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Colloquium Series

Departmental Colloquium Series

During the academic year, the department of psychology invites respected scholars to give lectures on research and theory in contemporary psychology. Please see the schedule below for more details and room locations. All are welcome to attend and engage with the Northwestern Psychology Community.

*Currently colloquiums are being held both via zoom & in-person,  3:15pm to 4:30pm CST.


carol gilligan

Dr. Carol Gilligan
Date: Friday, October 13th, 2023, 3:15pm
Swift Hall, Room 107
Website: About Dr. Carol Gilligan
(Host: Onnie Rogers) 

Title: In a Human Voice

Abstract: Forty years after the publication of In a Different Voice, “the little book that started a revolution,” Gilligan returns to questions she first raised in the 1970s and 80s. Given the research that she and others have done in the intervening years, three things have now become clear: 1) the “different voice” (the voice of care ethics) although initially heard as a “feminine” voice, is in fact a human voice; 2) the voice it differs from is a patriarchal voice (bound to gender binaries and hierarchies), and 3) where patriarchy is in force or enforced, a human voice is a voice of resistance and care ethics is an ethic of liberation.  In her talk, Gilligan will discuss the research leading to these insights and to her focus on resistance and accommodation as key to understanding development in social and cultural contexts. She will also speak briefly about the Listening Guide method which she and her students developed.


Dr. Mary Hegarty

Date: Friday, November 3rd, 2023, 3:15pm
Swift Hall, Room 107
Website: About Dr. Mary Hegarty
(Host: David Uttal) 

Title: Individual Differences in Navigation

Abstract: In this talk, I will review evidence for large individual differences in human navigation ability, or what is commonly referred to as the "sense of direction". I will review how cognitive psychologists study individual differences in navigation in both real and virtual environments, and what we know so far about the variation in navigation abilities and strategies. Finally, I will review current directions of my research on this topic, including studies on how GPS use might be affecting our navigation abilities, and the commonalities and dissociations between different measures of navigation ability.

philip corlett
Dr. Philip Corlett

Date: Friday, November 17th, 2023, 3:15pm
Swift Hall, Room 107
Website: About Dr. Philip Corlett
Host: Vijay Mittal

Title: Translational Models for Psychosis Research

Abstract: Computational approaches to explaining the symptoms of psychiatric illnesses are undergoing a renaissance. This talk will describe the development of computational approaches to psychotic symptoms through a series of phases: from conceptual, to empirical, and quantitative. The strengths of the approach include the ability to connect levels of explanation – from epidemiological data down to circuit neuroscience. The work suggests that delusions are aberrant beliefs driven by inappropriate prediction errors and hallucinations are errant percepts driven by overweighted prior beliefs. In order to unite these two symptom categories theorists and empiricists have begun to examine volatility processing. When the world is perceived to be changing unpredictably an organism is faced with two possibilities – learn quickly to pre-empt the changes or ignore that signals that change is afoot. These two strategies may underwrite delusions and hallucinations respectively and each may be implemented in independent neural circuits, each responding to aberrant signals of volatility. Furthermore, the social content of delusions and hallucinations demands explanation. Computational psychiatrists appeal either to a domain specific problem with social cognition or a domain general issue with inference. Future work in computational psychiatry, building upon the progress already made, will continue to refine the hypothesis space, ideally leading to a deeper understanding and better treatments for psychosis.


Dr. Vanessa Volpe

Date: Friday, April 5th, 2024, 3:15pm
Swift Hall, Room 107
Website: About Dr. Vanessa Volpe
Host: Onnie Rogers

Title: TBA

Abstract: TBA


 dana miller-cotto
Dr. Dana Miller-Cotto

Date: Friday, May 3rd, 2024, 3:15pm
Swift Hall, Room 107
Website: About Dr. Dana Miller-Cotto

Title: Examining measurement invariance by race: The case of the dimensional change card sort

Abstract: Executive function remains one of the most investigated variables in both cognitive science and education given its high correlation with numerous academic outcomes. Differences appear in executive function skills between children from higher socioeconomic and lower socioeconomic homes and children from different racial/ethnic backgrounds, with children from under resourced and minoritized communities demonstrating poorer performance relative to their peers with more resources. However, many accounts associate these differences with poor home/community values, imply inherent deficits in children from these communities, and imply a need to target these communities through executive function training. In this talk, I outline commonly held beliefs about these differences and offer strengths-based counternarratives that might be explaining these differences. Using a strength-based approach, I will also offer next steps for the field, and end by providing an example where my colleagues and I tested measurement invariance for the Dimension Change Cart Sorting (DCCS) Task across three ethnic/racial groups: White, Black, Latine, and Asian, using the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study- Kindergarten dataset. 
Dr. David Creswell

Date: Friday, May 17th, 2024, 3:15pm
Swift Hall, Room 107
Website: About Dr. David Creswell
Host: Rick Zinbarg

Title: How do mindfulness interventions work?

Abstract: TBA


Dr. Laurie Bayet

Date: Friday, June 7th, 2024, 3:15pm
Swift Hall, Room 107
Website: About Dr. Laurie Bayet
Host: Sandy Waxman

Title: TBA

Abstract: TBA