Associate Professor, Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences
Who they work with
Josh McDermott is an associate professor in MIT’s Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, where he heads the Laboratory for Computational Audition. His research addresses human and machine audition using tools from experimental psychology, engineering, and neuroscience. The longterm goals of the lab are to understand how humans derive information from sound, to improve treatments for those whose hearing is impaired and to enable the design of systems that mirror human abilities to interpret sound.
McDermott has received a Troland Research Award, an NSF Career Award, and a McDonnell Scholar Award. He earned a BA in brain and cognitive science from Harvard University, an MPhil in computational neuroscience from University College London, and a PhD in brain and cognitive science from MIT. He did his postdoctoral training in psychoacoustics at the University of Minnesota and in computational neuroscience at NYU.
- Feather, J., Durango, A., Gonzalez, R., McDermott, J.H. (2019). Metamers of neural networks reveal divergence from human perceptual systems. Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems (NeurIPS).
- Jacoby, N., Undurraga, E.A., McPherson, M.J., Valdes, J., Ossandan, T., McDermott, J.H. (2019). Universal and non-universal features of musical pitch perception revealed by singing. Current Biology, 29, 3229-3243.
- Norman-Haignere, S.V., McDermott, J.H. (2018). Neural responses to natural and model-matched stimuli reveal distinct computations in primary and nonprimary auditory cortex. PLoS Biology, 16, e2005127.
- Kell, A.J.E., Yamins, D.L.K., Shook, E.N., Norman-Haignere, S.V., McDermott, J.H. (2018). A task-optimized neural network replicates human auditory behavior, predicts brain responses, and reveals a cortical processing hierarchy. Neuron, 98, 630-644.
- Traer, J., McDermott, J.H. (2016). Statistics of natural reverberation enable perceptual separation of sound and space. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 113, E7856-E7865.
- September 19, 2019: MIT News, Perception of musical pitch varies across cultures.
- April 19, 2018: MIT News, Machine-learning system processes sounds like humans do.
- January 17, 2018: MIT News, Josh McDermott receives NAS Troland Research Award.
- January 5, 2017: MIT News, How the brain perceives rhythm.
- July 13, 2016: MIT News, Why we like the music we do.