Jon Freeman is Assistant Professor of Psychology and Neural Science at New York University and director of the Social Cognitive & Neural Sciences Lab. He received his Ph.D. from Tufts University and was on the faculty at Dartmouth College before coming to NYU in 2014.

He studies split-second social perception—how we use facial cues to instantly categorize other people into social groups and perceive their personality traits and emotion. He treats social perception as a fundamentally dynamic process, and is interested in how basic visual construal can be shaped by prior person knowledge, stereotypes and biases, and other aspects of social cognition. He studies the interplay of visual and social processes in perceptual judgments and interpersonal decisions, including the roles of specific facial features, social context, and individual differences. He additionally examines how the brain represents social categories and core trait dimensions of other people, and how initial perceptions influence downstream behavior and real-world outcomes. He takes an integrative and multi-level approach in examining these phenomena, incorporating insights across social psychology and the cognitive, vision, and neural sciences. His studies use a wide range of methodologies, including  neuroimaging (fMRI), electrophysiology (EEG/ERP), real-time behavioral techniques (mouse-tracking), and computational modeling. He is also the developer of the data collection and analysis software, MouseTracker.

Dr. Freeman is the author of over 50 peer-reviewed articles and the recipient of a number of awards, including the National Science Foundation CAREER Award, the SAGE Young Scholars Award from the Foundation for Personality & Social Psychology, the Early Career Award from the International Social Cognition Network, and the Innovation Award from the Social & Affective Neuroscience Society. He was also named a Rising Star by the Association for Psychological Science and one of the top 30 scientists under 30 by Forbes Magazine. His work has appeared in media outlets such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and TIME Magazine.  

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