News and Events
David Lubinski's research makes The Boston Globe's Top Ten articles of 2014!
January 19, 2015—Coverage of David Lubinski, Camilla Benbow, and Harrison Kell's research on the Study of Mathematically Precocious Youth has gone viral! Study results from 2013 were featured in The Boston Globe and this article received so many online hits it landed in third place on the The Boston Globe's Top 10 List of "Idea Pieces" for 2014! The Top 10 list can be viewed here. Subsequently, Lubinski, Benbow, and Kell's 2014 Psychological Science article was featured in The Huffington Post. Congratulations!
Congratulations Bunmi !
January 8, 2015—Bunmi Olatunji has been selected as one of the recipients of the 2015 American Psychological Association (APA) Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contribution to Psychology in the area of applied research. This is a highly competitive award that highlights the important contributions that Bunmi has already made to the field.
December 19, 2014—Professor Jeffrey Schall has been named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Association fellows are elected by their peers for advancing science or its applications. Schall, the E. Bronson Ingram Professor of Neuroscience and professor of ophthalmology and visual sciences, was elected for his groundbreaking work regarding visual perception, cognitive control and decisionmaking.
Congratulations to Ben and Anat!
November 26, 2014—Dr. Benjamin-Tamber Rosenau and Anat Fintzi, post-doctoral fellow and graduate student in the laboratory of Dr. René Marois, respectively, have won the best poster award at the 2014 Object Perception, visual Attention, and visual Memory (OPAM) annual conference held in Long Beach, CA, for their work on the spatial resolution of visual working memory. This award is given in recognition of the best research (poster division) presented at this conference.
Dr. Kei Fukuda wins the APA Division 3 award for best Psychonomic Society poster!
November 24, 2014—We would like to congratulate Dr. Kei Fukuda, postdoctoral researcher in Prof. Geoff Woodman’s lab, for winning the American Psychological Association’s Division 3 award for best Psychonomic Society poster at the annual meeting in Long Beach, California. This prestigious early career award recognizes excellent work in the experimental domain. Great work, Kei!
October 27, 2014—Kris Preacher won the Tanaka Award for Best Article of 2013 in the journal Multivariate Behavioral Research. This award was given by the Society for Multivariate Experimental Psychology for the article: Preacher, K.J., Zhang, G., Kim, C., & Mels, G. (2013). Choosing the optimal number of factors in exploratory factor analysis: A model selection perspective. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 48, 28-56.
Welcome Anita Disney!
October 2, 2014—The Department of Psychological Sciences would like to welcome our newest faculty member. here is a news piece on her work.
Kenneth MacLeish Ph.D., Center for Medicine, Health and Society, Vanderbilt University
Wilson Hall 316
Suicide, Surveillance and Intimacy in Military Life
Servicemember suicide is regarded by both military leaders and the American public as an urgent mental health and public health problem. This talk based on fieldwork at the U.S. Army’s Ft. Hood in central Texas does not describe the act of suicide itself, but how ideas about suicide show up in soldiers' talk and feelings and in institutional dimensions of everyday life in the military. Army efforts to parse the causes of suicide and aggressive, anticipatory monitoring of “risky” behavior believed to be associated with it both loom large in soldiers' experience. These efforts come to shape how soldiers understand their own mental and emotional distress, that of their comrades, and their relationship to commanders, health care providers, and the Army as a whole. While suicide is typically imagined as a profoundly individualized dysfunction, this talk addresses some of the ways that its "social life" can be understood on subjective, interpersonal, and institutional levels, frequently as a reflection of Army efforts to more efficiently monitor and control the lives in its charge.
Jeff Annis, Ph.D., Department of Psychology (Palmeri Lab), Vanderbilt University
Wilson Hall 115
Sequential Dependencies in Recognition Memory
A sequential dependency occurs when the response on the current trial is correlated with responses made on prior trials. Sequential dependencies have been observed in a variety of both perception and memory tasks. Thus, sequential dependencies provide a platform for relating these two cognitive processes. However, there are many issues associated with measuring sequential dependencies and therefore it is necessary to develop measurement models that directly address them. Here, several measurement models of sequential dependencies for both binary and multi-interval response tasks are described. The efficacy of the models is verified by applying them to simulated data sets with known properties. Lastly, the models are then applied to real-world data sets which test the critical assumption that the underlying processes of sequential dependencies are modulated by attention. The models reveal increased vigilance during testing decreases the degree of sequential dependencies.
David Lyon, Ph.D., Department of Anatomy & Neurobiology. University of California, Irvine School of Medicine
Wilson Hall 316
Viral based strategies for targeting specific circuits in visual cortex of non-transgenic animals
Neocortex is intricately organized into multiple layers and numerous cell types that allow for a rich array of circuits and functional complexity. Transgenics has opened the door for targeting specific cortical cell types and particular layers, but is limited largely to mouse models. Despite clear value, there are limitations to only studying transgenic mice, especially in brain structures like visual cortex that are more complex in species such as cat and monkey. Recent efforts in my lab have been aimed towards developing and using viral based strategies to target particular circuits in non-transgenic species. The goals of this talk will be to explain how these viral techniques work and the types of questions we can address in the study of visual cortex function, as well as provide a glimpse into the future potential of this approach.
Akash Umakantha, Biomedical Engineering & Neuroscience (Palmeri Lab), Vanderbilt University
Wilson Hall 316
Mapping Between a Spiking Neural Network and the Diffusion Model of Perceptual Decision Making
Rob Reinhart, Department of Psychology (Woodman lab), Vanderbilt University
Wilson Hall 316
Synchronizing Brain Rhythms Restores Adaptive Control in Schizophrenia
The ability to exert control over our behavior is fundamental to human cognition. This ability allows us to break out of routines and habits, adapting to new and ever changing environments. For people with psychiatric and neurological disorders, impairments in adaptive control are pervasive. Schizophrenia patients in particular show deficits in reacting to errors. These enduring difficulties with executive control mechanisms that allow us to adapt have direct implications for the lives of these patients in the real world. In this talk, I will present unique causal evidence for the neural mechanisms of adaptive control that distinguish healthy people from those with schizophrenia. I will show how we have combined direct-current stimulation to safely, noninvasively, and casually manipulate neural activity in a targeted brain region with measurements of electrical brain activity that are hypothesized to index the large-scale neural networks underlying adaptive control. Our results have implications for theories of executive control and cortical dysconnectivity in schizophrenia, as well as the development of new, drug-free, intervention therapies for psychiatric and neurological patients with cognitive deficits.
Katie Ryan, Department of Psychology (Gauthier Lab), Vanderbilt University
Wilson Hall 115
Title and abstract TBA