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Research

 

The PlasticityTeam researches neurocognitive changes caused by different types of learning interventions, such as cognitive training, video games, etc. The team comprises scientists passionate about researching the mysteries of the human mind.

Team Activities

Understanding the Process of Learning

During the process of learning the brain undergoes various changes including structural changes, such as altered size or number of synapses, functional changes as well as variations in the characteristics of the existing synapses. This phenomenon is called brain plasticity.

The ability to learn new things is common for people and animals, however not everyone learns at the same pace or achieves the same level. Members of the PlasticityTeam study what factors, both at the behavioral and the brain level, determine to what degree, if at all, people acquire new skills. In their studies, scientists apply several techniques, including neuroimaging (structural – MRI and functional – EEG) together with a precise assessment of cognitive functions during the process of learning new skills.

Understanding the learning process in the context of cognitive training is key for the development of an effective cognitive training paradigm. Especially, taking into consideration the rapidly aging population of the world and ongoing research on degenerative conditions of the brain, which indicate the need to ‘stimulate’ the mind by learning new skills and competencies.

Conferences and Awards

CONFERENCES AND WORKSHOPS

Some of the team members participated in the following conferences and workshops:

  • 2019 Annual Meeting of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping (OHBM) in Rome
  • Neuroimaging data workshop: 2019 FSL Course in Croatia, organized by the Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging at the University of Oxford.
  • 2019 Radboud Summer School on the analysis of EEG data, organized by Mike X. Cohen, neuroscientist, writer and teacher, Head of the Max X. Cohen Lab.

AWARDS

Dr. Natalia Kowalczyk, Head of the Plasticity Team, received a START Scholarship from the Foundation for Polish Science, and a grant from the Kosciuszko Foundation in the United States.

 

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Team

Head of the Plasticity Team

  • Dr. Natalia Kowalczyk

Doctoral students

  • mgr Aleksandra Bramorska
  • mgr inż. Nikodem Hryniewicz
  • mgr Natalia Jakubowska
  • mgr Justyna Józefowicz
  • mgr Anna Kovbasiuk
  • mgr Wanda Zarzycka
  • mgr Jagna Żakowicz

Collaborators

  • mgr Andrzej Białecki
  • Dr. Paweł Dobrowolski (IP PAN)
  • mgr Maciek Gaca (IBD im. M. Nenckiego PAN)
  • mgr Maciek Skorko (IP PAN)
  • mgr Natalia Rutkowska (WP UW)
  • mgr Anna Żochowska (WP UW)

Students

  • Paulina Lewandowska
  • Piotr Matuszewski
  • Monika Myśliwiec

Collaborating students

  • Iza Chałatkiewicz
  • Katarzyna Horak
  • Piotr Łopaciński
  • Klaudia Krystecka
  • Bartłomiej Kurczab
  • Wiktoria Podolecka
  • Ibrahim Vefa Arslan

Research Projects

Collaborations

The team closely collaborates with the Institute of Psychology of the Polish Academy of Sciences (PAN) and with the Auxilium, creator of an online research platform Gex. We also conduct studies in cooperation with the Interinstitute Laboratory of New Diagnostic Applications of MRI at the Nalecz Institute of Biocybernectics and Biomedical Engineering (IBIB) of the Polish Academy of Sciences (PAN) (CNS Lab IBIB PAN), which is equipped with a high quality Discovery MR750w 3.0T MRI scanner.

Current projects

Currently, we are working on the following project:
"The temporal dynamics of neurocognitive changes induced by complex task training in the form of strategic computer game".

  • Grant funded by the National Science Centre (NCN), duration 2017-2020
  • Grant amount: PLN 1,484,681
  • Principal Investigator: Associate Professor Aneta Brzezicka

We are recruiting subjects for new studies.
Interested parties may register at www.trenujmozg.pl

Location

SWPS University
Institute of Psychology
Chodakowska 19/31
03-815 Warsaw

Contact

Neurocognitive Research Center
Institute of Psychology
e-mail: ncrc@swps.edu.pl