Ewen Lavoie

MD Class of 2024 at the University of Calgary; PhD Candidate at the University of Alberta; Thinking about VR, Embodiment, and Consciousness


Ewen is a student in the MD class of 2024 at the University of Calgary, and also a PhD Candidate at the University of Alberta researching embodiment and object interactions in real and virtual worlds. Using visual attention measured via eye movements, and movement fluidity measured via body movements, he creates complex measures of eye, hand, and body coordination. He holds Bachelor’s degrees in Biology and Education, and a Master’s degree in Neuroscience and Movement.

Not only an expert user of many human experimental tools and techniques (Eye Tracking, Motion Tracking, Virtual and Augmented Reality, Electroencephalography, Electromyography, Galvanic Skin Response, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, Transcutaneous Spinal Cord Stimulation, and Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation), Ewen also possesses the statistical knowledge to analyze large complex datasets, as well as the skills to program in several languages (R, Matlab, Unity, C#, C++, Python).

Ewen has published scholarly articles in prestigious journals including the Journal of the American Medical Association Network Open, the Journal of Vision, Comparative Cognition and Behavior Reviews, and the Neuroscience of Consciousness. He has received hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants and scholarships, has presented at dozens of national and international conferences winning awards for his work, and has penned popular science articles about human behaviour, virtual reality, and the future of technology on the human experience.

Ewen instructs undergraduate courses, and volunteers with local, national and international organizations teaching brain injury prevention strategies, promoting viewpoint diversity, and communicating strategies for better social media practices. Ewen taught high school Biology and Mathematics for several years, and coached elite youth and university competitive swimming for over a decade.