SH Annabel Chen, PhD

Division of Psychology
School of Social Sciences
Nanyang Technological University

Dr. SH Annabel Chen is a clinical neuropsychologist, and currently a Faculty member of Psychology at the School of Social Sciences, LKCMedicine and Acting Director of the Centre of Research and Development in Learning (CRADLE), at the Nanyang Technological University.  

After obtaining her PhD in Clinical Rehabilitation Psychology from Purdue University and completing a Clinical Psychology Internship at West Virginia University School of Medicine, she continued with a post-doctoral residency in Clinical Neuropsychology at the Department of Neurology, Medical College of Wisconsin. Her research interests in clinical applications of advanced neuroimaging led her to further pursue post-doctoral research at the Department of Radiology at Stanford University School of Medicine.  

Back in Asia, she started the Clinical Brain Lab to apply neuropsychological principles to understand disturbance in brain and behavior using neuroimaging techniques, such as fMRI, diffusion MRI, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), and electroencephalography (EEG). Apart from focusing on cerebellar contribution in higher cognition and optimizing cognition in aging neuroscience, her most recent research development involves affective neuroscience in learning and translating neuroscience for education    


Ph.D., Clinical Psychology (APA accredited), Purdue University M.S., Clinical Psychology, Purdue University

Professional Experience

Post Doctoral Research Fellow, Lucas Magnetic Resonance Imaging Center, Department of Radiology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California

Resident in Clinical Neuropsychology (APPCN Accredited), Department of Neurology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Clinical Psychology Internship(APA Accredited), Clinical Neuropsychology Specialty Track (in accord with INS-Division 40 Guidelines), Department of Behavioral Medicine and Psychiatry, West Virginia University School of Medicine, Morgantown, West Virginia

Prof Chen has a diverse research background, including animal drug studies, human neuropsychological research and cognitive rehabilitation. She has applied Positron Emission Tomography (PET) to study individuals with post-concussion sequelae from mild traumatic brain injury and olfaction in Alzheimer’s Disease, and has been involved in functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) research examining language processing, executive functions, and affective memory in healthy and clinical populations (e.g. stroke, anxiety, schizophrenia, dementia), as well as, assessing neural systems used in motor timing/timing perception in patients with Parkinson's Disease. Her main research interests are to investigate underlying neural substrates involved in higher cognition in the cerebellum, as well as changes in cognitive processes in healthy aging and dementia through the application of neuroimaging techniques, such as fMRI, diffusion MRI,Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), and most recently electroencephalography (EEG). The goal of her research is to apply these paradigms to study and to develop neuroimaging markers in the cerebro-cerebellar circuitry for clinical groups, and to further understand the processes of neurodevelopmental (e.g. schizophrenia, dyslexia, autism) and neurodegenerative (e.g. dementia, healthy aging) conditions that would be informative to evidence-based interventions.

A recent research development in her lab, the Clinical Brain lab, is focusing on the Neuroscience of Learning and Education. In particular, their lab is investigating the neurophysiological changes in aging neuroscience for learning in language, memory and executive control networks. This allows development of neuromodulation techniques to optimize and/or enhance brain functions for learning. They are also developing research in understanding the effects of emotion on cognition and self-regulation with the use of neuroimaging

