Affiliated Research Centers and Labs

Cognitive Science affiliated faculty members head or are a part of each of the following research centers and labs. Therefore they are suitable for students thinking about getting involved with research and/or pursuing the honors program.

Affective Cognitive Neuroscience Lab

Affiliated faculty: Sonia Bishop

Much of the lab’s recent work falls under the umbrella of ‘computational psychiatry’. Here they believe in taking a 3-step approach: (i) identifying clinical symptomatology or clinical presentation of interest, (ii) computationally characterizing associated cognitive processes and how these vary as a function of psychiatrically pertinent traits or dimensions of symptomatology, (iii) relating computational models of cognition to changes in BOLD activity obtained by asking participants to perform tasks tapping the cognitive processes in question while fMRI data is acquired. 

Banks Lab 

Affiliated faculty: Marty Banks

Research in this lab focuses on visual space perception and sensory combination.

Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research (BAIR)

Affiliated faculty: Anca Dragan, Dan Klein, David Bamman, Michael DeWeese, Alison Gopnik, Marti Hearst, Bruno Olhausen, Jitendra Malik

The Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research Lab brings together UC Berkeley researchers across the areas of computer vision, machine learning, natural language processing, planning, and robotics. BAIR includes over two dozen faculty and more than a hundred graduate students pursuing research on fundamental advances in the above areas as well as cross-cutting themes including multi-modal deep learning, human-compatible AI, and connecting AI with other scientific disciplines and the humanities.

Berkeley Early Learning Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Fei Xu

This lab is interested in how young learners understand probability, reason about preferences, make categorizations, and acquire language. For more information about specific study goals, please visit the Projects page.

Berkeley Institute for Data Science

Affiliated faculty: David Bamman (senior fellow)

BIDS supports faculty, staff, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate/undergraduate research across a variety of fields in the life, social, and physical sciences, the humanities, and in computer science, statistics, and applied mathematics. 

Berkeley Natural Language Processing Group

Affiliated Faculty: Dan Klein

Berkeley NLP is a group of EECS faculty and students working to understand and model natural language. They are a part of Berkeley AI Research (BAIR) inside of UC Berkeley Computer Science. They work on a broad range of topics including structured prediction, grounded language, computational linguistics, model robustness, and HCI.

Berkeley PhonLab

Affiliated Faculty: Susanne Gahl & Keith Johnson

The UC Berkeley PhonLab (Phonetics/Phonology Lab) focuses on documenting and explaining sound patterns in language. This includes physical studies of aerodynamic and articulatory factors in speech production, behavioral and neural imaging studies of speech perception, as well as linguistic studies of synchronic and diachronic language sound patterns.

Berkeley Social Interaction Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Dacher Keltner

Research focuses on the biological and evolutionary origins of emotion, in particular prosocial states such as compassion, awe, love, and beauty, and power, social class, and inequality. 

Building Blocks of Cognition Laboratory (Bunge Lab)

Affiliated Faculty: Silvia Bunge

This lab draws from the fields of cognitive neuroscience, developmental psychology, and education research.

Caldwell Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Roy Caldwell

This lab focuses on research related to evolution, animal behavior, behavioral ecology, communication, sensory ecology, and aggressive behavior.

Carmena Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Jose Carmena

This lab leverages neuroplasticity, machine learning, and neurotechnology to ask how the brain learns and controls movement, and to develop smart prosthetics and neurotherapies.

Center for Human-Compatible Artificial Intelligence 

Affiliated Faculty: Stuart Russel & Anca Dragan

Artificial intelligence research is concerned with the design of machines capable of intelligent behavior, i.e., behavior likely to be successful in achieving objectives. The long-term outcome of AI research seems likely to include machines that are more capable than humans across a wide range of objectives and environments. This raises a problem of control: given that the solutions developed by such systems are intrinsically unpredictable by humans, it may occur that some such solutions result in negative and perhaps irreversible outcomes for humans. CHAI’s goal is to ensure that this eventuality cannot arise, by refocusing AI away from the capability to achieve arbitrary objectives and towards the ability to generate provably beneficial behavior. Because the meaning of beneficial depends on properties of humans, this task inevitably includes elements from the social sciences in addition to AI.

