Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is a very widely used technique in modern investigation of the human brain. Many tools are available for fMRI analysis, but proper understanding and use of these tools is essential for current experimenters. In this practical course, the aim will be to gain understanding of these tools, as well as experience using them. What is measured in fMRI scanners? How is this related to changes in neural activity? Which questions can we answer by different types of fMRI experimental design and analysis techniques? How are these experiments and analyses conducted?
Data analysis on example data sets will be conducted using the Matlab programming environment. No experience of programming is required. Matlab is the most used data analyses environment in the cognitive neuroscience community. A secondary aim of the practical course is to gain experience with the Matlab environment and applying this to practical problems. As such, this course relies on computer programming as its primary lab method.
Students will learn how to extract useful measurements from the fMRI response. They will then model the time course of that response with general linear modeling, the basis of most fMRI analysis. The responses of different brain areas will then be visualized on the neural anatomy, and these differences will be used to determine the positions of different brain areas. Finally, students will examine computational neuroimaging, advanced techniques that aim to model the nature of the neuronal population in each fMRI recording site.
Due to the short duration and intensive nature of the lab course, 100% attendance is required.