Sophie Arana

Fulford Junior Research Fellow

I am a Postdoctoral Researcher in the Human Information Processing Lab at the Department for Experimental Psychology.

My background is in cognitive psychology and Language and for my doctorate I studied neural correlates of abstract linguistic knowledge in human brain recordings using Magnetoencephalography.
In my current research, I explore the human capacity for generalising abstract sequential
rules in non-linguistic learning tasks. I am specifically interested in the following questions: (1) What are the conditions and constraints that promote abstract rule representation in the first place and (2) how does the brain represent and operate on abstract knowledge during sequential processing?


Selected Publications

  • “Is the motor system necessary for processing action and abstract emotion words? Evidence from focal brain lesions.” FR Dreyer, D Frey, S Arana, S Saldern, T Picht, P Vajkoczy, et al. Frontiers in Psychology 6, 1661. 2015
  • “Sensory Modality-Independent Activation of the Brain Network for Language.” S Arana, A Marquand, A Hultén, P Hagoort, JM Schoffelen. Journal of Neuroscience. 40 (14), 2914-2924. 2020
  • “Lexical frequency and sentence context influence the brain’s response to single words”. E Huizeling, S Arana, P Hagoort, JM Schoffelen. bioRxiv. 2020
  • “The cognate facilitation effect depends on the presence of identical cognates.” SL Arana, HM Oliveira, AI Fernandes, AP Soares, M Comesaña. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 1-19. 2022.
  • “MVPA does not reveal neural representations of hierarchical linguistic structure in MEG. SL Arana.” JM Schoffelen, T Mitchell, P Hagoort. bioRxiv. 2021

Where Next?