Engage and Enable Blog

The aim of this blog is to show what’s happening at the Center for Neurotechnology among its faculty, student and staff members. To learn more about the center and its work, visit our Feature Stories page.


Most students in the Center for Sensorimotor Neural Engineering’s (CSNE’s) Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program are studying and working in labs on the University of Washington campus this summer (learn about their experience here); however, there are students participating in the REU program on both the Massachusetts Institute for Technology (MIT) and San Diego State University (SDSU) campuses as well.

Read below about a few REU program participants’ experiences on the MIT and SDSU campuses, in their own words:

Yuyan Wang, Georgia Institute of Technology

Human clinical trials are becoming an increasingly important part of the fast-changing field of implantable brain-computer interface (BCI) research. Testing to help determine safety and efficacy in the human body is the next step in the development of clinical BCI devices for treatment of neurologic conditions like stroke, spinal cord injury and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Because testing implantable BCIs in humans can sometimes have serious and/or unexpected impacts, developing a better understanding of risks and establishing best practices in this area of research is an ethical imperative.

Nona Clifton: Pre-College Education Manager

Imagine being asked to solve a problem for someone who you've never met. You have the necessary skills, you've been given a detailed overview of the issues at-hand, and you understand what's at stake; however, you never have actually met anybody with the problem you're trying to solve. Given enough time and information, you might come up with an effective means of solving the problem, but it would be very difficult to anticipate all of the potential impacts of your solution.