daniel navarro

Karen Verstraelen

Visitor Research Intern

Main research area: Vision



Karen is a Belgian girl on her way to exploring the world, starting with the human brain. She grew up in Antwerp and did a BSc in Psychology at KU Leuven. During the last year of this Bachelor’s, she spent a semester at University of Birmingham as an exchange student. She graduated from the BSc in 2016 and then continued for a two-year MSc in Theoretical Psychology and Research at KU Leuven. During her studies, Karen became very interested in visual processing. After studying this from a psychological and biological perspective, she’s now joined our lab for a computational approach. She will be in the lab for six months as an intern, as part of her MSc programme.

In her free time, Karen likes dancing, travelling, photography, baking, listening to music, and generally enjoying the beautiful things in life!

research summary

Earlier studies have been done in our lab on the localisation of objects based on a hand-centred frame of reference. While these studies were done using a rate-coded network, Karen will be the first to study hand-centred representations in a spiking neural network.

Karen is also finishing her Master’s Thesis at the Laboratory of Biological Psychology at KU Leuven. This thesis is about higher order processing of the mouse visual system. She’s testing to what degree mice can discriminate between two visual stimuli, based on second order cues such as an expanding vs. retracting figure, or figures with a different texture.

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