The studies in our lab address two related areas of research, and span both theoretical and more applied projects:
1. On the theoretical side, we aim to improve understanding of the ways in which momentary variation in brain activity relates to performance on cognitive tasks.
- As part of this, we conduct studies that aim to clarify the principles that govern how specific task features affect observed patterns of neural activity, and their relation to individual differences. For example, recent studies have examined how correlations between brain activity and cognitive ability vary as a function of task characteristics, and how the aperiodic slope of the EEG power spectrum changes across various cognitive tasks and states. A long-term goal of this work is to help refine conceptions of cognitive ability itself and its relation to everyday task performance.
2. Other studies in the lab aim to apply these theoretical insights toward potential practical applications in clinical neuropsychology.
- Published examples include studies examining EEG correlates of aspects of executivefunctioning. Ongoing studies are examining these and other potentially relevant markers, such as the EEG aperiodic slope, heart-rate variability, and behavioral measures obtained via smart-phone based ecological momentary assessment. We are also in the final stages of a grant from the National Institute on Aging, which is examining whether EEG markers of mental exertion can differentiate healthy older adults from those with Mild Cognitive Impairment of early Alzheimer’s disease.
Most studies in the lab combine standardized cognitive assessments (as typically applied in neuropsychological assessment) with experimental tasks and ERP or time-frequency analysis of task-related and spontaneous EEG data.
Current populations of interest include community-dwelling older and younger adults, and individuals who have been diagnosed with Mild Cognitive Impairment or early Alzheimer’s disease. Over time we hope to expand our research to include additional neuropsychiatric groups.
Although much of our work addresses basic questions in cognitive electrophysiology, we believe our focus on neural dynamics and momentary behavioral variation will be increasingly relevant to clinical neuropsychology, particularly as the field moves more toward assessment of subtle dysfunction that is apt characterize mild or sub-clinical conditions (e.g., persons at risk for neurodegenerative disorders, mild TBI sequelae, cognitive effects of chronic illnesses, neuropsychiatric conditions, etc.).
Ultimately, we hope that this work can shed light on the functional mechanisms of cognitive dysfunction, and help improve approaches to neuropsychological assessment.
OPPORTUNITIES FOR STUDENTS
We do not anticipate any openings for new graduate students during the 2022-2023 recruitment cycle. Interested applicants are welcome to contact Dr. Euler in 2023 about potential openings for the class entering Fall 2024.
Students who are apt to have the best fit with the lab are those seeking a career in clinical neuropsychology, and who also have a strong interest in electrophysiology and neural mechanisms of cognition. Prior experience with electrophysiology, neuroimaging, and/or programming is highly valued, as is prior experience in clinical settings or with patient populations.
Students who join the lab will have many opportunities to contribute to the projects described above, and to develop their own novel directions that are consistent with the general laboratory focus.
Postdoctoral Fellowship, Medical College of Wisconsin (Adult Clinical Neuropsychology,
Ph.D., University of New Mexico (Psychology, 2010)
M.S., University of New Mexico (Psychology, 2007)
B.A., New Mexico State University (Psychology & Philosophy, 2003)
Euler, M. J., & Schubert, A. L. (2021). Recent developments, current challenges, and future directions in electrophysiological approaches to studying intelligence. Intelligence, 88, 101569. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.intell.2021.101569
Pathania, A., Schreiber, M., Miller, M., Euler, M.J., & Lohse, K.R. (2021). Exploring the reliability and sensitivity of the EEG power spectrum as a biomarker. International Journal of Psychophysiology, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijpsycho.2020.12.002
McKinney, T.L., Euler, M.J., & Butner, J.E. (2019). It’s about time: The role of temporal variability in improving assessment of executive functioning. The Clinical Neuropsychologist.
McKinney, T.L., & Euler, M.J. (2019). Neural anticipatory mechanisms predict faster reaction times and higher fluid intelligence. Psychophysiology. 2019;00:e13426.
Euler, M.J. (2018). Intelligence and uncertainty: Implications of hierarchical predictive processing for the neuroscience of cognitive ability. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 94, 93-112. Download
Euler, M.J., McKinney, T.L., Schryver, H.M., &, Okabe, H. (2017). ERP Correlates of the Decision Time-IQ Relationship: The Role of Complexity in Task- and Brain-IQ Effects. Intelligence, 65, 1-10. Download
Euler, M. J., Niermeyer, M. A., & Suchy, Y. (2016). Neurocognitive and neurophysiological correlates of motor planning during familiar and novel contexts. Neuropsychology, http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/neu0000219 Download
Euler, M. J., Wiltshire, T., Niermeyer, M. A., & Butner, J. E. (2016). Working Memory Performance Inversely Predicts Spontaneous Delta and Theta-band Scaling Relations. Brain Research, 1637, 22-33. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.brainres.2016.02.008 Download