Meet Our Team

Meet the members of the Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience Laboratory! The lab has been at Stanford for over a decade and includes over 25 current members.

Faculty/Research Scientists

Aarthi Padmanabhan, PhD

Scientific Research Director  

I graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a B.S. in Cognitive Science and a minor in Communication Design; and received my PhD in Cognitive Psychology with a Cognitive Neuroscience concentration from the University of Pittsburgh. I am specifically interested in the late childhood/adolescent period as the brain systems that underlie social motivation undergo considerable reorganization during this time. My hope is that understanding the progression of the disorder over development will allow us to identify key periods of plasticity that may inform intervention and therapeutic practices in the future.

Dan Abrams, PhD


My primary research goal is to understand the neurobiological foundations of speech and language impairments. Specifically, I am interested in how the perception and neural coding of speech impact communication and language deficits in children, with a focus on children with autism spectrum disorders and reading disabilities. I received my Bachelor's degree from the University of Arizona and my Ph.D. in Communication Sciences and Disorders from Northwestern University under the guidance of Professor Nina Kraus.

Weidong Cai, PhD


My research combines sophisticated computational methods, advanced functional neuroimaging techniques, and experimental work to understand how cognitive control networks are organized, how dynamic control process is implemented, how these functional circuits are developed, and how these brain systems are disturbed in psychiatric and neurological disorders characterized by cognitive control deficits. I am also interested in developing neuroimaging-based biomarkers for psychiatric and neurological disorders and prediction models for clinical symptoms using systems neuroscience approach and machine learning algorithms.

Shaozhen Qin, PhD


My primary research of interest is to understand how the brain supports learning and memory, and interaction with stress and emotion. And how these processes develop as the brain matures from childhood to adulthood. Using a multi-disciplinary approach, integrating functional brain imaging and experimental behavioral techniques, endocrine, psychophysiology and genetics, I currently investigate how the medial temporal, prefrontal and parietal systems interplay to support learning and memory and interact with emotion, and their maturational changes from childhood through adolescence into adulthood. The overarching goal of my research is to optimize learning and memory in education and prevention of learning and emotion problems over development.

Miriam Rosenberg-Lee, PhD


I received a B.S. in mathematics with a minor in cognitive science from McGill University in 2003. I completed my Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from Carnegie Mellon University in 2008. While in graduate school, I also participated in neuroscience training from the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition, a joint program between Carnegie Mellon and the University of Pittsburgh. My research focuses on understanding how the brain acquires and processes mathematical information. I’m interested in the ways that learning, instruction and individual differences influence math ability. I use structural and functional imaging to investigate math cognition in typically developing children and adults, and children with neurodevelopmental disorders, such as developmental dyscalculia and autism spectrum disorders.

Tianwen Chen, PhD

Research Scientist

Bio forthcoming!

John Kochalka

Research Scientist

I earned my B.Sc. in Computation and Neural Systems from the California Institute of Technology, and an M.Sc. in Biomedical Engineering with a focus on neuroengineering at the University of Southern California. As a research scientist in SCSNL, I am part of a small team focused on the development and application of novel methods for analysis of neuroimaging data. I am interested in understanding the neurobiological mechanisms underlying psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders such as ASD, and plan to pursue a PhD in neuroscience to study these topics from the perspective of basic research. In my career, I hope to combine basic neuroscience research with human neuroimaging and computational modeling in order to link mechanisms of cell and circuit dysfunction in animal models to aberrant human brain activity and behavior in psychiatric disorders.

Kaustubh Supekar, PhD

Research Scientist

Bio forthcoming!

Postdoctoral Fellows

Lang Chen

Post Doctoral Fellow

Bio forthcoming! 

Tanya Evans

Post Doctoral Fellow 

I am interested in the fundamental problem of how the human brain develops to acquire the basic skills necessary for success in the classroom, how this acquisition goes awry in certain individuals, and what can be done to successfully remediate these skills in struggling students.  My research falls broadly under the term educational neuroscience, i.e. how can breakthroughs in neuroscience be leveraged to inform educational practice.  I received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Lehigh University, and a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Georgetown University in 2013. As a postdoctoral fellow in the Stanford Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience Laboratory, I seek to further investigate how language may play a facilitative role in the acquisition of skills in mathematics, and explore what is distinct and common to dyslexia and dyscalculia, two prevalent and often comorbid learning disabilities. 

Tue Herlau

Post Doctoral Fellow

Bio forthcoming! 

Teresa Iuculano

Post Doctoral Fellow

Bio forthcoming!

Jalil Taghia

Post Doctoral Fellow

My research is on developing computational methods for modeling the functional and structural architecture of human cognitive networks. I received a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering in 2014 from KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden. My graduate research was on approximate Bayesian inference in machine learning and directional statistics. Prior to joining Stanford, I was a Postdoctoral researcher at Neural Information Processing Group at Technical University of Berlin, Germany. My research was on manifold learning and approximate inference in Bayesian estimation. 


Christina Atkinson

Lab & Recruitment Manager 

Bio forthcoming!

