Auditory Cognition

Institute of Psychology I

Group Members

Jonas Obleser (Group leader)
Franziska Scharata (Audiologist)
Michael Plöchl (Postdoc)
Sarah Tune (Postdoc)
Malte Wöstmann (Postdoc)
Mohsen Alavash (Postdoc)
Sophie Herbst (Postdoc)
Jens Kreitewolf (Postdoc)
Lorenz Fiedler (PhD student)
Leonhard Waschke (PhD student)

Research Interests

With our research, we hope to foster a unique cognitive neuroscience perspective on challenging listening situations, age-related hearing loss, and the possibilities of successful adaptation to it. Audition poses particular challenges to neuroscience: First, the “bottom-up” processes of acoustically decoding and neurally encoding the auditory signal along the central auditory pathways are not well understood. Second, humans cope surprisingly well with various sorts of occlusions, deletions, and degradations in their auditory input—in phone lines and at noisy parties, in chronic hearing damage, or, most drastically, when living with an artifical inner ear. “Top-down” or executive functions like attention clearly support these successful coping processes; their neural interfacing with auditory processes is unclear, however, and of particular relevance to our work. Our research questions thus touch on hearing, psychology, and neuroscience alike. We pursue them using listening and learning experiments and various methods of brain imaging.


  • Peter Lakatos, Nathan Kline Institute / NYU Lagone Medical Center, New York, USA
  • Nathan Weisz, University of Trento, Italy
  • Thomas Lunner, Eriksholm Research Centre, DK & University of Linköping, Sweden

Latest Publications

  1. Fiedler, L., Wöstmann, M., Graversen, C., Brandmeyer, A., Lunner, T., & Obleser, J. (2017) Single-channel in-Ear-EEG detects the focus of auditory attention to concurrent tone streams and mixed speech. Journal of Neural Engineering. In press.
  2. Wöstmann, M., Lim, S.J., & Obleser, J. (2017). The human neural alpha response to speech is a proxy of attentional control. Cerebral Cortex. In press.
  3. Alavash, M.,  Daube, C., Wöstmann, M., Brandmeyer, A., & Obleser, J. (2017). Large-scale network dynamics of beta-band oscillations underlie auditory perceptual decision-making. Network Neuroscience. In press.
  4. Wöstmann, M. , Herrmann, B., Maess, B., Obleser, J. (2016). Spatiotemporal dynamics of auditory attention synchronize with speech. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (P N A S). 113(14):3873–3878.
  5. Henry, M.J., Herrmann, B., Obleser, J., (2016). Neural microstates govern perception of auditory input without rhythmic structure. The Journal of Neuroscience. 36(3):860-71.

More publications on Pubmed