Friday, February 26th, 2016

William F. Flack, Jr. – Flack, William F. Jr.; Kimble, Matthew O.; Campbell, Brooke E.; Hopper, Allyson B.; Peterca, Oana; and Heller, Emily J. “Sexual Assault Victimization Among Female Undergraduates During Study Abroad: A Single Campus Survey Study.” Journal of Interpersonal Violence 30, no. 20 (2015) : 3453-3466.

William F. Flack, Jr., Associate Professor of Psychology

Almost all research on sexual assault victimization among undergraduate university students pertains to incidents that occur on domestic college and university campuses. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the prevalence of sexual assault victimization and related factors among undergraduates in the context of study-abroad programs. Two hundred eight female students (52% response rate) from a small university in the northeastern United States who had recently studied abroad responded to an online survey containing measures of sexual assault, posttraumatic stress responses (PSR), and alcohol consumption. Almost 19% of the respondents indicated one or more types of sexual assault victimization. Approximately 17% reported non-consensual sexual touching, 7% attempted rape, 4% rape, with 9% reporting attempted rape or rape. As in domestic studies, victimization in this sample was related positively to alcohol consumption and PSR. Use of force was the most frequently reported perpetrator tactic. In sum, the high rates of sexual assault victimization reported by this sample during study abroad replicate previous findings. This context requires further attention from sexual assault researchers, especially given the increasing numbers of university students engaging in study abroad, and from campus support personnel who may be unaware of the likelihood of assault in this context.

The Author(s) 2014.

Flack, William F. Jr.; Kimble, Matthew O.; Campbell, Brooke E.; Hopper, Allyson B.; Peterca, Oana; and Heller, Emily J. “Sexual Assault Victimization Among Female Undergraduates During Study Abroad: A Single Campus Survey Study.” Journal of Interpersonal Violence 30, no. 20 (2015) : 3453-3466.

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Friday, February 26th, 2016

Andrea Halpern – Pfordresher, Peter Q.; Halpern, Andrea; and Greenspon, Emma B. “A Mechanism for Sensorimotor Translation in Singing: the Multi-Modal Imagery Association (MMIA) Model.” Music Perception 32, no. 3 (2015) : 242-253.

Andrea Halpern, Professor of Psychology

WE PROPOSE A NEW FRAMEWORK TO UNDERSTAND singing accuracy, based on multi-modal imagery associations: the MMIA model. This model is based on recent data suggesting a link between auditory imagery and singing accuracy, evidence for a link between imagery and the functioning of internal models for sensorimotor associations, and the use of imagery in singing pedagogy. By this account, imagery involves automatic associations between different modalities, which in the present context comprise associations between pitch height and the regulation of vocal fold tension. Importantly, these associations are based on probabilistic relationships that may vary with respect to their precision and accuracy. We further describe how this framework may be extended to multi-modal associations at the sequential level, and how these associations develop. The model we propose here constitutes one part of a larger architecture responsible for singing, but at the same time is cast at a general level that can extend to multi-modal associations outside the domain of singing.

Pfordresher, Peter Q.; Halpern, Andrea; and Greenspon, Emma B. “A Mechanism for Sensorimotor Translation in Singing: the Multi-Modal Imagery Association (MMIA) Model.” Music Perception 32, no. 3 (2015) : 242-253.

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Friday, February 26th, 2016

Andrea Halpern – Pearce, Marcus T. and Halpern, Andrea. “Age-Related Patterns in Emotions Evoked by Music.”Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts 9, no. 3 (2015) : 248-253.

Andrea Halpern, Professor of Psychology

We presented older and younger nonmusician adult listeners with (mostly) unfamiliar excerpts of film music. All listeners rated their emotional reaction using the Geneva Emotional Music Scale 9 (GEMS-9; Zentner, Grandjean, & Scherer, 2008), and also rated familiarity and liking. The GEMS-9 was factor-analyzed into 3 factors of Animacy, Valence, and Arousal. Although the 2 age groups liked the music equally well, and showed roughly the same pattern of responses to the different emotion categories, the younger group showed a wider range of emotional reactivity on all the factors. We found support for a type of positivity effect, in that older people found Happy music somewhat less happy than did younger people, but found Sad music much less sad than did younger people. Older people also rated Fearful music more positively than did younger people. We propose that the GEMS-9 scale is an efficient and effective device to collect evoked emotion data for a wide age range of listeners.

Pearce, Marcus T. and Halpern, Andrea. “Age-Related Patterns in Emotions Evoked by Music.”Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts 9, no. 3 (2015) : 248-253.

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Friday, February 26th, 2016

Andrea Halpern – Lima, Cesar F.; Lavan, Nadine; Evans, Samuel; Agnew, Zarinah; Halpern, Andrea R.; Shanmugalingam, Pradheep; Meekings, Sophie; Boebinger, Dana; Ostarek, Markus; McGettigan, Carolyn; Warren, Jane E.; and Scott, Sophie K. “Feel the Noise: Relating Individual Differences in Auditory Imagery to the Structure and Function of Sensorimotor Systems.” Cerebral Cortex 25, no. 11 (2015) : 4638-4650.

