Lab Members


J. Devin McAuley is a Professor in the Department of Psychology, Director of the MSU Cognitive Science Program and a member of the Neuroscience Program. He completed his undergraduate and graduate studies at Indiana University, receiving a B.A. in Mathematics and Computer Science, a M.S. in Computer Science, and a joint Ph.D. in Computer Science and Cognitive Science. He then went on to complete postdoctoral studies in Psychology at the University of Queensland and the Ohio State University where he was a Music Cognition Postdoctoral Fellow. Before joining the MSU faculty in 2009, Devin was a faculty member in the Department of Psychology at Bowling Green State University. Dr. McAuley’s research interests include auditory perception, attention, and memory, music cognition, cross-modal processing, timing and temporal control of behavior, and relationships between music and language processing.

Leigh VanHandel is a former Associate Professor of Music Theory at Michigan State University, and is now Associate Professor of Music Theory at the University of British Columbia.  Her research areas focus on music cognition with an emphasis on rhythm, meter, and tempo. She’s currently working on the Tempo Project, which is studying what musical cues influence our perception and determination of tempo. In her spare time, she officiates roller derby and plays bass guitar in a rock band.

Graduate Students

Toni Smith is a fourth-year graduate student in the Psychology Department’s Cognition and Cognitive Neuroscience program. She graduated with a B.S. in cognitive science at the University of Connecticut in fall 2018, where she was an undergraduate research assistant in the Music Dynamics Lab. While there, she conducted research on synchronization and pitch-induced temporal illusions for her honors thesis. Here in the TAP Lab she is currently working on the SPiN project, looking at the role of rhythm and entrainment in the perception of speech in difficult listening situations. In her free time, she enjoys reading, dance, and learning to cook new foods.

Samantha Waddell is a second-year PhD student in Music Theory at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. She also holds a BM in Piano Performance from the University of Evansville (2018) and earned an MM in Music Theory at Michigan State University (2021). Sam has been collaborating on the Narrative Listening project since 2019, lending her performance and theory skills to the project. Outside of music cognition, Sam’s research interests include rhythm and meter perception in popular music, and music theory pedagogy. Outside of the classroom, she likes to care for her houseplants and prevent her cat from eating them.

Matthew Oakes is a first year MM music theory student at Michigan State University from Houston, TX. His research interests include the perception of musical closure, grouping structures, and perception of musical performance. He plans on working on the Narrative Listening project in the TAP lab. Outside of his studies, Matthew enjoys spending time with his fiancé, cooking, and spending time outdoors. 

Ryan Galik is a second year MM music theory and music composition student at Michigan State University from Princeton, New Jersey. His research interests include genre perception and flow in listening, understanding narrative through diegetic frames, extended just intonation, and cognition-informed pedagogy practices. Outside his studies, Ryan enjoys distance cycling, films no one has heard of, and losing at chess.

Brendan McEvoy is a first-year MM music theory student at Michigan State University from Fowler, Ohio. His research interests include inclusive and cognition-informed pedagogy, perception and analysis of musical narrative, and public music theory. Outside of school, Brendan enjoys playing chamber music with friends, meeting new cats, and curating memes.

Post Undergraduate

Jewelian Fairchild recently graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. She was an undergraduate RA on the Narrative Listening project and is now collaborating on two Narrative Listening papers. Outside of the TAP Lab, Jewelian is a project manager for the Prenatal Stress Study, with interest in how prenatal stress affects infant development. After taking time off to gain more research experience, she plans to apply to clinical psychology Ph.D. programs to continue her research interests on child maltreatment and parenting


Cynthia Sridhar is a senior from Los Angeles, California studying Neuroscience and Sociology with a minor in Bioethics. She is currently working on the Interpersonal Tapping Project which examines mimicry between individuals during interpersonal coordinated movements. After completing her undergraduate degree, she plans to attend medical school. In her free time she enjoys hanging out with friends and watching movies.

Kyle Oliver is a junior majoring in Neuroscience and Psychology. In the lab he looks forward to further working on the SPIN project. After graduating he plans to attend medical school with hopes of specializing in Neurology. Outside of school, Kyle loves to play soccer and golf!

Frank Dolecki is a senior in Lyman Briggs studying human biology along with a minor in cognitive science.  Currently, he is involved with the lab’s collaborative project with the University of Michigan’s Speech Neurophysiology lab studying speech processing in adults who stutter. He is planning to apply to medical school sometime after graduation. In his free time, he loves learning how to cook, drawing and painting, doing yoga, and watching comedians like Conan O’Brien and John Mulaney.

Bailey Rann is a senior majoring in Psychology along with a minor in Cognitive Science. She is currently involved with the lab’s collaborative project with the University of Michigan’s Speech Neurophysiology lab studying speech processing in adults who stutter. After she graduates, she plans to apply to Cognitive Psychology PhD programs. In her free time Bailey loves swimming, photography, and painting.

