Clayton Burles

Killam Predoctoral Scholarship Recipient

University of Calgary

How does the human brain perform navigational behaviours in the real world?

Clayton works in the field of cognitive neuroscience, researching human spatial orientation and navigation.  He uses both behavioural research as well as neuroimaging to conduct his studies.  One area of the brain in particular – the retrosplenial complex (located behind the large bundle of fibres connecting the brain’s two hemispheres) is commonly implicated in spatial-orientation tasks and Clayton is working to prove that this region in fact has smaller, more specialized sub regions. 

Once scientists such as Clayton are able to understand how the healthy human brain produces navigational behavior in the real world they will be able to assist individuals with spatial impairments such as those caused by Alzheimers or stroke to better orient themselves

“Volunteering in Dr. Iaira’s lab at UCalgary (neurolab.ca) was a very positive experience.  The dynamic environment in the lab fostered a genuine passion for research and solidified my intent to study at UCalgary.”

Being a Killam Laureate at UCalgary allows Clayton to fully focus on his studies and projects, thereby increasing his research capacity.  This type of focus benefits everyone as Clayton in eager to share the results of his work with other researchers across Canada and abroad.


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