Irina Castellanos, PhD; Principal Investigator
Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery
Courtesy Assistant Professor of Speech and Hearing Science

Dr. Irina Castellanos

Dr. Castellanos joined the faculty at The Ohio State University College of Medicine in 2016. She received her Ph.D. in Developmental Science from Florida International University, where she was trained in multisensory perception. Dr. Castellanos then completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Indiana University School of Medicine, where she focused on how neurocognitive systems are impacted by a period of early auditory deprivation in deaf children who use cochlear implants as a treatment for profound deafness. Her research seeks to explain how underlying neurocognitive processes (in particular, executive functions) regulate and contribute to the large individual differences observed in critical quality-of-life outcomes following cochlear implantation. Dr. Castellanos’ work is currently funded by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.

Natalie Safdar, BA, Graduate Student: Natalie joined our lab in May 2017 and began her first year as an Audiology graduate student in the fall of 2017. Her professional interests include pediatrics, cochlear implants, and speech-language outcomes in children with cochlear implants.

Jessica Lewis, BA, Graduate Student: Jessie joined our lab in August 2018 and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Speech and Hearing Science and a clinical doctorate in Audiology. Her research interests include effortful listening and neurocognitive processes in adult cochlear implant users.

Jillian Harrington, Senior RA: Jillian joined our lab in June 2017 and is currently working on her undergraduate thesis project examining maternal linguistic input. She is on the pre-med track majoring in Biology and minoring in Global Public Health.

Julianne Peacock: Julianne is a fourth year Biology major with a pre-health specialization and Spanish minor. She is interested in behavioral regulation and executive functioning in relation to early language development.

Gina Vivino: Gina is a fourth year Neuroscience major. Gina is especially interested in children’s language development and how research can be implemented into clinical practice.

Aayush Sharma: Aayush is a second year Neuroscience major on the pre-med track. He is especially interested in individual differences in language development.

Jake Sawyer: Jake joined our lab in January of 2019. He is a pre-med neuroscience student and is interested in how sensory input influences cognitive development.


Maria Zulliger, STEP Fellow: Maria joined our lab in July 2017 and completed her STEP Signature Project on Facilitative Language Techniques in the Spring of 2018. She is graduating from the pre-dental track with a major in Nutrition Sciences.

Helen Mitchell: Helen joined our lab in the summer of 2018. She is majoring in Neuroscience and minoring in Flute performance.


David B. Pisoni, PhD; Indiana University, Bloomington
William G. Kronenberger, PhD; Indiana University School of Medicine
Derek M. Houston, PhD; The Ohio State University College of Medicine
Chen Yu, PhD; Indiana University, Bloomington
Aaron C. Moberly, MD; The Ohio State University College of Medicine
Racheal Holt, PhD; The Ohio State University