Higher cognition in the cerebellum 

*Ng, H. B. T., Kao, K. L. C., Chan, Y. C., Chew, E., Chuang, K. H., & #Chen, S. H. A. (2016). Modality specificity in the cerebro-cerebellar neurocircuitry during working memory. Behavioural Brain Research, 305, 164-173. (Tier1; SJR-Q1; IF-3.002)
*Sobczak-Edmans, M., Ng, T. H. B., Chan, Y. C., Chew, E., Chuang, K. H., & #Chen, S. H. A. (2016). Temporal dynamics of visual working memory. NeuroImage, 124, 1021-1030. (Tier1; JCR-Q1; IF-5.463)
E, K. H., *Chen, S-H. A., Ho, M-H. R., & Desmond, J. D. (2014). A Meta-analysis of Cerebellar Contributions to Higher Cognition from PET and fMRI studies. Human Brain Mapping, 35(2):593-615. doi:10.1002/hbm.22194.
Matsuo, K., Chen, S-H. A., Liu, C-M., Liu, C-C., Hwang, T-J, Hsieh, M. H., Chien, Y. L., Hwu, H-G., & Tseng, W-Y. (2013). Stable signatures of schizophrenia in the cortical-subcortical-cerebellar network using fMRI of verbal working memory. Schizophrenia Research. doi:10.1016/j.schres.2013.10.028.
Kirschen, M. P., Chen, S-H. A., & *Desmond, J. E. (2009). Modality Specific Cerebro-Cerebellar Activations in Verbal Working Memory: An fMRI Study. Behavioural Neurology, 21, 1-13.
Kirschen, M. P., Davis-Ratner, M. S., Milner, M. W.,Chen, S-H. A., Schraedley-Desmond, P., Fisher, P. G., & *Desmond, J. E. (2008). Verbal memory impairments in children after cerebellar tumor resection. Behavioural Neurology, 20, 1-15.
*Desmond, J. E., Chen, S-H. A., & Shieh, P. B. (2005). Cerebellar transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) impairs verbal working memory performance. Annals of Neurology, 58, 553-560.
Chen, S-H. A., & *Desmond, J. E. (2005). Temporal Dynamics of Cerebro-Cerebellar Network Recruitment During a Cognitive Task. Neuropsychologia, 43(9), 1227-1237.
Chen, S-H. A., & *Desmond, J. E. (2005). Cerebro-cerebellar networks during articulatory rehearsal and verbal working memory tasks. NeuroImage, 24(2): 332-338.
Kirschen, M. P., Chen, S-H. A., Schraedley-Desmond, P., & *Desmond, J. E. (2005). Load and practice dependent increases in cerebro-cerebellar activation in verbal working memory: An fMRI study. NeuroImage, 24(2), 462-472.
Desmond, J. E., Chen, S-H. A., DeRosa, E., Pryor, M. R., Pfefferbaum, A., & Sullivan, E. V. (2003). Increased Fronto-Cerebellar Activation in Alcoholics During Verbal Working Memory: an fMRI Study. NeuroImage, 19(4), 1510-20.
Sullivan, E. V., Harding, A. J., Pentney, R., Dlugos, C., Martin, P. R., Parks, M. H., Desmond, J. E., Chen, S-H. A., Pryor, M. R., De Rosa, E., & Pfefferbaum, A. (2003). Disruption of frontocerebellar circuitry and function in alcoholism. Alcoholism-Clinical and Experimental Research, 27, 2, 301-309.

