The computational modeling core is designed to support the development of biologically plausible computational models across the range of projects proposed in the center. Various existing models have been developed for the experimental tasks employed across all of the proposed projects. This includes models of cognitive control (Project 1), learning (Project 2), emotion (Project 3), dompainergic infulences on executive funciton (Project 4) and child development (Project 5). Because these models are biologically inspired they consider both neurobiological and psychological constraints on processing. The development of computational models provides an important way of synthesizing experimental results in a mechanistic fashion, and generating predictions for further experimental studies. These models will be used in parallel with empirical investigations so that they can inform each other. Because of these characteristics, the computational core explicitly addresses a center goal of linking levels of analysis (computational, psychological, and neurobiological) in our understanding of executive function. The personnel associated with the computational core will provide both the faculty and post-doctoral expertise with regards to the creation, implementation and evaulation of comptuational models for all projects within the center. In addition, it will provide the computational infrastructure for those investigations as well as training materials and training opportunity for center members. Computational models of executive function can provide insights into psychiatric disorders in numerous ways. For example, models can be """"""""lesioned"""""""" or altered in ways that are impossible to do experimentally for either ethical or practical reasons. As such, they can provide insights into the mechanisms that support disordered thoughts or emotional processes. Furthermore, they may provide insights into mechanisms or interventions that might be effective in overcoming such disorders. This is especially true of the models proposed for this center, which are explicitly linked to the neuroanatomy and functioning of brain systems as well as the psychological processes that support executive function.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Specialized Center (P50)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZMH1-ERB-H)
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University of Colorado at Boulder
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