Cognition and Action Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Richard Ivry

Research projects cover diverse areas of behavior and cognition, including visual, auditory, and time perception; language and speech; and motor coordination.

Experiments incorporate a combination of behavioral, perceptual and cognitive tasks with both healthy participants and patient populations. Neuroimaging techniques such as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and non-invasive brain stimulation such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) are also used. Several researchers are involved in collaborative work with neuroscientists and/or physicians located at other research and hospital facilities located in the United States and around the world.

Cognitive Development and Learning Lab (Gopnik Lab)

Affiliated Faculty: Alison Gopnik

In the Gopnik lab, they are particularly interested in how children learn causal relations - cases where one event causes another. They investigate exactly how children acquire very sophisticated understandings and representations of the causal world around them. 

Cognitive Neuroanatomy Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Kevin Weiner

The over-arching goal of our research works toward building mechanistic models explaining how brain structure and function contribute to measurable behaviors. They implement a multi-modal approach of anatomical measurements in living and post-mortem individuals across spatial scales to compare to functional measurements in humans (typically high-resolution functional magnetic resonance imaging).

Computation and Language Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Steve Piantadosi

Colala's research includes computational and experimental approaches to language acquisition, language processing, and understanding the core features of language. Our work draws on corpus methods, behavioral experiments with adults and children, computational and mathematical modeling, as well as state-of-the-art techniques in machine learning, information theory, statistics, computer science, and linguistics.

Computational Cognitive Neuroscience Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Anne Collins

Research focuses on learning and executive function. Research is guided by the belief that the brain's processes for learning and decision making are complex and multi-faceted, more like a symphony played by many musicians, each good at their own instrument, than a melody played by one or two instruments. 

D'Esposito Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Mark D'Esposito

Research in the D'Esposito Lab investigates the neural bases of high-level cognitive processes such as working memory with the aim to translate this knowledge into clinical therapies to treat cognitive deficits.

DeWeese Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Michael DeWeese

This group has diverse interests in nonequilibrium statistical mechanics, deep learning theory, and experimental + theoretical neuroscience.

Embodied Design Research Laboratory (EDRL)

Affiliated Faculty: Dor Abrahamson

EDRL is a design-based research lab studying mathematical cognition and instruction by creating and evaluating theory-driven educational innovation using both traditional and cutting-edge media

Experimental Cognition Laboratory 

Affiliated Faculty: William Thompson 

At the Experimental Cognition Laboratory, we conduct basic interdisciplinary research in computational cognitive science. We study the cognitive algorithms that allow people to make discoveries, learn from others, communicate knowledge creatively, and reason about each other’s minds. The goal of our research is to better incorporate the richness of human social interaction into computational theories of intelligence and emerging technologies.

Our approach integrates perspectives from psychology, computer science, linguistics, and cultural evolution, with a focus on the development of methods that combine advances in machine learning with large-scale behavioral data. We are committed to the development of knowledge that benefits society and contributes to the challenge of addressing collective action problems such as the climate crisis and ethical integration of artificial intelligence into society. If you are interested in joining or visiting the lab, please get in touch at

InterACT Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Anca Dragan

This group’s research agenda is to formalize and algorithmically solve the problem of robot action not in isolation, but for assistance of and in coordination with people – this is what they call robot action for people, and around people.

Jacobs Lab of Cognitive Biology

Affiliated Faculty: Lucia Jacobs

This work synthesizes concepts from ecology, animal behavior, cognitive science and neuroscience in order to understand the evolution of universal cognitive traits, such as spatial memory and navigation.

Jagust Lab

Affiliated Faculty: William Jagust

The Jagust Lab is engaged in the study of brain aging and dementia. They use the techniques of positron emission tomography (PET), structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), neuropsychology, and cognitive neuroscience to understand the anatomic, biochemical, and neurochemical bases of changes in behavior with age and dementia.

