Haley Wilbanks, one of two Sewanee students participating in the Sewanee-At-Yale Directed Research Program this semester, writes with this update:
"My first few weeks have comprised mainly of reading different papers, books and chapters. These readings have been introducing me both to the relationship between addiction and parenting and to EEG/ERP and fMRI. The latter are methods that are used within the study to examine the brain activities of mothers in response to various stimuli. Once I have a solid, basic understanding of the studies and the science behind them, I will then move forward to choose one question to focus on within the overarching question regarding "the neurobiology of addiction in mothers". In this photo, I am wearing the EEG (electroencephalogram) net which contains 128 electrodes that individually recorded my brain activity while viewing faces and listening to the cries of different infants. I got to participate in the same routine as the mothers within our study so that I could understand what it feels like to participate as well. This exercise also granted me a physical experience that tied to what I had been reading, and excited me for what lies ahead."