Dr Joseph Galea PhD


Independent Research Fellow / Birmingham Fellow

School of Psychology


Contact details

School of Psychology
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT


Dr Galea is broadly interested in motor control. This ranges from the neural correlates of motor learning to movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease. At present, he is particularly interested in how reward/punishment influences our actions and can be used to alter the speed at which our motor system learns or retains new movements.

Personal website: www.josephgalea.weebly.com


BSc, University of Birmingham
PhD, University of Birmingham


Dr Galea completed his PhD on bimanual coordination in the School of Psychology at the University of Birmingham with Professor Chris Miall. He subsequently worked at Johns Hopkins University as a research fellow where he investigated the neural correlates of motor learning with Dr Pablo Celnik. Following this, he moved to University College London as a senior research fellow with Professor John Rothwell and became interested in the motor deficits of Parkinson’s disease patients. Dr Galea has now taken up an independent research fellow post at the University of Birmingham which is funded by the ‘Birmingham Fellows’ scheme.

Postgraduate supervision

I am currently looking for potential post doctorate candidates who would be interested in applying to the Marie Curie schemes, which would fund a European/Non-European fellow to work with me in Birmingham for 2 years with a highly competitive salary. The application deadline is August 2013.

Potential postgraduate students should email me to discuss funding opportunities.


Research interests

Motor learning, Motor control, Parkinson’s disease, Brain stimulation, Brain imaging

Other activities

Dr Galea won the prestigious Klein-Vogelbach prize for the research of human movement (2012).


Google Scholar Citation Page

Schlerf J, Galea J.M, Bastian A.J & Celnik P. Dynamic modulation of cerebellar excitability for abrupt, but not gradual visuomotor adaptation (2012). Journal of Neuroscience 32(34):11610-7. 32(34):11610-7.

Galea J.M*, Bestmann S*, Beigi M, Jahanshahi M & Rothwell J.C. Action reprogramming in Parkinson’s disease: response to prediction errors is modulated by levels of dopamine (2012). Journal of Neuroscience 32(2):542-50. 32(2):542-50.

Cantarero G, Galea J.M, Ajagbe L, Salas R, Willis J & Celnik P. Disrupting the Ventral Premotor Cortex Interferes with the Contribution of Action Observation to Use-dependent Plasticity (2011) . Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 23(12):3757-66.

Holland R, Leff A.P, Joseph O, Galea J.M, Mahalekshmi D, Price C.J, Rothwell J.C & Crinion J. Left frontal anodal tDCS elicits reduced neural activity in Broca’s area and faster naming responses (2011). Current Biology 21(16):1403-7.

Jayaram G, Galea J.M, Bastian A.J & Celnik P. Human locomotor adaptive learning is proportional to depression of cerebellar excitability (2011). Cerebral Cortex 21(8):1901-9.

Galea J.M, Vazquez A, Pasricha N, Orban de Xivry J.J & Celnik P. Dissociating the roles of the cerebellum and motor cortex during adaptive learning: the motor cortex retains what the cerebellum learns (2011). Cerebral Cortex 21(8):1761-70.

Galea J.M*, Albert N.B*, Dyte T & Miall R.C. Theta-burst TMS to the DLPFC facilitates the consolidation of procedural skills (2010). Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 22(6):1158-68. .

Galea J.M, Jayaram G, Ajagbe L & Celnik P. Modulation of cerebellar excitability by polarity-specific non-invasive direct current stimulation (2009). Journal of Neuroscience 29:9115-22

Galea J.M & Celnik P. Brain polarization enhances the formation and retention of motor memories (2009). Journal of Neurophysiology 102: 294-301. 

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