Nicole Calma-Roddin is an assistant professor in the Behavioral Sciences department. Calma-Roddin received her Ph.D. in cognitive science and a certificate in cognitive neuroscience at Stony Brook University in 2019. She received her M.A. in psychology at Stony Brook University in 2014 and her B.A. in linguistics, with a minor in music, in 2011. She also holds a Professional Certificate in Ear Training and Harmony from Berklee College of Music Online. In general, her research focuses on the areas of language processing and music cognition using both behavioral measures and electroencephalography (EEG).

Calma-Roddin is particularly interested in situations in which the brain must take syntactically-structured incoming information (e.g., notes in a melody, words in a sentence) and integrate them into a context (e.g., the current song or sentence) and/or memory (for the song, the speaker, and/or the state of the world). Calma-Roddin’s work on music cognition has examined how the brain responds to unexpected notes in a melody (including when the melody is familiar to the listener), as well as the connection between language and music processing in the brain. In relation to language, her research also explores conversation, including the study of ironic language and the study of reference in relation to communal common ground. In her teaching, Calma-Roddin is very interested in the use of hands-on activities and technology in the classroom to support student learning. She is also committed to learning how to make her teaching as accessible as possible for all of her students.

Recent Projects and Research

  • Music Cognition Projects: This work is focused on studying behavioral and/or brain responses (using EEG) to syntax and/or memory processing in music (and/or language/other syntactically-structured domains).
  • Conversation studies: This work is focused on studying reference, category, context, speaker identity, speaker/addressee knowledge, and more in relation to language and communication (using behavioral methods).
  • Virtual Reality (VR) in Education: This work is focused on implementing VR learning opportunities and studying the use of VR in the classroom. This project is a collaboration with Professor Kevin Park and Dr. Jacqueline Keighron, of New York Tech’s Digital Art & Design and Biological & Chemical Sciences departments, respectively. (Special thanks to Dominica Jamir, Roland Dubois, and the Spring 2020 PSYC 370 VR research group for their contributions to this ongoing project.)


  • Calma-Roddin, N., & Drury, J. E. (2020). Music, Language, and the N400: ERP Interference Patterns Across Cognitive Domains. Scientific Reports, 10, 1-14. doi: 10.1038/s41598-020-66732-0

Courses Taught at New York Tech

  • PSYC 210: Statistical Analysis
  • PSYC 251: Measurement Concepts
  • PSYC 370: Introductory Research Methods
  • PSYC 410: Physiological Bases of Behavior

Contact Information