Joseph Dunsmoor, PhD

Research Assistant Professor

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Personal profile


Joseph Dunsmoor is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Dell Medical School. He received his Ph.D. in psychology and neuroscience from Duke University in 2012 and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at New York University in 2017.

Research in Dunsmoor’s lab centers on how emotion and cognition interact to determine how we learn about and remember important events. This research integrates a number of psychological and neuroscience disciplines including Pavlovian conditioning, categorization, decision making and episodic memory, and it incorporates fMRI, psychophysiology and immersive virtual reality tools. Some research questions include (1) on what basis do we generalize from emotional experiences; (2) how do emotional experiences shape our memory; and (3) how do we overcome (or regulate) the unwanted psychological and physiological effects of negative experiences?

Dunsmoor’s lab seeks to bridge research from healthy adults to patients characterized by the inability to regulate fear and anxiety using translational cognitive neuroscience approaches. This research is funded in part by an R00 Pathway to Independence Award from The National Institute of Mental Health.

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Research Output 2003 2019

Episodic memory and Pavlovian conditioning: ships passing in the night

Dunsmoor, J. & Kroes, M. CW., Apr 1 2019, In : Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences. 26, p. 32-39 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Episodic Memory
Classical Conditioning
Long-Term Memory
1 Citations

Event segmentation protects emotional memories from competing experiences encoded close in time

Dunsmoor, J., Kroes, M. C. W., Moscatelli, C. M., Evans, M. D., Davachi, L. & Phelps, E. A., Apr 1 2018, In : Nature Human Behaviour. 2, 4, p. 291-299 9 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Episodic Memory
Short-Term Memory
5 Citations

Stimulus generalization as a mechanism for learning to trust

FeldmanHall, O., Dunsmoor, J., Tompary, A., Hunter, L. E., Todorov, A. & Phelps, E. A., Feb 13 2018, In : Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 115, 7, p. E1690-E1697

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Stimulus Generalization
1 Citations

A reminder before extinction strengthens episodic memory via reconsolidation but fails to disrupt generalized threat responses

Kroes, M. C. W., Dunsmoor, J., Lin, Q., Evans, M. & Phelps, E. A., Dec 1 2017, In : Scientific reports. 7, 1, 10858.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Episodic Memory
Psychological Extinction
Conditioning (Psychology)
2 Citations

Associative Learning of Social Value in Dynamic Groups

FeldmanHall, O., Dunsmoor, J., Kroes, M. C. W., Lackovic, S. & Phelps, E. A., Aug 1 2017, In : Psychological Science. 28, 8, p. 1160-1170 11 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Social Values
Social Learning