John Gaspar

Research scientist & brain enthusiast


Location

Davis, CA

Phone

530.219.6780

Citizenship

Canadian

Intro

What I am all about.

For the past decade, I have had the privilege to work in some incredible neuroscience laboratories, publishing impactful research primarily in the field of vision science and attention. Much of this work has focused on understanding how our brain manages to ignore all the distracting information in our environment so that we might focus on the task at hand, be it finding that lost set of keys or a friend in a crowded room. This line of research has been published in top-tier journals, earned me several academic distinctions, and been highlighted in prominent popular science magazines. During my tenure as a researcher, I have also had first hand experience collaborating with university administrators, granting agencies, research ethics boards, and of course, other researchers. I have a broad knowledge of different scientific disciplines and an understanding of how large-scale research projects can effectively be proposed, managed, and attain funding. In addition to conducting research, teaching remains my other passion; I have always found it exceedingly rewarding to communicate my love of neuroscience with my students, colleagues, and the public. If there's anything else you'd like to know, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Expertise

Stuff I'm good at.
01

Research Science

I'm proficient in a variety of research methodologies, including electroencephalography (EEG), event-related potentials (ERPs), eye-tracking, and psychophysical performance testing in both typical and clinical populations. I'm also very familiar with writing grant proposals and getting experimental protocols passed by research ethics boards.

02

Statistical Analyses

I have a strong background in both frequentist and Bayes factor statistical testing. I'm great at modeling regression analyses, correlational analyses, ANOVAs, ANCOVAs, and t-tests. I'm proficient using a number of software packages, including MATLAB, R, SPSS, JASP, Gretl, Excel, and Prism. Recently, I've begun learning to use Python to perform data analysis (NumPy, Matplotlib, Seaborn, Pandas).

03

Public speaking and research dissemination

Over the years, I've given 10 invited talks and guest lectures at universities and colleges throughout North America. I've personally presented my research 14 times and have had my research presented by collaborators an additional 8 times at national and international conferences.

04

Teaching and public education

I've been a teaching assistant 20 times since 2009 for a variety of college and university courses. I've given numerous lectures and mentored undergraduate and graduate students. During graduate school, I was also a member of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Synapse Mentorship Program, tasked with judging regional science fairs.

Highlighted Interviews and Media Relations

People I've talked to about my research.

Professional Appointments

What I've been up to.
2016 – Present

Center for the Mind & Brain

Postdoctoral Scholar

Supervisor: Steve Luck

Davis, CA, USA

2009 – 2016

Simon Fraser University

Teaching Assistant

Burnaby, BC, Canada

Behavioural Endocrinology (PSYC 381)
Spring 2016 semester, Instructor: Dr. Bryan Jones
Introduction to Cognitive Psychology (PSYC 221)
Fall 2015, Fall 2014, and Fall 2010 semester, Instructor: Dr. Richard Wright
Cognitive Neuroscience (PSYC 382)
Summer 2015, Fall 2013, and Fall 2011 semester, Instructor: Dr. John McDonald
Introduction to Cognitive Psychology (PSYC 221)
Spring 2015, Spring 2012, and Spring 2011 semester, Instructor: Dr. Tom Spalek
Introduction to Research Methods (PSYC 201W)
Summer 2014 semester, Instructor: Dr. George Alder
Attention (PSYC 330)
Spring 2014 semester, Instructor: Dr. Richard Wright
Memory and Mind (PSYC 325)
Spring 2013 and Fall 2011 semester, Instructor: Dr. Mario Liotti
Introduction to Biological Psychology (PSYC 280)
Summer 2012 semester, Instructor: Dr. Neil Watson
Introduction to Biological Psychology (PSYC 280)
Summer 2011 semester, Instructor: Dr. Ralph Mistlberger
Introduction to Cognitive Psychology (PSYC 221)
Fall 2010 semester, Instructor: Dr. Richard Wright
Introduction to Biological Psychology (PSYC 280)
Spring 2010 semester, Instructor: Dr. Tony Herdman
Brain, Mind, and Society (PSYC 109W)
Fall 2009 semester, Instructor: Dr. Gordon Rose

Education

Places I've learned.
2012 – 2016

Simon Fraser University

Doctor of Philosophy in Experimental Psychology, Cognitive and Neural Studies

Advisory committee: John McDonald, Urs Ribary, Mario Liotti

Burnaby, BC, Canada

Thesis: Mechanisms of attentional processing during visual search: how distraction is handled by the brain

2009 – 2012

Simon Fraser University

Master of Arts in Experimental Psychology, Cognitive and Neural Studies

Advisory committee: John McDonald, Urs Ribary

Burnaby, BC, Canada

Thesis: Within- versus cross-dimensional capture in fixed-feature visual search

2005 – 2009

Simon Fraser University

Bachelor of Arts in Psychology

Burnaby, BC, Canada
2000 – 2001

University of British Columbia

Certificate in Internet Publishing

Vancouver, BC, Canada

Awards

Funding and kudos I've received.

2017

Vision Sciences Society 17th Annual Meeting Graphics Competition ($350)


2014-2016

Postgraduate Scholarship - Doctoral, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council ($42,000)


2014

Ph.D. Graduate Fellowship, Simon Fraser University ($6,250)


2013

Graduate Student Research Award, Simon Fraser University ($12,500)


2013

Ph.D. Graduate Fellowship, Simon Fraser University ($3,125)


2012

Canadian Psychological Association Certificate of Academic Excellence


2012

British Columbia Psychological Association Graduate Medal in Psychology


2012

M.A. Graduate Fellowship, Simon Fraser University ($6,250)


2010

M.A. Graduate Fellowship, Simon Fraser University ($6,250)


2009

Special Graduate Entrance Scholarship, Simon Fraser University ($7,000)


2008

Undergraduate Student Research Award, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council ($4,500)