and more accurate when the stimulus and response spatially correspond compared to when they do not, even though stimulus position is irrelevant (Simon effect). It has been demonstrated that practicing with an incompatible spatial stimulus-response (S-R) mapping before performing a Simon task can eliminate this effect. In the present study we assessed whether a learned spatially incompatible S-R mapping can be transferred to a nonspatial conflict task, hence supporting the view that transfer effects are due to acquisition of a general "respond to the opposite stimulus value" rule. To this aim, we ran two experiments in which participants performed a spatial compatibility task with either a compatible or an incompatible mapping and then transferred, after a 5 min delay, to a color Stroop task. In Experiment 1, responses were executed by pressing one of two keys on the keyboard in both practice and transfer tasks. In Experiment 2, responses were manual in the practice task and vocal in the transfer task. The spatially incompatible practice significantly reduced the color Stroop effect only when responses were manual in both tasks. These results suggest that during practice participants develop a response-selection strategy of emitting the alternative spatial response.

  14. Superficial Layer-Specific Histaminergic Modulation of Medial Entorhinal Cortex Required for Spatial Learning.

    PubMed

    He, Chao; Luo, Fenlan; Chen, Xingshu; Chen, Fang; Li, Chao; Ren, Shuancheng; Qiao, Qicheng; Zhang, Jun; de Lecea, Luis; Gao, Dong; Hu, Zhian

    2016-04-01

    The medial entorhinal cortex (MEC) plays a crucial role in spatial learning and memory. Whereas the MEC receives a dense histaminergic innervation from the tuberomamillary nucleus of the hypothalamus, the functions of histamine in this brain region remain unclear. Here, we show that histamine acts via H1Rs to directly depolarize the principal neurons in the superficial, but not deep, layers of the MEC when recording at somata. Moreover, histamine decreases the spontaneous GABA, but not glutamate, release onto principal neurons in the superficial layers by acting at presynaptic H3Rs without effect on synaptic release in the deep layers. Histamine-induced depolarization is mediated via inhibition of Kir channels and requires the activation of protein kinase C, whereas the inhibition of spontaneous GABA release by histamine depends on voltage-gated Ca(2+) channels and extracellular Ca(2+). Furthermore, microinjection of the H1R or H3R, but not H2R, antagonist respectively into the superficial, but not deep, layers of MEC impairs rat spatial learning as assessed by water maze tasks but does not affect the motor function and exploratory activity in an open field. Together, our study indicates that histamine plays an essential role in spatial learning by selectively regulating neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission in the superficial layers of the MEC.

  15. [Effect of sodium nitrite on phosphorylation of cytoskeletal proteins and spatial learning and memory in rats].

    PubMed

    Hu, Zhi-Hong; Fan, Ling-Ling; Hu, Yong-Mei

    2015-10-25

    The present study was aimed to explore the effect of sodium nitrite on cytoskeletal protein phosphorylation and spatial learning and memory in rats. Rats were served with drinking water containing sodium nitrite (100 mg/kg) for 60 days, then, the ability of spatial learning and memory of the rats was measured by Morris water maze. Phosphorylation level of tau and neurofilament, and the expression of protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A) catalytic subunit in the hippocampus were detected by immunohistochemistry and Western blot. In comparison with the rats served with normal tap water, the rats served with sodium nitrite water showed significantly longer latency to find the hidden platform in Morris water maze (P < 0.05), elevated phosphorylation level of tau and neurofilament, and decreased expression of PP2A catalytic subunit (P < 0.05). These results indicated that administration of sodium nitrite could impair the spatial learning and memory of the rats, and the hyperphosphorylation of cytoskeletal proteins and the down-regulation of PP2A might be underlying mechanisms for the impairment.

  16. Spatial Learning and Action Planning in a Prefrontal Cortical Network Model

    PubMed Central

    Martinet, Louis-Emmanuel; Sheynikhovich, Denis; Benchenane, Karim; Arleo, Angelo

    2011-01-01

    The interplay between hippocampus and prefrontal cortex (PFC) is fundamental to spatial cognition. Complementing hippocampal place coding, prefrontal representations provide more abstract and hierarchically organized memories suitable for decision making. We model a prefrontal network mediating distributed information processing for spatial learning and action planning. Specific connectivity and synaptic adaptation principles shape the recurrent dynamics of the network arranged in cortical minicolumns. We show how the PFC columnar organization is suitable for learning sparse topological-metrical representations from redundant hippocampal inputs. The recurrent nature of the network supports multilevel spatial processing, allowing structural features of the environment to be encoded. An activation diffusion mechanism spreads the neural activity through the column population leading to trajectory planning. The model provides a functional framework for interpreting the activity of PFC neurons recorded during navigation tasks. We illustrate the link from single unit activity to behavioral responses. The results suggest plausible neural mechanisms subserving the cognitive “insight” capability originally attributed to rodents by Tolman & Honzik. Our time course analysis of neural responses shows how the interaction between hippocampus and PFC can yield the encoding of manifold information pertinent to spatial planning, including prospective coding and distance-to-goal correlates. PMID:21625569

