Cognition and Decision-Making

Researchers in this area study cognition by conducting human behavioral experiments and developing computational models that explain the observed behaviors. Based on the results from human experiments and computer simulations, researchers develop adaptive systems or machines that display effective learning in varying environments, and devise decision and training aids that improve people's performance.

One application of this work is detecting hostile intent in time to prevent attacks. Researchers are particularly interested in asymmetric situations, in which individuals or small teams are potential attackers. Human movement may reveal intent early enough to allow for interception; work at the center is finding that movement patterns can provide early clues about an intended destination, even if the subject is trying to deceive.

A primary goal of this work is to apply the understanding of human cognition to help solve real-world problems, such as detecting hostile intent, distributing sensors, understanding social networks and improving education.

Selected publications

Corter, J.E., C.J., Esche, S., Chassapis, C., Ma, J., and Nickerson, J.V. "Process and Learning Outcomes from Remotely-Operated, Simulated and Hands-On Student Laboratories." Computers & Education (accepted).

Zahner, D., Nickerson, J.V., Tversky, B., Corter, J.E., and Ma., J. "A Fix for Fixation? Re-representing and Abstracting as Creative Processes in the Design of Information Systems." Artificial Intelligence in Engineering Design, Analysis and Manufacturing, Maher, M., Kim, Y.S., and Bonnardel, N. (eds), 24, 2, 2010, in press.

Nickerson, J V., Tversky, B., Corter, J.E., Yu, L. and Mason, D. "Thinking with Networks." Proceedings of the 32nd Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society, 2010.

Yu, L. "Crowd Creativity through Combination." Ninth Annual SIG IS Cognitive Research Exchange Workshop, 2010.

Voiklis, J. and Corter, J.E. "Conventional Wisdom: Negotiating Conventions of Reference Enhances Category Discovery" (under review).

Kapur, M., Voiklis, J. and Kinzer, C. "A Complexity-Grounded Model of, or the Emergence of Convergence, in CSCL Groups." Analyzing Interactions in CSCL: Methodologies, Approaches and Issues, S. Puntambekar, G. Erkens and C. Hmelo-Silver (eds.), Springer (under revision).

Sakamoto, Y. and Love, B.C. "You Only Had to Ask Me Once: Long-Term Retention Requires Direct Queries During Learning." In N. Taatgen, H. van Rijn, L., 2009.

Sakamoto, Y., Ma, J. and Nickerson, J.V. "2,377 People Like this Article: The Influence of Others' Decisions on Yours." Proceedings of the 31st Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society, Taatgen, N., van Rijn, H., Schomaker, L. and Nerbonne, J. (eds.), 2009.