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James W. Pennebaker, Chair The University of Texas at Austin, SEA 4.212, Austin, TX 78712 • (512) 475-7596

David M Schnyer

Professor Ph.D., University of Arizona

David M Schnyer

Contact

Biography

Much of human mental capacity is driven by our ability to monitor and then control our behavior. In the past, my research has explored metamemory- the monitoring and control processes that contribute to memory functioning. I focused this work primarily at the role of monitoring in memory functioning by examining the algorithms and functional neural anatomy that underlie this process. While metamemory work continues in my lab, more recently I have also begun to expand this work by looking at the function of cognitive control more generally – its role in memory and mood regulation, as well as genetic influences, individual differences and aging. In addition, we examine disruption to control systems due to fatigue or brain injury.

Across all this work, I primarily take a Cognitive Neuroscience approach - testing well founded cognitive theories using several complimentary research methodologies including, (a) task dissociations in neurologically damaged patients and healthy controls, (b) human electro and magneto encephalograhic recordings (EEG and MEG), (c) functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI), and (d) the multimodal integration of fMRI and EEG/MEG.

Imaging Research Center

Selected Publications

Maddox, W. T., Pacheco, J., Reeves, M., Zhu, B., & Schnyer, D. M. (2010). Rule-based and information-integration category learning in normal aging. Neuropsychologia, 48(10), 2998-3008.

Beevers, C, Clasen, P., Stice, E, & Schnyer, D.M. (2010). Depression Symptoms and Cognitive Control of Emotion Cues: An fMRI Study, Neuroscience, 167. 97-103

Beevers, C.G. & Schnyer, D.M. (2009). The Serotonin System and the Cognitive Control of Emotion: Associations with Depression Vulnerability. Frontiers in Neuroscience. 3. 248-249. 

Pacheco, J., Beevers, C., Benavides, C., McGeary, J., Stice, E. and Schnyer, D.M. (2009). Frontal-Limbic White Matter Pathway Associations with the Serotonin Transporter Gene Promoter Region (5-HTTLPR) Polymorphism. Journal of Neuroscience, 29. 6229-6233.

Rocklage, M, Williams, V, Pacheco, J. & Schnyer, D.M. (2009). White matter differences predict cognitive vulnerability to sleep deprivation. Sleep. 32. 1100-1103.

Schnyer, D.M., Zeithamova, D. & Williams, T. (2009). Decision Making Under Conditions of Sleep Deprivation: Cognitive and Neural Consequences. Military Psychology 21, 36-45.

Schnyer, D.M., Dobbins, I.G., Nicholls, L.D., & Verfaellie, M. (2006) Rapid response learning in amnesia: Delineating associative learning components in repetition priming. Neuropsychologia, 44, 140-149.

Schnyer, D.M., Nicholls, L.D., & Verfaellie, M. (2005). The role of VPMC in metamemorial judgments of content retrievability.Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. 17, 832-846

Dobbins, I.G., Schnyer, D.M., Verfaellie, M., & Schacter, D.L. (2004). Cortical activity reductions during repetition priming can result from rapid response learning. Nature, 428:6980, 316-319.

Schnyer, D.M., Verfaellie, M., Alexander, M.P., LaFleche, G., Nicholls, L., & Kaszniak, A.W. (2004). A Role for Right Medial Prefrontal Cortex in Accurate Feeling of Knowing Judgments: Evidence from Patients with Lesions to Frontal Cortex.Neuropsychologia, 42:7, 957-966.

Interests

Cognitive neuroscience of memory, Implicit, explicit and metamemory processing explored in normal and memory disordered populations utilizing behavioral and neuroimaging methodologies

PSY 394U • Curr Tpcs In Cognitiv Neurosci

44307 • Spring 2014
Meets F 300pm-600pm SEA 4.244
show description

Seminars in Cognitive or Perceptual Systems. Three lecture hours a week for one semester. May be repeated for credit when the topics vary. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and consent of instructor.

