Steven Chase is a professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. Chase uses brain-computer interfaces to study motor learning and skill acquisition. His work stands to provide a better understanding of how movement information is represented in networks of neurons in the brain and will inform the development of neural prosthetics.

Chase was a Wimmer Faculty Fellow in 2013-14 and the recipient of a National Institutes of Health Individual National Research Service Award in 2002. His work has been supported by the NIH, DARPA, and the Craig H. Neilsen Foundation.

Google Scholar
Steven Chase
Chase Lab website

Designing Brain-Computer Interfaces to Understand Motor Learning & Control


2006 Ph.D., Biomedical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University

1999 MS, Electrical Engineering, University of California, Berkeley

1997 BS, Applied Physics, California Institute of Technology

Research Interests

Media mentions

CMU Engineering

It takes two: analyzing neural activity from calcium imaging

Biomedical engineering researchers analyzed existing methods that are used to interpret calcium imaging recordings, and proposed a novel method that combines two leading approaches.

CMU Engineering

Dark therapy shows promise in addressing lazy eye condition

A therapy to aid patients with amblyopia, also known as “lazy eye,” is the focus of a new pilot study by Carnegie Mellon researchers.

CMU Engineering

Does the brain learn in the same way that machines learn?

A new perspectives piece co-authored by Carnegie Mellon University researchers relates machine learning to biological learning.


Three-million dollar grant to fund study of internal states in the brain

Steve Chase, Matt Smith, and Byron Yu were recently awarded a $3 million grant from the NSF to support research investigating internal states in the brain, including motivation, attention, and arousal, using brain-computer interfaces.

Multiple outlets

Chase research on “choking under pressure” featured

Research from BME’s Steven Chase on the “choking under pressure” phenomenon in rhesus monkeys has been featured in Ars Technica, Nerdist, The Daily Mail, and Technology Networks.

CMU Engineering

Research sheds new light on decreased performance under pressure

Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh explore the phenomenon of choking under pressure and show for the first time that animals also exhibit this strange tendency.


He and colleagues receive NIH/NIBIB Neural Interfacing Training Grant

BME’s Bin He and his team were recently awarded an NIH/NIBIB Predoctoral Training Grant on Neural Interfacing. Over the next five years, the grant will fund the effort to establish an integrative Neural Interfacing graduate training program at Carnegie Mellon University. Other investigators of the grant are Marlene Behrmann, Steve Chase, and Matt Smith.

CMU Engineering

Connecting the dots between engagement and learning

New research from Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh examines how changes in internal states, such as engagement, can affect the learning process using BCI technology.

CMU Engineering

Stabilizing brain-computer interfaces

New research will drastically improve brain-computer interfaces and their ability to remain stabilized, greatly reducing the need to recalibrate these devices during or between experiments.

CMU Engineering

Brain changes when mastering new skills

Mastering a new skill—whether a sport, an instrument, or a craft—takes time and training. While it is understood that a healthy brain is capable of learning these new skills, how the brain changes in order to develop new behaviors is a relative mystery.


Chase quoted in Reuters on Stanford BCI experiment

BME’s Steve Chase was quoted in Reuters on a recent experiment performed by Stanford University. While previous experiments have had some success using brain sensors paired with customized computers to help paralyzed patients type up to eight words a minute, the article says, the current test focused on making it possible for these patients to use tablets and smartphones right out of the box without any special modifications.

Quanta Magazine

Yu and Chase quoted in Quanta on roadblocks to learning

Byron Yu and Steve Chase were quoted in Quanta Magazine about their research on how the brain reused old neural patterns when learning new tasks.