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Kurtulus Izzetoglu

Kurtulus Izzetoglu, PhD

Associate Professor
School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems

Office: Monell 102
Phone: 215.895.1579
Website: CONQUER Collaborative


Kurtulus Izzetoglu, PhD, is an Associate Professor in the School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems at Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA. He received his BS and MSc degrees from the Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering at METU, Ankara, Turkey. Prior to his PhD studies, he was employed by a medical imaging company in the Netherlands, where he was involved in the development of professional, FDA approved medical imaging software packages, implementation of quantitative analysis, and imaging techniques.

Dr. Izzetoglu’s research and teaching interests are in biomedical optics, functional brain imaging, human performance, learning, simulation-based training, human-autonomy teaming, medical sensor development, and biomedical signal processing. He has a background in both electrical and biomedical engineering, coupled with experience of developing a highly portable functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) system for use in field applications and translational neuroimaging. 

Over the last decade, Dr. Izzetoglu has focused on the development of performance and training assessment biosensors and metrics, joint human-system performance enhancement, anesthesia, and traumatic brain injury care monitoring in field settings. He has served as the principal or co-investigator on research projects funded by US federal agencies, including DoD, FAA, NIH, as well as industry partners. Some examples of his current research include: 1) sensor and algorithm development for depth of anesthesia and sedation monitoring; 2) cognitive workload assessment of air traffic controllers, pilots, and unmanned aircraft pilots and operators; 3) role of neurotechnology to improve simulation-based training and human-autonomy teaming; 4) effects of immersive VR manipulative interventions on spatial visualization and transfer of learning; 5) optical sensor and algorithm development for cerebral and somatic measures in hemorrhage assessment, in detecting hypoxia and edema development and for cerebral oximetry monitoring; and 6) evaluation of cerebral vascular reactivity in traumatic brain injury.  

Dr. Izzetoglu has been the institutional principal investigator and the lead for Drexel University’s collaboration with the FAA Center of Excellence for Technical Training and Human Performance (TTHP), and with the FAA Center of Excellence for Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) – Alliance for System Safety of UAS through Research Excellence (ASSURE). Both centers are 5(+5)-year funded programs and have been awarded by competitive process and led by a consortium of the public sector, academic institutions, and industry partners. Dr. Izzetoglu serves on various boards and program committees, including the International Conference on Augmented Cognition / International Conference on Human – Computer Interaction; program committee member of the International Conference for Research in Air Transportation; and program committee member of the International Symposium on Aviation Psychology. He also organized and chaired the annual meeting of the center of Excellence for Technical Training and Human Performance in 2018.


  • PhD in Biomedical Engineering, School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems, Drexel University, 2008
  • MS in Electrical Engineering, Middle East Technical University (METU), Ankara, Turkey, 1995
  • BS in Electrical Engineering, Middle East Technical University (METU), Ankara, Turkey, 1992

Research Interests

Biomedical optics, biomedical signal processing, functional brain imaging, near Infrared spectroscopy, human performance, learning, simulation-based training, human-autonomy teaming, anesthesia care and sedation monitoring, traumatic brain injury.


2022  Reddy, P., Shewokis, P. A., Izzetoglu, K. Individual differences in skill acquisition and transfer assessed by dual task training performance and brain activity. Brain Informatics, 9(1), 9.

2022 Kerr, J., Reddy, P., Shewokis, P. A., Izzetoglu, K. Cognitive Workload Impacts of Simulated Visibility Changes During Search and Surveillance Tasks Quantified by Functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy. IEEE Transactions on Human-Machine Systems, 1–10.

2021 Reddy, P., Izzetoglu, M., Shewokis, P. A., Sangobowale, M., Diaz-Arrastia, R., Izzetoglu, K. Evaluation of fNIRS signal components elicited by cognitive and hypercapnic stimuli. Scientific Reports, 11(1), 23457. 

2021 Andreu-Perez, AR, Kiani, M, Andreu-Perez, J, Reddy, P, Andreu-Abela, J, Pinto, M, Izzetoglu, K. Single-Trial Recognition of Video Gamer’s Expertise from Brain Hemodynamic and Facial Emotion Responses. Brain Sciences11(1), 106.

2021 Galoyan, T, Betts, K, Abramian, H, Reddy, P, Izzetoglu, K, Shewokis, PA. Examining Mental Workload in a Spatial Navigation Transfer Game via Functional near Infrared Spectroscopy. Brain Sciences11(1), 45.

2020 Izzetoglu, M, Du, J, Izzetoglu, K, Ayaz, H, Onaral, B, Ben Dor, B. Multilayer, Dynamic, Mixed Solid/Liquid Human Head Models for the Evaluation of Near Infrared Spectroscopy Systems. IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement69(10), 8441–8451. 

