Computational Cognitive Neuroscience, 


Computational Psychiatry


Dr. Laura Ana Bustamante is a postdoctoral fellow in the field of computational psychiatry working with Dr. Deanna Barch and the Cognitive Control & Psychopathology Laboratory at Washington University in St. Louis. She is interested in the cognitive processes underlying successfully achieving goals, as well as tools that support goal attainment. Her research focuses on computational approaches to understand psychiatric symptoms related to cognitive control, anxiety, motivation, and affect. She completed her Ph.D. at the Princeton Neuroscience Institute where she studied individual differences in motivation to exert cognitive and physical effort, advised by Dr. Jonathan Cohen, Dr. Nathaniel Daw, and Dr. Amitai Shenhav. Her goal is to move towards neurodiversity-affirming computational psychiatry, including strengths-based research, including experts by experience in the research and science communication process, and focusing on increasing access for disabled people.


Doctor of Philosophy in Neuroscience

Princeton University, Princeton Neuroscience Institute, Princeton, NJ

Completed May, 2022

Advisors: Jonathan D. Cohen, Nathaniel D. Daw, and Amitai S. Shenhav 

Quantitive Neuroscience Training Program participant and National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow. 

Bachelor of Arts       

University of Pennsylvania, College of Arts and Sciences, Philadelphia, PA

Completed May, 2014

Major: Biological Basis of Behavior

Minor: Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies

Graduated Magna Cum Laude with Distinction in Biological Basis of Behavior Program. 

Awards, Honors and Scholarships

The New Jersey Behavioral Health Foundation (2022) Co-investigator, co-grant author, and project lead. Project title ‘Neurobiological and theoretical foundations of cognitive control symptoms of depression’. Co-Principle investigators Drs. Jonathan Cohen and Anna Konova. 

Post-doctoral Fellow, Biomedical Research Training in Drug Abuse (2022) National Institutes of Drug Abuse Institutional National Research Service T32 Grant. 

The New Jersey Alliance for Clinical Translational Science Pilot Project Grant Program Translational and Clinical Sciences Award (2020) Co-investigator, lead grant author, and project lead. Project title ‘Motivation for cognitive and physical effort in depression’. Co-Principle investigators Drs. Jonathan Cohen and Anna Konova. 

Princeton Graduate School Exceptional Service Award (2021). Recognition by the Graduate School for exceptional service as an officer of the Graduate Student Government advocating for students during the COVID-19 pandemic of the 2020-21 academic year. 

Student Travel Award (2018) Conference on Cognitive Computational Neuroscience.

Quantitative and Computational Neuroscience Pre-doctoral Training Program (2016) National Institutes of Mental Health T32 Grant Recipient.

National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow (awarded in the 2014 pre-doctoral competition).

Princeton University Centennial Fellowship (2014-2019).

University of Pennsylvania Edward J. Mathias Scholarship (2012-2014).          

University of Pennsylvania Dean’s List (Academic years 2011-12, 2012-13, 2013-14).

University of Pennsylvania Pre-Doctoral Initiative (formerly the McNair Scholars Program), supports students who are members of groups underrepresented in graduate education and who are firmly committed to completing a doctoral degree program (April 2013-May 2014).

Nu Rho Psi Neuroscience National Honors Society (Fall 2012) University of Pennsylvania chapter.

Cipactli Latino Honors Society (Fall 2013) University of Pennsylvania.

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