Shirley Cheung

PhD student

Research Interests

I am interested in how language experience affects speech perception. Would infants learning two languages perceive new languages differently than infants who are learning only one? Some studies have argued that bilinguals’ linguistic perceptual systems are less committed than monolinguals given the greater variability in language input, thus remaining more flexible or 'open' for a longer period of time.

My PhD examines whether bilinguals elicit greater neural plasticity than monolinguals during phonemic perception tasks. I use functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) to localize brain activity in infants and adults. fNIRS is a non-invasive neuroimaging technique that measures blood-oxygen concentration levels on the cortex using two wavelengths of light. Future work may involve finding new methods to 'reopen' perceptual systems that have once been closed and bilingual advantages, if any, in novel word learning.

Psychology Department Postgraduate Conference
Participation in conference

Birkbeck/UCL NIRS Training Course
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

ICIS 2016
Participation in conference

Babylab representative
Festival/Exhibition

Sleep and Cognition/Language Meeting
Participation in conference

EMLAR XII
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

FST Christmas Conference
Participation in conference

The ASHA Convention
Participation in conference

LuCiD Mini Conference 2015
Participation in conference