Carnegie Mellon University

Why CMU?

Understanding how the brain works is one of the biggest puzzles left for science to solve.

Answers to critical questions in neuroscience lie at a pivotal intersection between biology, cognitive psychology, computer science, statistics and engineering – areas where Carnegie Mellon University excels.

And the world has taken notice of our excellence, putting CMU at the hub of unique global partnerships in the name of brain research.

CMU's Hamerschlag Hall

As the birthplace of artificial intelligence and cognitive psychology, CMU brain scientists have had real-world impact for over 50 years.

From the creation of some of the first cognitive tutors, to the development of the Jeopardy-winning Watson, to founding a ground-breaking doctoral program in neural computation, to recent cutting-edge work on the genetic basis of autism, Carnegie Mellon has, and will continue to be, a leader in the study of brain and behavior.

And our expertise doesn't stop at technology. World-renowned faculty such as Allen Newell, Herbert Simon, John Anderson and Raj Reddy, all helped shape modern cognitive psychology.

At the same time, seminal collaborations between psychologists and computer scientists gave rise to the field of artificial intelligence.

Today, partnerships between CMU neuroscientists, psychologists, statisticians, computer scientists, and engineers leave us poised to make similar groundbreaking accomplishments.

Taking a global approach to understanding the brain, CMU, with its partners around the world, is uniquely qualified for tackling this sort of highly interdisciplinary research. Read press release announcing BrainHub »

This cross-disciplinary effort, BrainHub, is lead by a faculty steering committee consisting of:

  • Alison Barth, Professor, Biological Sciences
  • Marlene Behrmann, George A. and Helen Dunham Cowan Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience
  • David Danks, Professor and Head, Philosophy
  • Aryn Gittis, Associate Professor, Biological Sciences
  • Rob Kass, Professor, Statistics, Machine Learning
  • Tom Mitchell, E. Fredkin University Professor; Head, Machine Learning
  • Carl Olson, Professor, Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition
  • O. Burak Ozdoganlar, Ver Planck Professor, Mechanical Engineering Associate Director, Engineering Research Accelerator; Courtesy Appointments, Biomedical Engineering, Materials Science & Engineering
  • Barbara Shinn-Cunningham, Director, Carnegie Mellon Neuroscience Institute 
  • Aarti SinghA. Nico Habermann Assistant Professor, Machine Learning
  • Michael Tarr, Professor and Head, Psychology
Are you a CMU faculty member interested in hearing more? Check out our frequently asked questions »