PSY 341K • Human Brain Imaging In Psych

43760 • Fall 2013
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm SEA 3.250
show description

Topics of contemporary interest that may vary from semester to semester. Three lecture hours a week for one semester. May be repeated for credit when the topics vary. Prerequisite: For psychology majors, upper-division standing and Psychology 301 and 418 with a grade of at least C in each; for nonmajors, upper-division standing, Psychology 301 with a grade of at least C, and one of the following with a grade of at least C: Biology 318M, Civil Engineering 311S, Economics 329, Educational Psychology 371, Electrical Engineering 351K, Government 350K, Mathematics 316, 362K, Mechanical Engineering 335, Psychology 317, Sociology 317L, Social Work 318, Statistics 309, Statistics and Scientific Computation 302, 303, 304, 305, 306, 318.

PSY 394U • Curr Tpcs In Cognitv Systems

43685 • Spring 2013
Meets F 1200pm-300pm SEA 3.250
show description

Seminars in Cognitive or Perceptual Systems. Three lecture hours a week for one semester. May be repeated for credit when the topics vary. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and consent of instructor.

PSY 341K • Human Brain Imaging In Psych

43310 • Fall 2012
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm SEA 3.250
show description

Brain imaging has become pervasive in psychology and cognitive neuroscience research. What are the various techniques, how do they work and what can we rightly infer about mental processes? The course will provide a basic overview of the philosophical, historical and neural foundation of brain imaging. We will then focus in on the 2 most widely used “functional” imaging techniques – the human electroencephalogram (EEG) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

The course will begin by covering the philosophical and theoretical foundations of brain/behavior relations, followed by a short introduction to human neurophysiology in order establish an understanding of the neural sources of brain imaging signals. Then each of the brain imaging techniques will be introduced in depth with lectures and hands-on laboratory sessions.

In the final part of the course, students will branch out into a specific area of interest (i.e. - language, attention, vision, memory, social psychology, clinical disorders, etc.) in order to develop a research proposal of their own that they will present in an oral class presentation and a final written research proposal.

PSY 341K • Human Brain Imaging In Psych

43238 • Spring 2012
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm SEA 3.250
show description

Brain imaging has become pervasive in psychology and cognitive neuroscience research. What are the various techniques, how do they work and what can we rightly infer about mental processes? The course will provide a basic overview of the philosophical, historical and neural foundation of brain imaging. We will then focus in on the 2 most widely used “functional” imaging techniques – the human electroencephalogram (EEG) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

The course will begin by covering the philosophical and theoretical foundations of brain/behavior relations, followed by a short introduction to human neurophysiology in order establish an understanding of the neural sources of brain imaging signals. Then each of the brain imaging techniques will be introduced in depth with lectures and hands-on laboratory sessions.

In the final part of the course, students will branch out into a specific area of interest (i.e. - language, attention, vision, memory, social psychology, clinical disorders, etc.) in order to develop a research proposal of their own that they will present in an oral class presentation and a final written research proposal.

PSY 387R • Fundamentals Of Cognition

43895 • Spring 2011
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm SEA 2.108
show description

Review of theories and empirical research on pattern recognition, attention, memory, imagery, and problem solving. Three lecture hours a week for one semester. A core course option. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and consent of instructor.

PSY 394U • Intro To Psychophysiology

44025 • Spring 2011
Meets W 100pm-400pm SEA 5.106
show description

Seminars in Cognitive and Perceptual Systems. Three lecture hours a week for one semester. May be repeated for credit when the topics vary. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and consent of instructor.

PSY 341K • Human Brain Imaging In Psych

43145 • Fall 2010
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm SEA 2.108
show description

Course Description

From electrophysiology to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), studies utilizing brain imaging technologies have become pervasive in the psychology and cognitive neuroscience literatures. How do the new techniques work and what do they tell us about how the mind works? The course will focus primarily on these questions. After a basic overview of brain imaging techniques and the mental process that can be inferred from these methodologies, the course will explore some of the

Students will then branch out into a specific area of interest (i.e. - language, attention, vision, memory, social psychology). The course will require a short review paper covering the student's topic of interest, an oral presentation and a final research proposal designed to answer an important empirical question using a functional imaging technology. There will also be some hands-on laboratory exercises involving structural and functional MRI, conducted at UT's new Imaging Research Center.

