Principal Investigator

Curriculum Vitae

I am interested in how our brains support hearing in younger and older adulthood. We use a wide range of behavioral, physiological, and brain recording tools (including psychophysics, pupillometry, EEG, MEG, fMRI). Before starting my Scientist and Assistant Professor position at the Rotman Research Institute and University of Toronto, I was a postdoc in the CONCH lab at Western University (Canada) and a postdoc in the Auditory Cognition lab at the Max Planck Institute CBS (Germany). I enjoy traveling, hanging out with good people, and playing squash. 




I'm a CIHR-funded postdoc at the Brain & Mind Institute (Western Ontario) with Ingrid Johnsrude and co-supervised by Björn. My PhD research focused on how humans process time and how timing information from different senses (vision and audition) are integrated. More recently, I am using neuroimaging methods (fMRI) with spoken, naturalistic narratives to explore how listeners overcome the auditory challenges presented in real-world scenarios. I am also interested in how these abilities change throughout our lifespan. Outside of the lab I can be found traveling, listening to music and enjoying good food.



Graduate student

Personal Webpage

Fran is a PhD student in Psychology at the Rotman Research Institute and UofT. She completed a Bachelor’s in Psychology at X (Ryerson) University, and an honour’s thesis in Dr. Russo’s SMART Lab. Fran’s research explored auditory, visual, and audiovisual activations of the human mirror neuron system. Before beginning the PhD program, Fran worked as the lab manager of the SMART Lab for five years. Her current research aims to better understand the physiological changes associated with listening engagement. In addition to working on research, Fran performs and composes music on the piano.



Graduate student

Eric (twitter: @mecui22) is a graduate student in psychology at the Rotman Research Institute and UofT, co-supervised by Björn and Dr. Allison Sekuler. He is interested in the interactions between bottom-up and top-down processing in humans, especially in the aging population, by using both behavioural and neuroimaging methods. He completed his HBSc at the Mississauga campus, where he studied age-related differences in visual perception and listening effort at the human communication lab. In addition to being an active researcher, he enjoys exploring new hiking trails around the GTA.



Graduate student

Frauke received her BSc in Medical Technology from the Universities of Tübingen and Stuttgart and her MSc in Auditory Technology from the University of Lübeck. During her master thesis in the Auditory Cognition group of Jonas Obleser at the University of Lübeck, she developed a fascination for the field of auditory neuroscience. Frauke is currently working on her PhD (supervised by Jonas and Björn). She is interested how different levels of attentional resource recruitment affect neural oscillations during listening, and the extent to which this oscillatory activity can be used as a marker of listening effort.



Co-op student

Christie is a HBSc student at University of Toronto specializing in Cognitive Neuroscience. Throughout her three years at UofT, she has studied advanced research and data analysis methods. She is enthusiastic about working on hearing-related projects in the Auditory Aging Lab. In addition to studying at UofT, Christie also spent the past year working at Scarborough Health Network’s Mass Vaccination Clinic. She gained first-hand experience in helping her community to combat Covid-19. Apart from her strong interest in research, Christie enjoys spending time outdoors with her beloved dog and travelling with her family.

Research volunteers
  • Naman Sharma

  • Garima Sharma

Previous team members


  • Tysen Dauer: Sep 2020 - Sep 2021