Please join Dr. Sam Ling, as he presents, “How Does Normalization Regulate Visual Competition?” The lecture will take place on December 11, 2018 as part of the Research lecture Series in Lecture Hall 2. All are welcome to attend. One hour of Mass CE will be awarded. You are invited to join us for a light reception in Conference Room 1 following the lecture.
Abstract: How does the visual system regulate competing sensory information? Recent theories propose that a computation known as divisive normalization plays a key role in governing neural competition. Normalization is considered a canonical neural computation, potentially driving responses throughout the neural and cognitive system. Interestingly, there is evidence to suggest that normalization's pervasive role relies on an exquisite tuning to stimulus features, such as orientation, but this feature-selective nature of normalization is surprisingly understudied, particularly in humans. In this talk, I will describe a series of studies using functional neuroimaging and psychophysics to shed light on the tuning characteristics that allow normalization to control population responses within human visual cortex, and to understand how this form of normalization can support functions as diverse as attentional selection and working memory.