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    Jenn Richler, Ph.D.

    I am a cognitive psychologist, broadly interested in the cognitive mechanisms involved in visual object recognition, categorization, learning, and memory, and how these processes are modulated by experience and expertise.

     

    I am currently a research associate in the Object Perception Lab and Category Laboratory at Vanderbilt University, associate editor for JEP:General, and I write APA PeePs and Article Spotlight: Experimental Psychology

     

    I enjoy writing about science for scientist and non-specialist audiences, and am always looking for new opportunities in this area.

     

    I live and work in Brooklyn, New York.

  • Research

    Holistic Processing 

    The majority of my work has used faces—a category with which we are all experts—to study holistic processing. This behavioral hallmark of perceptual expertise refers to the inability to selectively attend to individual face parts, even when instructed to do so, and even when it is disadvantageous to performance.

     

    I am interested in the mechanism underlying this attentional effect, how it develops from experience, and individual differences.

     

    Object Naming & Memory

    In my dissertation work, I examined whether and how naming objects influences subsequent memory for those objects.

     

    In particular, this work challenged the provocative claim that naming an object shifts its representation in memory. Instead, I showed that more general memory principles can explain how naming influences memory.

    Individual Differences in Object Recognition

    My recent projects are aimed at determining whether there is a single ability that determines how well an individual will be able to learn to discriminate visually similar objects.

     

    One prediction is that this ability is related to face recognition, because we all have a lot of experience and social motivation to hone this skill for this particular category.

  • Publications

    Google Scholar Page

    31. Ross, D.A., Richler, J.J., & Gauthier, I. (2015). Reliability of composite task measurements of holistic face processing. Behavior Research Methods, 47, 736-743. [pdf]

     

    30. Chua, K.-W., Richler, J.J., & Gauthier, I. (2015). Holistic processing from learned attention to parts. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 144, 723-729. [pdf]

     

    29. Richler, J.J., Floyd, R.J., & Gauthier, I. (2015). About-face on face recognition ability and holistic processing. Journal of Vision, 15, 1-12. [pdf]

     

    28. Richler, J.J., Palmeri, T.J., & Gauthier, I. (2015). Holistic processing does not require configural variability. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 22, 974-979. [pdf]

     

    27. Richler, J.J., Floyd, R.J., & Gauthier, I. (2014). The Vanderbilt Holistic Face Processing Test: A short and reliable measure of holistic face processing. Journal of Vision, 14, 1-14. [pdf] [test materials]

     

    26. Richler, J.J., & Gauthier, I. (2014). A meta-analysis and review of holistic face processing. Psychological Bulletin, 140, 1281-1302. [pdf]

     

    25. Gauthier, I., McGugin, R.W., Richler, J.J., Herzmann, G., Speegle, M., & Van Gulick, A.B. (2014). Experience moderates overlap between object and face recognition, suggesting a common ability. Journal of Vision, 14, 1-12. [pdf]

     

    24. Harrison, S.A., Gauthier, I., Hayward, W., & *Richler, J.J. (2014). Other-race effects manifest in overall performance, not qualitative processing style. Visual Cognition, 22, 843-864. [pdf] (*corresponding author)

     

    23. Chua, K.-W., Richler, J.J., & Gauthier, I. (2014). Becoming a Lunari or Taiyo expert: Learned attention to parts drives holistic processing of faces. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 40, 1174-1182. [pdf]

     

    22. Richler, J.J., & Palmeri, T.J. (2014). Visual category learning. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Cognitive Science, 5, 75-94. [pdf]

     

    21. Richler, J.J., Palmeri, T.J., & Gauthier, I. (2013). The effects of varying configuration in the composite task support an attentional account of holistic processing. Visual Cognition, 21, 711-715.

     

    20. Richler, J.J., & Gauthier, I. (2013). When intuition fails to align with data: A reply to Rossion (2013). Visual Cognition, 21, 254-276. [pdf]

     

    19. Richler, J.J., Palmeri, T.J., & Gauthier, I. (2013). How does using object names influence visual recognition memory? Journal of Memory and Language, 68, 10-25. [pdf]

     

    18. Richler, J.J., Palmeri, T.J., & Gauthier, I. (2012). Meanings, mechanisms, and measures of holistic processing. Frontiers in Psychology, 3, 553. [link]

     

    17. McGugin, R.W., Richler, J.J., Herzmann, G., Speegle, M., & Gauthier, I. (2012). The Vanderbilt Expertise Test reveals domain-general and domain-specific sex effects in object recognition. Vision Research, 69, 10-22. [pdf]

     

    16. Fritz, C.O., Morris, P.E., & Richler, J.J. (2012). Effect size measures: Current use, calculations and interpretation. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 141, 2-18. [pdf]

     

    15. Richler, J.J., Cheung, O.S., & Gauthier, I. (2011). Beliefs alter holistic face processing…if response bias is not taken into account. Journal of Vision, 11, 1-13. [pdf]

     

    14. Richler, J.J., Gauthier, I., & Palmeri, T.J. (2011). Automaticity of basic-level categorization accounts for labeling effects in visual recognition memory. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition, 37, 1579-1587. [pdf]

