Travis Seymour

TitleAssociate Professor
DivisionSocial Sciences Division
DepartmentPsychology Department
AffiliationsSocial Sciences Division
Web Site
OfficeSocial Sciences 2, Room 357
Office HoursWednesday 2-4pm (Fall 2017)
Campus Mail StopPsychology Faculty Services
Travis Seymour

Research Interests

Travis Seymour's research involves theoretical and empirical investigations into the role of memory on human performance. The representation and access of perceptual memory, working memory and long-term memory constrain how and when we can use relevant information to complete many cognitive tasks. For example one line of work focuses on how working memory, situational awareness and executive control play a role in the multiple-task performance of automobile drivers and military jet pilots. A similar study focuses on how air-traffic controllers keep track of and remember critical visual-spatial information that dynamically changes over time.

In addition to these human-performance issues, Professor Seymour explores the role of conscious and unconscious executive processes in recognition memory. This project examines how constraints on memory access can allow us to detect the presence of privileged knowledge, despite explicit strategies to conceal this information. Because, under certain circumstances, we cannot control our response to information we recognize, results from this research have led to the formulation of a new mechanical "lie detector" potentially more accurate and reliable than previous candidates.

To test the various theoretical claims associated with each project, Professor Seymour employs the use of symbolic computational models constrained by robust a priori cognitive architectures such as the EPIC architecture (Meyer and Kieras, 1997a, 1997b). By comparing the results of these computer simulations to the data produced by human subjects, theories instantiated in the models can be verified in a precise and constrained manner.

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Biography, Education and Training

M.A., Ph.D., University of Michigan
B.A., Northwestern University

Selected Publications

  • Mueller. T.; Seymour, T.L.; Kieras, D.E. and Meyer, D.E. On the storage and rehearsal mechanisms of verbal working memory. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning Memory & Cognition. In Press.

  • Schumacher, E.H.; Seymour, T.L.; Glass, J.M.; Kieras, D.E. and Meyer, D.E. Virtually perfect time-sharing in human dual-task performance. Psychological Science. 2001, 12(2), 101-108.

  • Seymour, T.L.; Seifert, C.M.; Mosmann, A.M. and Shafto, M.G. Using response time measures to assess "Guilty Knowledge". Journal of Applied Psychology, 2000, 85.

  • Kieras, D.E.; Meyer, D.E.; Mueller, S. and Seymour, T. Insights into working memory from the perspective of the EPIC architecture for modeling skilled perceptual-motor and cognitive human performance. In P. Shah and A. Miyake (Eds.), Models of Working Memory: Mechanisms of Active Maintenance and Executive Control. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1999, 183-223.

Courses Taught

Psych 1: Introduction to Psychology
Psych 129: Human Learning and Memory
Psych 139D: Modeling Human Performance
Psych 191A: Teaching College Psychology