Grading Policy

1/3 - Two short papers (3-5 pages)

1/3 - Oral presentation

1/3 - Final research proposal (15 pages)

Texts

Textbook - Handbook of Functional Neuroimaging of Cognition Second Edition, Roberto Cabeza and Alan Kingstone (Eds.)

Reading packet - TBD

PSY 387R • Fundamentals Of Cognition

44055 • Spring 2010
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm SEA 2.108
show description

Review of theories and empirical research on pattern recognition, attention, memory, imagery, and problem solving. Three lecture hours a week for one semester. A core course option. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and consent of instructor.

PSY 394U • Intro To Psychophysiology

44185 • Spring 2010
Meets W 100pm-400pm SEA 5.106
(also listed as NEU 394P )
show description

Seminars in Cognitive and Perceptual Systems. Three lecture hours a week for one semester. May be repeated for credit when the topics vary. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and consent of instructor.

PSY 341K • Human Brain Imaging In Psych-W

44120 • Fall 2009
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm SEA 4.242
show description

 

The University of Texas at Austin

Human Brain Imaging in Psychology 

PSY 341K

Fall 09

 

Lectures: SEA 4.242

TTH 2:00-3:30

 

Labs: Neuroimaging Analysis Center – SEA 2.210, Learning and Memory lab – SEA 3.312, Imaging Research Center, Pickle Research Campus West.

Times to be arranged

 

Instructor:

David Schnyer

Associate Professor of Psychology

Office: SEA 5.246, Tuesday 10-noon

Email: schnyer@psy.utexas.edu

Phone: 512- 475-8499

 

TA:

Jenni Pacheco, M.A.

Email: jpacheco@mail.utexas.edu

Office: SEA 2.210B, Wed. 1-3pm

Phone: 512-471-2727                       

 

Overview:

 

Brain imaging has become pervasive in psychology and cognitive neuroscience research. What are the various techniques, how do they work and what do they tell us about mental processes? The course will provide a basic overview of brain imaging techniques and the mental processes that can be inferred from these methodologies, with a specific focus on 2 popular “functional” imaging techniques – magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and the human electroencephalogram (EEG). The course will begin by covering the philosophical and theoretical foundations of brain/behavior relations, followed by a short introduction to human neurophysiology in order establish an understanding of the sources of brain imaging signals. Then each of the brain imaging techniques will be introduced in depth with hands-on laboratory sessions focusing on EEG and structural and functional MRI. The final part of the course will have students branch out into a specific area of interest (i.e. - language, attention, vision, memory, social psychology) in order to examine in depth how brain imaging has been used in that area. The course will require several short papers covering specific course topics, a short review paper covering the student’s topic of interest, an oral presentation, and a final research proposal designed to answer an important empirical question using brain imaging technique(s).

 


Course Goals:

 

The course is designed to fulfill two major goals. The first is to provide students with an introduction to the philosophical, historical, physiological, and technical issues surrounding human brain imaging. Students will be exposed to the main imaging methodologies currently being used in psychological and cognitive neuroscience research, and will be introduced to their application across a broad spectrum of research areas including: attention and visual processing, language, learning and memory, emotion and social cognition, clinical disorders, executive functions, and decision making. Three lab sessions will give students direct experience with conducting and analyzing an experiment using EEG and functional MRI. By the end of the course students should be able to read and understand research that uses a brain imaging technique with a sufficient foundation of knowledge to understand what was done and evaluate its’ scientific merit. Finally, students will begin to explore applying imaging techniques to their own research interests by thinking about and designing a functional imaging experiment.

 

Within the context of the first goal, the second goal of the course is to introduce students to the format and content of research writing and presentation in psychological science. Students will design and propose a study using one or more of the functional imaging methods introduced in the course with enough detail for a reviewer to evaluate their proposal.

 

Texts/Readings:

 

Required course reading packet – available at Jenn’s Copy and Binding.

 

Optional text - Handbook of Functional Neuroimaging of Cognition, 2nd edition. Edited by Roberto Cabeza and Alan Kingstone.

