Motor Control in a Changing Environment

Alissa Stover : Psychology

Mentor: Richard Ivry, Psychology

Elucidating how organisms are able to flexibly move about in dynamically changing environments is a fundamental problem in psychology and neuroscience. Imagine a ballerina practicing in front of warped mirrors: her brain must continually recalibrate the motor commands sent to move the body based on sensory feedback. In this context, there is a mismatch between the distorted visual feedback from the mirror and her internal sense of body position (proprioception). Alissa will conduct a series of experiments that examine how sensorimotor recalibration occurs when there is a mismatch between proprioception and vision. This information should contribute to our understanding of how the brain controls movement, allowing us to produce skilled actions, as well as provide insights that can be used for the rehabilitation of movement disorders.