Skip to Content

College of Arts and Sciences

  • woman with dark hair and suit presenting a powerpoint


The Institute for Mind and Brain holds regular forums to highlight current topics in cognitive neuroscience. The one-day conferences feature noted presenters, invited contributions by local researchers and a poster session.

These stimulating, one-day conferences are an opportunity to explore the many unique facets of the mind and brain. Students, faculty and other researchers in the field are invited to participate in an enriching day of scientific discourse, talks, posters and networking with researchers.

Upcoming conference

2024 Conference –  Reading and the Brain 

This upcoming conference will be held on February 16, 2024. This conference will examine neurobiological foundations of reading across a variety of school contexts, as well as bilingual and cross-linguistic perspectives on child literacy.  

Registration for the conference is free (RSVP link). Poster submission is also open. You can submit posters online (Poster Submission). Poster topics are not limited to reading, and any topic within cognitive science is welcome.  

Featured Speakers 2024
  • Jason Chow, Ph.D. | Vanderbilt University
  • Ioulia Kovelman, Ph.D. |  University of Michigan
  • Nicole Landi, Ph.D. | University of Connecticut
  • Jin Wang, Ph.D. | Harvard University
  • Suzanne Adlof, Ph.D. | University of South Carolina
  • Lisa Fitton, Ph.D. | University of South Carolina

Conference Archive

2023 Conference – Social & Emotional Brain 

The March 17, 2023 conference examined fundamental questions of the social and emotional brain — How are emotions represented within the brain?  How do we make social decisions? How does affect influence our decisions? Do brains synchronize during social interactions? How are social cognition and social networks affected by neurodevelopment or an acute condition? How do we quantify and qualify social brain markers?  

Featured Speakers 2023
  • Sara Jane Webb, Ph.D. | University of Washington & Seattle Children's Research Institute
  • Kevin LaBar, Ph.D. | Duke University 
  • Scott Huettel, Ph.D. | Duke University 
  • Lisa Johnson, Ph.D. | University of South Carolina
  • Caitlin Hudac, Ph.D. | University of South Carolina
  • Doug Wedell, Ph.D. | University of South Carolina

2019 Conference – Executive Function in Mind & Brain

For the March 1, 2019 conference, students and faculty convened to examine fundamental questions of executive function — What are the brain bases of executive control? Can executive function be improved with training or by other means? How does language impact executive function and conversely how does executive function impact language? What are the risk factors for decline in executive control?

Featured Speakers 2019
  • Sharon L. Thompson-Schill, Ph.D. | University of Pennsylvania
  • Mark D'Esposito, MD | University of California, Berkeley
  • Ellen Bialystok, OC, PhD, FRSC | York University
  • Rutvik H. Desai | University of South Carolina 
  • Robert Davis Moore, MS, Ph.D. | University of South Carolina

2016 Conference – Neuroscience of Attention

The conference, held October 14, 2016, examined topics related to visual-spatial attention, the development of attention, executive attention and the neuropsychology of attention.

Featured Speakers and Presenters 2016
  • Doug Munoz | Queen’s University
  • Troy Herter | University of South Carolina Department of Exercise Science
  • Scott Johnson | University of California
  • John Richards | University of South Carolina Department of Psychology
  • John McDonald | Simon Fraser University
  • Jessica Green | University of South Carolina Department of Psychology
  • Matthew Pontifex | Michigan State University
  • Robert Davis Moore | University of South Carolina Department of Exercise Science

2015 Conference – Neural Plasticity and Learning

On October 23, 2015, the Mind and Brain Institute held its' inaugural conference on Neural Plasticity and Learning. Presentations addressed topics ranging from the basic science of neural plasticity to plasticity within specific cognitive domains (language, memory and motor learning), application of neuromodulatory tools to enhance plasticity, and the role of neural plasticity in cognitive rehabilitation.

Featured Speakers 2015
  • Paul Reber | Northwestern University (USA)
  • Michal Ben-Shachar | Bar-Ilan University, (Israel)
  • Marcus Meinzer | University of Queensland (Australia)
  • Gottfried Schlaug | Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School (USA)

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.