Aging and Neuroscience 

*Archer, J. A., Lee, A., Qiu, A., #Chen, S. H. A. (2018) Working memory, age and education: a lifespan fMRI study. PLOS ONE, Mar,
*Heng, J. G., Gan, S., Nakai, T., & #Chen, S. H. A. (2018). Age-related differences in grey matter asymmetry during language and visuospatial processing. 2018 Organization for Human Brain Mapping Conference, Singapore.
*Heng, G.J., Wu, C.Y., Archer, J.A., Miyakoshi, M., Nakai, T., #Chen, S.H.A. (2017). The role of regional heterogeneity in age-related differences in functional hemispheric asymmetry: an fMRI study. Aging, Neuropsychology and Cognition.
*Heng, G.J., Gan, S., Nakai, T., & #Chen, S.H.A. (2017). Age-related changes in grey matter volume in language and visuospatial processing: A voxel-based morphometric study. INCF NeuroInformatics 2017, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
*Heng, G.J., Gan, S., Nakai, T., & #Chen, S.H.A. (2017). Age-related changes in grey matter volume in language and visuospatial processing: A voxel-based morphometric study. INCF NeuroInformatics 2017, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
*Heng, G.J., Wu, C.Y., Archer, J.A., Miyakoshi, M., Nakai, T., #Chen, S.H.A. (2017). The role of regional heterogeneity in age-related differences in functional hemispheric asymmetry: an fMRI study. Aging, Neuropsychology and Cognition.
*Archer, J. A., Lee, A., Qiu, A., & #Chen, S. H. A. (2017). Functional connectivity of resting-state, working memory and inhibition networks in perceived stress. Neurobiology of Stress.
*Archer, J. A., Lee, A., Qiu, A., & #Chen, S. H. A. (2016). A Comprehensive Analysis of Connectivity and Aging Over the Adult Life Span. Brain connectivity, 6(2), 169-185 (Tier2; SJR-Q2; IFe-2.57)
*Archer, J. A., Lim, Z. T., Teh, H. C., Chang, W. C., & #Chen, S. H. A (2015). The Effect of Age on the Relationship Between Stress, Well-Being and Health in a Singaporean Sample. Ageing International, 40(4), 413-425. (SJR-Q3; IFe-0.65)
*Lee, A., Ratnarajah, N., Tuan, T. A., Chen, S. H. A, & Qiu, A. (2015). Adaptation of brain functional and structural networks in aging. PloS one, 10(4), e0123462. (Tier1; JCR-Q1; IF-3.057)
Lee, A., Archer, J. A., Wong, C. K. Y.,Chen, S. H. A, & Qiu, A. (2013). Age-Related Decline in Paired Associate Learning in Healthy Chinese Adults. PLoS ONE 8(11): e80648. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0080648.
Teh, H. C., Archer, J. A., Chang, W. C., & *Chen, S. H. A (2013). Mental well-being mediates the relationship between perceived stress and perceived health. Stress and Health. doi:10.1002/smi.2510.
Yang, X., Goh, A., Chen, S. H. A, & *Qiu, A. (2012). Evolution of Hippocampal Shapes Across the Human Lifespan. Human Brain Mapping. doi:10.1002/hbm.22125.
*Miyakoshi, M., *Chen, S. H. A, Matsuo, K., Wu, C-Y., Suzuki, A., & Nakai, T. (2012). Extensive stimulus repetition leads older adults to show delayed functional magnetic resonance imaging adaptation. Brain Imaging and Behavior. doi:10.1007/s11682-012-9148-5.
Ta, A. T., Huang, S-E., Chiu, M-J., Hua, M-S., Tseng, W-Y. I., *Chen, S. H. A, & *Qiu, A. (2011). Age-related vulnerabilities along the hippocampal longitudinal axis. Human Brain Mapping. doi: 10.1002/hbm.21364
Haut, M. W.,Chen, S. H. A, & Edwards, S. (1999). Working memory, semantics, and normal aging. Aging, Neuropsychology and Cognition, 6(3), 179-186.

Science of Learning :

*Eng, Z. H. D., Yick, Y. Y., Guo, Y., Xu, H., Reiner, M., Cham, T. J., & #Chen, S. H. A (accepted) 3D faces are recognized more accurately and faster than 2D faces, but with similar inversion effects. Vision Research.
*Lee, S. -H., Walker, Z. M., Hale, J. B., & #Chen, S. H. A (2017). Frontal-Subcortical Circuitry in Social Attachment and Relationships: A Cross-Sectional fMRI ALE Meta-Analysis. Behavioural Brain Research. DOI: 10.1016/j.bbr.2017.02.032. (Tier1; SJR-Q1; IF-3.002)
Hale, J. B.,Chen, S. H. A, Tan, S. C., Poon, K., Fitzer, K. R., & Boyd, L. A. (2016). Reconciling individual differences with collective needs: the juxtaposition of sociopolitical and neuroscience perspectives on remediation and compensation of student skill deficits. Trends in Neuroscience and Education, 5(2), 41-51. (Tier1; SJR-Q1; IFe-3.12)

Social Neuroscience

*Leow, W. Y. D., Chew, C. L. A., Chen, S. H. A. (2018). Meta-analysis of neural activation associated with different deception detection tasks. 24th Annual Human Brain Mapping Conference, Singapore.


