The Ph.D. program in Cognitive Psychology seeks to educate and train students interested in pursuing research at the highest levels of academic scholarship. The program offers training in a wide range of research areas in cognitive psychology: categorization and concepts, creativity, humor perception, infant cognition, implicit and explicit memory, memory and aging, visual object recognition, inductive reasoning, metacognition, word recognition, cognitive and neuropsychological aspects of bilingualism, figurative language processing, and cognitive neuroscience.
In addition, our faculty and graduate students participate in collaborative professional exchanges with faculty and students in computer science, engineering, human performance, architecture, educational psychology, neuroscience, philosophy, linguistics, Hispanic studies, and women’s and gender studies. Upon completing their doctorate, many of our students have secured full-time academic positions involving teaching and research at prestigious colleges and universities. Others have pursued post-doctoral fellowships before seeking a faculty position.
The CCN program has an excellent student to faculty ratio of 2:1. Our students typically engage in research from the first year onward and present their first year project to the Department in the fall of their second year. CCN faculty and graduate students also meet every week for an interdisciplinary brown bag seminar series, Cognoscenti, which is one of many Working Groups sponsored by the Glasscock Center for Humanities Research. The series brings to campus faculty members from other departments and other universities and provides exposure to different perspectives on the field and the opportunity to network with professors at other institutions.
In 2015, a monthly reading/discussion group was launched by members of the CCN faculty to discuss neuroimaging research. The CCN area also participates in an annual regional conference on cognition (ARMADILLO), held in the fall at a different university in Texas each year (Texas A&M has hosted this conference on three occasions). There are also opportunities for students to present their research at other venues at the university and at national or international conferences, including the Psychonomics Society, the Association for Psychological Science, and specialized conferences. Our students also publish with CCN faculty in some of the leading journals in the field.
Research by CCN faculty has been supported by grants from federal agencies, private foundations, and internal funding sources. The faculty are also active on editorial boards of various scholarly journals: Cognitive Studies: Bulletin of the Japanese Cognitive Science Society, Journal of Memory and Language; Journal of Neurolinguistics; Laterality. One of our faculty (Vaid) is Editor of the journal, Writing Systems Research. Three CCN faculty (Ward, Smith & Vaid) co-edited a research volume, Creative Thought: An Investigation of Conceptual Structures and Processes.
The CCN area values collaborative interdisciplinary and international research. Individual faculty in the area have hosted visiting scholars (including Fulbright scholars) from India, Poland, France, Australia, Spain, Korea, Canada, and Israel.
|CORE FACULTY||RESEARCH INTERESTS||ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR 2017-2018|
|Anderson, Brian||Examine how previously reward-associated stimuli are processed in both healthy and individuals who struggle with addiction and other psychopathologies.||Yes|
|Barnhardt, Terry||Exploring the effects of different kinds of study tasks on different kinds of implicit memory tests.|
|Bernard, Jessica||Understand how the cerebellum contributes to both motor and cognitive behavior. Motor and cognitive performance changes in aging.||Yes|
|Geraci, Lisa||How stereotypes and expectations affect how people perform on cognitive tests.||Yes|
|Orr, Joseph||Examining the psychological and neural mechanisms underlying executive functions||Yes|
|Smith, Steve||Memory-Retrieval Blocking & Recovery, Metacognition-Tip of the tongue states, Creative Cognition-Fixation and mental blocks|
|Vaid, Jyotsna||Billingualism and language brokering experience, Word recognition across orthographies, Directional biases in spatial cognition||Yes|
|Wilcox, Teresa||Infant cognition, object representation, physical reasoning, neural basis of cognitive development||Yes|
|Worthy, Darrell||Developing a full understanding of human learning and decision-making using a computational cognitive neuroscience approach.||Yes|
|Yamauchi, Takashi||Emotion and cognition, brain-computer interface, affective computing, unconscious semantic processing||Yes|