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Brendan T. Johns, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Office: 120 Cary Hall
Phone: 716.829.5565
Email: btjohns@buffalo.edu

 

Current Work:

Generally, my interests lie in computational models of language comprehension, with an emphasis on language comprehension and 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. Additionally, I use these techniques to investigate bilingualism and also semantic deficits in aging and Alzheimer's disease. 

Website:

http://btjohns.com

Biography:

I am an Assistant Professor in the Communicative Disorders and Sciences Department at the University at Buffalo. 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.

Publications

  • Johns, B. T., Mewhort, D. J. K., & Jones, M. N. (in press). Small worlds and big data: Examining the simplification assumption in cognitive modeling. In Jones, M. N. (Ed.) Big Data in Cognitive Science: From Methods to Insights, Taylor & Francis.
  • Johns, B. T., Dye, M. W., & Jones, M. N. (in press). The influence of contextual diversity on word learning. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review.
  • Johns, B. T., Sheppard, C., Jones, M. N., & Taler, V. (2016). The Role of Semantic Diversity in Lexical Organization across Aging and Bilingualism. Frontiers in Psychology.
  • Johns, B. T., Jones, M. N., & Mewhort, D. J. K. (2016). Experience as a free parameter in the cognitive modeling of language. Proceedings of the 37th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society.
  • Dye, M., Johns, B. T., Jones, M. N., & Ramscar, M. (2016). The structure of names in memory: Deviations from uniform entropy impair memory for linguistic sequences. Proceedings of the 37th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society
  • Johns, B. T., Jamieson, R. K., Crump, M. J. C., Jones, M. N., & Mewhort, D. J. K. (2016). The combinatorial power of experience. Proceedings of the 37th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society.
  • Chubala, C. M., Johns, B. T., Jamieson, R. K., & Mewhort, D. J. K. (2016). Applying an exemplar model to the implicit rule-learning task: Implicit learning of semantic structure. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 69, 1049-1055.
  • Johns, B. T., & Jones, M. N. (2015). Generating structure from experience: A retrieval-based model of sentence processing. Canadian Journal of Experimental Psychology, 69, 233-251. [Winner of 2015 CPA/CSBBCS Best Article Award]
  • Johns, B. T., Dye, M., Jones, M. N. (2014). The influence of contextual variability on word learning. Proceedings of the 36th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society.
  • Johns, B. T., Jones, M. N., & Mewhort, D. J. K. (2014). A continuous source reinstatement model of true and illusory recollection. Proceedings of the 36th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society.
  • Johns, B. T., & Jones, M. N. (2014). Generating structure from experience: The role of memory in language. Proceedings of the 36th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society.
  • Taler, V., Johns, B. T., Young, K., Sheppard, C., & Jones, M. N. (2013). A computational analysis of semantic structure in bilingual fluency. Journal of Memory and Language, 69, 607-618.
  • Johns, B. T., Taler, V., Pisoni, D. B., Farlow, M. R., Hake, A. M., Kareken, D. A., Unverzagt, F. W., & Jones, M. N. (2013). Using cognitive models to investigate the temporal dynamics of semantic memory impairments in the development of Alzheimer’s disease. In the Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Cognitive Modeling (ICCM).
  • Johns, B. T., Jones, M. N., & Mewhort, D. J. K. (2012). A synchronization account of false recognition. Cognitive Psychology, 65, 486-518.
  • Johns, B. T., Gruenenfelder, T. M., Pisoni, D. B., & Jones, M. N. (2012). Effects of word frequency, contextual diversity, and semantic distinctiveness on spoken word recognition. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 132:2, EL74-EL80.
  • Johns, B. T., & Jones, M. N. (2012). Perceptual Inference through global lexical similarity. Topics in Cognitive Science, 4, 103-120.
  • Jones, M. N., Johns, B. T., & Recchia, G. (2012). The role of semantic distinctiveness in lexical organization. Canadian Journal of Experimental Psychology, 66, 115-124.
  • Johns, B. T., & Jones, M. M. (2011). Construction in semantic memory: Generating perceptual representations with global lexical similarity. In L. Carlson, C. Hölscher, & T. Shipley (Eds.), Proceedings of the 33rd Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society. Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society. [Marr Prize for Best Student Paper]
  • Johns, B. T., & Jones, M. N. (2010). Evaluating the random representation assumption of lexical semantics in cognitive models. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 17, 662-672.
  • Mewhort, D. J. K., Johns, B. T., & Kelly, M. (2010). Applying the permutation test to factorial designs. Behavior Research Methods, 42, 366-372.
  • Johns, B. T., & Jones, M. N. (2010). Are random representations accurate approximations of lexical semantics? In S. Ohisson & R. Catrambone (Eds.), Proceedings of the 32nd Annual Cognitive Science Society. Austin TX: CSS.
  • Mewhort, D. J. K., Kelly, M., & Johns, B. T. (2009). Randomization tests and the unequal-N/unequal-variance problem. Behavior Research Methods, 41, 664-667.
  • Johns, B. T., & Jones, M. N. (2009). False recognition through semantic amplification.In N. A. Taatgen & H. van Rijn (Eds.), Proceedings of the 31st Annual Cognitive Science Society, (pp. 2795-2800). Austin TX: CSS.
  • Johns, B. T., & Jones, M. N. (2009). Simulating false recall as an integration of semantic search and recognition. In N. A. Taatgen & H. van Rijn (Eds.), Proceedings of the 31st Annual Cognitive Science Society, (pp. 2511-2516). Austin TX: CSS.
  • Johns, B. T., & Jones, M. N. (2008). Predicting word-naming and lexical decision times from a semantic space model. In B. C. Love, K. McRae, & V. M. Sloutsky (Eds.), Proceedings of the 30th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (p. 279). Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society.
  • Recchia, G., Johns, B. T., & Jones, M. N. (2008). Context repetition benefits are dependent on context redundancy. In B. C. Love, K. McRae, & V. M. Sloutsky (Eds.), Proceedings of the 30th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (p. 267). Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society.