Meet the Director
Pavel Zahorik, Ph.D.
Heuser Hearing Research Center (HHRC), Endowed Chair
Zahorik Auditory Perception Laboratory (ZAPlab), Associate Research Director
University of Louisville (UofL), Associate Professor
Pavel Zahorik, Ph.D. earned his bachelor of science in psychology and philosophy and his doctoral degree in experimental psychology from the University of Wisconsin. He completed three years of post-doctoral training in visual and auditory space perception at the University of California, Santa Barbara before joining the University of Louisiana as an associate professor of psychology in the division of communicative disorders in 2003. He runs the university’s ZAPlab, which you can learn more about by visiting www.zaplab.org.
Dr. Zahorik’s research interests are in auditory perception, with a focus in sound localization and spatial hearing. Specific areas of interest include the perception of sound source distance; the contributions of echoes and reverberation to percepts of source direction and distance; and the effects of adaptation, training, and input from other sensory modalities on spatial hearing. Research in his laboratory relies heavily on auditory display technology that effectively simulates a “virtual” auditory space using information about the acoustical characteristics of listeners’ external ears and the environment. This technology not only enables the precise study of psychophysical relationships between the acoustic signals present at the two ears and human spatial hearing abilities, but it also allows for simulations and scientifically relevant signal manipulations that would be impossible in real listening situations.
Dr. Zahorik’s current projects and collaborations include an NIH-funded study that seeks to validate an innovative conceptual model of how auditory and visual distance information is combined and processed. Validation of the model will inform the development of new strategies for assisting or enhancing degraded spatial information to improve orientation and navigation abilities in visually-impaired and/or hearing-impaired populations.
Along with his research, Dr. Zahorik serves as associate editor or ad hoc reviewer to more than 25 scientific journals and has dozens of peer-reviewed papers to his credit.