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Experimental Psychology Program - Cognitive Psychology Concentration Graduate Programs

Philip I. Pavlik Jr., Director
Phone: (901) 678-2326
Office: Psyc 434

Faculty Affiliates 

Cognitive Graduate Students

Undergraduate Opportunities

A cognitive psychology specialization involves training in 3 primary areas: General cognition, psycholinguistics and discourse, and learning technologies. Training in this program integrates theory and data from all three emphases. Training also draws upon the Institute for Intelligent Systems (IIS), an active cognitive science research community, which includes faculty from the Departments of Psychology, Audiology and Speech Pathology, Computer Science, Education, Educational Technology, Engineering, English, Mathematical Sciences, Philosophy, and Physics. We have a highly active and interactive program with two meetings per week, the Cognitive Brownbag Series on Mondays at noon, and the Cognitive Science Seminar on Wednesdays at 4PM, both in the FedEx Institute of Technology.

1. General cognition. This research emphasis examines the cognitive processes used in the encoding, storage, and retrieval of linguistic and non-linguistic information. Within this emphasis, students and faculty collaborate on a number of topics, including:

  • action dynamics
  • knowledge and skill acquisition
  • emotions and motivation
  • individual differences
  • computational modeling
  • symbolic and embodied cognition

2. Psycholinguistics and discourse. This emphasis involves the processes and knowledge structures used in understanding and producing written and spoken language. A related goal is to better understand comprehension processes at all ages. Topics of interest in this area include:

  • discourse processing
  • pragmatics
  • conversation and dialogue
  • figurative language
  • question answering
  • corpus linguistics
  • text coherence
  • multimodal communication

3. Learning technologies. In this emphasis, faculty and students investigate how recent developments in computer science and computational modeling can be applied to learning, particularly the learning of complex domains of knowledge (e.g., physics). The overarching goal of this research is to apply principles of cognitive science to educational practice via technology to create automated learning environments. Research topics include:

  • intelligent tutoring systems
  • multimedia and hypermedia
  • learning from text
  • learning from multimedia
  • human-computer interaction
  • human-to-human tutoring
  • individual differences in learning
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Last Updated: 11/3/14