Modeling in Cognition training program

The Cognitive Science Program at Indiana University is pleased to offer predoctoral and postdoctoral fellowships for a training program in the Modeling of Cognition.

Successful applicants for predoctoral and postdoctoral fellowships typically have had training in mathematics and computer science or other physical and/or biological and social sciences.


Over the centuries, the interaction between mathematics and empirical science has not only benefited the latter, but undoubtedly led to many advances in pure and applied mathematics. We feel that a secondary long-term goal for programs such as ours is to stimulate such beginning interactions between the mathematical sciences and cognitive science and psychology.

All in all, our program is intended to provide the very best scientific and quantitative training possible to a new generation of cognitive science researchers and teachers to meet the challenge and promise of the twenty-first century.


Fellows will be provided with in-depth training on a variety of mathematical and computational modeling techniques, and with hands-on experience utilizing these to build and test models of perceptual and cognitive processes with laboratory data. We expect fellows to become specialists in one or two types of modeling and problem domains, but generalists in their ability to apply modeling strategies to a range of substantive areas.

Our program is also designed to ensure that fellows will be capable of carrying out what we hope will be groundbreaking research, facilitated by their modeling skills. The potential substantive areas span the fields of perception, cognition and cognitive science, reflecting the research interests of the core faculty. These areas include:

  • Memory and Learning
  • Categorization, Classification, and Conceptualization
  • Memorial Interference and Forgetting
  • Attention and Automatization of Attentional Processes
  • Skill and Motor Skill Learning
  • Lexical Access
  • Language and Speech
  • Face Perception and Cognition
  • Perception and Action
  • Auditory and Visual Perception and Human Information Processing
  • Problem Solving
  • Decision Making

The Modeling of Cognition program has nine core faculty, from the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, all of whom are internationally recognized for their expertise in the modeling of cognition. They have contributed some of the major models of cognition in the field, and also many important methodological innovations and techniques.

Our core faculty have expertise in a range of techniques, including:

  • Dynamic Systems and Non-linear Dynamical Modeling
  • Probability Theory and Stochastic Processes
  • Abstract Algebra and Foundational Measurement Theory
  • Point Set and Algebraic Topology and Differential Geometry and Topology
  • Mathematical Logic and Game Theory
  • Neural Net, Distributed Memory and Connectionist Modeling

In addition, other affiliated faculty and liaisons with the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science facilitate breadth and depth in our training program. Often a member of one or both of those departments serve on a predoctoral student's training and doctoral committees.

Predoctoral Fellowships

Our predoctoral fellows take a five-year program resulting in a joint Ph.D. degree in Psychology and Cognitive Science, as well as a certificate in Modeling in Cognitive Science.

The predoctoral program emphasizes laboratory research and mathematical modeling of the empirical results. In general, a predoctoral candidate will gain experience in the laboratories of at least two faculty members.

Postdoctoral Fellowships

Our postdoctoral fellows will visit for two years, taking mathematical modeling courses and in some cases, courses in mathematics, computer science or other sciences, and carrying out a wide variety of research involving modeling in the laboratories of two or more faculty members.


For more information, contact:

James Townsend, c/o S. Mobley (smobley@indiana.edu)
Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences
Indiana University
Bloomington, IN 47405
Phone: (812) 855-9871
Fax: 812-855-4691