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The Language Research Center's Science Making Headlines


The APS story on the origins of psychopathic tendencies

Dr. Robert Latzman featured on public radio's The Academic Minute    A Moment of Science

Chimpanzees driven to distraction (APA convention blog)

Chimpanzees and humans have similar personalities Huff Post

The evolution of throwing Washington Post26June13

Dr. Bill Hopkins participates in ScienceLIVE chat on the value of laboratory behavioral research with chimpanzees. Science LIVE 30May13

Dr. Michael J. Beran on Delay of Gratification  APA Psychological Science Agenda

Do primates enjoy computer games?      BBC Nature

Smart chimp gets speech like a human     Discovery News

Chimps are Good Listeners Too: Lisa Heimbauer, Michael Owren, and Michael Beran study speech comprehension by Panzee       Science Magazine, July 2011     //     Nature, July 2011     //     Beautiful Brain July 2011     //     ScienceNews July 2011

Rhesus monkeys have a form of self awareness (Justin Couchman et al)     Newswise, June 2011

Monkeys display self-doubt like humans     BBC Earthnews, February 2011     //      Discover Magazine, February 2011

Do Apes Laugh When Tickled?     NPR interview and story by Nell Greefieldboyce with Dr. Michael Owren // click here to download the NPR interview audio file

It's mine, I tell you: Mankind's inner chimpanzee refuses to let go. This matters to everything from economics to law.
The Economist; June 19, 2008

Ape Willpower     Nature News, August 2007     //     New Scientist, August 2007     //     LiveScience, September 2007     //    
ScienCentral; December 4, 2007

Go forth and multiply: New research explores animals' math skills.
Monitor on Psychology; October, 2007

Animals do the most amazing things
The Psychologist (The British Psychological Society); January 10, 2008

Why Don't Chimpanzees Like To Barter Food?
ScienceDaily; February 5, 2008

Deal? No Deal, Chimps Say
LiveScience; February 4, 2008


 Features on the GSU/COAS websites

            Chimpanzees plan route in mazes

            One minute with Professor Brosnan

            Ken Sayers on the real Paleo Diet  

            Evolution of fairness

            Bill Hopkins obtains grant to study evolution of language and speech

            Chimpanzees show similar personality traits to humans

            Craig Dongoski and "The Sound of Art" featured as part of Atlanta Science Festival

            Templeton Foundation supports LRC scientists' study of prosocial behavior

            Chimpanzees use gesture to communicate in search for hidden food

            When less is more: plate size affects food choices

            Chimpanzees think about thinking

            Is gambling unique to humans? Is gambling helpful for survival?




Congratulations to LRC Researchers for Receiving Prestigious Awards and Other Accomplishments

Kate Talbot received the 2015 Outstanding Graduate Student Research Award from the psychology department.

Undergraduate psychology major and honors student Kristin French was awarded the Elizabeth A. Kenny Scholarship in Psychology. Kristin is a University Assistant working as part of Dr. Washburn's research team at the LRC. The Kenny Scholarship is given annually to the most outstanding psychology major (rising junior or senior).

Will Whitham was co-recipient of the 2015 Bailey Wade Fellowship from the psychology department.

Holly Adams received the Walter F. Daves Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award from the department of psychology.

Laurent Pretot received a 2015 Dissertation Grant from Georgia State University

Dr. Sarah Brosnan received the inaugural Clever Sys Early Career Investigator Award from Division 6 (Behavioral Neuroscience and Comparative Psychology) of the American Psychological Association.

Audrey Parrish was named the recipient of the Richard Morrell Outstanding Graduate Student Award from the Department of Psychology. This honor recognizes the doctoral student who has excelled in professional development/research, teaching, and service.

Audrey Parrish received a competitive Student Travel Award from the Southern Society for Philosophy and Psychology. The award is based on the quality of the talk that Audrey submitted for presentation at the 2014 annual meeting in Charleston, SC.

Laurent Pretot received a dissertation fellowship from the Swiss National Science Foundation for his project, "The ephemeral-permanent paradigm: Converging operations, differentiation, and backward induction in a cross-taxon comparative research program."

