James B. Duke Professor Emeritus of Psychology and Neuroscience
Education & Training
Ph.D., Harvard University 1964
Until my retirement in 2007, my laboratory did experimental research on learning and adaptive behavior, mostly with animals: pigeons, rats, fish, parakeets. We were particularly interested in timing and memory, feeding regulation, habituation and the ways in which pigeons and rats adapt to reward schedules. An objective is to arrive at simple models for learning that can help to identify the underlying neural mechanisms. I continue to do theoretical and historical work on the power law in psychophysics, operant learning, timing and memory, habituation and feeding regulation. I have applied some of these ideas to economics and financial markets and social issues such as traffic control and smoking. Most recently I have finished a book Scientific Method: How Science Works, Fails to Work, and Pretends to Work. top be published by Psychology Press in November.