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Kelsey Thompson


Brain, Behavior, & Cognition
Department of Psychology
Northwestern University

Office: Cresap 309
Email: kelseythompson2012@u.northwestern.edu

Current Research Interests:
I am interested in the implicit learning process and how it happens in the brain. Contributing towards this understanding, my first year research focused on the effects of ego depletion on implicit skill learning and the mechanisms by which depletion interferes with both the learning and performance of motor skills. In my second year, I conducted two separate research studies aimed at answering different questions about the implicit learning process. One was an EEG study looking at the neural correlates of implicit sequence learning, and the second investigated the type of information participants extract when learning an implicit motor sequence. Currently, I am continuing behavioral and computational modeling work to find the statistical learning model that best accounts for how people associate sequential cues as they learn an implicit sequence.


Thompson, K. R., Sanchez, D. J., Wesley, A. H., & Reber. P. J. (2014). Ego depletion impairs implicit learning. PloS one, 9(10), e109370.

Thompson, K. R., Johnson, A., Emerson, J., Dawson, J., Boer, E., & Rizzo, M. (2012). Distracted driving in elderly and middle-aged drivers. Accident Analysis and Prevention, 45, 711-717.

Thompson, K., Read, K., Anderson, S., & Rizzo, M. (2011). Systematic analysis of real-world driving behavior following focal brain lesions. In Proceedings of the Sixth International Driving Symposium on Human Factors in Driver Assessment, Training, and Vehicle Design. Lake Tahoe, CA.

Bergquist, T. F., Thompson, K., Gehl, C. & Pineda, J. M. (2010). Satisfaction ratings after receiving internet-based cognitive rehabilitation in persons with memory impairments after severe acquired brain injury. Telemedicine and e-Health, 16(4), 417-423.


Thompson, K. R. & Reber, P. J. Rapid learning of long-range dependencies in implicit sequence learning, March 2015. Poster presented at the International Convention of Psychological Science, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Thompson, K. R., Batterink, L., Paller, K., & Reber, P. J. Using EEG to identify neural signatures of implicit sequence learning, April, 2014. Poster presented at the Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, Boston, MA.


2014 – M.S. in Psychology, Northwestern University

2010 – B.A. in Psychology, St. Olaf College


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