Amanda Baker

Research Assistant 

I graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in 2014 with B.A.s in both Cognitive Science and Psychology. After graduating, I worked with Sonia Bishop in Berkeley's Affective Cognitive Neuroscience Lab researching fear conditioning in anxious individuals and the neural mechanisms behind emotional processing. I then came to the Stanford Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience Lab with the hope of researching brain processing and development in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). After my time here, I hope to pursue a PhD in Cognitive Neuroscience. In my free time I enjoy spending time with friends and family, eating good food, and writing poetry.

Yeo Bi (YB) Choi

Research Assistant 

I graduated from University of Chicago in 2016 with a B.A. in Psychology and Economics. As a research assistant and honors thesis student for Prof. Amanda Woodward, I examined the longitudinal relationship between preschool theory of mind (ToM) ability and infant frontal activity during a social imitation task using EEG. AT SCSNL, I am excited to be researching cognitive development in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and brain mechanisms underlying different aspects of mathematical cognition using fMRI. In the future, I hope to get a PhD in clinical psychology in order to conduct behavioral and neurosceinctific research on neurodevelopmental disorders and provide therapy to family members of individuals with ASD. Outside of lab, I enjoy taking pictures, traveling, and golfing!

Kate Duberg

Research Assistant 

Bio forthcoming! 

Julia Kang

Research Assistant 

I graduated from UC Berkeley with a B.A. in Psychology and a minor in Education. During my undergraduate career, I worked as a research assistant in various labs within the psychology and social welfare departments, including Dr. Silvia Bunge’s Building Blocks of Cognition lab. My research interests include learning and cognition, developmental, neural and clinical disorders, and hope to pursue a Ph.D. in Clinical Neuropsychology where I can keep exploring the brain and behavior using neuropsychological assessments and brain imaging. At the Stanford Cognitive and Systems Neuroscience Lab, I am exploring the relationship between cognitive and brain processes such as learning and memory. I’m particularly working with children with math difficulties and autism. In my free time, I enjoy playing with my dog, exploring the Bay Area and spending time with family and friends.

Samantha Mitsven

Research Assistant

I graduated from San Diego State University with a B.A. in Psychology. My undergraduate honors thesis utilized both visual and haptic responses to evaluate word knowledge in infants. After graduation, I joined Lisa Oakes' lab at UC Davis as a Lab Manager. There I conducted research investigating the effects of visual-short term memory on attention allocation in infancy.  After two years, I came to the SCSNL with the hope of applying my knowledge of the typical developmental trajectory of memory, attention, and language to understand these aspects of development in children with ASD. In the future, I hope to pursue a doctoral program in Clinical/Developmental Psychology focusing on the development of cognitive abilities in children with neurodevelopmental disorders. Outside of work, I enjoy hiking, going to the beach, and playing with my dog Izzie.

Jonathan Nicholas 

Research Assistant 

I graduated from Brown University in 2015 with a B.S. in Cognitive Neuroscience. My undergraduate honors thesis, conducted in David Badre’s lab, explored the temporal dynamics of working memory filtration. I'm interested in human and machine learning and the intersection of computation and cognitive neuroscience. Outside of work, I enjoy music, natural history, and digital art.


Post Doctoral Fellows

Sarit Ashkenazi, PhD

Naama Barnea-Goraly, PhD

Soohyun Cho, PhD

Sonia Crottaz-Herbette, PhD

Christa-Lynn Donovan, PhD

Amy Garrett, PhD

Michael Greicius, MD, MPH

Michael Haberecht, MD, PhD

Anna Lembke, MD

Judith Piggott, PhD

Susan Rivera, PhD

Elena Rykhlevskaia, PhD

Leanne Tamm, PhD

Tony Yang, MD, PhD

Dietje Jolles, PhD

Ting Ting Chang, PhD

Aron Metcalfe, PhD

Christian Battista, PhD

Graduate Students

Anjali Bhatara

Catie Chang

Ting-Ting Chang

Matt Davis-Ratner

Sridhar Devarajan

Nirav Kamdar

Valorie Salimpoor

Symeon Mengkai Shieh

Gauarav Srivastava

Jessica Tsang


Research Assistants

Robert Anagnoson

Jose Anguiano

Maria Barth

Kevin Holmes

Katherine Keller

Amirah Khouzam

Leeza Kondos

Meghan Meyer

Sangeetha Santhanam

Charles Lynch

Emily Escovar

Anna Gorn Swigart

Caitlin Tenison

Sarah Wu

Christina Young

Emma Adair

Sandhya Prathap

Sarah-Nicole Bostan

Holly Wakeman

Sally (Se Ri) Bae

Shivani Kaushal

Paola Odriozola

Rachel Rehert



Jonathan Berger, MFA, DMA

Chris Chafe, PhD

Mark Eckert, PhD

Stephan Eliez, MD

Carl Feinstein, MD

Lynn Fuchs, PhD

David C. Geary, PhD

Gary Glover, PhD

Michael Greicius, MD, MPH

Booil Jo, PhD

Jennifer Keller, PhD

Daniel Levitin, PhD

David Lyons, PhD

Josef Parvizi, MD, PhD

Allan Reiss, MD

Alan Schatzberg, MD

Daniel Schwartz, PhD