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Department of Psychology

Faculty - Karyl B. Swartz

Academic Interests

  • Learning, development, experimental methods.


  • Cognition and cognitive development in nonhuman primates, especially macaque monkeys and great apes.
  • Professor Swartz's research interests address nonhuman primate cognition. Cognitive components of serial list learning are investigated in rhesus monkeys and great apes using a touchscreen apparatus and photographic stimuli. Studies with rhesus monkeys are conducted in Professor Swartz's laboratory at Lehman College; studies of serial list memory in great apes are conducted at the Smithsonian Institution National Zoological Park in Washington, D.C.
  • A second area of interest is the phenomenon of mirror self-recognition in nonhuman primates. Individual and species differences in mirror use and self-recognition are explored. These studies have been conducted in the Lehman laboratory as well as the National Zoo, Monkey Jungle in Miami, Florida, and at the Centre International de Recherches M├Ędicales de Franceville in Gabon, Africa.
  • Studies of cognitive development, specifically memory and conceptual development, in orangutans are being conducted at a reintroduction center in Indonesia. These ex-captive orphaned infants are tested with procedures used with human infants, and results are compared with other primate species, including humans.

Graduate Program involvement

  • Biopsychology and Anthropology