Kaufer Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Daniela Kaufer

The Kaufer Lab investigates molecular events that underlie brain plasticity and deterioration in the face of stress and neurological insults throughout life. While they are primarily a molecular neuroscience lab, they use interdisciplinary approaches ranging from cell culture to behavioral analysis, and frequently collaborate to expand our methods of analysis including high-resolution imaging, electrophysiology, and high-throughput methods. 

Kidd Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Celeste Kidd

The Kidd Lab studies curiosity, exploration, and learning throughout early development using a combination of behavioral and computational methods.

Knight Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Robert Knight

Research focuses on attention and memory; neuropsychology and physiology; cognitive neuroscience.

Kriegsfeld Neurobiology Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Lance Kriegsfeld

The broad goal of the research in this lab is to understand the genetic, cellular, and hormonal mechanisms responsible for the temporal control of motivated behaviors and their underlying physiology.

Language and Cognition Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Terry Regier

This lab investigates the relation of language and thought, in computational terms

Language and Cognitive Development Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Mahesh Srinivasan

Compared to other animals, humans are unique in their linguistic, cognitive, and social abilities. Broadly speaking, this lab explores how these abilities develop and interact in children, as a way of addressing the question of what makes humans special.

Moore Accuracy Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Don Moore

Research focuses include overconfidence—including when people think they are better than they actually are, when people think they are better than others, and when they are too sure they know the truth. Investigates forecasting, judgment, and decision making.

Neuroeconomics Laboratory

Affiliated Faculty: Ming Hsu

Economic decision-making involves choices ranging from weighty ones such as purchasing a home to routine ones such as grocery shopping. An understanding of the biological basis of consumer choice is important not only scientifically, but also clinically due to disruptions of decision-making processes in neuropsychiatric disorders. In this lab, they study these questions by combining ideas and tools from neuroscience, economics, psychology, and marketing. The goals of their research involves characterizing the underlying neural systems as well as molecular and genetic mechanisms.

Perceptual Reality Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Emily Cooper

This is a vision science research lab that examines the principles underlying visual perception, with applications to both basic and translational questions.

Redwood Center

Affiliated Faculty: Michael DeWeese & Bruno Olshausen

The Redwood Center for Theoretical Neuroscience is a research center home to faculty, postdocs, and students who are working on theories of computation in the brain. Modern neuroscience has at its disposal many new tools for measuring brain activity, but far fewer tools for understanding these measurements in a larger theory of brain function. Their aim is to supply useful algorithms, statistical analysis, and theoretical ideas to both analyze measurements and guide further experimentation.

Social and Moral Judgment Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Clayton Critcher

The SOMO lab conducts behavioral science experiments to understand how people make social and morally relevant judgments and decisions in a variety of everyday contexts.

Theunissen Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Frédéric Theunissen

The long term goal of the research in the laboratory is to understand the neural computations that underlie auditory perception with a focus on how the brain of animals and humans decipher behaviorally relevant sounds and, in particular, vocalizations used in communication.  They believe that the neural representation of sound, the major auditory perceptual dimensions (pitch, timbre, rhythm) and the statistics of natural sounds are intertwined and that understanding this 3-way relationship is critical for explaining audition.  Their research approach is multifaceted and interdisciplinary; they combine animal behavior, human psychophysics, sensory neurophysiology and theoretical and computational neuroscience.

UC Berkeley Center for the Science of Psychedelics (BCSP)

Affiliated Faculty: Dacher Keltner & David Presti

BCSP will leverage UC Berkeley’s strengths in basic neuroscience, psychology, and molecular biology to conduct studies to help elucidate the mechanistic bases of the actions of psychedelics and subjective psychedelic experiences, as well as their enduring effects.

Whitney Lab

Affiliated Faculty: David Whitney

Using both psychophysical and neuroimaging techniques, this lab studies visual, auditory, and visuomotor localization, with the goal of understanding the perceptual, cognitive, and neural mechanisms that allow humans to perceive and interact with objects in a dynamic world.

Wilbrecht Lab

Affiliated Faculty: Linda Wilbrecht

The frontal regions of the neocortex show protracted development in mammals. While dendritic spines are pruned in the frontal neocortex in adolescence there is also late growth of new local and long range connections. This lab is interested in understanding the function of these changes and their impact on learning and decision making.