Welcome to the Center for Psychological Sciences at Zhejiang University





Xiaoqing Gao, Ph.D.



Assistant Professor



E-mail: xiaoqinggao@zju.edu.cn

Tel: +86 (571) 8827-6299


Research Interest

Atypical Early Life Experience, Neural Plasticity, Multisensory integration


Dr. Gao has been studying the development of high-level visual functions in children since his PhD work. His research approach includes visual psychophysics and fMRI. Especially, by tracking patients who had early visual deprivation as a result of congenital cataract, he investigates the role of early visual input in the development of visual functions and their neural underpinnings. Recently, Dr. Gao developed a highly efficient fMRI paradigm, in collaboration with Dr. Bruno Rossion at University of Louvain. With this paradigm, he studies functional organization of the occipitotemporal cortex in normal population and studies functi-onal localization in epileptic patients before and after surgery.



Work Experience

2018.09 to present                Assistant Professor                                                 Center for Psychological Sciences, Zhejiang University

2015.09-2018.08                   Marie Curie Actions postdoctoral fellow                 Psychological Sciences Research Institute and Institute                                                                                                                                                                      of Neuroscience, University of Louvain, Belgium

2014.01-2015.08                   CIHR postdoctoral fellow,                                     Dr. Eric Jackman Institute of Child Study, University                                                                                                                                                                            of Toronto

2010.07-2013.12                   Postdoctoral fellow,                                               Centre for Vision Research, York University


Education and Training

2005-2010                            Ph.D. in Psychology                                                  McMaster University, Canada

2002-2005                            M.A. in Psychology                                                   Zhejiang University

1998-2002                            B.S. in Psychology                                                     Zhejiang University


Selected Research Projects

2014 – 2018The effect of early visual deprivation from cataracts on the development of cross-modal processing

                        ERC grant, sub-project, local investigator


Selected Publications

[1]     Gao, X.,Vuong, Q.C., &Rossion, B. (In press). The cortical face network of the prosopagnosic patient PS with fast periodic stimulation in fMRI. 

         Cortex. DOI:10.1016/j.cortex.2018.11.008

[2]     Gao, X., Gentile F., &Rossion, B. (2018). Fast periodic stimulation (FPS): a highly effective approach in fMRI brain mapping. 

        Brain Structure and Function, 223(5), 2433-2454. DOI:10.1007/s00429-018-1630-4

[3]     Gao, X., Lahat, Y., Maurer, D., Savoy, C., Van Lieshout, R. J., Boyel, M. H., Saigal, S., & Schmidt, L., A. (2017). Sensitivity to facial expressions 

         among extremely low birth weight survivors in their 30s. Developmental Psychobiology. DOI:10.1002/dev.21580

[4]     Gao, X., LoBue, V., Irving, J., & Harvey, T. (2016). The effect of spatial frequency information and visual similarity in threat detection. 

         Cognition and Emotion, 18, 1-11.

[5]     Gao, X., Maurer, D., & Wilson, H.R. (2015). The PCA learning effect: an emerging correlate of face memory during childhood. 


[6]     Gao, X.& Wilson, H. R. (2014). Implicit learning of geometric eigenfaces. Vision Research, 99, 12-18.

[7]     Gao, X.& Wilson, H. R. (2013). The neural representation of face space dimensions. Neuropsychologia, 51, 1787-1793.

[8]     Gao, X.& Maurer, D. (2011). A comparison of spatial frequency tuning for the recognition of facial identity and facial expressions

         in adults and children. Vision Research, 51, 508-519. 

[9]     Gao, X. & Maurer, D. (2010). A happy story: developmental changes in children’s sensitivity to facial expressions of varying intensities. 

         Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 107, 67-86. 

[10]   Gao, X., Maurer, D., & Nishimura, M. (2010). Similarities and differences in the perceptual structure of facial expressions of children and adults. 

         Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 105, 81-97.

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