Erin Cressman


Erin Cressman
Associate Professor

2007, Ph.D., Motor Control, University of British Columbia
2002, B.Sc.H,Mathematics and Chemistry, Queen's University
2001, B.P.H.E., Physical Education, Queen's University

MNT 360

Office: (613) 562-5800 ext. 4264

Work E-mail:

Erin Cressman


I started at the University of Ottawa in 2009 after completing a two-year postdoctoral fellowship at the Centre for Vision Research at York University.  In general, my research examines how the brain processes sensory information for goal-directed actions.

We are constantly performing goal-directed actions.  For example, in the last few minutes, I have picked up my cup of tea, used a computer mouse to scroll through a document on my computer and typed these words on my keyboard.  Now, most of us would consider these simple acts and perform them without too great an effort or too much thought. However, while these actions may seem simple, in order for them to be carried out correctly, the brain must perform a complex series of sensory to motor transformations. Specifically, in order for me to pick up my cup of tea without spilling, my brain must determine where the cup is with respect to my hand and body and how full it is, and then integrate all of this information to plan an appropriate reaching movement. 

Research Interests

Sensorimotor control, motor learning, neuroscience

Ongoing Research

In order to determine how the brain processes sensory information for motor output, my research focuses on: 

  • Visuomotor control in the absence of conscious awareness:  Can our actions be guided by (visual) stimuli that we never experience at a conscious level?
  • Sensory integration:  How are different sources of sensory information (e.g., visual information and the sense of body position) integrated to form a coherent estimate of where one’s limb is in space?
  • Sensory and motor learning
  • Action vs. perception

Selected Publications

  • Zbib B, Henriques DYP, & Cressman EK, "Proprioceptive recalibration arises slowly compared to reach adaptation", Experimental Brain Research, (in press).
  • Flannigan JC, Chua R, & Cressman EK, "The rapid-chase theory does not extend to movement execution ", Consciousness and Cognition, 42, 75-92, 2016.
  • Cressman EK, & Henriques DYP, "Generalization patterns for reach adaptation and proprioceptive recalibration differ following visuomotor learning", Journal of Neurophysiology, 114, 354-365, 2015.
  • Drummond NM, Cressman EK, & Carlsen AN, “Inhibition of motor-related activation during a simple reaction time task requiring visuomotor mental rotation”, Behavioral Neuroscience, 129, 160–169, 2015.
  • Khanafer S, & Cressman EK, "Sensory integration during reaching: the effects of manipulating visual target availability", Experimental Brain Research, 232, 3833-3846, 2014.
  • Barkley V, Salomonczyk D, Cressman EK, & Henriques DYP, "Reach adaptation and proprioceptive recalibration following terminal visual feedback of the hand", Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 8, 1-11, 2014.
  • Clayton, HA, Cressman EK, & Henriques DYP, "The effect of visuomotor adaptation on proprioceptive localization; the contributions of perceptual and motor changes", Experimental Brain Research, 232, 2073-2086, 2014.
  • Blinch J, Cameron BD, Cressman EK, Franks IM, Carpenter MG, & Chua R, "Comparing movement preparation of unimanual, bimanual symmetric, and bimanual asymmetric movements", Experimental Brain Research, 232, 947-955, 2014.
  • Salomonczyk D, Cressman EK, & Henriques DYP, "The role of the cross-sensory error signal in visuomotor adaptation", Experimental Brain Research, 228, 313-325, 2013.
  • Cressman EK, Lam MY, Franks IM, Enns, JT, & Chua R, " Unconscious and out of control: Subliminal priming is insensitive to observer expectations ", Consciousness and Cognition, 22, 716-728, 2013.
  • Drummond NM, Carlsen AN, & Cressman EK, "Motor preparation is delayed for both directly and indirectly cued movements during an anticipation-timing task", Brain Research, 1506, 44-57, 2013.
  • Henriques DYP, & Cressman EK, "Visuomotor adaptation and proprioceptive recalibration", Journal of Motor Behavior, 44, 435-444, 2012.
  • Cressman EK, & Henriques DYP, "Reach adaptation and proprioceptive recalibration", Progress in Brain Research, 191, 91-90, 2011.
  • Salomonczyk D, Cressman EK, & Henriques DYP, "Proprioceptive recalibration following prolonged training and increasing distortions in visuomotor adaptation", Neuropsychologia, 49, 3053-3062, 2011.
  • Cressman EK, Cameron BD, Lam MY, Franks IM, & Chua R, "Movement duration does not affect automatic online control", Human Movement Science, 29, 871-881, 2010.
  • Cressman EK, & Henriques DYP, "Proprioceptive Recalibration leads to Visuomotor Adaptation", Journal of Neurophysiology, 103, 1888-1895, 2010.
  • Cressman EK, Salomonczyk D, & Henriques DYP, "Visuomotor adaptation and cross-sensory recalibration in older adults", Experimental Brain Research, 205, 533-544, 2010.
  • Cressman EK, & Henriques DYP, "Sensory recalibration of hand position following visuomotor adaptation", Journal of Neurophysiology, 102, 3505-3518, 2009.
  • Cressman EK, Franks IM, Enns JT, & Chua R, "On-line control of pointing is modified by unseen visual shapes", Consciousness and Cognition, 16, 265-275, 2007.
  • Cressman EK, Franks IM, Enns JT, & Chua R, "No automatic pilot for visually guided aiming based on color", Experimental Brain Research, 171, 174-183, 2006.

Invited Speaker

  • Cressman EK, "Unconscious and out of control: The influence of subliminal stimuli on goal directed actions", Invited Speaker, The Canadian Society for Psychomotor Learning and Sport Psychology (SCAPPS) Conference, October, 2014.
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