Eric Roy

Professor Emeritus

Coordinator Neurobehavioural Assessment Option

Cross appointment with Psychology

Eric Roy




BSc (Waterloo)

MPE (British Columbia)

PhD (Waterloo)

Research interests

Dr. Roy's research is aimed at understanding the neurocognitive and neuromotor mechanisms underlying how movements are learned and controlled. His approach involves examining normal healthy persons as well as those with neurologic disorders such as stroke, Alzheimer's disease and Down syndrome. Since many of these disorders arise in older adults, his work also focuses on the effects of aging. Prehension, movement sequencing, limb gesturing and tool use and disruptions to these movements seen in various neurologic disorders are all of interest.

One line of research is concerned with identifying the basis of manual asymmetries in performance and how these asymmetries vary with and are related to measures of hand preference.

Another focus is on apraxia, a disorder in limb gesturing and tool use. In this work he developed a cognitive neuropsychological model of apraxia to identify disruptions at different stages of gesture production and then to relate these to lesion localization in the brain.

A more applied aspect of research builds upon his expertise as a clinical neuropsychologist and involves studying the effects of concussion and traumatic brain injury. One focus is on concussion in hockey. Dr. Roy acts as a consultant to several teams in the Ontario Hockey (Major Junior A) League in the use of neuropsychological assessments as part of return to play guidelines for players who have suffered a concussion. He is an advisor to a committee of the Ontario Brain Injury Association on concussion in hockey. He is also a co-investigator on a national study of concussion in hockey which is aimed at examining the incidence of concussion, establishing return to play guidelines and developing educational materials on concussion for coaches and players and their families.

Selected publications

Roy, E.A., Black, S.E., Blair, N. & Dimeck, P.T. (1998) Analyses of deficits in gestural pantomime. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology , 20, 628-643.

Weir, P.L., MacDonald, J.R., Mallat, B.J., Leavitt, J.L. & Roy, E.A. (1998) Age related differences in prehension: The influence of task goals. Journal of Motor Behaviour, 30, 79-79.

Pryde, K.M., Roy, E.A. & Campbell, K. (1998) Prehension in children and adults: The effects of object size. Human Movement Science, 17, 743-752.

Roy, E.A., Weir, P., Desjardins-Denault, S. & Winchester, T. (1999) Pointing versus grasping in young and elderly adults. Developmental Neuropsychology, 16, 19-27

Bryden, P.J. & Roy, E.A. (1999) Spatial demands affect the extent of manual asymmetries. Laterality, 4, 27-37

Roy, E.A., Heath, M., Westwood, D., Schweizer, T.A., Dixon, M.J., Black, S.E., Kalbfleisch, L., Barbour, K. & Square, P.A. (2000) Task demands in limb apraxia. Brain and Cognition, 44, 253-279

Westwood, D.A., Heath, M. & Roy, E.A. (2000) The effect of pictorial illusion on closed-loop and open-loop prehension. Experimental Brain Research, 134, 456-463.