Observation

APS Fellows Elected to SEP

AGuggenheim Fellow and a co-founder of an influential psychological theory are among five APS Fellows newly elected to the Society of Experimental Psychologists (SEP), one of the most prestigious honorary societies in scientific psychology. Founded in 1904, SEP admits about 6 new members annually from among the leading experimentalists in North America

APS Fellows Diane Beck, Charles Brainerd, Steve Sloman, Joshua Greene, and Fei Xu, along with three other psychological scientists, have been selected as 2020 SEP Fellows. In addition, Vanderbilt University researcher Jennifer Trueblood, named an APS Rising Star in 2015 and a 2020 APS Janet Taylor Spence Award recipient (see article above), is receiving the SEP Early Investigator Award.

Beck, a psychology professor and head of the Attention and Perception Lab at the University of Illinois, studies the cognitive processes and neural structures that enable and limit our visual representations of the world. Her lab uses a variety of approaches, including functional magnetic resonance imaging, behavioral methods, and transcranial magnetic stimulation.

Brainerd, a professor in Cornell University’s College of Human Ecology, studies human memory and decision-making, statistics and mathematical modeling, cognitive neuroscience, learning, intelligence, cognitive development, false memory, learning disability, and child abuse. He is best known for developing, with APS Fellow Valerie F. Reyna, the fuzzy-trace theory — a general model of how memory influences reasoning and how reasoning influences memory.

Greene, a professor of psychology at Harvard University, studies the automatic and controlled processes that support moral judgement and decision-making. His lab uses a combination of behavioral experiments and functional neuroimaging to investigate the role of this dual-process framework in religious belief, cooperation, and conflict resolution, among numerous other phenomena.

Sloman, a professor of cognitive, linguistic, and psychological sciences at Brown University, studies how our habits of thought influence the way we see the world, and how the way we believe the world works influences our evaluations of and reactions to events. He is the author, with psychological scientist Philip Fernbach, of the 2017 book The Knowledge Illusion, Why We Never Think Alone.

A psychology professor at the University of California, Berkeley, Xu studies cognitive and language development from infancy to middle childhood, using behavioral experiments and computational models to understand how young children learn so fast and so well. Xu was named a Guggenheim Fellow in 2018.

Trueblood uses a joint experimental and computational modeling approach
to study human judgment, decision-making, reasoning, and memory. She investigates how people make decisions when faced with multiple alternatives; how dynamically changing information affects decision processes; how people reason about complex causal events; and how different perspectives, contexts, and frames can interfere with decision-making and memory.

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