2019 Izzetoglu, K, Richards, D. Human Performance Assessment: Evaluation of Wearable Sensors for Monitoring Brain Activity. In M. Vidulich and P. Tsang (Eds.), Improving Aviation Performance through Applying Engineering Psychology: Advances in Aviation Psychology(1st ed., pp. 163–180). Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

2019 Ayaz H, Izzetoglu M, Izzetoglu K, Onaral B, Ben Dor B. Early diagnosis of traumatic intracranial hematomas.Journal of Biomedical Optics. 24: 1-10. PMID: 30719879 DOI: 10.1117/1.JBO.24.5.051411          

2017 Hernandez-Meza G, Izzetoglu M, Sacan A, Green M, Izzetoglu K. Investigation of data-driven optical neuromonitoring approach during general anesthesia with sevoflurane.Neurophotonics. 4: 041408. PMID: 28840160 DOI:10.1117/1.NPh.4.4.041408          

2017 Hernandez-Meza G, Izzetoglu M, Osbakken M, Green M, Abubakar H, Izzetoglu K. Investigation of optical neuro-monitoring technique for detection of maintenance and emergence states during general anesthesia.Journal of Clinical Monitoring and Computing. PMID: 28214930 DOI:10.1007/s10877-017-9998-x          

2015 Hernandez-Meza G, Izzetoglu M, Osbakken M, Green M, Izzetoglu K. Near-Infrared Spectroscopy for the Evaluation of Anesthetic Depth.Biomed Research International. 2015: 939418. PMID: 26495317 DOI: 10.1155/2015/939418          

2014 Leon-Dominguez U, Izzetoglu M, Leon-Carrion J, Solís-Marcos I, Garcia-Torrado FJ, Forastero-Rodríguez A, Mellado-Miras P, Villegas-Duque D, Lopez-Romero JL, Onaral B, Izzetoglu K. Molecular concentration of deoxyHb in human prefrontal cortex predicts the emergence and suppression of consciousness.Neuroimage. 85: 616-25. PMID: 23872157 DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.07.023          

2014 Curtin A, Izzetoglu K, Reynolds J, Menon R, Izzetoglu M, Osbakken M, Onaral B. Functional near-infrared spectroscopy for the measurement of propofol effects in conscious sedation during outpatient elective colonoscopy.Neuroimage. 85: 626-36. PMID: 23850462 DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.07.009          

2014 Sela I, Izzetoglu M, Izzetoglu K, Onaral B. A functional near-infrared spectroscopy study of lexical decision task supports the dual route model and the phonological deficit theory of dyslexia.Journal of Learning Disabilities. 47: 279-88. PMID: 22798106 DOI:10.1177/0022219412451998          

2013 Ayaz H, Onaral B, Izzetoglu K, Shewokis PA, McKendrick R, Parasuraman R. Continuous monitoring of brain dynamics with functional near infrared spectroscopy as a tool for neuroergonomic research: empirical examples and a technological development.Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. 7: 871. PMID 24385959 DOI:10.3389/fnhum.2013.00871          

2012 Sela I, Izzetoglu M, Izzetoglu K, Onaral B. A working memory deficit among dyslexic readers with no phonological impairment as measured using the n-back task: an fNIR study.Plos One. 7: e46527. PMID 23152750 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0046527          

2012 Meiri H, Sela I, Nesher P, Izzetoglu M, Izzetoglu K, Onaral B, Breznitz Z. Frontal lobe role in simple arithmetic calculations: an fNIR study.Neuroscience Letters. 510: 43-7. PMID 22260794 DOI: 10.1016/j.neulet.2011.12.066          

2012 Ayaz H, Shewokis PA, Bunce S, Izzetoglu K, Willems B, Onaral B. Optical brain monitoring for operator training and mental workload assessment.Neuroimage. 59: 36-47. PMID 21722738 DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2011.06.023          

2011 Ayaz H, Shewokis PA, Curtin A, Izzetoglu M, Izzetoglu K, Onaral B. Using MazeSuite and functional near infrared spectroscopy to study learning in spatial navigation.Journal of Visualized Experiments : Jove. PMID 22005455 DOI:10.3791/3443          

2011 Holtzer R, Mahoney JR, Izzetoglu M, Izzetoglu K, Onaral B, Verghese J. fNIRS study of walking and walking while talking in young and old individuals.The Journals of Gerontology. Series a, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences. 66: 879-87. PMID 21593013 DOI: 10.1093/gerona/glr068          

2010 León-Carrión J, Izzetoglu M, Izzetoglu K, Martín-Rodríguez JF, Damas-López J, Barroso y Martin JM, Domínguez-Morales MR. Efficient learning produces spontaneous neural repetition suppression in prefrontal cortex.Behavioural Brain Research. 208: 502-8. PMID 20045712 DOI: 10.1016/j.bbr.2009.12.026          

2007 Izzetoglu M, Bunce SC, Izzetoglu K,Onaral B, Pourrezaei K. Functional brain imaging using near-infrared technology.IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Magazine : the Quarterly Magazine of the Engineering in Medicine & Biology Society. 26: 38-46. PMID 17672230 DOI: 10.1109/MEMB.2007.384094          

2006 Ayaz H, Izzetoglu M, Platek SM, Bunce S, Izzetoglu K, Pourrezaei K, Onaral B. Registering fNIR data to brain surface image using MRI templates.Conference Proceedings : ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Annual Conference. 1: 2671-4. PMID 17946973 DOI: 10.1109/IEMBS.2006.260835          

2006 Bunce SC, Izzetoglu M, Izzetoglu K, Onaral B, Pourrezaei K. Functional near-infrared spectroscopy.IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Magazine : the Quarterly Magazine of the Engineering in Medicine & Biology Society. 25: 54-62. PMID 16898659 DOI: 10.1109/MEMB.2006.1657788          

2005 Izzetoglu M,I zzetoglu K, Bunce S, Ayaz H,Devaraj A, Onaral B, Pourrezaei K. Functional near-infrared neuroimaging.IEEE Transactions On Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering : a Publication of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. 13: 153-9. PMID 16003893 DOI: 10.1109/TNSRE.2005.847377

2004 Izzetoglu, K, Bunce, S, Onaral, B, Pourrezaei, K, Chance, B. Functional Optical Brain Imaging Using Near-Infrared During Cognitive Tasks. International Journal of Human-Computer Interaction17(2), 211–227.