Document

Daniel J. Simons

Section 1

Program Area: Attention & Perception

Professor of Psychology

User Photo

Contact Information:

Specializations

  • Visual cognition, attention, perception, memory, change blindness, inattentional blindness, metacognition & intuition

Research Description

Visual cognition, perception, attention, and memory. Most of my recent research has focused on the cognitive underpinnings of our experience of a stable and continuous visual world. One line of research focuses on change blindness. These failures to notice large changes to scenes suggest that we are aware of far less of our visual world than we think. Related studies explore what aspects of our environment automatically capture attention and what objects and events go unnoticed. Such studies reveal the surprising extent of inattentional blindness - the failure to notice unusual and salient events in their visual world when attention is otherwise engaged and the events are unexpected. Other active research interests include scene perception, object recognition, visual memory, visual fading, attention, and driving and distraction. Research in my laboratory adopts methods ranging from real-world and video-based approaches to computer-based psychophysical techniques, and it includes basic behavioral measures, eye tracking, simulator studies, and training studies. This diversity of approaches helps establish closer links between basic research on the mechanisms of attention and the real-world implications and consequences of our findings.

Education

  • B.A. from Carleton College
  • Ph.D. from Cornell University

Courses

  • Introduction to Experimental Psychology (Psych 103)
  • Introduction to Visual Cognition
  • Grad seminars on perception and on professional issues

Recent Publications

Chabris, C. F., & Simons, D. J. (2010). The Invisible Gorilla (And Other Ways Our Intuitions Deceive Us). New York, NY: Crown. (see www.theinvisiblegorilla.com for details).

Most, S. B., Scholl, B. J., Clifford, E. R., & Simons, D. J. (2005). What you see is what you set: Sustained inattentional blindness and the capture of awareness. Psychological Review, 112(1), 217-242.

Simons, D. J., & Chabris, C. F. (1999). Gorillas in our midst: Sustained inattentional blindness for dynamic events. Perception, 28, 1059-1074.

Simons, D. J., & Jensen, M. S. (2009). The effects of individual differences and task difficulty on inattentional blindness. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 16(2), 398-403.

Simons, D. J., & Rensink, R. A. (2005). Change blindness: Past, present, and future. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 9(1), 16-20.

Section 2

Sections

Facilities Information

All-Gender ADA Accessible Restroom

The Psychology Department is very pleased to announce that an all-gender, ADA accessible, family-friendly restroom has been built on the first floor next to the elevators. The department partnered with F&S to construct this new restroom, which is now available to use. Please note that there is an indicator on the door showing whether the restroom is available or in use. Be sure to lock the door while using the restroom, and unlock the door before leaving.