I am an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Denison University. I received my PhD from the Psychology Department at the University of California, San Diego where I worked in the Rayner Eyetracking Lab.
As a researcher, I explore questions at the interface of visual perception, attention, and language processing—primarily the coordination of these different systems during reading. The primary goal of my research program is to understand how the cognitive-linguistic system adapts to individual differences in language skills and variable task demands to maximize efficiency. In particular, I use eye tracking and other behavioral paradigms to measure the effects of specific linguistic and visual manipulations on readers’ ongoing word identification and language comprehension, and use distributional analyses (e.g., survival analysis) and machine learning techniques (e.g., cluster analysis) to determine how individual cognitive and linguistic skills or specific task demands shape and alter the reading process. Together, I explore how eye movement planning, rapid visual perception, and linguistic skills work together to produce highly efficient readers. Within this larger framework, the two main branches of my research program investigate the functions of phonological (sound) information during silent reading (including developmental changes) and the cues and strategies readers use to make sense of language that is often massively ambiguous.