Assistant Professor of Psychology
Behavior analysis, comparative cognition, applied statistics
Prior to graduate school at Columbia University (earning my Ph.D. in 2014), I spent a decade in Reed's psychology department, first as an undergraduate, and subsequently managing Allen Neuringer's lab. These formative years taught me the value of studying psychological processes using a comparative approach, with both human and animal experiments providing their own pieces of the puzzle. Since obtaining my doctorate, the focus of my research has been the fundamental mechanisms of abstract thinking and cognitive representation. When we perform logical comparisons and make intuitive inferences, we engage heuristics that we share with other species and that predate the evolution of language. I am also an enthusiastic advocate for statistical methodology. Thanks to advances in both theory and in the computational tools available, there has been an explosion of possibilities in both the experimental designs we can undertake and the precise psychological theories we can formulate.
Selected Recent Publications
(Reed student co-authors bolded)
Elpers, N., Jensen, G., & Holmes, K. J. (2022). Does grammatical gender affect object concepts? Registered replicationof Phillips and Boroditsky (2003). Journal of Memory and Language, 127, 104357. doi:10.1016/j.jml.2022.104357