Audrey Parrish was awarded the APA Division 3 Award for the best paper at the Comparative Cognition Society's fall conference in Toronto, ON.

Kate Talbot received an APA Dissertation Award from the American Psychological Association for her project, "Recognition of pictures and social relationships among chimpanzees."

Pam Johnson received an award from the GSU College of Arts and Sciences. At the end of each fiscal year, the college recognizes outstanding staff members who performed the best in managing the accounts and finances of their respective units. This is the second time that Pam has been honored.

Audrey Parrish was named the 2013 Duane M. Rumbaugh Fellow, in recognition of her potential in the discipline and in support of her research program on perceptual learning and judgment. The Rumbaugh Fellowship was established through a generous gift by Mr. Steve Woodruff in honor of the founding director of the LRC. The goal of the Fellowship is to promote comparative research on "emergents" -- cognitive competencies that are not explained by operant- or classical-conditioning mechanisms. The selection committee lauded Ms. Parrish's scholarly accomplishments to date, and recognized the potential of her research not only to elucidate contextual effects on perception from a comparative framework, but also to inform the basic pattern-recognition mechanisms that may underlie all emergent forms of learning. Audrey is the sixth Rumbaugh Fellow.

Lindsay Mahovetz was awarded Rumbaugh Grant-in-Aid to support her research on tool use by nonhuman primates.

Dr. David Washburn was elected the 70th President of the American Psychological Association's Division of Experimental Psychology (Division 3).

In a separate election, Dr. David Washburn was elected President of Division 6 - Behavioral Neuroscience and Comparative Psychology of the American Psychological Association. This is the second time in history that the same person has been elected simultaneously to lead these two charter APA divisions.

LRC Founding Director and Regents Professor Emeritus Dr. Duane M. Rumbaugh has written a new book,With Apes In Mind, that is now available as a Kindle eBook. The book traces the remarkable changes in comparative psychology--and psychology more generally--as seen through Professor Rumbaugh's remarkable professional career. All proceeds from the book will go directly to support the apes at the LRC and in Iowa.




Dr. Michael Beran was elected President of the Southern Society for Philosophy and Psychology. The SSPP, founded in 1904, is the oldest of the regional psychological associations.

Dr. Bonnie Perdue was selected by the American Psychological Association for advocacy training and congressional visits to highlight the importance of chimpanzee research (see full APA story here).

Dr. Bonnie Perdue was awarded the Duane M. Rumbaugh Fellowship, in recognition of her qualifications and potential for high-impact research that illuminatesRumbaugh Fellow 2012 emergent behaviors and competencies and their relations to associative learning mechanisms. The Rumbaugh Fellowship was established through a generous gift by Mr. Steve Woodruff in honor of the founding director of the LRC and Dr. Rumbaugh's career of research with nonhuman primates. Dr. Perdue is the fifth Rumbaugh Fellow.

Audrey Parrish and Kate Talbot received Rumbaugh Grant-in-Aid Awards to support research or travel related to research on emergents.

Megan Hoffman successfully defended her dissertation in completion of requirements for the PhD degree. Dr. Hoffman's project was titled, "A comparative assessment of how rhesus monkeys and 3- to 4-year-old children remember self-agency with spatial, temporal, and contextual features in working memory." Megan now joins the faculty of Piedmont College as Assistant Professor of Psychology.

At the 2012 annual meeting of the American Society of Primatologists, John Kelley was recognized with the Senior Research Award. According to the ASP webpage:"This award honors individuals who, because of their dedication to their profession and their productivity, have made significant contributions to research activities supporting or enhancing knowledge relevant to primatology. Such contributions could take place in laboratories, the field, or in zoological gardens. The award is reserved for those who have not received the highest degree offered in their field (e.g., Ph.D., M.D., D.V.M.) but are deserving of the Society's recognition for their achievements."

Lisa Heimbauer successfully defended her dissertation in completion of the requirements for the PhD. Dr. Heimbauer, who is a Duane M. Rumbaugh Fellow and L&L Fellow, earned her degree in part for the doctoral project titled, "Investigating speech perception in evolutionary perspective: Comparisons of chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) and human capabilities." She has accepted a postdoc at Penn State University.

