Kate Ergo

FWO PhD Student
Department of Experimental Psychology
Ghent University - Belgium
kate.ergo@ugent.be

I am a PhD student funded by the FWO (Research Foundation Flanders) working in the VergutsLab @ Ghent University. My research focuses on how reward prediction errors influence declarative memory.


Research

My research investigates the interplay between reward prediction errors (RPEs; i.e., mismatches between reward outcome and reward expectation) and declarative memory (e.g., learning a foreign language).

Using a Dutch-Swahili word learning paradigm, we found that word pair recognition increases linearly with larger and more positive RPEs (De Loof et al., 2018). We also found neural oscillatory signatures that confirm the experience of signed RPEs (SRPEs) boosting declarative memory (Ergo et al., 2019) during reward feedback processing. My goal is to further investigate the robustness and generality of these findings.

To study how RPEs influence declarative memory, I use both behavioral and EEG studies.
Recently, I also became interested in eye tracking and neurostimulation techniques (i.e., tACS).

My PhD is funded by the Flanders Fund for Scientific Research (FWO).



Presentations

Ergo, De Loof & Verguts (2019). Does reward prediction error modulate phase connectivity in a declarative learning task? Society for Psychophysiological Research (Washington DC, USA). (Poster)

Ergo, De Loof, Debra & Verguts (2018). Does theta tACS modulate the effect of reward prediction error on declarative learning (Nijmegen, The Netherlands). (Poster)

Ergo, De Loof, Janssens & Verguts (2017). Signed reward prediction errors drive declarative learning. Research afternoon FPPW (Ghent, Belgium). (Poster)

Ergo, De Loof, Janssens & Verguts (2017). Signed reward prediction errors drive declarative learning. Internation Conference for Cognitive Neuroscience (ICON) (Amsterdam, The Netherlands). (Poster)

De Loof, Ergo, Janssens, Talsma & Verguts (2017). Signed reward prediction errors drive declarative learning. Belgian Society for Neuroscience meeting (Ghent, Belgium). (Oral presentation)

De Loof, Ergo, Janssens, Talsma & Verguts (2017). The role of reward prediction errors in declarative memory. Cognitive neuroscience of memory: The recollection, familiarity and novelty detection conference (Li├Ęge, Belgium). (Oral presentation)


Technical Skills

Experimental Tools
  • EEG (intermediate)
  • tACS (beginner)
  • Eye tracking (beginner)
Programming Languages
  • R (intermediate)
  • MATLAB (intermediate)
  • Python (beginner)
Toolboxes & Others
  • EEGLAB (intermediate)
  • FieldTrip (beginner)
  • MNE (beginner)
  • BrainVision Analyzer (beginner)
  • sLoreta (beginner)
  • Git (beginner)
  • GitHub (intermediate)
  • HTML (intermediate)
  • CSS (beginner)

Curriculum Vitae

Ghent University

PhD
Experimental Psychology

current

Ghent University

Master of Science
Theoretical and Experimental Psychology

Summa Cum Laude

September 2016

Ghent University

Bachelor of Science
Theoretical and Experimental Psychology

Cum Laude

July 2014