 

Assignments:

 

Three short content papers (2-3 pages, double spaced) – 20%

Topic background paper (3-5 pages, double spaced) and oral presentation - 30%

Final research proposal (10-15 pages, double spaced) – 40%

Class and lab participation – 10%

 

The short content papers will follow each section of the course – philosophical foundations, neurophysiology, EEG, and MRI. One or more questions will be given that will form the basis of these papers.

 

A background paper, the presentation, and the final research proposal will be focused on a specific topic of interest chosen by the student. The topic proposal is due Oct. 12th and the schedule for student presentations will be chosen by random lottery and announced on Oct. 16th. An overview and literature review of that topic will serve as the background paper, which will also serve as the basis for a 15-minute class presentation. The presentation should end with several open questions that have emerged from the student’s inquiry and will form the basis of the final research proposal. A draft of the background paper is due Nov. 6th and the final version, after responding to feedback from the draft, is due Nov. 24th.

 

For the final paper, students will construct a research proposal that consists of the previous background section corrected and combined with a - specific aims, methods and results sections, and a conclusion. The background establishes the background of research on the topic of interest and should contain a reworked version of the paper and presentation. This background should build to a specific unanswered question and propose a clear testable hypothesis. The methods section describes in detail the methodology to be used, how the experiment is to be carried out and what are the expected results. A conclusion will address the implications of the possible findings as well as future directions.

 

Grading:

 

Writing is the major portion of evaluation for this course. While grading written work seems like a subjective process, there is a lot that can be done to explain the basis of a grade. First, what you write must be YOUR own work. I cannot emphasize this enough. If you are unfamiliar with how you should reference ideas then check with the instructor or the Undergraduate Writing Center. The center can also provide other assistance with writing - http://uwc.utexas.edu/.

 

Your goal when writing is to convince, not to fill. In this regard, just writing a lot does not gain you a better grade. One must make a convincing argument, and this requires building the background and clearly articulating the conclusions that can be drawn from that information. If you make a convincing case and it is done with correct writing style (i.e. intro paragraph, intro and concluding sentences for each paragraph, and final summary paragraph) then you have earned an 85. From here you can gain points for, among other things: clear concise writing, innovative thinking, anticipation and countering of opposing view points, and/or a clear grasp of the imaging methodologies we have covered. You can lose points for, among other things: sloppy spelling and grammar (no excuse for this with spell and grammar checking built into word processing software) or not understanding the imaging methodology you are discussing. We will not read pages over the size range indicated above, so don’t even try to write more. You will be asked to write in “pseudo” APA style, so you should make some attempt to structure the paper in this style, particularly with respect to references. A good overview of this style can be found at - http://www.docstyles.com/apacrib.htm#Abbrev. The link is on the blackboard site.

 

Writing Center: I strongly encourage you to use the Undergraduate Writing Center, FAC 211, 471-6222: http://uwc.utexas.edu). The Undergraduate Writing Center offers free, individualized, expert help with writing for any UT undergraduate, by appointment or on a drop-in basis. Any undergraduate enrolled in a course at UT can visit the UWC for assistance with any writing project. They work with students from every department on campus, for both academic and non-academic writing. Whether you are writing a lab report, a resume, a term paper, a statement for an application, or your own poetry, UWC consultants will be happy to work with you. Their services are not just for writing with "problems." Getting feedback from an informed audience is a normal part of a successful writing project. Consultants help students develop strategies to improve their writing. The assistance they provide is intended to foster independence. Each student determines how to use the consultant's advice. The consultants are trained to help you work on your writing in ways that preserve the integrity of your work.

 

Participation in class, doing the readings and attendance in both class and lab will make up 10% of the grade. This is a given if you just show up and stay engaged. Labs are mandatory. Reading ahead of time will help you to make informed comments during the class sessions. 

 

Prerequisites:

 

(a) PSY 301 with a C or better

(b) PSY 418 (or an equivalent listed in the course schedule) with a C or better

(c) Upper-Division standing (60 hours completed)

(d) Deep curiosity about the brain and its relationship to mental functions!

 

Course timeline and reading schedule  - (subject to change with notification) 

 

 

 

Date

Content

Reading

(CP = course packet)

 

August 27

Introduction and scope. Syllabus review.

