UAEU Opens Neuroscience of Language Laboratory
The Department of Linguistics at The United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) today held an opening ceremony of their new state of the art Neuroscience of Language Laboratory in Al Ain.
This new laboratory’s mission is to deepen understanding of how the human brain acquires and processes language. The laboratory houses a combination of behavioral and neuroscientific research equipment, included an electro-encephalography system which records electrical activity of the brain and allows researchers to track brain processes as they occur over time.
In announcing the laboratory opening at the ceremony in the university’s new Research Building on the UAEU campus in Al Ain, Dr Steve Bird, Chair of Linguistics at UAEU and Co-Director of the research laboratory, explained: “UAEU now has the team and the facilities to conduct world class research into the neuroscience of human language.”
The UAEU’s laboratory opening coincides this week with the opening of a partner laboratory on the New York University Abu Dhabi Campus. The two laboratories have reached a collaboration agreement that will allow the sharing of facilities and researchers. UAEU lead researcher Dr Sami Boudelaa has been appointed a Co-Director of the NYU laboratory, and he will oversee cooperation and research in both facilities, and his UAEU colleague Dr Ali Idrissi has already established several collaborative projects with members of the NYU team.
Professor Sehamuddin Galadari, Vice Provost for Research and Graduate Studies, said: "I welcome the collaboration between UAEU and NYU Abu Dhabi as this enables better research in the UAE and Abu Dhabi, and it contributes to an enhancement in the learning environment for students at UAEU and NYU Abu Dhabi."
Professor Mohamed Al Baili, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences commented: "This is an outstanding historical event for the University that we have long awaited. This laboratory will have a great impact on research and student development in the university."
The development of these two research laboratories began three years ago. Dr Bird explained that “setting up laboratories of this calibre requires the involvement of many different people: scientists, engineers, and senior administration who believe that this research will be of great importance to the UAE and the wider world. It involves a strong and persistent funding commitment, and we have been very fortunate to have that commitment at UAEU.”
The laboratory is not only being used for research but also for teaching. Dr Bird emphasized that “students in our university will now benefit enormously from having hands-on laboratory experience to equip them with the skills needed to carry on research in the field. There is no better way for our students to learn that through participation in this laboratory’s day-to-day operations.”
Notes to Editors:
United Arab Emirates University (UAEU)
- 21st Century research-based university, providing research solutions to support the UAE and, through its global partners, the wider world
- Founded in 1976 by HH Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan; the UAE’s first national university
- Chancellor: His Highness Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research
- Ranked # 338 in the 2011/2012 Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings
- Nine faculties:
- Business & Economics
- Food & Agriculture
- Humanities & Social Sciences
- Information Technology
- Medicine & Health Science
- 12,279 students enrolled in 2010/11
- First PhD program in UAE national institution commenced in 2009
- Strong focus on providing specific research solutions and benefits to society − the new model of a 21st Century university, furthering research as part of the global network of discovery and innovation