Bhattarcharjee, S., Chew, A., Liu, H.S., Yeo, M.C.L, Wu, C.Y., O'Brien, B., & Chen, S.A., (2018).Investigating the change in blood pressure with respect to the reference electrode positioning in tDCS. 4th Annual Brain Stimulation and Imaging Meeting, Singapore
Wu CY, Yeo MCL, Matsuo K, Tseng WYI, & Chen SHA. (2018). The Neural Network of Reading Influenced by Lexical Decision and Lexical Recognition Demands. Poster for the 24th Annual Meeting of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping, Singapore.
Liu HS, & Chen SHA. (2017). A meta-analysis of neuroimaging studies in English, Japanese, and Chinese visual semantic processing. Poster for THE 23th Annual Meeting of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping, Vancouver, Canada.
*Liu H. S. , & #Chen, S. H. A (2015). Neural Correlates of Chinese and Japanese Semantic Processing: A Meta-analysis. Language and Cognitive Science, 1(1), 77-107.
*Wu, C. Y., Koh, J. Y. S., Ho, M. H. R., Miyakoshi, M., Nakai, T., & #Chen, S. H. A (2014). Age-related differences in effective connectivity of brain regions involved in Japanese kanji processing with homophone judgment task. Brain and Language, 135, 32-41. (Tier1; JCR-Q1; IF-3.038)
Wu, C-Y., Ho, M-H. R., & *Chen, S. H. A (2012). A Meta-Analysis of fMRI Studies on Chinese Orthographic, Phonological, and Semantic Processing, NeuroImage, 64, 281-291. doi:10.1016/ j.neuroimage.2012.06.047
Matsuo, K.,*Chen, S. H. A, Hue, C. W., Wu, C-Y., Bagarinao, E. T., Tseng, W-Y. I., & Nakai, T. (2010). Neural substrates of phonological selection for Japanese kanji character based on fMRI investigations. NeuroImage, 50, 1280-1291.
*Chen, S. H. A, Matsuo, K., Nakai, T., Bagarinao, E., Ho, M-H. R., Tseng, W-Y. I., & Hue, C-W. (2009). Reproducibility analysis to validate language processes in Kanji and Chinese characters under different scanner environments. Medical Imaging Technology, 27(4), 217-223.
Kareken, D. A., Lowe, M. J., Chen, S. H. A, Lurito, J. T., & Mathews, V. P. (2000). Word rhyming as a probe of hemispheric language dominance with functional MRI. Neuropsychiatry, Neuropsychology, and Behavioral Neurology, 13 (4), 264-270.
Lurito, T. J., Kareken, D. A., Lowe, M. J., Chen, S. H. A, & Mathews, V. P. (2000). Comparison of rhyming and word generation with fMRI. Human Brain Mapping, 10(3), 99-106.


Edmans-Sobcszak, M., & #Chen, S.H.A. (2017) Modulation of resting-state networks by visual working memory. INCF NeuroInformatics 2017, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
*Eng, Z.H.D., Yick, Y.Y., Guo, Y., Xu, H., Reiner, M., Cham, T.J., & #Chen, S.H.A. (2017). 3D faces are recognized more accurately and faster than 2D faces, but with similar inversion effects. Vision Research, 138: 78-85.
Schulte, T.,Chen, S. H. A, Muller-Oehring, E. M., Adalsteinsoon, E., Pfefferbaum, A., & *Sullivan, E. V. (2006). fMRI Evidence for individual differences in premotor modulation of extrastriatal visual-perceptual processing of redundant targets. NeuroImage, 30(3), 973-982.


*Khosrowabadi, R., Quek, H. C., Ang, K. K., Wahab, A., & Chen, S. H. A (2015). Dynamic screening of autistic children in various mental states using pattern of connectivity between brain regions. Applied Soft Computing, 32, 335-346. (Tier1; JCR-Q1; IF-2.857)
Bernard-Opitz, V.,Chen, S. H. A, Kok, A. J., & Sriram, N. (2000). Analysis of pragmatic aspects of communicative behavior in non-verbal and verbal children with autism. Praxis der Kinderpsychologie und Kinderpsychiatrie (German), 49, 97-108.
*Chen, S. H. A & Bernard-Opitz, V. (1993). Comparison of personal and computer assisted instruction in children with autism. Mental Retardation, 31(6), 368-376.

