Department of Psychiatry

Penn Behavioral Health

NSBRI Cognition Study

Are you smart enough to be an astronaut? If so, prove it! We are currently recruiting healthy, motivated individuals between the ages of 25 and 55 with a Master’s Degree or higher level of education to participate in a cognitive research study. This study will be conducted at Penn (not in outer space). The purpose of this research study is to collect performance data on a range of cognitive abilities in high-performing, healthy adult subjects. The Brain Behavior Laboratory and the National Space Biomedical Research Institute will use data collected to help monitor the performance of real astronauts while in outer space.

You may be eligible to participate if:

  • you are between the ages of 25 and 55 years old
  • have at least a Master's Degree level of education
  • you are generally healthy.

If you qualify for this research study, you will be asked to do the following: 

  • take part in a short phone call questionnaire to evaluate your eligibility
  • schedule one 2-hour study appointment.
  • complete a variety of computerized tests

Participants will be reimbursed $40.00 for their time and effort. For individuals who qualify, travel costs will also be reimbursed.

Under National Space Biomedical Research Institute (NSBRI) funding the Brain Behavior Laboratory developed the computerized neurocognitive battery, Cognition, to be administered in the International Space Station (ISS) and other NSBRI and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) projects. This study is focused on acquiring data needed to monitor high-performing space travelers for whom this battery is intended.

To learn more and find out if you are eligible to participate, please call or email Kevin Seelaus:

Principal Investigators: Ruben C. Gur, PhD & Mathias Basner, MD, PhD, MSc


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