Attention and Decision Making

Fluorescently stained section of brain

Our daily lives are shaped by the decisions we make and how we selectively attend to information from our environment to shape those decisions. Recent progress in the field of neuroscience has begun to shed light on how the brain underlies these critical aspects of cognition. Research among our faculty on these topics spans model systems from rodents to humans and ranges from questions about cellular mechanisms to cognitive control. Major areas of focus include:

  • Neural mechanisms of perceptual decisions
  • The cellular and circuit mechanisms that mediate the effects of spatial attention
  • Psychological modeling of decision processes
  • The role of attention in decision making
  • Combination of multiple sources of information for decision making
  • Altered decision making that accompanies drug use/abuse
  • How natural aging affects attentional selection and decision making
  • Neural mechanisms underlying suppression of distracting inputs
  • Coordinated processing across large-scale neural networks for attention and decision making
  • Computational modeling to bridge the gap between single-neuron measurements and neural network function
  • Executive control in attention and decision making
  • Links between attention, emotion, and anxiety
  • How attention and decision-related signals alter neural representations of sensory stimuli
  • The relationship between neural activity and reward-based behavior
  • How the brain forms predictive models of the environment

Faculty study attention and decision making