Sharon L. Thompson-Schill
University of Pennsylvania
Sharon L. Thompson-Schill is the Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, where she is currently the chair of the Department of Psychology and the founding director of MindCORE (Center for Outreach, Research and Education), Penn’s hub for the integrative study of the mind.
Since her arrival at the University of Pennsylvania in 1996, Thompson-Schill has served numerous roles to support the research and teaching missions of the university, including the Director of Undergraduate Studies in psychology and the director of the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience.
She received her BA in psychology from Davidson College in 1991 and her PhD in psychology from Stanford University in 1996. Thompson-Schill's lab studies the biological bases of human cognitive systems. She uses a combination of psychological and neuroscientific methods, in both healthy and brain-damaged individuals, to study the psychological, neurological, and genetic bases of complex thought and behavior, including topics in perception, memory, attention, language, personality, and creativity.
Thompson-Schill's research is funded by the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health and has been recognized by numerous awards including the Searle Scholars Award, the Young Investigator Award from the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, and the James McKeen Cattell Fund Fellowship.
Thompson-Schill is a fellow of the Psychonomic Society and served on the Society’s Publications Committee from 2011-2015. She is also an enthusiastic teacher of psychology and neuroscience; she founded the psychology department's Honors Program 10 years ago, and more recently she has been active in the creation and implementation of the college's Integrated Studies program for undergraduates as well as several new pre- and post-doctoral career development and mentoring programs.
She has received numerous local and national teaching awards, including the Women in Cognitive Science Mentorship Award, the Trustees Council of Penn Women Advising Award, and the two highest teaching honors bestowed by the University of Pennsylvania: the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching and the Provost's Award for Distinguished PhD Teaching and Mentoring. She regularly discusses her research findings not only to international scientific audiences but also to lay audiences in live and podcast formats, including the American Folk Art Museum in New York, the Philadelphia Science Festival, the Philadelphia-based NPR show The Pulse, and The Story Collider.