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Brain waves: those mysterious wiggles which come up on a screen when we record electric signals from someone's head. What can neural oscillations tell us about how the brain works?
What brain rhythms can reveal about our resiliencies and vulnerabilities
Dr Ali Mazaheri (Senior Lecturer at the School of Psychology, University of Birmingham)
The term ‘resiliency’ in psychological sciences refers to the ability to successfully adapt to adverse events. Conversely, the term ‘vulnerability’ refers to factors that make someone at risk of illnesses. The living brain produces specific electric rhythms, akin to musical notes. This talk will provide evidence that these brain rhythms offer insight on whether someone is vulnerable or resilient to developing chronic pain after surgery or developing Alzheimer’s disease. Ali will also discuss the implications of this research, trying to answer the age-old question: What’s all this good for?
Rhythm makes the world go round: How brain rhythms help us understand another’s perspective
Professor Klaus Kessler (Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, Aston University)
The rhythms of our brain activity have intrigued scientists for over a hundred years but we still do not know very much about how complex cognitive and social functions are actually related to these rhythms. In other words, how have specific frequencies in electric brain activity helped us become social beings with a unique capacity and motivation for trying to understand the mental states of others? This talk will not be able to provide final answers but will present recent findings and discuss their wider implications for what makes us human.