My research focuses on how reward and reward prediction errors (i.e., mismatches between reward outcome and reward expectation) influence declarative memory (e.g., learning a foreign language). Using a Dutch-Swahili word learning paradigm, we found that word pair recognition increases linearly with larger and more positive RPEs (De Loof et al., 2018). We also found neural oscillatory signatures that confirm the experience of signed RPEs (SRPEs) boosting declarative memory. My goal is to further investigate the robustness and generality of these findings. To study how RPEs influence declarative memory, I use both behavioral and EEG studies. Recently, I also became interested in neurostimulation techniques, such as tACS. My PhD is funded by the Flanders Fund for Scientific Research (FWO).
Outside of the lab, I enjoy hanging out with my dog Fellow, playing the guitar, karaoke, gaming and travelling. Contact me at kate.ergo (at) ugent.be