Dr Chau obtained his DPhil degree from University of Oxford and his MPhil and BSc degrees from The University of Hong Kong. His key research interests are in the neuroscience of reward-guided decision making and learning. In our modern lives, it is very common that we make decisions between a large number of options. However, our knowledge about neural mechanisms of decision making is mainly based on experiments that involve a few options. Hence, recently his research focuses on investigating whether these mechanisms are generalizable to decisions with many options. Key research questions involve how do people sample information from large sets of options? How do people make use of information to guide their decision making?
Dr Chau generally conducts his research using a combination of brain imaging, brain stimulation, eye tracking and computational modelling techniques. His research findings mainly show that (1) in two-option decisions, the lateral orbitofrontal cortex is important for reinforcement learning and guiding optimal decisions and; (2) in three-option decisions, people make suboptimal decisions and the decision signal in ventromedial prefrontal cortex is attenuated; (3) when there are plenty options, the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex is involved in filtering out choice-irrelevant information. These findings were published in journals such as Nature Neuroscience and Neuron.
Education and Academic Qualifications
- Bachelor of Science, The University of Hong Kong
- Master of Philosophy, The University of Hong Kong
- Doctor of Philosophy, University of Oxford