Other Clinical Populations:

Alcoholism and Animal Models

Woods, J. E., McKay, P. F., Masters, J., Seyoum, R., Chen, S. H. A, La Duff, L., Lewis, M. J., June, H. L. (2003). Differential responding for brain stimulation reward and sucrose in high-alcohol-drinking (HAD) and low-alcohol-drinking (LAD) rats. Alcoholism-Clinical and Experimental Research, 27(6), 926-936.
June, H. L., Cason, C. R., Chen, S. H. A, & Lewis, M. J. (1998). Buprenorphine alters ethanol self-administration in rats: Dose-response and time-dependent effects. Psychopharmacology, 140U, 29-37. (SCI)
June, H. L., Duemler, S. E., Greene, T. L., Williams, J. A., Lin, M., Devaraju, S. L., Chen, S. H. A, Lewis, M. J., & Murphy, J. M. (1995). Effects of the benzodiazepine inverse agonist RO19-4603 on the maintenance of tolerance to a single dose of ethanol. The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, 274, 1105-1112.


Kareken, D. A., Doty, R. L., Moberg, P. J., Mosnik, D., *Chen, S. H. A, Farlow, M. R., & Hutchins, G. D. (2001). Olfactory-evoked Regional Cerebral Blood Flow in Alzheimer Disease. Neuropsychology, 15(1), 18-29.


*Kwok, F. Y., O’Brien, B.A., Tay., S.K.H, & #Chen, S.H.A. (2018). Understanding Verbal Working Memory Deficits in Children with Dyslexia. 24rd Annual Human Brain Mapping Conference, Singapore.
*Kwok FY, O’Brien BA, Tay SKH, Chang WT, & #Chen SHA. (2017). Verbal working memory network in Adults and Children: An Effective Connectivity Study. Poster for The 23rd Annual Human Brain Mapping Conference, Vancouver, Canada.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Eng, G.K., Gupta, B., Jarayaman, H., Yim, J.H.E., Ho, R.C.M., Ho, C.S.H., Zhang, M.W., Mahendran, R., Sim, K., Chen, S.H.A.(2018) Cerebro-cerebellar resting-state functional connectivity of alterations in OCD. 2018 Organization for Human Brain Mapping Conference, Singapore.
*Eng GK, Gupta B, Ang TSD, Long SY, Ho CMR, Ho SHC, Zhang MW, Mahendran R, Sim K, & #Chen SHA. (2017). ICA of Resting-State fMRI in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Poster for The 23rd Annual Human Brain Mapping Conference, Vancouver, Canada.
*Eng, G. K., Sim, K., & #Chen, S. H. A (2015). Meta-analytic investigations of structural grey matter, executive domain-related functional activations, and white matter diffusivity in obsessive compulsive disorder: an integrative review. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 52, 233-257. (Tier1; JCR-Q1; IF-8.580)


Chen, C. L. H., Ikram, K., Anqi, Q., Yin, W. T., & Chen, S. H. A, & Venketasubramanian, N. (2013). The NeuroAiD II (MLC901) in Vascular Cognitive Impairment Study (NEURITES). Cerebrovascular Disease, 35(suppl 1):23-29. doi:10.1159/000346234
Chen, S. H. A (2012). Editorial. Neuroscience and Neuroeconomics, 1:1-2.
Chang, W-H., *Tang, P-F., Wang, Y-H., Lin, K-H., Chiu, M-J., & Chen, S. H. A (2010). Role of the premotor cortex in leg selection and anticipatory postural adjustments associated with a rapid stepping task in patients with stroke. Gait & Posture, 32, 487-493.
Tang, P. F., Ko, Y-H., Luo, Z-A., Yeh, F-C.,Chen, S. H. A, & *Tseng, W-Y. I. (2010). Tract-specific Quantitative Analysis of Corticospinal Tract Integrity in Subcortical Ischemic Stroke: A Reliability and Validity Study. American Journal of Neuroradiology, 31(6), 1023-1030.

