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Joseph Dunsmoor, Ph.D.


Ph.D., Psychology and Neuroscience
Duke University


Joseph Dunsmoor, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Dell Medical School. He received his doctorate in psychology and neuroscience from Duke University in 2012 and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at New York University in 2017.

Research in Dunsmoor’s lab centers on how emotion and cognition interact to determine how we learn about and remember important events. This research integrates a number of psychological and neuroscience disciplines including Pavlovian conditioning, categorization, decision making and episodic memory, and it incorporates fMRI, psychophysiology and immersive virtual reality tools. Some research questions include (1) on what basis do we generalize from emotional experiences; (2) how do emotional experiences shape our memory; and (3) how do we overcome (or regulate) the unwanted psychological and physiological effects of negative experiences?

Dunsmoor’s lab seeks to bridge research from healthy adults to patients characterized by the inability to regulate fear and anxiety using translational cognitive neuroscience approaches. This research is funded in part by an R00 Pathway to Independence Award from The National Institute of Mental Health.

Awards & Honors
  • NIH R00, 2017-2020
    National Institute of Mental Health
  • NIH K99 Pathway to Independence Award, 2015-2017
    National Institute of Mental Health
  • Travel Awardee, 2016
    American College of Neuropsychopharmacology
  • NIH Training Award in Systems and Integrative Neuroscience, 2013-2014
  • NARSAD Young Investigator Award
    Brain and Behavior Research Foundation, 2018