Hi there! My name is Kerwin Olfers and I'm a PhD candidate at the Cognitive Psychology unit at Leiden University (The Netherlands), where I started in August 2012. My research project is funded by the NWO (Open MaGW Program grant) and is titled: "Do video games keep the brain young?".
My research focuses on the possibilities of video games for cognitive enhancement, that is, can playing certain games make you smarter, better or faster? In particular I'm interested in the effects of serious gaming on the brain, related to memory and cognitive control.To investigate this I use behavioral measures such as reaction times tasks, together with neurophysiological measures such as EEG or eye tracker data, finally I use modeling approaches to bring the different data together.
I graduated for my BSc in Psychology and my MSc in Cognitive Neuroscience at Leiden University. After my graduation I spent some time as a research assistant at the Serre Lab, Brown University. I had previously done my master research internship there, during which I used a computational model of the human visual system to identify human actions in videos. In my research assistant position I worked on developing a model for navigation in virtual environments, using the same model of the human vision system.
I believe it's important to invest time in activities outside of education or work to broaden the horizon, pick up new skills and meet new people. During my studies I was an active member of the study association Labyrint Leiden and served on several committees in positions such as Chairman and Chief Editor. Currently I'm board member of the Leiden PhD Association LEO, as Chief Editor of our biannual digital magazine "Thesis".