Attention and perception
Research focuses on the cognitive and perceptual processes involved in the selection and processing of visual and auditory information. Current interests include the interaction between attention and associative learning (George), the nature and time course of the acquisition of information in speech and vision (Smith), face recognition in children and adults (Nakabayashi), the 'rubber hand' illusion (George, Holle,), visual attention during social interaction (Skarratt), and word learning (Mather, Riggs)
Cognitive decline and impairment
The aim is to investigate the causes and consequences of impairments to cognitive functions. Current projects investigate how cognitive processes are affected by normal ageing (Guerrini, Morton) and in individuals with conditions such as autism (Jellema), dementia (Guerrini), depression (Anderson), and schizophrenia (Wright).
The questions addressed are whether similar psychological mechanisms govern learning in humans and non-human animals, and whether high-level cognitive processes present in humans can also be observed in non-human species. Current projects include associative and perceptual learning in humans (George), spatial learning in humans and other species, social cognition and personality in primates (Morton), cognition and perception in dogs (George), and visual search in fish species (Skarratt).
Research here investigates the cognitive processes that underpin performance in applied contexts. Current projects include the effects of stress and fatigue on performance in the workplace (Earle), the effects of environmental noise on cognition (Wright), the cognitive underpinnings of traits such as mental toughness and resilience (Anderson and Dewhurst), and the role of mental toughness in sport, work, and education (Earle).
Imagination and thought
This theme is concerned with understanding the cognitive processes that enable us to think creatively, to imagine alternative realities, and to anticipate events that might occur in our future. Current projects investigate counterfactual thinking and its development (Anderson, Riggs, O'Connor) and the simulation of hypothetical future events (Anderson, Dewhurst).
This focuses on the cognitive processes involved in verbal and nonverbal language comprehension and language development. Current projects are investigating word learning in children and adults (Mather, O'Connor, Riggs), the interaction between visual processing and language (Lindsay, Nakabayashi), the effects of sleep on word learning in adults (Lindsay), the integration of gesture and language (Holle, O'Connor), and the effects of negation and falsification of information (Weil).
Learning and memory
Research here is concerned with understanding human memory, with current interests in associative and perceptual learning (George), autobiographical memory (Anderson), false memories (Anderson, Dewhurst), category learning in infants (Mather), intentional forgetting (Anderson, Dewhurst), and the effects of sleep on memory consolidation and retrieval (Lindsay).
Our research investigates the cognitive processes involved in social interaction, group behaviour, and the processing of emotions. Current projects are concerned with social inhibition of return (Skarratt), theory of mind in people with autism (Jellema, Riggs, O'Connor), understanding implicit processes in social cognition (Jellema, Weil), intergroup dynamics in conflict and cooperation (Nakabayashi), and social behaviour in primates (Morton).