Joey Ka-Yee Essoe (劉家宜)
cognitive neuroscience. learning enhancement. therapeutic learning.
An admirer of Deuteronomy, kittens, and one specific Irish Whisky, I was born and raised in Hong Kong under English rule. After completing the infamous HKCEE, I moved to San Francisco, for I longed to be in a society that was tolerant of quirky and independent women.
I have been interested in cognition since childhood; I have never envisioned anything but a life in research and science. The fact that academia seems to be a natural home for other quirky and independent people was a gratifying surprise.
See my DEIB statement, strategies, and outcomes here.
I am a cognitive neuroscientist and an experimental psychologist who specialises in learning enhancement via game-like technologies (e.g., VR, mobile apps). Applying cognitive neuroscience techniques to clinical research, my current work aims to enhance therapeutic learning in evidence-based behavioural therapy to improve outcomes for youth with neuropsychiatric conditions such as tic disorders, OCD, anxiety, and anorexia nervosa.
I received my Ph.D. in Psychology (major: Cognitive Neuroscience; minor: Quantitative Psychology) from UCLA, now serve as Post-doctoral Research Fellow at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (Research Centre: JH-COACH). Research tools I use or have used include fMRI, simultaneously EEG/fMRI, psychophysiology, EEG, and behavioural experimentation. I am also experienced in VR development and writing software to interface between VR and experimental devices.
Johns Hopkins University
School of Medicine
Enhancing Therapeutic Learning in Behaviour Therapy
My early work at JH-COACH examined learning processes relevant to childhood neuropsychiatric disorders (e.g., Tourette Disorder, OCD, and anxiety). My current work focuses on applying learning enhancement techniques to optimise therapeutic learning in youth undergoing evidence-based behaviour therapy for these conditions.
See a list of publication from this work here.
Post-doc research fellow
Johns Hopkins Center for OCD, Anxiety, & Related Disorder for Children
Enhancing Learning and Retention using Distinctive Virtual Contexts
This work examined the use of VR as a tool for learning enhancement.
My dissertation is now published in Nature Partner Journal: Science of Learning, and it was featured on the journal’s front page between Dec. 2022 and Jan. 2023. You can read it for free here: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41539-022-00147-6
Graduate Researcher, NSF GRFP fellow
Rissman Memory Laboratory, Department of Psychology
University of California, Los Angeles (2012-2018)
Affliation before UCLA:
Gazzaley Laboratory, University of California, San Francisco (2010-2012)
Cognitive Psychophysiology Laboratory, San Francisco State University (2001-2006)
Fun beyond the laboratory
I started creative writing in 2021.
Adventures at home and abroad.
One of my favourite things is cooking.
I am married to my favourite person in the world.