Theme Programs

Memory and Consciousness

Broadway South, Friday, May 26, 2006, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Plasticity and Change: A Lifelong Perspective

Astor Ballroom, Friday, May 26, 2006, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

The Psychology of Terrorism

Broadway North, Friday, May 26, 2006, 9:00 AM - 12:30 PM


Memory and Consciousness

Broadway South, Friday, May 26, 2006, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

The past is a constant influence on the present, of which we are sometimes only dimly aware. Much of memory appears to be marked by particular subjective states and conscious control over how it is deployed. However, some varieties of memory are unaccompanied by conscious recollection, yet nevertheless have strong influences on behavior. How do these differences in awareness relate to the uses and structure of memory? Leading psychologists will discuss such topics as:

  • implicit memory in normal and amnesic subjects
  • unconscious influences of goals on conscious behavior
  • people's subjective experiences of memory
  • memory disturbances imposed by drug-altered states
  • people's awareness of and beliefs about memory and cognition

View Program


Plasticity and Change: A Lifelong Perspective

Astor Ballroom, Friday, May 26, 2006, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Although "plasticity" is a well-documented phenomenon during early stages of development, there is now compelling evidence that significant changes in behavior and neural systems occur throughout life. This program will be devoted to examining this issue from diverse perspectives, ranging from neural plasticity in the adult cerebral cortex to personality and therapy process and outcomes.

View Program


The Psychology of Terrorism

Broadway North, Friday, May 26, 2006, 9:00 AM - 12:30 PM

In the 1980s, the American perspective of terrorism was limited to a hostage situation on a hijacked plane or a bombing in some far-off conflict zone. Even though Americans had been victims of terrorism before September 11, 2001, the scope and scale of the attacks that day forever rocked our relatively secure sensibilities into a color-coded alert system and a heightened sense of anxiety, trepidation, and fear. The years since 9/11 have only seen an increase in terrorist attacks across the globe.

In a special series of programs, leading behavioral scientists will discuss the many lines of research into questions that have been on the minds of everyone: What creates a terrorist? How do we protect against future attacks? How do we understand reactions to terrorism? Specific topics include:

  • psychosocial factors that breed terrorists
  • how theories of persuasion explain willingness to support terrorism
  • psychological responses to the trauma of terrorist attacks
  • how risk communication and response to terrorist attacks can be better managed
  • how measures to combat terrorism can be assessed using established principles of measurement theory and decision theory

View Program