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Summer Short Course: Methods for Analyzing Sound and Modeling Auditory P

Subject: Summer Short Course: Methods for Analyzing Sound and Modeling Auditory Plasticity (MASMAP), Buffalo, NY
From: "Mercado, Eduardo" <>
Date: Thu, 21 Feb 2019 02:59:48 +0000

Summer 2019 Short Course
Methods for Analyzing Sound and Modeling Auditory Plasticity (MASMAP)
-- June 5-7, 2019 --


Location: University at Buffalo, The State University of New York, Buffalo, NY 14260


Organizers: Eduardo Mercado III, Micheal Dent, Peter Pfordresher

Instructors: Cynthia Henderson, James Mantell, Jennifer Schneider, Matthew Wisniewski



Perceptual processes have been a central focus of computational models of neural and cognitive mechanisms for much of the past century. Often, these models serve to prove the feasibility of proposed mechanisms rather than to simulate actual situations faced by organisms. For instance, models of speech processing may assume that listeners are working with pristine representations of received words rather than natural speech in noisy conditions. One way to increase the ecological validity of perceptual models is to represent actual inputs in biologically plausible ways rather than using idealized inputs. This requires transforming recorded signals into representations that reflect the sensory and perceptual sensitivities of receivers prior to analyzing the patterns within those representations. Providing psychology researchers with the computational skills necessary to implement biologically-based signal transformations in combination with simulations of perceptual processing can move the field closer to realistic theories of perception and cognition.


Aims of the Short Course

     1. Familiarize graduate students and postdoctoral trainees with current software platforms commonly used to characterize physical features of acoustic signals.

     2. Train students to combine signal processing and pattern recognition techniques (supervised and unsupervised neural networks) to objectively classify different sounds and sound sequences in terms of their type, location, or similarities to target sounds.

     3. Show students how signal processing and classification algorithms can be modified to simulate auditory processing by vertebrate brains.

     4. Give students opportunities to work together in instructor-coached teams in applying software to analyze novel data sets chosen by participants.

     5. Guide student teams in the use of basic computational models to simulate learning-related changes in auditory discrimination or categorization of sounds pertinent to their fields of interests (music, speech, animal communication, or echolocation).


Financial Support

Financial support will be available for students and postdocs accepted into the summer short course. Participants will receive support to cover the costs of travel, lodging and meals during the course, and software used in the course.


To apply, please submit:

1: A reference letter from your supervisor or someone familiar with your academic performance.

2: Your CV including a publication list (if applicable).

3: An application form.

Please send these materials to with the subject line “MASMAP application” by April 15, 2019. Review and selection of eligible candidates will be conducted immediately after the application process has been closed. Each accepted student will receive an official letter of invitation by April 20, 2019 from the summer school organizers.

There is no registration fee for this summer short course.



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