Dr. Michael Beran has accepted an appointment as Associate Director of the Language Research Center. This role was created with approval from Dean Bill Long of the College of Arts and Sciences in recognition of the need for a staff scientist to assist in the daily administration of the growing research program at the LRC. Dr. Beran's appointment acknowledges the service that he has already been providing in this capacity for several years.

Darby Proctor successfully defended her dissertation, "Gambling and Decision-Making Among Primates: The Primate gambling task" to complete the requirements for her PhD. Dr. Proctor now begins a prestigious, competitive FIRST Fellowship postdoc at Emory University.

Megan Hoffman has accepted a faculty position at Piedmont College, where she will be an Assistant Professor of Psychology.

Audrey Parrish was selected to represent the American Psychological Association of Graduate Students (APAGS) at the APA Consolidated Meetings in spring 2012. These meetings provide important opportunities for professional development and leadership within the APA.

Dr. Bonnie Perdue was selected to receive the 2012 Interdivisional Mentoring Award from the American Psychological Association. The award is co-sponsored by APA Divisions 3 (Experimental), 6 (Behavioral Neuroscience and Comparative), 28 (Psychopharmacology) and the APA Committee on Animal Research and Ethics (CARE). It recognizes rising stars in the psychology whose contributions impact the mission of these Divisions. Click here for more information.

Dr. Michael Beran was selected as a mentor of the APA-USNC International Travel and Mentoring Program. Co-sponsored by the APA Office of International Affairs, the U.S. National Committee for Psychological Science, and the National Science Foundation, the award provides travel for Dr. Beran to attend the 30th International Congress of Psychology in Cape Town, South Africa, to provide mentorship to student and early-career psychologists.

Darby Proctor received a highly competitive 2011 APA Dissertation Award.

Dr. Michael Owren was named a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America.

Dr. Michael Owren was named a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science.

Dr. Tim Flemming has agreed to join the faculty at the rank of Assistant Professor at Georgia Gwinnett College. Congratulations Tim!

Dr. Sarah Brosnan was selected by the Dean of the College of A&S as one of the inaugural recipients of the Rising Stars Awards. For more information, see

Lisa Heimbauer was awarded the 2011 Richard M. Griffith Memorial Award for best paper in psychology by a recent PhD or doctoral candidate from the Southern Society for Philosophy and Psychology. Her paper was titled "A Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) Recognizes Spoken Words Synthesized as Noise-vocoded and Sine-Wave Speech."

Lisa Heimbauer was awarded the Duane M. Rumbaugh Fellowship. The Rumbaugh Fellowship was established through a generous gift from the late Steve Woodruff to support students or postdoctoral associates in the study of emergent learning by nonhuman primates. Ms. Heimbauer is the fourth student to be named a Rumbaugh Fellow (following Dr. Michael Beran, Dr. Emily Klein, and Dr. Timothy Flemming).

Congratulations to Dr. Timothy Flemming on the completion and defense of his dissertation, "An analogical paradox for nonhuman primates: Bridging the perceptual-conceptual gap"! Dr. Flemming has secured an outstanding postdoctoral position through Fyssen Foundation support to work in Professor Joel Fagot's laboratory in France.

Dr. Michael Beran was named a Fellow of the American Psychological Association.

Megan Hoffman was awarded a Graduate Student Travel Grant Award from the Southern Society for Philosophy and Psychology.

Michael Beran was invited to give the Keynote Address at the 16th Annual Student Research Conference at Southeast Missouri State University.

Timothy Flemming was awarded the 2008 APA Division 3 Young Investigator Award for the most outstanding empirical paper in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes.

Emily Klein was awarded a 2008 CARE Imprinting-Interdivisional Mentoring Fellowship Award from the American Psychological Association.

Emily Harris Marr successfully defended her dissertation entitled "Numerical cognition in rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta).” Congratulations Dr. Marr!

Sarah Brosnan was awarded the Morton Deutsch award for the best paper published in the journal Social Justice Research in the year 2006. She will be given the official award at the summer meeting of the International Society for Justice Research this August.




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