Neuropsychology and biological psychology

Researchers in La Trobe's Department of Psychology and Counselling are world leaders in innovative neuropsychology and biological psychology research with real-world impact. We:

  • investigate the cognitive, emotional and behavioural sequelae of a wide range of clinical conditions including alcohol and substance use disorders, stroke, traumatic brain injury, learning difficulties, anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, and cancer
  • conduct clinical trials evaluating neuropsychological interventions for people affected by acquired brain injury, in collaboration with multidisciplinary neurorehabilitation researchers and clinicians across Australia
  • make ground-breaking discoveries about the biological mechanisms underpinning neurological and psychiatric disorders

Our clinical neuropsychology researchers are all scientist-practitioners who focus on clinically relevant research questions, including methods for enhancing evidence-based practice and clinician competencies.

Neuropsychology and biological psychology research topics currently available for research students include:

Research topicResearchers
Cognition in preclinical Alzheimer's disease; Subjective memory decline in older adults as a risk factor for future dementia; Neuropsychological interventions for older adults; Neuropsychological interventions for people with cancer-related cognitive impairment; Better understanding of cancer-related cognitive impairment; Consumer and clinician experiences of neuropsychological interventions Kerryn Pike
Neuropsychological rehabilitation after acquired brain injury (e.g., stroke, traumatic brain injury)

Competencies in neuropsychology practice; clinical implementation of evidence-based neuropsychological assessment techniques and interventions
Stroke rehabilitation; young stroke
Cognitive rehabilitation
Psychological therapies adapted for people with cognitive impairment

Dana Wong (eNACT research group
Role of neurotransmitters in anxiety and depression Matthew Hale 
Psychoneuroimmunology; Behavioural and physiological consequences of calorie restriction and of breast cancer Stephen Kent
Atypical hemispheric lateralisation and interhemispheric communication in clinical disorders and sub clinical syndromes (ASD, AQ traits, depression, schizotypy, dyslexia) Annukka Lindell 
Pattern of cognitive decline-comparison between two different neurodegenerative disorders: Parkinson's disease and Fragile X Associated Tremor/Ataxia Syndrome (FXTAS); Relationships between motor dysfunctions and specific cognitive impairments in Parkinson's Disease; Identification of specific cognitive/behavioural changes in the carriers of small CGG repeat expansions in the FMR1 gene within the 'grey zone' range affected with parkinsonism which distinguish them from the idiopathic Parkinson's disease; Are subtle motor dysfunctions and/or cognitive deficits related to the regional brain white matter microstructure assessed by diffusion-weighted imaging in the non-FXTAS carriers of premutation in the FMR1 gene? Danuta Loesch-Mdzewska 
Learning disorders in children, adolescents and young adults Alexia Pavlis 
Relationships between employment, cognition, social support, exercise and stress levels on physiological and health outcomes Brad Wright

Research group pages

eNACT research group

The eNACT Clinic brings together researchers and clinicians who work with people with acquired brain injury (ABI).