Antoni Rodriguez Fornells

Catalan Institution for Research and Advanced Studies (ICREA)
IMéRA Aix-Marseille
Psychology & Cognitive Sciences
10 months

Research Interests: Language learning, Music Curiosity and Information seeking, Intrinsic Reward and Motivation, Cognitive control and Error monitoring, Neuroimaging and Cognitive Neuroscience, slow oscillatory brain activity associated to learning and prediction

Research Project

Language information-seeking in infants: behavioral and neural evidence

The present project addresses an important question: what sustains the inherent drive observed in infants to learn a language. Albeit the importance of this question, there is currently a lack of research regarding this issue. The present project aims to tackle this issue investigating the role of intrinsic reward mechanisms and self-monitoring in understanding the complex process of learning a new language in infants. With that purpose in mind and using behavioral and neuroimaging methods, we will try to create two new research lines that will answer the following questions: (i) to which extent infants show a preference to explore potential sources of word-learning information and (ii) the potential involvement of self-monitoring skills for correctly navigate and choose the most positive learning experiences (information sources) during infant language acquisition. In both research lines we aim to provide new evidence on the cognitive and neural mechanisms that sustain the strong intrinsic motivation observed in infants for learning a new language


Antoni Rodríguez Fornells is ICREA Research Professor at Institut d'Investigació Biomèdica de Bellvitge (IDIBELL) and at Universitat de Barcelona (UB). Social & Behavioural Sciences.

Antoni Rodríguez Fornells got his PhD at the University of Barcelona (UB, 1996) and afterwards, he worked at the University of Magdeburg (Germany, 1999-2002) as a post-doctoral researcher. His main topics of research are language learning, executive functions and the brain correlates of error and reward monitoring. In 2002, he got a "Ramón y Cajal" research position and afterwards he joined ICREA as a Research Professor. Since then, Antoni Rodríguez Fornells has created a interdisciplinar research group (Cognition and Brain Plasticity Unit, CDBU), at ICREA-IDIBELL-UB devoted to the study of learning process and brain plasticity effects in healthy and brain damaged patients. The group is located at the Hospital of Bellvitge – IDIBELL biomedical institute. This research is inherently interdisciplinary and requires expertise in interfacing research fields as brain plasticity, brain development and learning and memory mechanisms.