Projects in Cognition and Individual Differences

Supervised by Penny Yee


Professor Yee will supervise one and two semester projects in areas of cognition and individual differences. One-semester projects will be completed in the Fall Semester, and will consist of an analysis (literature review) of original empirical research on an approved topic. Continuation of thesis work into the Spring Semester will be contingent on satisfactory performance in the fall.

Executive Control Processes
I am interested in understanding how people exert control over their conscious experience. How do we control and direct our attention? How do we ignore distractions? Ongoing projects examine attention and perceptual processes that affect performance in a variety of contexts. Recent projects have incorporated the use of eye-tracking apparatus to examine the association between eye movements and perceptual processes. A primary project examines eye-movement patterns of college-aged students with reported ADHD symptomatology as they complete a battery of detection and reading tasks. The goal of this project is to understand how executive control functions may differ for individuals who experience ADHD symptoms in adulthood. This project is conducted in collaboration with Professor Tara McKee.

Mechanisms of Forgetting
An intriguing fact about human memory is that we forget. Contrary to our initial intuitions, forgetting can be an adaptive process. This research focuses on intentional forgetting, and projects explore the various mechanisms that give rise to forgetting. For instance, what mechanisms are involved? Is there a single mechanism or multiple mechanisms responsible for memory loss? Does forgetting demand cognitive resources; is it effortful, or is it something that just happens? Projects on these topics may be conducted in collaboration with Professor Mark Oakes.

Peer Relationships and Bullying: Development and Testing of a Self-Report Measure
Recently, a number of students have collaborated on a project examining the prevalence and development of relational aggression in early development through early adulthood. Projects have focused on the development of a self-report measure of relational aggression and social support in peer relationships and behavioral correlates of these variables (e.g., psychological adjustment, parental factors, etc.). Projects on these topics may be conducted in collaboration with Professors Greg Pierce or Jean Burr.