Sanaye Lewis is a sophomore from Atlanta, Georgia majoring in Computer Science with a minor in Cognitive Science. After graduating, she plans on going into industry and becoming a software engineer. In her free time she enjoys dancing, watching musicals, and listening to podcasts.

Meghana Gogineni is a junior in Lyman Briggs majoring in Neuroscience and Psychology and minoring in Entrepreneurship and Innovation and Cognitive Science. Currently she has been involved in helping with the Narrative Listening project and plans to get more involved with other studies.  She plans to apply for medical school after graduation. In her free time, she enjoys dancing, singing, and spending time with friends.

Tanmay Shekhar is a freshman in the Lyman Briggs College majoring in Neuroscience. Currently he is involved in helping with the MINT project. He plans to continue research in some form or the other after graduation. His hobbies include reading philosophy and playing the trombone.

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Lab Affiliates

  • Zach Hambrick, Ph.D., Michigan State University
  • Melissa Allman, Ph.D., Michigan State University
  • Jason Moser, Ph.D., Michigan State University
  • Juli Wade, Ph.D., Michigan State University

Other Institutions

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Michigan State University

  • Carolyn Kroger, Ph.D., 2022
  • Jessica Truong, B.A., 2022
  • Anusha Mamidipika, B.S., 2022
  • Nathalie Nordan, B.S., 2022
  • Ryan Jones, M.A., 2022
  • Yan Cong, Ph.D., 2021
  • Olivia, Dodson, 2021
  • Paul Clancy, B.S., 2021
  • Alison Eberle, B.A., 2021,
  • Shubhangi Sharma, B.S., 2021
  • Alperen Ekinci, B.S., 2021
  • William Quackenbush, B.S., 2020
  • Gabby Kindig, B.A., 2020
  • Zack Loyd, B.A., 2020
  • Becca Vroegop, B.A., 2020
  • Kelly Russell, B.S., 2020
  • Nicole Boog, B.S., 2020
  • Rebecca Guei, B.A., 2020
  • Audrey Drotos, B.S., 2019
  • Sarah Dec, B.A., 2019
  • Elizabeth Wieland, 2019
  • Marilyn Zahrt, 2019
  • Stacey Rowland, 2017
  • Alyssa Cleland, 2017
  • Klea Doko, 2017
  • Vixey Silva, 2017
  • Lauren J. Amick, M.A., 2017
  • Elisa K. Fromboluti, Ph.D., 2016
  • Courtney Cox, 2016
  • Audrianna St. Germain, 2016
  • Sara Dziubek, 2015
  • Monique Daignault, 2015
  • Jayson Winsor, 2015
  • Katherine Jones, M.S., 2015
  • Emily LaPlante, 2015
  • Joshua Lucksom, 2014
  • Bradley Seegert, 2014
  • Joshua Linkowski, 2014
  • Joshua Hamilton, 2014
  • Katie Centurione, 2014
  • Karli Nave, B.S., 2014
  • Jon Walters, B.S., 2014
  • Trisha Zdziarska, B.S., 2014
  • Breanna Borg, 2014
  • Abid Ahmad, 2014
  • Neelima Wagley, B.S., 2013
  • Brad Perry, B.S., 2013
  • Prashanth Rajarajan, B.S., 2013
  • Ashley Elliston, 2013
  • Ben Mastay, 2012
  • Alan Wedd, M.S., 2012
  • Ben Syzek, 2012
  • Jessica Wallace, 2012
  • Krista Bur, B.A., 2012
  • Patrick Engler, B.A., 2012
  • Erica Koelzer, B.A., 2012
  • Liza Kustantin, 2011
  • Amelia Wiggins, B.S., 2011
  • Lauren Zielinski, B.S. 2011
  • Brian Spyke, B.S., 2010

Bowling Green State University

  • Elina Banzina, Ph.D., 2012
  • Thomas J. Donahue, 2011
  • Amanda Stewart, 2011
  • Molly Henry, Ph.D., 2011
  • Alyssa Cain, 2010
  • Jennifer Vogt, B.S., 2010
  • Nathan Miller, Ph.D., 2010
  • Tracey Raybourn, M.A., 2010
  • Samantha Tuft, B.A., 2010
  • Louis Vinke, M.A., 2010
  • Brian Grushcow, B.A., 2009
  • Nicholas Steuver, B.S., 2009
  • Marta Zaleha, B.A., 2007
  • Steven Borawski, M.A., 2006
  • Laren Conklin, B.S., 2006
  • Deborah Frater, B.S., 2006
  • Allison Skinner, B.S., 2006
  • Jonathan P. Miller, Ph.D., 2005
  • Chris Ayala, M.A., 2004
  • Josie Bostleman, B.S.
  • Lori Curtindale, M.A., 2007
  • Laura Fuhr, B.S.
  • Laura Krauss, B.S.
  • Ann Mary Mercier, M.A., 2007
  • Kelly Miller, B.S.
  • Chris Trimmer, B.S.
  • Kelly Rider
  • Jacqueline Toft
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