People

Akram Bakkour

Akram Bakkour

Assistant Professor & Lab Director

Akram founded the Bakkour Memory and Decision lab in 2020. He received a BS in Neuroscience from Brown University and a PhD in Neuroscience from The University of Texas at Austin. Akram then completed his postdoctoral training at Columbia University before moving to Chicago. He is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at The University of Chicago.

CV Email

Euan Prentis

Euan Prentis

Ph.D. Student

Euan is a doctoral student in the Cognitive Psychology Program. He received his B.A. in Psychology from New York University, before working as a Research Specialist at the University of Pennsylvania for two years. He is broadly interested in how structured information about the world is encoded in memory, and how this knowledge is used to facilitate flexible decision-making. Outside the lab, Euan spends his time playing the guitar, watching live music, and exploring Chicago with his camera.

Xinyue Li

Xinyue Li

Ph.D. Student

Xinyue is a doctoral student in the Cognitive Psychology Program. She previously completed the MA Program in the Social Sciences (MAPSS) at the University of Chicago and conducted her thesis research in the lab. As an undergraduate student at the University of California, San Diego, she double majored in Psychology and Communication. She is broadly interested in the cognitive mechanisms of episodic memory and decision-making, and the interactions between them. During her free time, Xinyue enjoys anime, video games, films and traveling.

Seoyoung Lee

Seoyoung Lee

Ph.D. Student

Seoyoung is a doctoral student in the Computational Cognitive Neuroscience program. She received her B.A. in Psychology from New York University Abu Dhabi and her M.Sc. in Cognitive Science from the Center for Mind/Brain Sciences at the University of Trento, Italy. Seoyoung is broadly interested in understanding the neural mechanisms underlying the interaction between memory and decision-making. In her spare time, she likes to play the violin, piano, bake, and watch random videos that are recommended by the algorithm.

Abby Shivers

Abby Shivers

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Abby is a fourth year in the College double majoring in Neuroscience and Psychology. She is very interested in the numerous facets of the world that alter how the mind functions as well as the neural circuitry underlying them. Specifically, she is growingly interested in what factors affect every day processes, like decision making, and how this knowledge could be implemented in many areas of society, such as clinical work and neuroeconomics. In her free time, she enjoys baking, walking to the lake, traveling, and trying new coffee places!

Lucas Mantovani

Lucas Mantovani

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Lucas is a third-year Brazilian student in the College double-majoring in Computer Science and Media, Arts, and Design. He is passionate about using software engineering to create applications that explore human decision-making processes through game development and Machine Learning. Outside the lab, he is interested in reading, travelling, and working out.

Rain Liu

Rain Liu

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Rain is a second year in the College double majoring in Cognitive Science and Computer Science. She is interested in exploring memory and decision-making as well as neurolinguistics through programming. In her free time, she enjoys cooking, painting, traveling and Chinese television.

Naryna Azizpour

Naryna Azizpour

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Naryna is a second-year student in the College majoring in Cognitive Science and minoring in Computer Science. She is passionate about exploring underlying algorithms for memory formation and decision-making processes and deploying them in software engineering for solving real-world computational problems. Outside the lab, she is interested in reading, playing the piano, dancing, and learning new languages.

Omar Fernandez

Omar Fernandez

Undergraduate Research Assistant — NESSTP Summer Program

Omar is a third year UChicago undergraduate student double-majoring in Neuroscience and Psychology. He is broadly interested in the complex processes of memory, learning, and sensation as well as the role they play in processes such as decision making and how we form our perceptual understanding of the world. He is also interested in mental health, neurological disorders, and education. In his free time, Omar enjoys cycling, dancing, and watching new TV shows.

Lab Alumni

Lab Managers: Hayoung Ahn (currently Medical Student at UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine)

MAPSS Students: Yuye (Flory) Huang (currently Postgraduate Associate at Yale University)

Undergraduate Honors Students: Defne Buyukyazgan (currently Lab Manager at Brown University)

Undergraduate Research Assistants: Daniella Conner, Emanuele Guidi, Aidan Grogan, Margarita Hovsepyan (summer)