Andrea Halpern, Professor of Psychology

Humans can generate mental auditory images of voices or songs, sometimes perceiving them almost as vividly as perceptual experiences. The functional networks supporting auditory imagery have been described, but less is known about the systems associated with interindividual differences in auditory imagery. Combining voxel-based morphometry and fMRI, we examined the structural basis of interindividual differences in how auditory images are subjectively perceived, and explored associations between auditory imagery, sensory-based processing, and visual imagery. Vividness of auditory imagery correlated with gray matter volume in the supplementary motor area (SMA), parietal cortex, medial superior frontal gyrus, and middle frontal gyrus. An analysis of functional responses to different types of human vocalizations revealed that the SMA and parietal sites that predict imagery are also modulated by sound type. Using representational similarity analysis, we found that higher representational specificity of heard sounds in SMA predicts vividness of imagery, indicating a mechanistic link between sensory- and imagery-based processing in sensorimotor cortex. Vividness of imagery in the visual domain also correlated with SMA structure, and with auditory imagery scores. Altogether, these findings provide evidence for a signature of imagery in brain structure, and highlight a common role of perceptual-motor interactions for processing heard and internally generated auditory information.

Lima, Cesar F.; Lavan, Nadine; Evans, Samuel; Agnew, Zarinah; Halpern, Andrea R.; Shanmugalingam, Pradheep; Meekings, Sophie; Boebinger, Dana; Ostarek, Markus; McGettigan, Carolyn; Warren, Jane E.; and Scott, Sophie K. “Feel the Noise: Relating Individual Differences in Auditory Imagery to the Structure and Function of Sensorimotor Systems.” Cerebral Cortex 25, no. 11 (2015) : 4638-4650.

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Friday, February 26th, 2016

Andrea Halpern – Halpern, Andrea; Golden, Hannah L.; Magdalinou, Nadia; Witoonpanich, Pirada; and Warren, Jason D. “Musical Tasks Targeting Preserved and Impaired Functions in Two Dementias.” Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1337, no. 1 (2015) : 241-248.

Andrea Halpern, Professor of Psychology

Studies of musical abilities in dementia have for the most part been rather general assessments of abilities, for instance, assessing retention of music learned premorbidly. Here, we studied patients with dementias with contrasting cognitive profiles to explore specific aspects of music cognition under challenge. Patients suffered from Alzheimer’s disease (AD), in which a primary impairment is in forming new declarative memories, or Lewy body disease (PD/LBD), a type of parkinsonism in which executive impairments are prominent. In the AD patients, we examined musical imagery. Behavioral and neural evidence confirms involvement of perceptual networks in imagery, and these are relatively spared in early stages of the illness. Thus, we expected patients to have relatively intact imagery in a mental pitch comparison task. For the LBD patients, we tested whether executive dysfunction would extend to music. We probed inhibitory skills by asking for a speeded pitch or timbre judgment when the irrelevant dimension was held constant or also changed. Preliminary results show that AD patients score similarly to controls in the imagery tasks, but PD/LBD patients are impaired relative to controls in suppressing some irrelevant musical dimensions, particularly when the required judgment varies from trial to trial.

2014 The Authors. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences published by Wiley Periodicals Inc. on behalf of The New York Academy of Sciences.

Halpern, Andrea; Golden, Hannah L.; Magdalinou, Nadia; Witoonpanich, Pirada; and Warren, Jason D. “Musical Tasks Targeting Preserved and Impaired Functions in Two Dementias.” Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1337, no. 1 (2015) : 241-248.

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Friday, February 26th, 2016

Andrea Halpern – Schaal, Nora K.; Javadi, Amir-Homayoun; Halpern, Andrea; Pollok, Bettina; and Banissy, Michael J. “Right Parietal Cortex Mediates Recognition Memory for Melodies.” European Journal of Neuroscience 42, no. 1 (2015) : 1660-1666.

Andrea Halpern, Professor of Psychology

Functional brain imaging studies have highlighted the significance of right-lateralized temporal, frontal and parietal brain areas for memory for melodies. The present study investigated the involvement of bilateral posterior parietal cortices (PPCs) for the recognition memory of melodies using transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS). Participants performed a recognition task before and after tDCS. The task included an encoding phase (12 melodies), a retention period, as well as a recognition phase (24 melodies). Experiment 1 revealed that anodal tDCS over the right PPC led to a deterioration of overall memory performance compared with sham. Experiment 2 confirmed the results of Experiment 1 and further showed that anodal tDCS over the left PPC did not show a modulatory effect on memory task performance, indicating a right lateralization for musical memory. Furthermore, both experiments revealed that the decline in memory for melodies can be traced back to an interference of anodal stimulation on the recollection process (remember judgements) rather than to familiarity judgements. Taken together, this study revealed a causal involvement of the right PPC for memory for melodies and demonstrated a key role for this brain region in the recollection process of the memory task.

Schaal, Nora K.; Javadi, Amir-Homayoun; Halpern, Andrea; Pollok, Bettina; and Banissy, Michael J. “Right Parietal Cortex Mediates Recognition Memory for Melodies.” European Journal of Neuroscience 42, no. 1 (2015) : 1660-1666.

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