MClerMeredith J. Cler is a Ph.D. candidate in Computational Neuroscience at Boston University. She has a B.S. in Computer Science from Bradley University and a Graduate Certificate in Cognitive Science from the University of Central Florida. Her research involves applying quantitative and computational techniques to rehabilitate speech motor control disorders in children and adults. She works in the Stepp Lab for Sensorimotor Rehabilitation Engineering, developing and validating novel communication interfaces for individuals with severe paralysis and developing quantitative assessment and videogame rehabilitation for individuals with resonance disorders.

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Education

PhD Candidate, Graduate Program for Neuroscience – Computational Neuroscience
Boston University, Boston, MA
Aug 2013 – present
Graduate Certificate in Cognitive Sciences
University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL
Jan 2011 – May 2012
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
Bradley University, Peoria, IL
GPA: 3.94; Honors Program and summa cum laude
Aug 2003 – May 2007

Awards and Honors

Student Scholar Award for 11th Annual Eleanor M. Saffran Conference on Cognitive Neuroscience and Rehabilitation of Communication Disorders Sept 2016
Selected to participate in ASHA’s Lessons for Success 2016 Apr 2016
Boston University Center for Computational Neuroscience and Neural Technology (CompNet) Travel Award
For travel to 2016 Conference on Motor Speech
Mar 2016
National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Predoctoral Fellowship
“Optimization and prediction for fast and robust AAC”
NIDCD 1F31DC014872
Sept 2015 – Aug 2018
Boston University Center for Computational Neuroscience and Neural Technology (CompNet) Travel Award
For travel to 2015 Summer School on Neurorehabilitation
Aug 2015
2015 Henry I. Russek Student Achievement Award – First place May 2015
Boston University Computational Neuroscience Fellowship
“Predictive Methods in Surface Electromyographic Communication Interfaces”
Sept 2014 – Aug 2015
Boston University Center for Computational Neuroscience and Neural Technology (CompNet) Travel Award
For travel to 7th International IEEE EMBS Conference on Neural Engineering
Aug 2014
2014 Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society Student Travel Award
For travel to IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Conference
Aug 2014
Boston University Center for Computational Neuroscience and Neural Technology (CompNet) Travel Award
For travel to IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Conference
Aug 2014
Boston University Center for Computational Neuroscience and Neural Technology (CompNet) Travel Award
For travel to Neural Interfaces Conference
June 2014
Graduate Engagement Scholarship
University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL
Service-learning project at adult day care center for clients with dementia – “Excellence in quality of project design and implementation at the graduate level”
May 2012

Refereed Journal Publications

Cler M.J., Lien Y.-A. S., Braden M.N., Mittelman T., Downing K., & Stepp C.E. (2016) “Objective measure of nasal air emission using nasal accelerometry,” Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research. Access
Heller Murray E.S., Girouard K.L., Cler M.J., Stepp C.E. (2016) “Development of an electronic documentation system for voice therapy: A new teaching and clinical research tool”, Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, 1, 63-73. Access
Cler M.J., Nieto-Castanon A., Guenther F.H., Fager S., & Stepp C.E. (2016) “Surface electromyographic control of a novel phonemic interface for speech synthesis.” Augmentative and Alternative Communication. Access
Cler M.J. & Stepp C.E. (2015) “Discrete vs. continuous mapping of facial electromyography for human-machine-interface control: Performance and training effects”, IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, 23(4), 572-580. Access

Other Refereed Papers

Cler M.J., Voysey G.E., Stepp C.E. “Video game speech rehabilitation for velopharyngeal dysfunction: Feasibility and pilot testing,” 7th International IEEE EMBS Conference on Neural Engineering, 22-24 April, 2015. Access
Cler M.J., Michener C.M., Stepp C.E. “Discrete vs. continuous surface electromyographic interface control,” Proceedings of the 36th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, 27 – 30 August, 2014. Access
Cler M.J., Nieto-Castanon A., Guenther, F.H., Stepp C.E. “Surface electromyographic control of speech synthesis,” Proceedings of the 36th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, 27 – 30 August, 2014. Access

