In the BrAIn Lab, we study how people perform actions alone and together with other people. Current projects focus primarily on joint actions, in which two or more people coordinate their actions to achieve a shared goal, such as a musical duet, a conversation, or moving a couch from point A to point B. The links below provide more information about the types of questions we’re currently investigating.
People are remarkably adept at timing their actions with respect to other people’s actions. There is perhaps no more compelling example of this than ensemble music performance. Our research has employed experimental analogs of ensemble music performance to examine how people predict when others will act and adapt the timing of their own actions accordingly. We are currently extending this work to the precisely timed transitions between speakers that typically occur in conversation. In collaboration with Jorden Cummings at the University of Saskatchewan, we will soon be investigating how interpersonal synchrony might benefit therapist-client relationships and treatment outcomes in psychotherapy.
Loehr, J.D., Large, E. W., & Palmer, C. (2011). Temporal coordination and adaptation to rate change in music performance. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 37, 1292-1309.
Loehr, J.D., & Palmer, C. (2011). Temporal coordination between performing musicians. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 64, 2153-2167.