B.A. Temple University, Philadelphia, PA- 2012
Research Assistant, Temple University Neurocognition Lab- 2011
Research Assistant, Fox Chase Cancer Center- 2010
Honors & Awards
National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship- 2013
Engberg Fellowship- 2012
Henry M. MacCracken Fellowship- 2012
Although most agree that the prefrontal cortex is the most important area for higher-level cognition, we still know very little about the exact mechanisms by which it exerts control. Understanding how the prefrontal cortex is involved in selecting and planning voluntary actions has widespread benefits: from understanding neurologic and psychiatric disorders that stem from dysfunctions in executive control (such as autism and schizophrenia) to interventions aimed at increasing the cognitive abilities of individuals.
Currently, I am a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow studying Cognition & Perception at NYU. As a member of the Curtis Lab, I employ various neuroscience methods (including brain imaging, eye-tracking, psychophysics, and transcranial magnetic stimulation) to investigate the following lines of research:
HOW DOES THE BRAIN SUPPORT GOAL-DIRECTED THOUGHT AND BEHAVIOR?
What are the neurobiological underpinnings of working memory and cognitive control? Furthermore, how do these neural processes inform the relationships between working memory and attention, judgment, and intelligence?
WHAT LIMITS EXIST WITHIN WORKING MEMORY AND COGNITIVE CONTROL?
Intelligence measures highly correlate with cognitive capacity. Since people who suffer from neurological and psychiatric illnesses often have reduced cognitive capacity, is it possible to manipulate this limitation for their benefit? What effect do cognitive interventions such as working memory training have on cognitive function in adolescent, healthy aging, and clinical populations?
Mackey, W.E., Devinsky, O., Doyle, W., Meager, M., & Curtis, C.E. (2016). “Human dorsolateral prefrontal cortex is not necessary for spatial working memory”. Journal of Neuroscience. In press.
Mackey, W.E., Winawer, J., & Curtis, C.E. (2016). “Visual field maps in human association cortices”. In prep.
Mackey, W.E., & Curtis, C.E. (2016). “Disruption of delay-period activity in human frontal eye fields causes systematic impairments in spatial cognition”. In prep.
Mackey, W.E., & Curtis, C.E. (2016). “The prefrontal cortex across species: brain stimulation bridges the gap”. In prep.
Mackey, W.E., & Curtis, C.E. (2016). “Disruption of delay-period activity in human frontal eye fields causes systematic impairments in spatial cognition”. Cognitive Neuroscience Society, New York, N.Y., USA.
Mackey, W.E., & Curtis, C.E. (2014). “Rethinking the contribution of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex to spatial working memory”. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, D.C., USA.
Curtis, C.E., Mackey, W.E., & Winawer, J. (2014). “Visual field maps in human association cortices”. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, D.C., USA.