Associate Professor Tom Carlson

A/Prof.

A19 - Griffith Taylor Building
The University of Sydney


Curriculum vitae Curriculum vitae

Biographical details

Current & Previous Appointments

2016-present ARC Future Fellow/Associate Professor, University of Sydney

2013-2016 ARC Future Fellow/Senior Lecturer, Macquarie University

2008-20013 Assistant Professor, University of Maryland, USA

2004-2008 Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard University/University of Utrecht

Research interests

My research focuses on uncovering the brain mechanisms that support human perception -- how do we see?.

We are a computational and theoretical neuroscience research group in the School of Psychology at the University of Sydney. Our research uses neural decoding methods to study how the brain represents information; and how the structure of information in brain representations relates to, and can be use to be predict behaviour. We use functional magnet resonance imaging (fMRI) to study how information is represented in different brain areas; and magnetoencephalography (MEG) to study how the brain dynamically processes information in time with millisecond precision.

Teaching and supervision

The lab currently has several openings for Honours and PhD projects. Example projects include:

Hyperalignment of human brains.All brains are different. The functional and anatomical differences between individual brains make it challenging to investigate commonalities. Recently, a hyperalignment method was introduced to functionally align brains based on fMRI recordings. The aim of the project will be to design an analog for EEG/MEG. This project’s outcomes will provide a method for neuroscientists to investigate the common representations across individual brains.

Predicting human perception from monkey brains. This project aims to develop models that can be used to predict behavior from brain activity. We will make use of a large dataset of neural recordings from primate brains to predict visual illusions in human participants. This project will involve designing and running a behavioral experiment, then modeling the neural data to predict the behavioral data.

* Please note that this is a computational lab and the research involves computer programming. Students are expected to have programming expereince or a strong motivation to learn. Contact A/Prof Carlson for an appointment if you would like more information.

Current projects

Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Project (2016-2019) "Predicting Behaviour from Brain Representations." Carlson, T.

Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowship (2013-2017) "Decoding the neural representation of the objects."

In the media

The mountain illusion: What's wrong with this picture? BBC Future. 22 May 2015. (Carlson, T., & Wardle, S.)

International links

United Kingdom

(United Kingdom Medical Research Council) Collaboration studying the neural mechanisms of object perception with Dr. Niko Kriegeskorte (Programme leader of the Memory and perception group).

United Kingdom

(University College London) Collaboration studying the neural mechanisms of motion perception with Dr. Sam Solomon.

United States

(National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)) Collaboration studying neural mechanisms of object and face perception with Dr. David McMahon and Dr. David Leopold (Section Chief of the Cognitive Neurophysiology and Imaging in the Laboratory of Neuropsychology).

Selected grants

2016

  • Predicting Behaviour from Brain Representations; Carlson T; School of Psychology/Research Support.
  • Predicting Behaviour from Brain Representations; Carlson T; Australian Research Council (ARC)/Discovery Projects (DP).

2013

  • Decoding the neural representation of objects in the human brain; Carlson T; Australian Research Council (ARC)/Future Fellowships (FT).

Selected publications

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Journals

  • Ritchie, J., Tovar, D., Carlson, T. (2015). Emerging Object Representations in the Visual System Predict Reaction Times for Categorization. PLoS Computational Biology, 11(6), 1-18. [More Information]
  • Carlson, T. (2014). Orientation Decoding in Human Visual Cortex: New Insights from an Unbiased Perspective. The Journal of Neuroscience, 34(24), 8373-8383. [More Information]
  • Carlson, T., Ritchie, J., Kriegeskorte, N., Durvasula, S., Ma, J. (2014). Reaction time for object categorization is predicted by representational distance. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 26(1), 132-142. [More Information]
  • Plow, E., Cattaneo, Z., Carlson, T., Alvarez, G., Pascual-Leone, A., Battelli, L. (2014). The compensatory dynamic of inter-hemispheric interactions in visuospatial attention revealed using rTMS and fMRI. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 8(1 APR, 17 April 2014), 1-12. [More Information]
  • Carlson, T., Simmons, R., Kriegeskorte, N., Slevc, L. (2014). The emergence of semantic meaning in the ventral temporal pathway. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 26(1), 120-131. [More Information]
  • Redcay, E., Carlson, T. (2013). Rapid neural discrimination of communicative gestures. Knowledge Management Research, 10(4), 545-551. [More Information]
  • Carlson, T., Tovar, D., Alink, A., Kriegeskorte, N. (2013). Representational dynamics of object vision: The first 1000 ms. Journal of Vision, 13(10). [More Information]
  • Ritchie, J., Carlson, T. (2013). Tool Integration and Dynamic Touch. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 24(6), 1066-1068. [More Information]
  • Dakin, S., Greenwood, J., Carlson, T., Bex, P. (2011). Crowding is tuned for perceived (not physical) location. Journal of Vision, 11(9), 1-13. [More Information]
  • Hogendoorn, H., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F. (2011). Mapping the route to visual awareness. Journal of Vision, 11(13), 1-10. [More Information]
  • Naber, M., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F., Einhauser, W. (2011). Perceptual benefits of objecthood. Journal of Vision, 11(4), 1-9. [More Information]
  • Naber, M., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F., Einhauser, W. (2011). Perceptual benefits of objecthood. Journal of Vision, 11(4), 8.
  • Carlson, T., Hogendoorn, H., Fonteijn, H., Verstraten, F. (2011). Spatial coding and invariance in object-selective cortex. Cortex, 47(1), 14-22. [More Information]
  • Carlson, T., Alvarez, G., Wu, D., Verstraten, F. (2010). Rapid Assimilation of External Objects Into the Body Schema. Psychological Science, 21(7), 1000-1005. [More Information]
  • Hogendoorn, H., Carlson, T., VanRullen, R., Verstraten, F. (2010). Timing divided attention. Attention, Perception and Psychophysics, 72(8), 2059-2068. [More Information]
  • Hogendoorn, H., Kammers, M., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F. (2009). Being in the dark about your hand: Resolution of visual-proprioceptive conflict by disowning visible limbs. Neuropsychologia, 43(13), 2698-2703. [More Information]
  • Kanai, R., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F., Walsh, V. (2009). Perceived timing of new objects and feature changes. Journal of Vision, 9(7), 1-13. [More Information]
  • Hogendoorn, H., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F. (2008). Interpolation and extrapolation on the path of apparent motion. Vision Research, 48(7), 872-881. [More Information]
  • Carlson, T., Rauschenberger, R., Verstraten, F. (2007). No Representation without Awareness in the Lateral Occipital Cortex. Psychological Science, 18(4), 298-302. [More Information]
  • Hogendoorn, H., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F. (2007). The time course of attentive tracking. Journal of Vision, 7(14), 1-10. [More Information]
  • Carlson, T., Hogendoorn, H., Verstraten, F. (2006). The speed of visual attention: What time is it? Journal of Vision, 6(12), 1406-1411. [More Information]

