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Kichan SONG

Kichan SONG, Portrait Photo
Assistant, Graduate School of Brain Science

Research TopicBrain-Machine Interface, Behavioral Neuroscience

Research Activities in the Space-DREAM Project

I have researched on plastic changes in neural activity induced by operant conditioning. Specifically, behaviors of multiple neurons and effects of reinforcement schedules related to neural operant conditioning. The voluntary behavior immediately followed by reinforcement (reward) soon becomes more frequent. Based on such methodology, a method of learning has been developed and called “neural operant conditioning”, in which rewards are given for modulations of neuronal activity. Recently, neural operant conditioning has become a core process for better operation of brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) for its innate characteristics, for example, voluntary modulation of neural activity. I believe it is possible to study the relationship between neural activity and bodily movements more effectively by utilizing such characteristics of neural operant conditioning. In this project, the fine bodily movements including speed, direction and posture and the neural activities across multiple brain regions of the subjects during neural operant conditioning will be investigated.


I was born in South Korea and graduated from Yonsei University. I became interested in implicit learning in my early days in the university so studied psychology as a minor. Even after graduating from university, I still wanted to know the theme more deeply, so I chose to become a researcher. After coming to Japan through the government-sponsored study abroad program of the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, I entered the Graduate School of Letters, Kyoto University. At Kyoto University, I completed a master's degree in psychology, and then transferred to the Graduate School of Brain Science, Doshisha University and earned PhD. Currently, I am continuing my research as an assistant at the same facility.