B.A., Williams College; Ph.D., Harvard University
Assistant Professor of Psychology
My research probes how individuals think and see differently to illuminate principles of mind and brain and to inform applied work.
My research centers around the question: What makes each individual person unique? This is one of the oldest questions in the study of mind and brain, yet across a surprising array of cognitive and visual domains, it remains unanswered. My lab aims to enhance our understanding of individual human variation. In so doing, we seek to illuminate fundamental aspects of the mind, including the origins, organization, and utility of basic cognitive and visual mechanisms (Wilmer, 2008). At the same time, we seek to isolate novel dimensions of human variation and to develop efficient, valid ways of measuring these dimensions (Wilmer et al, 2012).
I regularly teach Introduction to Psychology, a 200-level course entitled Sensation and Perception, and a seminar entitled Genes, Brains, and Human Variation, and I involve students at a high level in the ongoing research in my lab. An underlying belief in all of my teaching and research mentoring is that the skills students learn - to think critically about the source of information, to write elegantly and persuasively, to marshall and evaluate evidence, to apply knowledge to real-world problems, and to imagine what does not yet exist or what is not yet known - will be applicable to their future lives whatever directions they take personally, professionally, and as citizens.
When I am not teaching and researching, I enjoy playing traditional fiddle music and spending time outdoors with my family.