 

Week 1

Sept 1

The Mind Body Problem

1) CP - Mind and Brain – from Cognition Brain and Consciousness, B.J Baars

 

2) CP - The Mind-Body Problem – from The Psychology of Consciousness, G.W. Farthing

 

3) CP - Optional - Minds and Bodies: Rene Descartes and the possibility of a science of the mind – from the Science of Mind, O. Flanagan

 

Sept 3

History of Neuroimaging

1) CP – Cabeza, Chapter 1- Functional Neuroimaging: A historical and physiological perspective

 

Week 2

Sept 8 and 10

Specification and Localization of mental functions.

Functional neural anatomy of the Human brain.

1) CP - Psychophysiological Science – Interdisciplinary approaches to classic questions about the mind - from Handbook of Psychophysiology, J.T. Cacioppo, L.G. Tassinary, Berntson, Eds.

2) CP - Organization of the nervous system – from Fundamentals of Human Neuropsychology, B. Kolb and I.Q. Whishaw Eds

 

 

Sept 15

1st content paper due – Philosophical Foundations

 

Week 3

Sept 15 and 17

Neural Tracks

1) CP - Cellular organization of the nervous system – from Fundamentals of Human Neuropsychology, B. Kolb and I.Q. Whishaw Eds

Week 4

Sept 22 and 24

Brain Electrical Activity – EEG and MEG

1) CP - Chapter 3 – Electroencephalography and High-density electrophysiological source localization – from Handbook of Psychophysiology, J.T. Cacioppo, L.G. Tassinary, Berntson, Eds.

2) CP - Chapter 4 – Event-related Brain Potentials: Methods, theory, and applications – from Handbook of Psychophysiology, J.T. Cacioppo, L.G. Tassinary, Berntson, Eds.

 

Week 5

Sept 29 - Oct. 1

EEG Lab (SEAY 3.312)

 

 

 

Oct. 6th

2st content paper due – Human Electrophsyiology

 

Week 6

Oct. 6

Brain Metabolism – PET & fMRI

1) CP – Cabeza,Chapter 2 – Functional neuroimaging: Basic principles of functional MRI

Oct. 8

Brain Metabolism – PET and fMRI (cont)

Optional) CP - Chapter 2 – Elements of functional neuroimaging - from Handbook of Psychophysiology, J.T. Cacioppo, L.G. Tassinary, Berntson, Eds.

 

Oct. 12

Presentation proposal due, with suggested reading to be posted online – presentation schedule to be announced by Fri Oct. 16th

 

 

Week 7

Oct. 13

Experimental design in functional imaging

1) CP – Cabeza, Chapter 3 – Functional neuroimaging: Experimental design and analysis

Oct. 15

Experimental design in functional imaging (cont)

 

 

 

Oct. 22

3rd content paper due – fMRI

 

Week 9

Oct. 20

Lab 3 – Structural MRI, Navigating the brain (SEAY 2.210)

Oct. 22

Lesion studies and structural imaging

 

Example Presentation

1) The lesion method in cognitive neuroscience - from Handbook of Psychophysiology, J.T. Cacioppo, L.G. Tassinary, Berntson, Eds.

Week 10

Nov. 3-5

Lab 2 – Functional Neuroimaging – Imaging Research Center

 

 

 

 

Nov. 6

Draft of Background paper due

 

 

 

Week 11

Nov. 10 and 12

Student Presentations

Optional) TB - Chapter 4 – Functional neuroimaging of attention

Week 12

Nov. 17

And 19

Student Presentations

Optional) TB - Chapter 13 – Functional neuroimaging of emotion and social cognition

Week 13

Nov. 25

Student Presentations/Ethics in Neuroimaging Research

1) CP - fMRI in the public eye

Eric Racine, Ofek Bar-Ilan and Judy Illes from Nature Neuroscience, 2005

 

 

 

 

Nov 24

Final version of Background paper due

 

 

 

Week 14

Dec. 1 and 3

Student Presentations

 Optional) TB - Chapter 10 – Functional neuroimaging of executive functions

 

 

 

 

 

5pm Dec 11

Final paper due

         

 

Optional readings are in the reading packet.

