Team

Nathan Ward – Principal Investigator

Dr. Ward’s research is focused on understanding and improving the ability to manage multiple streams of information (i.e., multitasking) both in the lab and in real-world settings. His work aims to unpack the cognitive mechanisms that support multitasking, such as task switching and dual tasking, as well as to understand whether these and other mechanisms are differentially engaged across the lifespan. To this end, Dr. Ward uses several approaches, ranging from simulated environments to speeded response times, in order to assess real-time multitasking performance in younger and older adults. Dr. Ward also relies on interventions like cognitive training, exercise, and low-current brain stimulation to modulate how people multitask under a variety of scenarios.

Erika Hussey – Research Scientist

Dr. Hussey is a research psychologist on the Cognitive Science Team at US Army Natick Soldier Research, Development, and Engineering Center (NSRDEC) and is affiliated with Tufts University via the Center for Applied Brain and Cognitive Sciences. She is interested in how executive control abilities influence higher-level cognition, including language processing, decision making, and multitasking.

 

Eduardo Fontes – Visiting Scholar

Dr. Fontes is a visiting scholar from Brazil. Using different neurological techniques, such as transcranial electrical stimulation, EEG, NIRS and MRI, he has been investigating the role of cognition when regulating physical exercise. His research has been applied to clinical populations, such as drug abusers, obese children, and older adults, as well as healthy individuals and athletes.

 

Tom McWilliams  – Graduate Student

Tom is a second year Ph.D. student in the Psychology and Cognitive Science program. He has a background in Cognitive Psychology, Human Factors, and driving research. He is interested in how people handle multiple streams of information and how our understanding of attention and multitasking can be applied to virtual environments and human-machine interactions.

Kell da Costa  – Graduate Student

Kell is a fourth year Ph.D. student in the Health Sciences program in Brazil and is a visiting researcher at TACL. His research is focused on frontal cortex function and cognition, using neurological techniques on various populations, such as drug abusers, children, and older adults.

 

Shaina Martis – Lab Coordinator

Shaina graduated from the University of Colorado Boulder with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She is interested in spatial perception and cognition, navigation using virtual and augmented reality technologies, neuromodulation, cognitive control states, and multitasking.

 

Victoria Kusztos – Research Coordinator

Victoria is a senior at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Biology and planning on attending medical school. In addition to working in the lab, she is involved in GlobeMed at Tufts and volunteers for the Boston Tax Help Coalition.

 
 
 
 
 

Karina Asseraf – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Karina is a freshmen at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Clinical Psychology and a minor in Child Studies and Human Development and Human Nutrition. She is interested in children’s cognitive development. After college she plans on continuing her studies to become a licensed therapist while combining research, therapy and teaching. When not in the lab, Karina spends her time tutoring children as part of the LCS and practicing and teaching Yoga.

Amelia Coffey – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Amelia is a sophomore at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Human Factors Engineering and a minor in Engineering Management. Outside of the lab, she enjoys singing in choir.

 
 
 
 
 
 

Zaila Foster – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Zaila is a junior at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Engineering Psychology and minor in Studio Art. In her free time, she enjoys dancing with the Tufts Latin Dance Team, Encendido, and volunteering with the Big Sister Association of Greater Boston.

 

Beth Krikorian – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Beth is a sophomore at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Engineering Psychology and a minor in Entrepreneurial Leadership Studies. In addition to working in the lab, Beth is a member of the field hockey team.

 
 
 
 

Alekya Menta – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Alekya Menta is a sophomore at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Biopsychology and a minor in Cognitive and Brain Sciences.  Outside of the lab, Alekya is a member of the Tufts Pulse dance team, a tour guide, and a volunteer with Sharewood.

 
 
 
 

Jasper Park – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Jasper is a senior at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Cognitive Brain Science and a minor in Music. He is passionate about how the brain works and plans on pursuing a Ph.D. in cognitive brain science after graduating college. In addition to working in the lab, Jasper plays the bass guitar in a band.

 
 
 

Francesca Raileanu – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Francesca is a senior at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Clinical Psychology and a minor in Child Studies and Human Development. After college, she plans on moving back to Europe. She wants to combine therapy with research and teaching. Francesca spends her time volunteering at the Medford Community Center, practicing Muay Thai, and dancing for the Tufts Ballroom Team.

 

Eleanor Sultana – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Eleanor is a sophomore at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Psychology and an SMFA degree in interdisciplinary art. She is interested in learning more about human cognition and hopes to continue studying psychology in grad school. Outside of the lab, Eleanor spends time in the SMFA giving tours to prospective students and working with ceramics.

 

 Gabriel Ukegbu – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Gabriel is a sophomore at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Biopsychology. He is particularly interested in the relationship between cognition and pain. Outside of the lab, Gabriel is a member of the Tufts Blackout step team and a Big Sib in the Big Brother Association of Greater Boston.

 
 

 Ginny Ulichney – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Ginny is a junior at Tufts pursuing a B.A. in General Psychology and a B.A. International Relations with a focus on Global Health, Nutrition and the Environment. She is interested in the relationship between mobility and cognition with a focus on the interaction between balance and attentional mechanisms. In addition to working in the lab, she is a member of ATO of Massachusetts, is involved with the Laidlaw Scholars program, and is a Peer Leader for the F.I.T. pre-orientation program.

 

 Jonathan Zamsky – Undergraduate Research Assistant

Jonathan is a freshman at Tufts pursuing a B.S. in Biopsychology. The mind fascinated him, and he hopes to one day earn a medical degree and become a psychiatrist. While not in the lab, he enjoys playing guitar and running.

 
 
 
 

Lab Alumni


Emily Touchet – Undergraduate Research Assistant (January 2018 – January 2019)
Sarah Poling – Undergraduate Research Assistant (June 2018 – December 2018)
Isabella Montoya – Undergraduate Research Assistant (October 2018 – December 2018)
John DiGiacomo – Undergraduate Research Assistant (June 2018 – August 2018)
Joe Pajka – Undergraduate Research Assistant (September 2017 – August 2018)
Morgan Taylor – Undergraduate Research Assistant (June 2016 – August 2018)
Geoffrey Genova – Lab Coordinator (June 2017 – May 2018)
Anisha Jain – Undergraduate Research Assistant (June 2017 – March 2018)
Scott Mongold – Undergraduate Research Assistant (September 2016 – January 2018)
Kira Hoffman  – Undergraduate Research Assistant (January 2017 – December 2017)
Nikita Rao – Undergraduate Research Assistant (September 2016 – April 2017)
Mariana Rodriguez – Undergraduate Research Assistant (September-December 2016)
Rakshana Selvarajan – Undergraduate Research Assistant (July-August 2016)

 

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