Photo of Michael I. Posner

Michael I. Posner

  • National Medal of Science
  • Behavioral And Social Science

For his innovative application of technology to the understanding of brain function, his incisive and accurate modeling of functional tasks, and his development of methodological and conceptual tools to help understand the mind and the development of brain networks of attention.

Michael Posner on the revolutionary nature of his research

Considered one of the 100 most eminent psychologists of the 20th century, the American Psychological Association ranks Dr. Michael I. Posner with the likes of Sigmund Freud and B.F. Skinner.

Early in his academic career, Dr. Posner began as a fresh-faced physics graduate, later diving into psychology and human information processing during his time at the University of Michigan and University of Wisconsin.

The Ohio native pioneered attention and learning research, leading to discoveries in genetic and experimental factors in the development of brain networks. Dr. Posner’s esteemed work in analyzing an individual’s attentional shift has led to renaming such research tests the “Posner Cueing Task” and “Posner Paradigm.”

The University of Oregon Department of Psychology Professor Emeritus has published articles detailing his work from understanding the efficiency of multitasking to the developing brain networks during childhood.

About his work in the field, Dr. Posner has said, “I was fortunate to be around during extraordinary times for the study of psychology. Neuroimaging made the human brain, which is obviously central to understanding the mind and behavior, available for scientific analysis.”

By Melissa Ayala