  17. Hemodynamic imaging of the auditory cortex.

    PubMed

    Deborah, Ann Hall; Karima, Susi

    2015-01-01

    Over the past 20 years or so, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has proven to be an influential tool for measuring perceptual and cognitive processing non-invasively in the human brain. This article provides a brief yet comprehensive overview of this dominant method for human auditory neuroscience, providing the reader with knowledge about the practicalities of using this technique to assess central auditory coding. Key learning objectives include developing an understanding of the basic MR physics underpinning the technique, the advantage of auditory fMRI over other current neuroimaging alternatives, and highlighting some of the practical considerations involved in setting up, running, and analyzing an auditory fMRI experiment. The future utility of fMRI and anticipated technical developments is also briefly evaluated. Throughout the review, key concepts are illustrated using specific author examples, with particular emphasis on fMRI findings that address questions pertaining to basic sound coding (such as frequency and pitch).

  18. The Goldilocks effect in infant auditory attention.

    PubMed

    Kidd, Celeste; Piantadosi, Steven T; Aslin, Richard N

    2014-01-01

    Infants must learn about many cognitive domains (e.g., language, music) from auditory statistics, yet capacity limits on their cognitive resources restrict the quantity that they can encode. Previous research has established that infants can attend to only a subset of available acoustic input. Yet few previous studies have directly examined infant auditory attention, and none have directly tested theorized mechanisms of attentional selection based on stimulus complexity. This work utilizes model-based behavioral methods that were recently developed to examine visual attention in infants (e.g., Kidd, Piantadosi, & Aslin, 2012). The present results demonstrate that 7- to 8-month-old infants selectively attend to nonsocial auditory stimuli that are intermediately predictable/complex with respect to their current implicit beliefs and expectations. These findings provide evidence of a broad principle of infant attention across modalities and suggest that sound-to-sound transitional statistics heavily influence the allocation of auditory attention in human infants.

  19. How the Learning Path and the Very Structure of a Multifloored Environment Influence Human Spatial Memory

    PubMed Central

    Dollé, Laurent; Droulez, Jacques; Bennequin, Daniel; Berthoz, Alain; Thibault, Guillaume

    2015-01-01

    Few studies have explored how humans memorize landmarks in complex multifloored buildings. They have observed that participants memorize an environment either by floors or by vertical columns, influenced by the learning path. However, the influence of the building’s actual structure is not yet known. In order to investigate this influence, we conducted an experiment using an object-in-place protocol in a cylindrical building to contrast with previous experiments which used rectilinear environments. Two groups of 15 participants were taken on a tour with a first person perspective through a virtual cylindrical three-floored building. They followed either a route discovering floors one at a time, or a route discovering columns (by simulated lifts across floors). They then underwent a series of trials, in which they viewed a camera movement reproducing either a segment of the learning path (familiar trials), or performing a shortcut relative to the learning trajectory (novel trials). We observed that regardless of the learning path, participants better memorized the building by floors, and only participants who had discovered the building by columns also memorized it by columns. This expands on previous results obtained in a rectilinear building, where the learning path favoured the memory of its horizontal and vertical layout. Taken together, these results suggest that both learning mode and an environment’s structure influence the spatial memory of complex multifloored buildings. PMID:26770288

  20. Effect of methylphenidate on enhancement of spatial learning by novel alternated dual task.

    PubMed

    Veetil, Praveen Kottath; Mukkadan, Joseph Kurian

    2011-01-01

    The novel alternated dual task (ADT) arranged rats to learn T-maze spontaneous alternation task and radial arm maze (RAM) task alternatively, and by doing ADT, rats could acquire the tasks more easily than non alternated dual task (NADT) group. Also retention capacity of ADT group was significantly more and ADT help to learn a complex task faster than learning it in isolation from other tasks. In the present study effect of methylphenidate (MPD), a mood elevator, known to enhance learning and memory, on ADT procedure is assessed. Also effect of ADT procedure and MPD on spatial learning and memory are compared. Different groups were assigned by administering MPD (intraperitoneal injection at a dose of 3 mg/kg body weight) during different phases of behavioural experiments, and control groups received saline injection. MPD administration increased both acquisition and retention capacities. The amelioration attained for retention of complex task by ADT procedure, could be achieved by NADT rats only by administration of MPD. The influence of ADT procedure on acquisition and retention of TM and RAM tasks were similar to the effects of MPD, especially for the RAM task. MPD at low dose is found to enhance the learning and memory capacity in rats, than deteriorating it, supporting the use of MPD as a drug to treat attention deficit hyperactive disorder. The recent reports suggesting the effect of MPD only on retention and not on acquisition could not be confirmed, as enhancement for both acquisition and retention was found in this study. PMID:22319900