2017 James C. Carlsen Lecture: Dr. Jessica Grahn

Jessica Grahn 2 cropped

The Laboratory for Music Cognition, Culture, and Learning is pleased to welcome Dr. Jessica Grahn for the 2017 James C. Carlsen Invited Lecture. Dr. Grahn will visit the UW February 9th and 10th, including  visits to the Institute of Learning and Brain Science (I-LABS) and the Music Education course “Psychology of Music Performance.”

The main event, the James C. Carlsen Invited Lecture, will be Friday, February 10th from 2:30-3:30pm in the Fishbowl, School of Music Building:

Feeling the beat: Rhythm, Movement, and the Brain: Moving to musical rhythm is an instinctive, often involuntary activity, but how does the brain produce this behaviour? In this talk I will describe how perception of musical rhythms activates motor brain areas even when no overt movement is made. I will cover studies of individual differences in rhythmic ability, examining how motor and auditory activity relate to important behavioural components of rhythm ability. Finally, I will discuss whether musical rhythm can be used to support movement in patients with movement disorders.

More about Dr. Grahn: Dr. Grahn investigates music neuroscience. Her primary topic is investigating the representation of temporal sequences in the brain. She also examines how music makes us move, how musical training changes brain structure, and whether music can affect cognitive abilities (such as memory or reasoning), or can benefit patients with neurological disorders, such as Parkinsons disease. Dr. Grahn has degrees in Neuroscience and Piano from Northwestern University, and a PhD from Cambridge, England. She is Associate Professor in the Psychology department and Brain and Mind Institute at the University of Western Ontario. Dr. Grahns research is supported by the James S. McDonnell Foundation, the GRAMMY foundation, Parkinson Society Canada, and several Canadian research councils.


Welcome to the MCCL!


The goal of our lab is to explore the processes of music learning, both formal and informal, and how they are shaped by culture, biology, and experience. Through the methods of cognitive psychology and cognitive neuroscience, we hope to better define the role of culture and context in shaping how people hear and understand the music of their time and place. We also seek to clarify how music cognition and learning shape and are shaped by the structures and functions of the brain.

Watch this space for updates about visiting scholars, lectures, and projects.