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Katherine E. Prater

Co-Founder and Co-Director of RELATE at University of Michigan

Areas of expertise

  • - Science communication training
  • - Science communication
  • - Community engagement event organization
  • - Scientific research (Individual differences in vulnerability to developing PTSD)

Major works

Co-Founded RELATE (, an organization that seeks to improve communication between researchers and the public through training and practice Community Choice Award for Innovation in Graduate Education 2013 from the National Science Foundation (with Elyse Aurbach) for their proposal of RELATE 20+ class sessions and workshops on science communication, neuroanatomy, and brain imaging

Social links

About Me

A career neuroscientist and co-Founder of RELATE (Researchers Expanding Lay-Audience Teaching and Engagement), Katherine revels in scientific discovery and improving scientific communication. Outside of the lab, Katherine devotes her time to science communication initiatives. Through RELATE, she has taught graduate students, undergraduates, and faculty at the University of Michigan to better communicate their research to local communities through science cafes and online videos. She was the organizer of the local Brain Awareness event BrainsRule! for five years of her graduate career at the University of Michigan, introducing more than 1,000 fifth and sixth graders to the wonders of brain research. This year, she is volunteering with the University of Washington’s Brain Awareness Week event, and plans to continue her science communication and engagement efforts at the University of Washington and beyond.

A PhD graduate of the Neuroscience Graduate Program at the University of Michigan, Katherine is currently a senior research fellow at the University of Washington, where she endeavors to understand whether the brain’s immune system may play a role in anxiety disorders such as PTSD. Her devotion to promoting interdisciplinary research that may have translational medical benefit is seconded closely by her desire to reach out to all communities to share the important role science plays in our lives.

Courses and Programs taught by Katherine E. Prater