Cognition Lab

Dr. Mary Harmon-Vukic, Principal Investigator

In my lab I investigate memory processes during reading. Specifically, I am interested in factors that influence memory retrieval.

Areas of interest:

  • Inferences during Reading
  • Negation and Memory
  • The Minimally Counterintuitiveness Effect
  • Cognitive Load during Reading

Recent Publications:

  • Harmon-Vuki?, M. E. (2013).  Navigating the tenure process. In J. Keely, S.E. Afful, J. J.
  • Stiegler-Balfour, J. Good, & S. Leder (Eds.). So you landed a job – What’s next? Advice for early career psychologists from early career psychologists. Retrieved from the Society for the Teaching of Psychology web site.
  • Harmon-Vuki?, M. E., Upal, M. A., & Sheehan, K. J. (2012). Understanding the memory
  • advantage of counterintuitive concepts.  Religion, Brain, and Behavior, 2(2), 121-139.
  • Harmon-Vuki?, M. E., & Schanz, K. (2012). A cultural immersion course in psychology.
  • Teaching of Psychology, 39(2), 42-45.
  • Harmon-Vuki?, M. E., Guéraud, S., Lassonde, K. A., & O’Brien, E. J. (2009). The activation and instantiation of instrumental inferences. Discourse Processes, 46, 467-490.
  • Harmon-Vuki?, M. E., & Slone, D. J. (2009). The effect of integration on recall of
  • counterintuitive stories. Journal of Cognition and Culture, 9(1-2), 57-68.
  • Manuscripts Under Review:
  • Harmon-Vuki?, M. E. (under review). Teaching culture to privileged students: An analysis.
  • Harmon-Vuki?, M. E., Upal, M. A., & Trainor, C. (under review).  Understanding the role of
  • context in memory for maximally counterintuitive concepts.


Current Research Assistants:

  • Caitlin Trainor (Lab Manager)
  • Mia Kruzel
  • Emily Mercer

Independent Study

I encourage you to consider doing an independent study in the Cognition Lab. Below is some information.


  • PSY 201/202—Research Design and Statistical Analysis I and II
  • PSY 316—Cognitive Psychology
  • PSY 416—Experimental Cognitive Psychology Or Permission from Dr. Harmon-Vukic


Typical independent study projects build on experiments from PSY 316 and/or PSY 416. Most independent studies involve empirical work investigating memory.

How to apply

You must submit a research proposal including an introduction, methods section, and hypotheses.

Please contact me if you are considering an independent study or if you have any questions.