Deborah Hannula

Associate Professor

Web Site:


Ph.D., University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, 2005

Courses Taught:

  • Psych 611/711: Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Psych 611: Visual Cognition

Research Interests:

Research conducted in my lab is designed to investigate the cognitive processes and neural substrates of human memory. At the broadest level, my research is best characterized by three overarching themes:

  1. investigations of the link between indirect, eye-movement-based memory measures and behavioral reports/awareness;
  2. characterization of the time-course and neural substrates of relational memory retrieval; and
  3. investigations of medial temporal lobe (MTL) contributions to performance on short-term or working memory tests.

Particular emphasis is also placed on examining the contributions of anatomically distinct MTL structures to memory for items vs. memory for inter-item relationships.

These issues are addressed with multiple research methods, including behavioral, eye-movement, and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies in neurologically intact subjects and amnesic patients with MTL damage. It is our hope that this research might ultimately contribute to new directions in the diagnosis and treatment of memory impairment that is evident in so many psychiatric (e.g., schizophrenia, depression) and neurological (e.g., traumatic brain injury, Alzheimer’s Disease, stroke) conditions.

Selected Publications

Hopkins, L. S., Helmstetter, F. J., & Hannula, D. E. (2016). Eye movements are captured by a perceptually simple conditioned stimulus in the absence of explicit contingency knowledge. Emotion, 16, 1157-1171.
Hopkins, L. S., Schultz, D. H., Hannula, D. E., & Helmstetter, F. J. (2015, November). Eye movements index implicit memory expression in fear conditioning. PLoS ONE, 10.
Hannula, D. E., Tranel, D., Allen, J. S., Kirchhoff, B. A., Nickel, A. E., & Cohen, N. J. (2015). Memory for Items and Relationships among Items Embedded in Realistic Scenes: Disproportionate Relational Memory Impairment in Amnesia. Neuropsychology.
Hannula, D. E., Libby, L., Yonelinas, A., & Ranganath, C. (2013). Medial temporal lobe contributions to cued retrieval of items and context. Neuropsychologia, 51, 2322-2332.
Hannula, D. E., Baym, C. L., Warren, D. E., & Cohen, N. J. (2012). The Eyes Know: Eye Movements as a Veridical Index of Prior Exposure. Psychological Science, 23, 278-287.
Hannula, D. E., Ranganath, C., Ramsay, I. S., Solomon, M., Yoon, J., Niendam, T. A., Carter, C. S., & Ragland, J. D. (2010). Use of Eye Movement Monitoring to Examine Item and Relational Memory in Schizophrenia. Biological Psychiatry, 68, 610-616.
Hannula, D. E., Althoff, R. R., Warren, D. E., Riggs, L., Cohen, N. J., & Ryan, J. D. (2010). Worth a Glance: Using Eye Movements to Investigate the Cognitive Neuroscience of Memory. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, Article 166, 1-16.
Hannula, D. E., & Ranganath, C. (2009). The Eyes Have It: Hippocampal Activity Predicts Expression of Memory in Eye Movements. Neuron, 63, 592-599.
Hannula, D. E., & Ranganath, C. (2008). Medial Temporal Lobe Activity Predicts Successful Relational Memory Binding. Journal of Neuroscience, 28, 116-124.
Hannula, D. E., Ryan, J. D., Tranel, D., & Cohen, N. J. (2007). Rapid Onset Relational Memory Effects are Evident in Eye Movement Behavior, but not in Hippocampal Amnesia. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 19, 1690-1705.
Hannula, D. E., Tranel, D., & Cohen, N. J. (2006). The Long and the Short of It: Relational Memory Impairments in Amnesia, even at Short Lags. Journal of Neuroscience, 26, 8352-8359.
Hannula, D. E., Simons, D. J., & Cohen, N. J. (2005). Imaging Implicit Perception: Promise and Pitfalls. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 6, 247-255.