Mind at Large




Paul Seli, PhD

Principal Investigator

Paul is an Assistant Professor of Psychology & Neuroscience at Duke University. Beginning in 2010, he worked at the University of Waterloo (Canada) under the supervision of Dr. Daniel Smilek, earning his Master’s degree in 2012 and his PhD in 2015. For his outstanding dissertation and graduate career, Paul received the coveted Governor General's Gold Medal. Paul then moved on to complete a two-year Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship at Harvard University (Department of Psychology) with Dr. Daniel L. Schacter.

Contact: paul.seli@duke.edu

Samuel Murray, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

Samuel is a postdoctoral researcher at Duke University. Before coming to Duke, he earned his PhD from the University of Notre Dame in philosophy. His work focuses on the psychology of acting over time and how vigilance interacts with attention, memory, and control to facilitate temporally extended agency. Additionally, he works on normative questions of moral responsibility--especially responsibility for negligence--and has an abiding interest in the history of early modern philosophy.

Contact: samuel.murray@duke.edu

Nick Brosowsky, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

Nick is a postdoctoral researcher at Duke University. Originally from Winnipeg (home to cold winters, the Winnipeg Jets, and John K. Samson), he earned his BA from the University of Manitoba and PhD from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Nick's research interests include adaptive cognitive control (How do people learn to ignore distractions?), skill-learning (How do people learn to play a musical instrument?), inattention (Why do people mind wander?), and creativity (How does flexible control facilitate creativity?).

Contact: nick.brosowsky@duke.edu

Anna Smith

Doctoral Student

Anna is a second-year Psychology & Neuroscience Ph.D. student at Duke University. After receiving her B.A. in Cognitive Science from Carleton College, Anna moved to Southern California, where she spent two years working with Dr. Michael Yassa in UC Irvine's Department of Neurobiology & Behavior on studies of episodic memory mechanisms and performance trajectories associated with healthy and disordered aging. She hopes to tie in her previous work on the nature of episodic and semantic representations, her love for interdisciplinary science, and a personal drive to create and consume art, to pursue a body of research that illuminates stages and conditions of the creative process. Anna also serves as Co-director and Instructor for Duke Neurosciences Camp, a residential summer camp for high schoolers.

Contact: anna.p.smith@duke.edu

Matthew Slayton

Doctoral Student

Matthew is a PhD Student in the Psychology and Neuroscience program at Duke University. His research interests include group creative interaction, social neuroscience, and information processing. He earned his BA in Neurolinguistics at Duke, an MA in Philosophy of Biology at the University of Chicago, and an MM in Music Composition at San Francisco Conservatory of Music. He has also done research in Cancer Biology at the University of Chicago and Primate Neuroethology at Princeton University. In addition to his work in science, Matthew is a composer of contemporary classical music, and his work can be found on www.matthewslayton.com.

Contact: matthew.slayton@duke.edu

Nathan Liang

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Nathan is a fourth-year undergraduate at Duke University majoring in psychology and double-minoring in neuroscience and philosophy. His research interests currently include morality, religiosity and spirituality, language, imagination, creativity, and mind-wandering, and he plans to pursue a doctoral degree in cognitive psychology or neuroscience after graduation. Hailing from Boston, Massachusetts, he is a fan of colder weather, an avid soccer player, a charcoal artist on hiatus and a lover of small animals, particularly hamsters.

Contact: nathan.liang@duke.edu

Akshaj Turebylu

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Akshaj is a second-year undergraduate at Duke University planning on majoring in English with a minor in neuroscience. His research interests include ameliorative psychedelics, religious experience, and imagination. His hometown is Coppell, Texas where he became an aficionado of jazz and rock music. He is now involved in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and enjoys television and stand-up comedy from the 90's (looking at you, Bill Hicks).

Contact: akshaj.turebylu@duke.edu

Jen Wang

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Jen is a second-year undergraduate at Duke University planning to major in Psychology, minor in Education, and participate in the Child Policy Research certificate program. Her research interests are varied, but she’s most passionate about topics that connect psychology and classroom education. She’s also very interested in cross-cultural research. Jen is originally from Beijing. In her free time, she enjoys dance, frisbee and all kinds of board games.

Contact: sihan.wang641@duke.edu

Lois Triplett

Lab Manager

Lois is the lab manager for the Mind at Large lab at Duke University. She is a recent graduate from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a BA in psychology. Her research interests are varied and generally revolve around the beliefs we hold and how they shape our behavior, including specifics such as decision making, persuasion, and propaganda, particularly in the contexts of new media and technologies. In her free time, Lois enjoys an assortment of nerdy pastimes including playing role-playing games, writing historical fiction, and binging pop culture in all its forms.

Contact: lois.triplett@duke.edu