Thomas Carr


Research Statement

My research focuses on perceptual recognition, attention, and the executive control of complex skills, including how skills are learned, how they are performed in their mature and well-practiced states, whether they are susceptible to choking under pressure or other kinds of cognitive and motivational stressors, and the neural substrates of these processes using fMRI. Skill domains have included word recognition and reading, writing, and mathematical computation and problem solving. Recently I've come to view knowledge acquisition as a skill, and have begun to investigate test-enhanced learning (the testing effect). In addition to basic-science investigations, I am interested in the instructional implications of research on skill acquisition, and I collaborate with an aphasiologist on the behavioral, cognitive, and neural impact of aphasia rehabilitation programs. From 1993 through 1998 I served as Editor of the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, and from 2003 through 2007 as Editor of Perception & Psychophysics (now called Attention, Perception & Psychophysics). From 2005 through 2007 I was on leave from Michigan State, serving as the Frank W. Mayborn Professor of Cognitive Studies at Vanderbilt University. Currently I'm one of the Associate Editors of Cognitive Psychology.