This is an NIH Pathway to Independence Award, which provides an opportunity for promising postdoctoral scientists to receive both mentored and independent research support from the same award. The aim of this research is to reveal the fundamental mechanisms that underlie human comprehension of spoken language using a promising approach called electrocorticography (ECoG), which involves the direct application of electrodes to the brain surface for recording cortical activity during neurosurgical procedures. The understanding of how speech is coded in the brain has significant implications for numerous language disorders (e.g. aphasia, dyslexia, autism, et alia). Abnormal perception of phonemes is a central component to language disability in all of these conditions, and findings from this research could lead to the development of new diagnostic and rehabilitative strategies for language disorders, including autism.