Attention Brains Reward

In daily life we actively attend to specific sources of information. Attention allows the brain to selectively enhance sensory inputs for further processing, especially those that are self-relevant. My research is focused on understanding the fundamental neural and cognitive mechanisms through which we learn which inputs to attend to.



  • Van den Berg, B., Krebs, R. M., Lorist, M.M. & Woldorff, M.G. (2014).  Utilization of reward-prospect enhances preparatory attention and reduces stimulus conflict. Cogn Affect Behav Neurosci.
  • Clark, K., Appelbaum, L.G., Van den Berg, B., Mitroff, S. & Woldorff, M. G. (2015). Improvement in visual search with practice: Mapping learning-related changes in neurocognitive stages of processing. Journal of Neuroscience.10.1523/jneurosci.1152-14.2015
  • Marini, F., Van den Berg, B., & Woldorff, M. G.(2015). Reward-prospect interacts with trial-by-trial preparation for potential distraction. Visual Cognition.
  • Van den Berg, B., Appelbaum, L. G., Clark, K., Lorist, M. M. & Woldorff, M. G. (2016) Visual search performance is predicted by both prestimulus and poststimulus electrical brain activity. Scientific Reports.
  • McKay, C.C., Van den Berg, B., & Woldorff, M. G. (2017). Neural cascade of conflict processing: not just time-on-task! Neuropsychologia.
  • Park, J., Van den Berg, B., Chiang, C., Woldorff, M. G. & Brannon, E.M. (2017) Developmental Trajectory of Neural Specialization for Visual Letter and Number Processing. Developmental science.
  • Van den Berg, B., Geib, B. R., San Martin, R., & Woldorff, M. G. (2019). A key role for stimulus-specific updating of the sensory cortices in the learning of stimulus–reward associations. SCAN.
  • Van den Berg, B., de Bruin, A. B. H., Marsman, J.C., Lorist, M. M., Schmidt, H. G., Aleman, A., & Snoek, J. W. (2020). Thinking fast or slow? Functional magnetic resonance imaging reveals stronger connectivity when experienced neurologists diagnose ambiguous cases. BRAIN COMMUNICATIONS.
  • Van den Berg, B.*, de Jong, M.*, Woldorff, M. G. & Lorist, M.M. (2021). Caffeine boosts preparatory attention for reward-related stimulus information. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience.
  • Van den Berg, B. & Snoek, J.W. (2020).