Brendan T. Johns

Home        CV        Publications       Research         Code

I am an Assistant Professor in the Communicative Disorders and Sciences and Computational Linguistics Departments at the University at Buffalo, where I run the UB Computational Language and Memory Laboratory. Previously I was an NSERC post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Psychology at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario, under the supervision of Dr. Douglas J. K. Mewhort. I was also a post-doc in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Indiana University, Bloomington, under the supervision of Dr. Richard M. Shiffrin in the Memory and Perception Lab. In August 2012 I received my Ph.D. at IU under the supervision of Dr. Michael N. Jones in the Cognitive Computing Lab. I received my Bachelor of Computing (with a major in Cognitive Science) from Queen's University in 2007.

The wordle to the left is of some recent papers I've written and describes quite accurately what my research interests are. Generally, my interests lie in big data approaches to cognition, particularly in building large-scale computational models of memory and language, with an emphasis on semantic memory. Specifically, I am interested in how humans are able to acquire representations of word meanings, and in turn how these representations are used in other forms of cognition, such as recognition memory, sentence processing, word learning, memory retrieval, and conceptualization. I am also interested in the neurological implementations of these different systems.

My secondary research interests lie in the area of computational statistics and model testing. This includes both significance testing, and exploratory techniques used to inform models of cognition. My recent research has focused on using these techniques to investigate bilingualism and also semantic deficits in aging and Alzheimer's disease. More information on specific research can be found in the Publications and Research sections.