     

    13. Cheung, O.S., Richler, J.J., Phillips, W.S., & Gauthier, I. (2011). Does temporal integration of face parts reflect holistic processing? Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 18, 476-483. [pdf]

     

    12. Richler, J.J., Wong, Y.K., & Gauthier, I. (2011). Perceptual expertise as a shift from strategic interference to automatic holistic processing. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 20, 129-134. [pdf]

     

    11. Richler, J.J., Cheung, O.S., & Gauthier, I. (2011). Holistic processing predicts face recognition. Psychological Science, 22, 464-471. [pdf]

     

    10. Mack, M.L., Richler, J.J., Gauthier, I., & Palmeri, T.J. (2011). Indecision on decisional separability. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 18, 1-9. [pdf]

     

    9. Richler, J.J., Mack, M.L., Palmeri, T.J., & Gauthier, I. (2011). Inverted faces are (eventually) processed holistically. Vision Research, 51, 333-342. [pdf]

     

    8. Mack, M.L., Richler, J.J., Polyn, S., & Palmeri, T.J. (2010). Modelling effects of object naming on long term object recognition memory. Visual Cognition, 18, 1526-1529.

     

    7. Richler, J.J., Mack, M.L., Gauthier, I., & Palmeri, T.J. (2009) Holistic processing of faces happens at a glance. Vision Research, 49, 2856-2861. [pdf]

     

    6. Richler, J.J., Cheung, O.S., Wong, A.C.-N., & Gauthier, I. (2009). Does response interference contribute to face composite effects? Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 16, 258-263. [pdf]

     

    5. Richler, J.J., Bukach, C.M., & Gauthier, I. (2009). Context influences holistic processing of non-face objects in the composite task. Attention, Perception & Psychophysics, 71, 530-540. [pdf]

     

    4. Cheung, O.S., Richler, J.J., Palmeri, T.J. & Gauthier, I. (2008). Revisiting the role of spatial frequencies in the holistic processing of faces. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception & Performance, 34, 1327-1336. [pdf]

     

    3. Richler, J.J., Tanaka, J.W., Brown, D.D. & Gauthier, I. (2008). Why does selective attention to parts fail in face processing? Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition, 34, 1356-1368. [pdf]

     

    2. Richler, J.J., Gauthier, I., Wenger, M.J. & Palmeri, T.J. (2008). Holistic processing of faces: Perceptual and decisional components. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory and Cognition, 34, 328-342. [pdf]

     

    1. Richler, J.J., Mack, M.L., Gauthier, I. & Palmeri, T.J. (2007). Distinguishing between perceptual and decisional sources of holism in face processing. Proceedings of the Twenty-Ninth Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society, 1427-1432. [pdf]

  • Tests

    Downloadable materials for tests designed and validated by the Vanderbilt Object Perception Lab for use in individual differences research. These tests are freely available to promote research in this area.

    Please cite the reference provided for each test.

    Vanderbilt Holistic Processing Test - Faces 2.1

    A reliable test of holistic processing of faces, operationalized as a failure of selective attention.

    In this version of the VHPT-F, trials that were made incorrectly in version 2.0 have been fixed.

     

    In addition, based on item analyses of data from 525 subjects, we modified 16 trials from version 2.0 that were not correlated with overall condition scores (e.g., congruent trials that were negatively correlated with overall performance on congruent trials).

     

    Download VHPT-F program here

    Note that the program was created on a Mac, and is therefore best optimized for Mac. However, a Windows version is also available.

     

    Richler, J.J., Floyd, R.J., & Gauthier, I. (2014). The Vanderbilt Holistic Face Processing Test: A short and reliable measure of holistic face processing. Journal of Vision, 14, 1-14. [pdf]

  • APA PeePs

    APA PeePs (Particularly Exciting Experiments in Psychology) is a free bimonthly summary of ongoing research trends common to six APA journals that focus on experimental Psychology.

     

    The goal of PeePs is to move beyond single article summaries to highlight meaningful connections between articles published in different journals.

     

    These interdisciplinary links between contemporary studies help readers situate research questions in a broader context. PeePs covers both animal and human studies to promote lateral thinking about how to approach a given topic or question.

     

    Subscribe to PeePs

    Archived Issues

    2016

    Issue 74: Visual Illusions

    Issue 73: Optimal Practice Schedules

    Issue 72: Rewarding Stimuli

    Issue 71: Task Switching

    Issue 70: Social Transmission of Fear

    Issue 69: Magnitude Comparison with Fractions

    Issue 68: Contingency Learning

    Issue 67: Social Expectations

    Issue 66: Orthographic (Mis)Perception

    Issue 65: Future-oriented Cognition

    Issue 64: Risk Tolerance

    Issue 63: Motor Learning

    Issue 62: Anxiety

    Issue 61: Goals & Actions

     

