Our lab is broadly interested in how our prior expectations influence our memory and decision making. Specifically, our research addresses how expectations compensate for noisy and incomplete memory (e.g. for color or objects in scenes) and impact our decision making for the future (e.g. patient health choices)..

How do people use information from complex naturalistic environments when retrieving information from memory? My research focuses on the relationship between mental representations of the environment and episodic memory, and how people use knowledge and expectations about their environment to make decisions. To better understand the cognitive goals underlying memory I combine computational modeling with behavioral experiments.

Current studies include:

  • How do prior knowledge and expectations about objects in natural and ransom scenes influence episodic memory?
  • How do people categorize color and how do prior expectations about color influence episodic memory?
  • How does the natural frequency of, and object or word affect recognition and recall?
  • How can prior knowledge be useful in assessing the validity of eyewitness testimony?
  • How do people use natural frequencies when reasoning?

Research in the lab is heavily dependent on the use of computers. Familiarity with Matlab programming and/or strong skills in photoshop are very helpful.

For more information, visit the lab website or email Pernille Hemmer (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) with a brief description of your cognitive science and programming background.