Conference Description

Overview

The conference consists of plenary sessions (oral presentations of symposia or papers) and poster sessions.  All paper sessions are opened by a thematic overview talk by individuals invited by the program committee.  The vast majority of papers are presented in poster sessions.

The program committee will entertain two types of submissions: (1) single presentations (as done in the past) that may be designated as submissions to be considered for a spoken paper, poster, or either format; or (2) submitted symposia (a new feature for the CAC).  Either type of submission should be made through the appropriate submission portal on the conference website. Unlike 2018, there is a single due date for both proposal types: November 1, 2019.

We will provide timely notification of acceptance of submissions, including a date and time for the presentation. Anticipated notification date for all proposals: December 15, 2019. All submitters will be notified regarding acceptance via email.

The program committee consists of relevant faculty of the School of Psychology at Georgia Tech.

The 2020 conference coordinator is Christopher Hertzog.

The graduate student coordinating logistics and organization of the 2020 meeting is MacKenzie Hughes.

All individuals attending the meeting are responsible for their own travel arrangements, hotel booking, and conference registration.

Please direct any and all inquiries about the Conference Aging Conference to cogagingconference@gmail.com

Pre-Conference Workshops

There will be two pre-conference workshops held the morning of April 16th, 2020. See the description of each workshop below.

Workshop #1, provided by Dr. Martin Sliwinski

Pervasive mobile technology, such as smartphones, are finding increasing use as data collection tools for researchers. This workshop provides instruction in the use of smartphones for administrating and collecting data from cognitive tests. The workshop will be divided into three sections. First, we will provide a brief overview of benefits and challenges of using mobile technology to assess cognition remotely and in natural (i.e., uncontrolled) environments. In the second part of the workshop, we will provide hands-on instruction in how to use software and testing procedures developed as part of the NIH-funded Mobile Monitoring of Cognitive Change (M2C2) project for delivering and collecting data from mobile devices. And finally, we will provide a more technical tutorial in how to design custom testing procedures via high-level scripting.
 

Workshop #2, provided by Dr. Kamen A. Tsvetanov

We are rapidly gaining knowledge about relationships between neural function and cognition, but we still do not understand the mechanisms and the factors by which they break down in aging. Understanding these mechanisms and factors is predicated on accurate identification of brain functional activity and connectivity within and between large-scale functional brain networks. Such substrates of brain function can be estimated from task-based and task-free functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) signal. However, blood-oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) based fMRI is a composite of neural and vascular signals, both of which are differentially affected by aging. It is therefore essential to use approaches to the analysis of fMRI data that distinguish the age effects on vascular health and neural function.  Modelling individual and group differences in vascular health in fMRI studies of aging may improve the interpretation of imaging findings and their behavioural relevance towards better understanding of neurocognitive aging.

As fMRI BOLD is the primary tool used for studying neurocognitive aging, familiarity with various methods for the separation of neural and vascular dynamics in fMRI BOLD signal is increasingly important, including those based on normalization and calibration techniques, as well as supervised and unsupervised approaches. In this workshop, we will provide an overview of the methodological aspect of each approach as well as their application to help characterising various aspects of the underlying neural signal with insights into understanding individual differences as well as healthy and unhealthy aging.

Objective: The workshop will introduce attendees to the topic of separating vascular from neural signals in fMRI BOLD data. Upon completion, attendees will gain an appreciation for the various approaches, and their differences, appropriate for modelling vascular and neural signals in fMRI BOLD data. Practical suggestions will be emphasized throughout a hands-on session, including freely available software (e.g. stand-alone or matlab-based SPM), recommendations of best practices, resources for more detailed information, and sample code. Participants are asked to bring laptops and actively engage with the materials, which will be made available on GitHub prior to the course.

Target audience: The workshop is mainly aimed at researchers working with task-based and task-free fMRI BOLD data to characterise behaviourally relevant estimates of brain functional activity and functional connectivity in the context of neurocognitive aging. In more general, the workshop is relevant to psychologists, neuroscientists and clinicians interested in understanding the potential, limitations, and practical implementations of using fMRI BOLD data to gain insights into understanding individual differences in neural function and the consequences of aging and neurodegeneration.

Registration for the pre-conference workshops is now open! Please note that workshop registration is not conference registration. See the Registration page for more information.