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Wendy Heller

Division: Clinical/Community

Professor of Psychology
Professor of Gender and Women's Studies

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Research Description

My primary focus is on the neurobiological correlates of emotional function, including the neurological and neuropsychological processes involved in mood and emotion regulation, the development of personality and psychopathology, and the interaction of emotional processes with cognition. I am particularly interested in investigating cognition-emotion interactions in psychopathology, particularly in anxiety and depression.Neuropsychological research has demonstrated not only that the cerebral hemispheres are specialized for different cognitive functions but also that they differ in their emotional organization. Areas of the brain that are involved in information processing are thus engaged in a variety of emotional processes, concurrently and in a complementary manner, that may influence or interact with cognition at various stages of the learning or memory process. My research specializes in examining how different aspects of brain organization, including lateralization of function, as well as more specific regions of interest, influence emotional, social, and cognitive functioning.


  • Ph.D. from the University of Chicago


  • Neuropsychological Assessment
  • The autobiography of disability and mental illness

Recent Publications

Engels, A.S., Heller, W., Mohanty, A., Herrington, J.D., Banich, M.T., Webb, A.G., & Miller, G.A. (2007). Specificity of regional brain activity in anxiety types during emotion processing. Psychophysiology, 44, 352-363.

Heller, W., Levin, R. L., Mukherjee, D., & Reis, J. P. (2006). Characters in contexts: Identity and personality processes that influence individual and family adjustment to brain injury. Journal of Rehabilitation, 72, 44-49.

Levin, R. L., Heller, W., Mohanty, A., Herrington, J. D., & Miller, G. A. (2007). Cognitive deficits in depression and functional specificity of regional brain activity. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 31, 211-233.

Miller, G.A., Elbert, T., Sutton, B.P., & Heller, W. (2007). Innovative clinical assessment technologies: Challenges and opportunities in neuroimaging. Psychological Assessment, 19, 58-73.

Mohanty, A., Engels, A.S., Herrington, J.D., Heller, W., Ho, R.M., Banich, M.T., Webb, A.G., Warren, S.L., & Miller, G.A. (2007). Differential engagement of anterior cingulate cortex subdivisions for cognitive and emotional function. Psychophysiology, 44, 352-363.