Alan Brown


Alan Brown


Hyer Hall 306C

CURRICULUM VITAE click to view

My research primarily involves how we store and retrieve information about the real world, and the manner in which these processes fail us. One of these phenomena is tip of the tongue experience, where one is momentarily stymied in accessing well-stored knowledge. Another is the false positive recognition experience of déjà vu, where a present experience seems subjectively familiar when you know that it is objectively new. We are currently extending the TOT research to identify the factors underlying repeated TOTs, and whether these change in frequency with age. We are also exploring the prevalence of other varieties of spontaneous familiarity, related to déjà vu, and whether there are changes across the age span. Finally, there are several research projects on how people incorporate other’s life experiences into their own autobiography.

Another recent line of research involves the retention of health-related information, and what concepts from basic research in cognition can be applied to improving memory for intervention instructions. The key question is if this can facilitate behavior change to remediate problematic behaviors, such as excessive alcohol consumption.

Brown, A. S. (2012). The tip of the tongue state. New York: Psychology Press.

Brown, A. S., & Croft, K. (in press). There it is again on my tongue: Tracking repeat TOTs. In B. W. Schwartz & A. S. Brown (Eds.), Tip of the tongue states and related phenomena. Cambridge University Press.

Gollan, T. H., & Brown, A. S. (2006). From tip-of-the-tongue (TOT) data to theoretical implications: When more TOTs means better retrieval. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 135, 462-483.

Brown, A. S., & Marsh, E. J. (2010). Digging into déjà vu: Recent research findings on possible mechanisms. In B. H. Ross (Ed.), The Psychology of Learning and Motivation, Vol. 53, Burlington: Academic Press (pp. 33-62).

Brown, A. S., & Marsh, E. J. (2008). Evoking false beliefs about autobiographical experience. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 15, 186-190.

Brown, A. S., & Marsh, E. J. (2009). Creating illusions of past encounter through brief exposure. Psychological Science, 20, 534-538.

Cleary, A. M., Brown, A. S., Sawyer, B. D., Nomi, J. S., Ajoku, A. C., & Ryals, A. J. (in press). Familiarity from the configuration of objects in 3-dimensional space and its relation to déjà vu: A virtual reality investigation. Consciousness and Cognition.

Jouriles, E. N., Brown, A. S., Rosenfield, D., McDonald, R., Croft, K., Leahy, M. M., & Walters, S. T. (2010). Improving the effectiveness of computer-delivered personalized drinking feedback interventions for college students. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors.

Jouriles, E. N., McDonald, R., Garrido, E., Rosenfield, D., & Brown, A. S. (2005). Assessing physical violence in adolescent romantic relationships: Can we do it better? Psychological Assessment, 17, 469-475.