Date of Award

Fall 12-9-2016

Degree Type

Honors Thesis


Zoology and Physiology

First Advisor

Kara Pratt


Synesthesia is a neural phenomenon in which stimulation of a particular sense consistently activates an abnormal perception in another sense. While much research has been conducted into this condition, the exact neural mechanisms that give rise to this condition have not yet been identified. The first part of this review introduces background information on the types of synesthesia that have been identified, as well as key aspects about the condition that differentiate it from other neurological conditions. The review then considers current theories on the neural mechanisms that could give rise to synesthesia, and why determining a conclusive cause is difficult due to the many types of synesthesia. The last portion of this review focuses on possible developmental origins of the condition, as well as the genetic variations that could cause the potential neural mechanisms discussed in the review.