The primary goal of the cognitive psychology graduate program is training a new generation of theoretically-focused scientists to understand the mind and brain. We provide exciting opportunities for training in research with a number of different populations (including brain-damaged adults, infants, and children) and a range of state-of-the-art techniques. We have recently opened the Center for Biomedical and Brain Imaging, which houses a 3T Siemens Prisma scanner, and we provide extensive training in neuroimaging, including fMRI, DTI, MVPA, and other analysis techniques. We also provide training in ERP, brain stimulation (TMS), eye tracking, computational modeling, and behavioral experiments. We encourage collaborative, interdisciplinary research, so our students can obtain the kind of broad training that is required in today’s research environment.
Furthermore, we believe that along with methodological expertise, it is critical that students develop a strong theoretical foundation in understanding cognitive processes. Students develop these skills via formal coursework in statistics, methods, and special topics in cognition. Students will also learn through their own research in labs addressing the following questions:
What are the attentional mechanisms underlying our ability to perceive and act in a goal directed manner? (Jim Hoffman)
How does the brain/mind represent the scenes that surround us? (Helene Intraub)
How does the brain represent the body? How can evidence from brain-damaged individuals inform cognitive theories? (Jared Medina)
How is human language represented, processed and acquired? What is the relationship between language and thought? (Anna Papafragou)
What is going on inside the head of an infant? (Paul Quinn)
What is the fundamental architecture of the brain that gives rise to our conscious perceptions? (Keith Schneider)
How does the brain learn the structure of the visual world and the values associated with our perceptual experiences and actions? (Tim Vickery)
Our students will also receive training in teaching. This is provided in the form of teaching assistantships, courses on best practices in teaching, and opportunities to teach at an NSF-funded summer “BRAIN camp” for undergraduates.
For more information about our program (including admission), please see the cognitive graduate program FAQ.