The Standard of Academic Integrity

A fundamental principle for any educational institution, academic integrity is highly valued and seriously regarded at The University of Texas at Austin, as emphasized in the standards of conduct. More specifically, you and other students are expected to "maintain absolute integrity and a high standard of individual honor in scholastic work" undertaken at the University (Sec. 11-801, Institutional Rules on Student Services and Activities). This is a very basic expectation that is further reinforced by the University's Honor Code. At a minimum, you should complete any assignments, exams, and other scholastic endeavors with the utmost honesty, which requires you to:

  • acknowledge the contributions of other sources to your scholastic efforts;
  • complete your assignments independently unless expressly authorized to seek or obtain assistance in preparing them;
  • follow instructions for assignments and exams, and observe the standards of your academic discipline; and
  • avoid engaging in any form of academic dishonesty on behalf of yourself or another student.

For the official policies on academic integrity and scholastic dishonesty, please refer to Chapter 11 of the Institutional Rules on Student Services and Activities.

The University of Texas Honor Code

 

The core values of The University of Texas at Austin are learning, discovery, freedom, leadership, individual opportunity, and responsibility. Each member of the University is expected to uphold these values through integrity, honesty, trust, fairness, and respect toward peers and community.

 

University Electronic Mail Notification Policy

 

All students should become familiar with the University's official e-mail student notification policy. It is the student's responsibility to keep the University informed as to changes in his or her e-mail address. Students are expected to check e-mail on a frequent and regular basis in order to stay current with University-related communications, recognizing that certain communications may be time-critical. It is recommended that e-mail be checked daily, but at a minimum, twice per week.

 

Use of Blackboard in Class

 

This course uses Blackboard, a Web-based course management system in which a password-protected site is created for each course. (Student enrollments in each course arc updated each evening.) Blackboard can be used to distribute course materials, to communicate and collaborate online, to post grades, to submit assignments, and to take online quizzes and surveys.

 

You will be responsible for checking the Blackboard course site regularly for class work and announcements. As with all computer systems, there are occasional scheduled downtimes as well as unanticipated disruptions. Notification of these disruptions will be posted on the Blackboard login page. Scheduled downtimes are not an excuse for late work. However, if there is an unscheduled downtime for a significant period of time, I will make an adjustment if it occurs close to the due date.

 

Blackboard is available at http://courses.utexas.edu. Support is provided by the ITS Help Desk at 475-9400 Monday through Friday 8 am to 6 pm, so plan accordingly.

 

Disability Statement

 

Students who require special accommodations need to get a letter that documents the disability from the Services for Students with Disabilities area of the Office of the Dean of Students (471-6259- voice or 47 I -4641 - TTY for users who are deaf or hard of hearing). This letter should be presented to the instructor in each course at the beginning of" the semester and accommodations needed should be discussed at that time. Five business days before an exam the student should remind the instructor of any testing accommodations that will be needed.

 

See Web site below for more information:

http://deanofstudents.utexas.edu/ssd/providing.php

 

Religious Holidays

 

Religious holy days sometimes conflict with class and examination schedules. If you miss an examination, work assignment, or other project due to the observance of a religious holy day you will be given an opportunity to complete the work missed within a reasonable time after the absence. It is the policy of The University of Texas at Austin that you must notify each of your instructors at least fourteen days prior to the classes scheduled on dates you will be absent to observe a religious holy day.

 

Feedback

 

Feedback is an important part of any learning. Without feedback on how well you understand the material or your proficiency in a skill, it is more difficult to make significant progress. During this course I will be asking you to give me feedback on your learning in informal as well as formal ways such as assignments or exams. Please let me know when something we discuss is not clear. It will enable me to provide additional information when needed or to explain a concept in different terms.

PSY 394U • Analysis Of Fmri Data

43430 • Spring 2009
Meets M 100pm-400pm SEA 2.210
(also listed as NEU 394P )
show description

Seminars in Cognition and Perception. Three lecture hours a week for one semester. May be repeated for credit when the topics vary. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and consent of instructor.

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