giuseppe iaria (DIRECTOR)

Giuseppe Iaria Dr. Iaria is Associate Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience in the Department of Psychology at the University of Calgary. He is a member of the Hotchkiss Brain Institute, and Alberta Children's Hospital Research Institute for Child and Maternal Health. Dr. Iaria graduated in 1997 with a bachelors degree in Experimental Psychology, completed further training in Neuropsychology in 1999, and a Ph.D. in Cognitive Neuroscience in 2003. He has conducted behavioural and neuroimaging studies in both healthy individuals and brain-damaged patients and worked in different academic/research locations such as the University of British Columbia (Vancouver, Canada), the University of Rome "La Sapienza" (Rome, Italy), the Montreal Neurological Institute at McGill University (Montreal, Canada), and Le College de France (Paris, France). (Phone: +1 403 220 8482)

ford burles (graduate student - PhD)

Ford's main project at NeuroLab focuses on investigating the contribution of the retrosplenial complex on the human ability to orient, and its relationship to the lifelong condition of getting lost in familiar surroundings (i.e. Developmental Topographical Disorientation). In addition, he is responsible for the development of, the very first online platform providing a comprehensive assessment of human orientation skills. The data collected through this website provides us with a very large database that allows us to gain insight into the processes used by individuals as they navigate and orient (or get lost) in their surroundings. Ford is the recipient of the prestigious Izaak Walton Killam Pre-Doctoral Scholarship and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) Graduate Scholarship. (Phone: +1 403 220 3828)

veronica guadagni (graduate student - PhD)

Veronica's research interest at NeuroLab focuses on investigating the effects of sleep, sleep-deprivation, and sleep disturbances on cognitive functioning. She is interested in investigating how sleep (and the lack thereof) affects the human ability to orient, as well as empathy and the way individuals process emotional stimuli. Veronica's methodological approach includes objective (actigraphy) and subjective (questionnaires) sleep quality measures, structural and functional neuroimaging techniques, and cortisol measures. Veronica is an international student who joined NeuroLab from the University of L'Aquila (Italy). (Phone: +1 403 220 3715)

Liam mcfarlane (graduate student - master)

Liam's research interest focuses on investigating concussion in professional athletes. As both a researcher and former professional speed skater, Liam is particularly interested in investigating the development of a cognitive training program that will contribute to a faster and more effective recovery from sport-related concussion. At NeuroLab, he will develop a training program focused on spatial cognition, and evaluate its positive effects from a cognitive and neurological perspective; to this aim, Liam will take a neuropsychological approach, making use of structural and functional neuroimaging to quantify post-concussion recovery professional athletes. (Phone: +1 403 220 3715)

alberto umilta (graduate student - phd)

Alberto has joined NeuroLab from The University of Bologna (Italy). His research interest focuses on developing and assessing effectiveness of online cognitive training. At NeuroLab, Alberto will focus on investigating the behavioural and neurological effects of a training program designed to improve individuals' spatial orientation skills. Specifically, his research project will focus on using the state-of-the-art technology to create an interactive virtual environment in which individuals will practice creating and making use of cognitive maps for orientation. The effects of this training will be assessed neurologically, through the use of both structural and functional neuroimaging, and behaviourally, through the use of spatial orientation tasks in ecological surroundings. (Phone: +1 403 220 3715)

irene liu (graduate student - phd)

Irene's research interest focuses on investigating the development of orientation skills in children. She is particularly interested in the developmental cognitive aspects that contribute to our ability to form and make use of cognitive maps. Assessment of children's navigation and orientation skills is made possible through the use of a video game specifically designed by NeuroLab to evaluate children's abilities to become familiar with the environment and find their way around by following the most efficient routes. From a clinical perspective, Irene is interested in investigating the effects of major depression in adolescents on the ability to orient in spatial surroundings. (Phone: +1 403 220 4069)


aiden arnold (graduate student - PhD)

Aiden's research at NeuroLab aims to explore the neurological basis of individual variability in orientation skills. Coupling neuroimaging techniques with behavioural experiments that target orientation strategies, Aiden hopes to develop an enriched understanding of the interaction between neural processing and spatial cognition. Aiden is currently visiting Arne Ekstrom's lab at the University of California Davis. (Phone: +1 403 220 3828)


kendra potocki (research assistant)

Kendra’s main focus at NeuroLab will be assisting with ongoing research into the lifelong condition of getting lost in familiar surroundings, as seen in Developmental Topographical Disorientation. Kendra holds a BSc with a major in cellular, molecular, and microbial biology, and a minor in psychology. She is specifically interested in investigating the influence genetics has on spatial ability, and is currently focusing on the heritability of DTD. (Phone: +1 403 220 3715)

kara murias (research associate)

Kara had joined Neurolab in 2012 as a PhD student in the Clinical Investigator Program after completing three years of a paediatric neurology residency, and has received her PhD in December 2015. She is interested in investigating how a neurological disease affects the development of cognitive abilities in children. Her main project at NeuroLab focuses on investigating the effects of perinatal stroke on the emergence of orientation skills. Kara combines a traditional clinical approach with advanced behavioural and neuroimaging techniques aiming to understand the effect of neuro-plasticity on the development of a complex cognitive function such as the ability to navigate and orient in spatial surroundings.



Edward (Ted) Slone (PhD student 2011-16)
Kara Murias (PhD student 2012-15)
Elizabeth Cook (honours student 2015-16)
Antony Wang (honours student 2015-16)
Silvana Valera (honours student 2015-16)
Kara Murias (phd student 2012-15)
Silvana Valera (summer student 2015)
Sana Tariq (research associate 2014-15)
Melissa Yue (honours student 2014-15)
Harold Song (honours student 2014-15)
Taneesha Chawla (summer student 2014)
Zaw Aung (summer student 2014)
Gurjot Sekhon (summer student 2014)
Laura Gerow (honours student 2013-14)
Kathy Kwok (honours student 2013-14)
Felecia Hoey (honours student 2012-13)
Naveet Sohi (honours student 2012-13)
Adrian Gil Castillejo (summer student 2013)
Katharina Müller (international student 2012-13)
Lauren Froese (summer student 2012)
Taya Krivoruchko (honours student 2011-12)
Andrea Moir (honours student 2011-12)
Rachel Sharkey (honours student 2011-12)
Rachel Sharkey (summer student 2011)
Sabine Seyffarth (international student 2011)
Jacqueline Boon (summer students 2011)
Colin Rey (research associate 2010-11)
Mada Wentzel (honours students 2010-11)
Amber Nowakowski (honours students 2010-11)