Amandine Van Rinsveld



My general research interests are higher-order cognitive processes and their development, more specifically numerical cognition and language. Currently, I am carrying out my new post-doc project « The neural signature of numerosity: Tracking the cerebral correlates of numerical and continuous magnitude extraction with a frequency-based approach » (acronym: Freq4Num). 


Project summary : Mathematics is a very common source of learning issues in children. The ability to approximate large quantities has been identified as one of the possible bases of mathematical learning, although the specific mechanism by which numerical quantities (i.e. numerosity) are extracted from one’s visual environment are still debated. Most authors agree that humans have a cognitive system for numerical approximation, which is dedicated specifically to processing numerosity. According to an alternative theory, numerosity is extracted by weighing the continuous properties of objects (e.g. size). The Freq4Num project aims at distinguishing between cerebral responses that are specific to numerosity, and those that relate to these continuous properties. Working with teams headed respectively by Alain Content and Xavier de Tiège (functional brain mapping laboratory – LCFC & ULB Neuroscience Institute), I will use a novel approach based on neural synchronization on the stimulation frequency (frequency-tagging) that will allow to measure neuronal correlates that are specific to numerosity and continuous properties, as well as their potential interactions. For more information and updates about the Freq4Num project, please check the following link: 


Brief bio: After my master in psychological sciences at the ULB, I worked at the university of Luxembourg first as a PhD candidate and later as a post-doc researcher on the influence of language on numerical processing and mathematical problem solving in bilingual individuals (PhD thesis: « Do you speak Numbers? The relation between language and numerical cognition through the prism of bilingualism and cross-linguistic investigations », Post-doc project: « Arithmetic in the bilingual brain”). The main methodological approaches I used to address my research questions are behavioral and neuropsychological testing as well as neuro-imaging experimental approaches (fMRI, EEG).  I joined the CRCN in march 2017 as a post-doc researcher to explore the processes by which adults extract numerosity information from visual collections of elements.