Olivia Cheung
Principal Investigator
olivia.cheung@nyu.edu, NYU Abu Dhabi faculty pageGoogle Scholar, CV

Olivia is an assistant professor of psychology at NYU Abu Dhabi. Her research aims to understand how we perceive the visual world. Olivia holds a Ph.D. in Psychology from Vanderbilt University. Before joining NYU Abu Dhabi, she did postdoctoral research at Harvard Medical School, at the Center of Mind/Brain Sciences (CIMeC) in Trento, Italy, and at Harvard University.

Chenxi He
Postdoctoral Researcher

chenxi.he@nyu.edu, CV

Chenxi is a postdoctoral researcher in the lab. She received her Ph.D. from Beijing Normal University. Chenxi is interested in the neural basis of visual scene perception, object recognition, and concept learning. Currently, she is particularly interested in understanding how multiple objects build up a meaningful scene, and how prior knowledge could impact the processing of objects in a scene.

Emma Wei Chen
Postdoctoral Researcher
emma.chen.w@nyu.edu, CV

Emma is a postdoctoral researcher in the lab. She received her Ph.D. from Chinese Academy of Sciences, and did postdoctoral research at Center for Cognition and Brain Disorders, Hangzhou Normal University. Emma is interested in quantitative characterizations of expert object recognition, from the early stages of visual processing to the effects of attention. Her main methods include psychophysics, combining with advanced neuroimaging methods.

Shao-Chin Hung
Postdoctoral Researcher
shaochin.hung@nyu.edu, CV

Shao-Chin is a postdoctoral researcher in the lab. She received her Ph.D. from University of California, Riverside, where she used psychophysics and eye-tracking to study mechanisms of human perceptual learning. As a postdoctoral fellow in Biomedical Engineering at Purdue University, she conducted fMRI and EEG research on human visual perception. Shao-Chin is interested in applying psychophysics and neuroimaging methods to study human attention, learning, object recognition, and conceptual knowledge.


James Smoley
Capstone Research student, class of 2017

James graduated from NYU Abu Dhabi in 2017. He majored in Psychology with a minor in Social Research and Public Policy. He is interested in how our culture and life experiences can affect our ways of thinking. His capstone research investigated whether our initial judgments of a stranger's face are affected by our implicit racial biases and our experience with individuals of different races.

Oliver Heyn
Capstone Research student, class of 2017

Oliver graduated from NYU Abu Dhabi in 2017. He majored in Psychology with minors in Business Studies and Economics. He is primarily interested in studying how marketing and branding strategies intersect with psychological phenomena. The topic of his capstone research was the study of company logos, specifically in understanding what kinds of visual properties attract attention and make certain logos more preferable than others.

Mahlet Kassa
Capstone Research student and Summer Research Assistant, class of 2016


Mahlet graduated from NYU Abu Dhabi in 2016. She majored in Psychology with a concentration in Film and New Media. Her research interests include affective science, cognitive and social psychology. The topic of her capstone research was on the relative effects of experience and social bias on cross-race face recognition. Mahlet is currently at the master's program in cognitive science in Center for Mind/Brain Sciences (CIMeC), University of Trento. She has received the UNITN-SISSA scholarship for the position. 

Sachith Joseph Cheruvatur
Summer Research Assistant, class of 2015


Sachith graduated from NYU Abu Dhabi in 2015. He majored in Philosophy, specializing in a philosophy of mind, with a strong concentration in psychology. His research interests lie primarily in the area of empirical philosophy of mind. At the moment he is interested in object concept representation in the brain from both a philosophy of science/mind and cognitive neuroscience point of view. Sachith has started his PhD in Neurophilosophy at Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich in fall 2015.