The Sonny Carter Life Sciences Laboratory

Language Research Center

Georgia State University


The SCLSL is a component of Georgia State University's Language Research Center . Constructed by GSU in 1989, the laboratory supports research in comparative and cognitive science. The laboratory was dedicated in 1992 in the name of native Georgian Manley L. (Sonny) Carter, Jr. The dedication ceremony was attended by members of Dr. Carter's family, by Rep. John Lewis (D - GA), and by representatives of NASA and Georgia State University.

Captain Carter was an astronaut, physician, pilot, and scientist who provided guidance and support for the space life sciences research at Georgia State University. His death in a 1991 plane crash was a tremendous loss to his family and friends, to NASA, to the biomedical and behavioral research community, and to the country. It is an honor and an inspiration for this GSU laboratory to bear his name.


Scientists at the Sonny Carter Life Sciences Laboratory study the behavior and performance of humans and nonhuman animals (principally rhesus monkeys and chimpanzees). This research is designed to elucidate the processes of attention, learning, and memory -- as these constructs are manifest across species. Experiments are designed to reveal how these mental abilities develop, how they correspond with brain mechanisms, how they relate to one another, and how they are affected by cognitive (e.g., perceived control), social (e.g., competition), and environmental (e.g., microgravity) variables. Moreover, research at the SCLSL is designed to examine how psychological well-being can be measured and maintained.


The Sonny Carter Life Sciences Laboratory offers opportunities for biobehavioral collaborative research with investigators from institutions around the world. Graduate and undergraduate students are involved in every phase of the research. For additional information, contact David A. Washburn, Ph.D.

Related links

Psychomotor Test System (PTS)
David A. Washburn, Ph.D.

B2EC2 (Brain, Behavior and the Emergence of Cognitive Competence)



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