    2015

    Issue 60: Information Seeking

    Issue 59: Visual Spatial Frequency Information

    Issue 58: Auditory Category Learning

    Issue 57: Evaluating False Claims

    Issue 56: Visual Attention

    Issue 55: Interference from Native Language

    Issue 54: Quantity Discrimination

    Issue 53: Face Recognition & Memory

    Issue 52: Motivation

    Issue 51: Attentional Control

    Issue 50: Social Learning

    Issue 49: False Memory

    Issue 48: Altruism

    Issue 47: Awareness

    Issue 46: Response Inhibition

    Issue 45: Scene Context

    Issue 44: Reading Comprehension

    Issue 43: Visual Object Perception

    Issue 42: Metacognition

    Issue 41: Problem Solving

    Issue 40: Stress

    Issue 39: Self Biases

    Issue 38: Risky Decision-Making

    Issue 37: Spatial Learning in Rats

     

    2014

    Issue 36: Group Decision-making [teacher supplement]

    Issue 35: Navigation & Landmarks [teacher supplement]

    Issue 34: Instructions [teacher supplement]

    Issue 33: Semantic Priming [teacher supplement]

    Issue 32: Video Game Training [teacher supplement]

    Issue 31: Motor-Perception Interactions [teacher supplement]

    Issue 30: Prosocial Behavior [teacher supplement]

    Issue 29: Prosody [teacher supplement]

    Issue 28: Visual Category Learning [teacher supplement]

    Issue 27: Visual Search [teacher supplement]

    Issue 26: Adaptive Forgetting [teacher supplement]

    Issue 25: Morality [teacher supplement]

    Issue 24: Visual Working Memory [teacher supplement]

    Issue 23: Contextual Biases in Choice [teacher supplement]

    Issue 22: Gaze Cues & Theory of Mind [teacher supplement]

    Issue 21: Reward & Memory [teacher supplement]

    Issue 20: Visual Cues & Spatial Reorientation

    Issue 19: Training

    Issue 18: Communicative Gesture

    Issue 17: Shape Perception

    Issue 16: Sleep

    Issue 15: Scene Perception

    Issue 14: Interval Duration

    Issue 13: Speech Perception

     

    2013

    Issue 12: Auditory Perception

    Issue 11: Manual Actions

    Issue 10: Emotion & Memory

    Issue 9: Predictive Learning

    Issue 8: Social Influences on Person Perception

    Issue 7: Numerical Cognition

    Issue 6: Olfaction

    Issue 5: Embodied Cognition

    Issue 4: Perceptual Learning

    Issue 3: Retrieval-induced Forgetting

    Issue 2: Delayed Gratification

    Issue 1: Reading and Eye Movements

  • Article Spotlight: Experimental Psychology

    Article Spotlight: Experimental Psychology features summaries of recently published articles from APA's experimental psychology journals. Spotlight highlights one recently published article, chosen by the journal Editor for being particularly noteworthy to the scientific community.

     

    Subscribe to Spotlight

    Archived Issues

    2016

    Understanding Addiction by Dissociating "Wanting" and "Liking"

    Anselme & Robinson, 2016, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition

     

    Qualitative Changes in the Processes Supporting Math Performance Across Learning

    Tenison & Anderson, 2016, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition.

     

    Processing benefits for consonance in rats and humans

    Crespo-Bojorque & Toro, 2016, Journal of Comparative Psychology

     

    Writing facilitates symbol learning due to output variability

    Li & James, 2016, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General

     

    The ability to detect color differences is not categorical

    Witzel & Gegenfurtner, 2015, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance

     

    Enhancing motivation can alleviate cognitive deficits

    Avlar, Kahn, Jensen, Kandel, Simpson, & Balsam, 2015, Behavioral Neuroscience

     

    Recognition without awareness

    Craik, Rose, & Gopie, 2016, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition

     

    Category generalization in nonhuman primates

    Smith, Zakrzewski, Johnston, Roeder, Boomer, Ashby, & Church, 2015, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition

     

    2015

    Pursuing happiness leads to well-being in cultures where happiness is defined in socially engaged ways

    Ford, Dmitrieva, Heller, Chentsova-Dutton, Grossmann, Tamir, Uchida, Koopmann-Holm, Floerke, Uhrig, Bokhan, & Mauss, 2015, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General

     

    Can a bonobo keep the beat?

    Large & Grey, 2015, Journal of Comparative Psychology

     

    Taste perception is influenced by extreme noise conditions

    Yan & Dando, 2015, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance.

     

    Early damage to the amygdala or hippocampus has subtle effects on adult social behavior

    Moadab, Bliss-Moreau, & Amaral, 2015, Behavioral Neuroscience

     

    Large-scale analyses of non-word performance provide insight into lexical processing

    Yap, Sibley, Balota, Ratcliff, & Rueckl, 2015, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition

     

    Searching the Internet inflates estimates of internal knowledge

    Fisher, Goddu, & Keil, 2015, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General.

     

    Interactions between multiple independent memory systems in pigeons

    Roberts, Strang, & Macpherson, 2015, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition

     

    Humans, but not pigeons, use global and local visual information flexibly and adaptively

    Aust & Braunöder, 2015, Journal of Comparative Psychology

     

  • Contact

    jenn [dot] richler [at] gmail.com

    @JennRichler

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