Welcome to the Cognitive Hearing Laboratory.
Our goal is to understand how the sense of hearing shapes the way that our brain works. The ear is a remarkably complex system with functions that affect our behaviours, the way we think about information and remember it, and how we use other senses like touch and vision. The knowledge we gain from our research helps us to improve a person’s health and well-being, to develop technologies that help human communication, and to design spaces in which we live, work, and recreate.
A main focus of the lab is adult-onset hearing loss. Although our brains have tens of billions of neurons, the most important and meaningful signals for many people—the voice of a loved one, a favourite song—pass through a bank of only 3,500 sensory cells inside each ear. Some of these cells are inevitably and permanently lost during aging, but abuse of our ears through noise exposure and other trauma will accelerate this process. We now understand that the loss of hearing during adulthood can drastically change how a person chooses to live their life, and it particularly affects memory, attention, communication, and emotional well-being. Our goal is to create knowledge and technology that improves the lives of people who choose a hearing lifestyle.
April 2022: Practicum student Rayna Adachi is awarded an Undergraduate Research Opportunity grant from the Faculty of Arts at TMU. Congratulations Rayna!
September 2021: The lab welcomes Patricia V. Aguiar (MA1 student), Michelle Williams (UG thesis student) and Jennifer Hanna Al-Shaikh (research volunteer) to the laboratory!
August 2021: Dr. Paul receives full funding from the Canadian Foundation for Innovation through the John R. Evans Leaders Fund to study hearing loss at the cocktail party
June 2021: Dr. Paul receives an NSERC Discovery Grant and a Discovery Launch Supplement to study visual plasticity in partial hearing loss
Our work is sponsored by: