center for brain, behavior & evolution

Understanding the natural diversity of behavior, in the lab & in the wild.

Sound origins: Vocalizations, mechanisms & evolution

Center for Brain, Behavior and Evolution, Annual Spring Symposium

with sponsorship from

Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, and the

Oak Ridge Associated Universities


Avala Auditorium, POB rm 2.302, University of Texas at Austin

9:00am, Continental breakfast

Theme 1. Behavioral perspectives

9:30am, Carlos Rodriguez, Department of Psychology,Emory University

             “Social reward during a sensitive period predicts vocal learning”

10:00am, Hans Bilger, Department of Integrative Biology, UT Austin

            “Higher order musical sequencing in birdsong.”

10:30am, Coffee

Theme 2. Structure and function

11:00am, Julia Clarke, Department of Geology, UT Austin

              “Identity and novelty in the avian syrinx.”

11:30am, Rosemary Lester-Smith, Department of Communication Sciences & Disorders

              “Auditory-motor control of voice in healthy & neurologically-impaired speakers.”

12:00pm, Lunch


Theme 3. Neural regulation

1:00pm, Steve Phelps, Department of Integrative Biology, UT Austin

               “Decision-making and vocalization in singing mice”

1:30pm, Michael Smotherman, Department of Biology, Texas A & M

     “The ephemeral link between singing and territoriality in bats”

2:00pm, Michael Long, Department of Neuroscience, NYU Langone Medical School

               “Vocal turn-taking in mouse song and human conversation”

2:30, Coffee

Theme 4. Evolutionary perspectives

3:00, Mike Ryan, Department of Integrative Biology, UT-Austin

              “An unusual frog larynx and its role in sexual selection and speciation.”

3:30, Tecumseh Fitch, Department of Cognitive Biology, University of Vienna

               “The evolution of vertebrate vocalization”

4:30, Discussion: Interdisciplinary questions and opportunities

5:00-6:30pm, Poster session

(Unofficial post-meeting activities at the White Horse at ~8pm.)