Traumatic Brain Injury

*Chen, S. H. A, Kareken, D. A., Fastenau, P. S., Trexler, L. E., & Hutchins, G. D. (2003). A study of persistent post concussion symptoms in mild head trauma using positron emission tomography. Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry, 74, 326-332. (Editor’s Choice)
*Chen, S. H. A, Thomas, J., Glueckauf, R. L., & Bracy, O. L. (1997). The effectiveness of computer-assisted cognitive rehabilitation for persons with traumatic brain injury. Brain Injury, 11(3), 197-209.


Prasad, D. K., Liu, S., Chen, S. H. A. , Quek, C. (2018). Sentiment analysis using EEG activities for suicidology. Expert Systems With Applications, 103:206-217
Fung H., Gan S.R., Lee S.H., Ho R.C., & Chen S.H.A. (2018). An fMRI investigation of hot and cool executive functions in healthy adults. 018 Organization for Human Brain Mapping Conference, Singapore.
Heng, J. G., Leong, L. A., Ho, M-H., R., & Chen, S. H. A. (2018). Music preferences in an Asian culture: An examination of the MUSIC Model in a Singaporean context. 15th International Conference on Music Perception and Cognition (ICMPC) & 10th triennial conference of the European Society for the Cognitive Sciences of Music, Montreal, Canada.
*Lee SH , & #Chen S-HA. (2017). The neural circuitry in reward decision making and theory of mind: an ALE meta-analysis study. Poster for THE 23th Annual Meeting of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping, Vancouver, Canada.
Chung, S.H., & Chen, S.H.A. (2017). Classifications of fMRI Data using Deep Learning Approach. INCF NeuroInformatics 2017, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
*Teh, H. C., Archer, J. A., Chang, W., & #Chen, S. H. A. (2015). Mental Well‐Being Mediates the Relationship between Perceived Stress and Perceived Health. Stress and Health, 31(1), 71-77. (Tier2; SJR-Q2; IFe-1.57)
Matsuo, K., Chen, S. H. A, *Tseng, W.Y.I. (2012). AveLI: A robust lateralization index in functional magnetic resonance imaging using unbiased threshold-free computation. Journal of Neuroscience Methods, 205, 119–129.
*Nakai, T., Bagarinao, E., Miyakoshi, M., Matsuo, K., Tseng, W-Y. I., & *Chen, S. H. A (2009). Medical GRID as an ICT for Collaborative Neuroimaging, IEICE Technical Report MI2008-132, 329 – 334.
*Chen, S. H. A, Tseng, W-Y. I., Nakai, T., Bagarinao, E., & Matsuo, K. (2008). A Vision for Translating Neuroimaging Techniques into Clinical Applications through Collaboration. Brain Imaging and Behavior, 2(4):350-8.
Chen, S. H. A (2008). Transcranial magnetic stimulation in cognitive brain research. In Onozuka M & Yen CT (Eds.). Novel Trends in Brain Science: Brain Imaging, Learning and Memory, Stress and Fear, and Pain. Editors. Springer, Japan
*Desmond, J. E. & Chen, S. H. A (2002). Ethical issues in the clinical application of fMRI: Factors affecting the validity and interpretation of activations. Brain and Cognition, 50, 482-497.
Fekete DM, Bond GR, McDonel EC, Salyers MP, Chen, S. H. A & Miller L. (1998). Rural assertive community treatment: A field experiment. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal, 21 (4), 371-379.
Svanum, S., Chen, S. H. A, & Bublitz, S. (1997). Internet-based instruction of the principles of baserate and prediction: A demonstration project. Behavior Research Methods, Instruments, & Computers, 29(2) , 228-231.
McDonel, E. C., Bond, G., Salyers, M., Fekete, D., Chen, S. H. A, McGrew, J. G., & Miller, L. (1997). Implementing assertive community treatment programs in rural settings. Administration and Policy in Mental Health, 25(5), 153-173.