Neurocognitive Linguistics Laboratory

Current Research

  • Impact of brain injury on semantic processing skills in children and adults: picture naming, word reading, and categorization
  • Changes in attention, memory, and processing speed following brain injury, especially mild TBI (concussion)
  • Hemispheric processing of suprasegmental aspects of speech in linguistic stimuli
  • Computational and analytic models for predicting severity and outcomes following brain injury
  • Cognitive and physiological factors affected by brain injury with all severity levels
  • Evaluation and therapeutic techniques for cognitive and language deficits following brain injury from coma to mild TBI (concussion)
  • Evaluation and therapeutic intervention techniques for various semantic processing abilities at conversational level following cerebral vascular accident and brain injury
  • Computational modeling of normal brain function for cognitive and language processes

Lab Description

The Neurocognitive Linguistics Laboratory, run by Dr. Kristin King, conducts research both at the Master's and PhD levels in the areas of cognition and language and is housed in the Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology at UT-K. Collaborations have been established with Oak Ridge National Laboratories, UT Athletic Department, UT-Medical Center, and the Sarah Jane Brain Foundation. These collaborations allow for both a multi-disciplinary and neuroscientific approach to addressing the impact of brain injury on cognitive, linguistic, and physiologic functions in both children and adults. Research is being conducted to develop models which better explain the cognitive and language processes which occur in the normal brain and following brain injury in both children and adults. A primary focus of the research is on sports-related injuries and blast injuries as seen in the military. The modeling is meant to further the understanding of brain function and, subsequently, the impact of brain injury on function. The studies being conducted address multiple aspects of cognitive-linguistic change, from diagnosis to therapeutic intervention. Research techniques may include computational modeling, neuroimaging, EEG studies, ERP studies, and cognitive and linguistic behavioral testing. Current research also involves the use of reaction time measures with various semantic processing tasks to better understand linguistic characteristics and cognitive processes affected by brain injury.