Conference Abstracts and Proposals

Cler M.J., Lien Y.-A. S., Braden M.N., Mittelman T., Byron K., & Stepp C.E. “Objective measure of nasal air emission using nasal accelerometry,” American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA) Convention, November 17-19, 2015, Philadelphia, PA.
Heller Murray E.S., Girouard K.L., Cler M.J., Stepp C.E. “Development of an electronic documentation system for voice therapy: A new teaching and clinical research tool,” American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA) Convention, November 17-19, 2015, Philadelphia, PA.
Heller Murray E.S., Michener C.M., Enflo L., Cler M.J., Stepp C.E. “The impact of glottal closure on speech breathing,” 10th International Conference on Voice Physiology and Biomechanics, March 14-17, 2016, Vina del Mar, Chile.
Cler M.J., Nieto-Castanon A., Guenther F.H., Fager S.K., & Stepp C.E. “2D control of speech synthesis via surface electromyography,” Conference on Motor Speech, Newport Beach, CA, March 3-6, 2016.
Cler M.J., Lee J.C., Mittelman T., Stepp C.E., & Bohland J.W. “Electromagnetic articulographic analysis of speech sound sequencing errors induced by delayed auditory feedback,” Conference on Motor Speech, Newport Beach, CA, March 3-6, 2016.
Cler M.J. & Stepp C.E. “Videogame rehabilitation of velopharyngeal mislearning,” Conference on Motor Speech, Newport Beach, CA, March 3-6, 2016.
Cler M.J., Nieto-Castanon A., Guenther F.H., & Stepp C.E. “Speech synthesis via surface electromyographic control: Training effects,” 2015 Summer School on Neurorehabilitation, Valencia, Spain, September 13-18, 2015.
Cler M.J. & Stepp C.E. “Video Game Rehabilitation of Velopharyngeal Dysfunction,” American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA) Convention, Denver, CO, November 12-14, 2015.
Cler M.J., Nieto-Castanon A., Guenther, F.H., Stepp C.E. “Speech synthesis via surface electromyographic control: Training effects,” NeruoHAM (Neural processing in humans, animals, and machines) Conference, 10-12 June, 2015.
Cler M.J., Michener C.M., Stepp C.E. “Discrete vs. continuous mapping of facial electromyography for learning and generalization of human-machine-interface control,” Neural Interfaces Conference, Dallas, TX, June 23-25, 2014.

Invited Talks

“Articulatory kinematic analysis of speech sound errors under delayed auditory feedback,” Boston Speech Motor Control Working Group, Boston, MA, May 3, 2016.
“Videogame rehabilitation of velopharyngeal mislearning,” Graduate Program for Neuroscience Seminar, Boston University, Boston, MA, Feb 2, 2016.
“Surface electromyographic control of speech synthesis,” Boston Speech Motor Control Working Group, Boston, MA, May 19, 2015.
“Speech synthesis via surface electromyographic control: Training effects,” 2015 Henry I. Russek Student Achievement Day, Boston University, Boston, MA, May 1, 2015.
“Surface electromyographic control of communication interfaces,” Graduate Program for Neuroscience Seminar, Boston University, Boston, MA, Oct 24, 2014.

Patents

US Patent 7,805,421 (published 5/7/2009), “Method and System for Reducing a Data Set”, Grichnik, A.J., Taylor, M.L., Nikolopoulos, C., Mason, J.R., Cler, M.J., and Hart, G.C.

Industry Experience

Freelance Web Designer
Melbourne, FL
May 2008 – Jul 2013
Web Design Subcontractor, DrupalEasy
Melbourne, FL
Apr 2009 – Jul 2013
IT Analyst I (2007-2008), Corporate Intern (2006), & Administrative Assistant (2005-2006), Caterpillar Inc.
Peoria, IL
Jun 2007 – May 2008

Scientific Outreach

Guest Lecture, “Videogames for Rehabilitation”, KHC HS102 The Body Rewired: Reinventing Medicine through Human-Machine Interfaces, Boston University, Boston, MA Mar 2016
Guest Lecture, “Human-Machine Interfaces for Communication”, KHC HS102 The Body Rewired: Reinventing Medicine through Human-Machine Interfaces, Boston University, Boston, MA Feb 2016
Guest Lecture, SAR SH810 – Doctoral seminar on grantsmanship, Boston University, Boston, MA Jan 2016
Demonstrations and paper discussion with Boston University Academy, Boston, MA Oct 2015
Graduate Program for Neuroscience Recruitment Chair, Boston University, Boston, MA Jun 2014 – May 2015
Perkins Career Exploration Panel, Perkins School for the Blind, Watertown, MA Mar 2015
Experimental demonstrations and discussion with Boston University Academy, Boston University, Boston, MA Sept 2014
Experimental demonstrations to Summer Pathways in Science and Engineering, Boston University, Boston, MA Jul 2014
Guest Lecture, KHC HS102 The Body Rewired: Reinventing Medicine through Human-Machine Interfaces, Boston University, Boston, MA Mar 2014
Research presentation to the BU chapter of the National Student Speech Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA), Boston University, Boston, MA Mar 2014
Experimental demonstrations of the Stepp Lab for Okayama Prefectural Tsuyama High School (Japan) students, Boston University, Boston, MA Mar 2014
Cognitive Sciences Student Association President, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL 2011 – 2012
Conference presentation “Women in Technology: Starting a Student Interest Group On Campus,” Proceedings of the Midwest Celebration of Women in Computing Sept 2006
Women in Technology Student Association Founder and President, Bradley University, Peoria, IL 2005 – 2007
STEM outreach activities with 4th-8th grade girls, Bradley University, Peoria, IL Jan – May 2007