Cognitive Sciences

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The Cognitive Sciences program area oversees the Cognitive Sciences (CGS) concentration, which encompasses interdisciplinary interests in experimental psychology, neuroscience, philosophy, computer science, and translational science. With cognition as its unifying thread, the program area provides opportunities to specialize in research and training in basic or applied cognitive psychology, cognitive neuroscience, social cognition, language and cognitive development, psycholinguistics, and comparative cognition.

The research methods include noninvasive behavioral and cognitive testing with children, adults, and non-human primates, as well as electroencephalography (EEG), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI and fMRI), transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), eye-tracking, virtual reality/virtual environment testing, neurogenomics, and cognitive neuroinformatics.

We accept students with wide-ranging interests across the cognitive sciences for the terminal PhD program. Students shape their own programs of research in consultation with their advisors. Prospective applicants should contact faculty for more information about individual research programs.

Specific faculty interests include learning and memory; language acquisition and use, including the roles of experience, gesture, and specific brain structures and processes; economic decision making; attention and executive functioning (e.g., metacognition, planning, cognitive control); false memories and eyewitness accuracy; decision making, including speeded judgments, economic decision making, and reasoning; inequity perception and response; comparative cognition; individual and group (e.g., species, race, gender, diagnostic category, age) differences; cooperation and prosocial behavior; and brain-behavior relations that underlie various cognitive competencies.

Interdisciplinary Initiatives

Brains and Behavior Program
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Neuroscience Institute
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Center for Behavioral Neuroscience
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Language Research Center
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CRADL: Center for Research on Atypical Development and Learning
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Center for Advanced Brain Imaging
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Center for Neuroethics
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Research on Challenges in Acquiring Language and Literacy
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Second Century Initiative in Primate Social Cognition, Evolution & Behavior