2015

  • Ritchie, J., Tovar, D., Carlson, T. (2015). Emerging Object Representations in the Visual System Predict Reaction Times for Categorization. PLoS Computational Biology, 11(6), 1-18. [More Information]

2014

  • Carlson, T. (2014). Orientation Decoding in Human Visual Cortex: New Insights from an Unbiased Perspective. The Journal of Neuroscience, 34(24), 8373-8383. [More Information]
  • Carlson, T., Ritchie, J., Kriegeskorte, N., Durvasula, S., Ma, J. (2014). Reaction time for object categorization is predicted by representational distance. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 26(1), 132-142. [More Information]
  • Plow, E., Cattaneo, Z., Carlson, T., Alvarez, G., Pascual-Leone, A., Battelli, L. (2014). The compensatory dynamic of inter-hemispheric interactions in visuospatial attention revealed using rTMS and fMRI. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 8(1 APR, 17 April 2014), 1-12. [More Information]
  • Carlson, T., Simmons, R., Kriegeskorte, N., Slevc, L. (2014). The emergence of semantic meaning in the ventral temporal pathway. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 26(1), 120-131. [More Information]

2013

  • Redcay, E., Carlson, T. (2013). Rapid neural discrimination of communicative gestures. Knowledge Management Research, 10(4), 545-551. [More Information]
  • Carlson, T., Tovar, D., Alink, A., Kriegeskorte, N. (2013). Representational dynamics of object vision: The first 1000 ms. Journal of Vision, 13(10). [More Information]
  • Ritchie, J., Carlson, T. (2013). Tool Integration and Dynamic Touch. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 24(6), 1066-1068. [More Information]

2011

  • Dakin, S., Greenwood, J., Carlson, T., Bex, P. (2011). Crowding is tuned for perceived (not physical) location. Journal of Vision, 11(9), 1-13. [More Information]
  • Hogendoorn, H., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F. (2011). Mapping the route to visual awareness. Journal of Vision, 11(13), 1-10. [More Information]
  • Naber, M., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F., Einhauser, W. (2011). Perceptual benefits of objecthood. Journal of Vision, 11(4), 1-9. [More Information]
  • Naber, M., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F., Einhauser, W. (2011). Perceptual benefits of objecthood. Journal of Vision, 11(4), 8.
  • Carlson, T., Hogendoorn, H., Fonteijn, H., Verstraten, F. (2011). Spatial coding and invariance in object-selective cortex. Cortex, 47(1), 14-22. [More Information]

2010

  • Carlson, T., Alvarez, G., Wu, D., Verstraten, F. (2010). Rapid Assimilation of External Objects Into the Body Schema. Psychological Science, 21(7), 1000-1005. [More Information]
  • Hogendoorn, H., Carlson, T., VanRullen, R., Verstraten, F. (2010). Timing divided attention. Attention, Perception and Psychophysics, 72(8), 2059-2068. [More Information]

2009

  • Hogendoorn, H., Kammers, M., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F. (2009). Being in the dark about your hand: Resolution of visual-proprioceptive conflict by disowning visible limbs. Neuropsychologia, 43(13), 2698-2703. [More Information]
  • Kanai, R., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F., Walsh, V. (2009). Perceived timing of new objects and feature changes. Journal of Vision, 9(7), 1-13. [More Information]

2008

  • Hogendoorn, H., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F. (2008). Interpolation and extrapolation on the path of apparent motion. Vision Research, 48(7), 872-881. [More Information]

2007

  • Carlson, T., Rauschenberger, R., Verstraten, F. (2007). No Representation without Awareness in the Lateral Occipital Cortex. Psychological Science, 18(4), 298-302. [More Information]
  • Hogendoorn, H., Carlson, T., Verstraten, F. (2007). The time course of attentive tracking. Journal of Vision, 7(14), 1-10. [More Information]

2006

  • Carlson, T., Hogendoorn, H., Verstraten, F. (2006). The speed of visual attention: What time is it? Journal of Vision, 6(12), 1406-1411. [More Information]

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