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PROFILE — Anna Fisher
Click to Enlarge Photo . . . Associate Professor
Area: Developmental

Contact information:
Email: fisher49@andrew.cmu.edu
Psychology office: 335I Baker Hall
Psychology phone: 412-268-8656

Director,
Cognitive Development Laboratory
www.psy.cmu.edu/cognitivedevelopmentlab

Research Interests:

Cognitive Development; Inductive Generalization; Category- Based Reasoning; Language & Cognition; Attention & Learning; Individual Differences

A major goal of my research is to contribute to understanding of how young children learn and how they generalize knowledge. In some ways, these processes are remarkably similar in humans and other species. For instance, a variety of species can learn visual and auditory categories based on the distribution of features in the input. In other ways, generalization in humans is remarkably different from that in other species. To name just a few, only humans exhibit evidence of the ability to organize categories into multiple levels of abstraction, create ad-hoc categories, establish arbitrary groupings, or engage in higher-order reasoning. My research explores the development of uniquely human modes of learning and inference, and I am particularly interested in the development of category-based inductive reasoning. A related line of research in my lab explores the relationship between sustained attention and learning. Ultimately, this line of research seeks to apply insights from developmental cognitive psychology to improve childrenŐs learning in academic settings.
 

Recent Publications:

For a full list of publications go to http://www.psy.cmu.edu/~cognitivedevelopmentlab/

Godwin, K.E., Matlen, B., & Fisher, A.V. (2013). Development of category-based reasoning in 4- to 7-year-old children: The influence of label co-occurrence and kinship knowledge. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 115, 74-90.

Fisher, A.V., Thiessen, E.D., Godwin, K., Kloos, H., & Dickerson, J.P. (2013). Assessing selective sustained attention in 3- to 5-year-old children: Evidence from a new paradigm. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 114, 275-294.

Sloutsky, V.M., & Fisher, A.V. (2012). Linguistic labels: Conceptual markers or object features? Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 111, 65-86.

Fisher, A.V. (2011). Processing of perceptual information is more robust than processing of conceptual information in preschool-age children: Evidence from costs of switching. Cognition, 119, 253-264.

Fisher, A.V., Matlen, B., & Godwin, K.E. (2011). Semantic Similarity of Labels and Inductive Generalization: Taking a Second Look. Cognition, 118, 432-438.

Fisher, A.V. (2011). Automatic shifts of attention in the Dimensional Change Card Sort task: Subtle changes in task materials lead to flexible switching. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 108, 211-219.


 

Assistants to Dr. Fisher:
Amy Barrett, Lab Manager
Jessica Meeks,  jameeks@andrew.cmu.edu
Manon Sohn,  masohn@andrew.cmu.edu

Current Graduate Students:
Karrie Godwin,  kegodwin@andrew.cmu.edu
Layla Unger,  lunger@andrew.cmu.edu



Related Links:

  • Curriculum Vitae (pdf file)
  • Cognitive Development Laboratory
  • Program in Interdisciplinary Education Research (PIER)
  • CMU Directory Information