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Verbal communication, in particular speech comprehension, relies on a combination of general auditory and speech-specific mechanisms, as well as on their interactions with multimodal and wide-spread neural networks that support other cognitive functions (e.g., attention and decision making). We study the cognitive and neural mechanisms that support language comprehension and verbal communication, in monolingual and bilingual individuals.

We are located at the Center for Integrative Neuroscience (CIN) at the University of Tübingen.

Methodologies: We use multiple electrophysiological methodologies, including whole-brain recordings using MEG and EEG, as well as intracranial electrophysiology in clinical settings (iEEG). This combination provides us with the unique opportunity to study human communication across neuronal scales: whole-brain neural dynamics in MEG, and submillimeter spatial resolution of intracranial recordings. Experimentally, we combine the analysis of continuous naturalistic stimuli with targeted hypothesis-driven task and stimulus designs.


Aug 2021
Our paper on cortical auditory pathways is finally out in Cell! (in collaboration with Liberty Hamilton, UT Austin):
Parallel and distributed encoding of speech across human auditory cortex

Peer-reviewed publications

For a full list of publications on google scholar click here.


Hamilton, L., Oganian, Y., Hall J.A. & Chang E.F.  (2020) Topography of speech-related acoustic and phonological feature encoding throughout the human core and parabelt auditory cortex. Cell
(accepted). [BioRxiv preprint Doi: /10.1101/2020.06.08.121624]


Frey K., Zöllner J.P., Knake S., Oganian Y., Kay L., Mahr K., Keil F., Willems L.M., Menzler K., Bauer S., Schubert-Bast S., Rosenow F., Strzelczyk A. (2020). Risk incidence of fractures and injuries: A multicenter video-EEG study of 626 generalized convulsive seizures. Journal of Neurology, 267, 3632–3642 (2020).



Oganian Y. & Chang E.F. (2019). An envelope landmark for syllable encoding in human superior temporal gyrus. Science Advances, 5, eaay6279.

Journal link

Coverage on NPR All Things Considered

UCSF Press Release

Video Summary

Spalek K.* & Oganian Y.* (2019). The neurocognitive signature of focus alternatives. Brain & Language 194, 98-108.



Korn, C.W., Heekeren, H.R., Oganian, Y. (2019) The framing effect in a monetary gambling task is robust in minimally verbal language switching contexts. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology. 72(1): 52-59.



Oganian, Y., Heekeren, H.R., Korn, C.W. (2019) Low foreign language proficiency reduces optimism about the personal future. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology. 72(1): 60-75.





Morawetz, C. , Oganian, Y., Schlickeiser, U., Jacobs, A. M., & Heekeren, H. R. (2017) Second Language Use Facilitates Implicit Emotion Regulation via Content Labeling. Frontiers in Psychology, 8(March), 1–11.



Korn, C. W., Ries, J., Schalk, L., Oganian, Y., & Saalbach, H. (2017). A hard-to-read font reduces the framing effect in a large sample. Psychonomic bulletin & review, 1-8.




Oganian, Y., Froehlich, E., Schlickeiser, U., Hofmann, M. J., Heekeren, H. R., & Jacobs, A. M. (2016) Slower perception followed by faster lexical decision in longer words: A diffusion model analysis. Frontiers in Psychology, 6(JAN).



Oganian, Y.*, Korn, C. W. *, & Heekeren, H. R. (2016). Language switching-but not foreign language use per se-reduces the framing effect. Journal of Experimental Psychology. Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 42(1), 140–8.



Oganian, Y., Conrad, M., Aryani, A., Heekeren, H. R., & Spalek, K. (2016) Interplay of bigram frequency and orthographic neighborhood statistics in language membership decision. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 19(3), 1–19.




Oganian, Y., Conrad, M., Aryani, A., Spalek, K., & Heekeren, H. R. (2015) Activation Patterns throughout the Word Processing Network of L1-dominant Bilinguals Reflect Language Similarity and Language Decisions. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 27(11), 2197–2214.





Oganian, Y., & Ahissar, M. (2012). Poor anchoring limits dyslexics’ perceptual, memory, and reading skills. Neuropsychologia, 50(8), 1895–1905.




Ahissar, M., & Oganian, Y. (2008). Response to Ziegler: The anchor is in the details. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 12(7): 245-246.


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