I am a Research Scientist at San Diego State University, Laboratory for Language and Cognitive Neuroscience (LLCN). I received my Ph.D. from University College London (UCL) in Cognitive, Perceptual and Brain Sciences (now UCL Psychology & Language Sciences, PaLS). I am a teacher and linguist by training.
The goal of my research is to use the study of sign languages to reveal what is universal to all human languages. I also investigate how sign language exposure and deafness impact visual perception, brain organization and language processing. I use behavioral, statistical and electrophysiological methods (EEG/ERP, motion capture). My projects have been supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institutes of Health (NIH).
I am the Co-Investigator on an award-winning project, ASL-LEX, a lexical database for 2723 signs in American Sign Language (ASL). It is an online open-access resource for educators, students and scientists interested in the mental lexicon, vocabulary acquisition, or machine learning. An interactive visualization of the ASL-LEX data set can be found here: asl-lex.org
I have a passion for science communication and poetry. I host monthly science edutainment shows, Nerd Nite San Diego and review for Consilience Journal, a peer-reviewed open-access journal of science communication through poetry and art. I offer online mentorship, academic writing & research skills support to students in higher education all over the world.