Aron K. Barbey is Professor of Psychology, Neuroscience, and Bioengineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is co-chair of the Intelligence Systems Research Theme, leader of the Intelligence, Learning, and Plasticity Initiative, and director of the Decision Neuroscience Laboratory at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology. He received a Ph.D. in Psychology from Emory University in 2007 and completed a research fellowship in Cognitive Neuroscience at the National Institutes of Health in 2011. Professor Barbey’s research investigates the neural mechanisms of human intelligence and decision making, with particular emphasis on enhancing these functions through cognitive neuroscience, physical fitness, and nutritional intervention. He has won more than $25 million in federal and private research grants since joining the University of Illinois in 2011, receiving support from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the NIH BRAIN Initiative, the research division of the United States Director of National Intelligence (IARPA), the Department of Defense (DARPA), the National Science Foundation (NSF), and private industry. He has received multiple academic achievement awards, is co-editor of The Cambridge Handbook of Intelligence and Cognitive Neuroscience, and serves on the editorial board of Intelligence, Thinking & Reasoning, and NeuroImage.
Our research investigates the principles of brain organization that underlie executive control, reasoning and decision making. Through a combination of human behavioral, computational modeling, functional neuroimaging (fMRI) and neuropsychological patient data, we seek to uncover the mechanisms that shape higher cognitive processes and to develop predictive models of brain function that link neural systems to specific patterns of inference and behavior. An important motivation for our work is the development of a theoretically sound foundation for research on the relationship between disturbances of brain function and their manifestation as disorders of thought and behavior in psychiatric illness and neurological disease.
Ph.D., Emory University
Additional Campus Affiliations
Affiliate, Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology
Professor, Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology
Professor, Speech and Hearing Science
Adjunct Professor, Internal Medicine
Daugherty, A. M., Sutton, B. P., Hillman, C. H., Kramer, A. F., Cohen, N. J., & Barbey, A. K. (2020). Individual differences in the neurobiology of fluid intelligence predict responsiveness to training: Evidence from a comprehensive cognitive, mindfulness meditation, and aerobic exercise intervention. Trends in Neuroscience and Education, 18, . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tine.2019.100123
Hiscox, L. V., McGarry, M. D. J., Schwarb, H., Van Houten, E. E. W., Pohlig, R. T., Roberts, N., Huesmann, G. R., Burzynska, A. Z., Sutton, B. P., Hillman, C. H., Kramer, A. F., Cohen, N. J., Barbey, A. K., Paulsen, K. D., & Johnson, C. L. (2020). Standard-space atlas of the viscoelastic properties of the human brain. Human Brain Mapping, 41(18), 5282-5300. https://doi.org/10.1002/hbm.25192
Larsen, R. J., Raine, L. B., Hillman, C. H., Kramer, A. F., Cohen, N. J., & Barbey, A. K. (2020). Body mass and cardiorespiratory fitness are associated with altered brain metabolism. Metabolic Brain Disease, 35(6), 999-1007. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11011-020-00560-z
Pietro, V. D., Yakoub, K. M., Caruso, G., Lazzarino, G., Signoretti, S., Barbey, A. K., Tavazzi, B., Lazzarino, G., Belli, A., & Amorini, A. M. (2020). Antioxidant Therapies in Traumatic Brain Injury. Antioxidants, 9(3), . https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox9030260
Pindus, D. M., Zwilling, C. E., Jarrett, J. S., Talukdar, T., Schwarb, H., Anderson, E., Cohen, N. J., Barbey, A. K., Kramer, A. F., & Hillman, C. H. (2020). Opposing associations between sedentary time and decision-making competence in young adults revealed by functional connectivity in the dorsal attention network. Scientific reports, 10(1), . https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-70679-7