Roger Beaty



Assistant Professor of Psychology
Preferred Pronouns: he/him/his
452 Moore Building University Park, Pa 16802
(814) 863-8524


Ph.D. 2015, University of North Carolilna at Greensboro

Professional Bio

My research seeks to understand how people think creatively. In our lab, we use brain imaging and behavioral experiments to examine neural and cognitive systems that support creative thinking. One line of research uses fMRI to characterize brain network dynamics during creative task performance. A goal of this work is to link brain activity during creative performance to specific cognitive processes (such as memory, attention, and cognitive control), using network analysis and multivariate modeling of fMRI data. We also combine brain imaging with neuromodulation (e.g., tES-fNIRS) to test causal questions regarding neurocognitive mechanisms of creativity, with the longer-term goal of understanding whether and how creativity can be enhanced. We study creativity in a variety of contexts and domains, including musical improvisation and scientific problem solving. We also develop open access resources to measure creativity for educators and researchers, using natural language processing and other computational tools.

Beaty, R. E., Benedek, M., Silvia, P. J., & Schacter, D. L. (2016). Creative cognition and brain network dynamics. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 20, 87-95. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2015.10.004

Beaty, R. E., Cortes, R. A., Merseal, H. M., Hardiman, M. M., & Green, A. E. (2023). Brain networks supporting scientific creative thinking. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts. https://doi.org/10.1037/aca0000603
Beaty, R. E., & Johnson, D. R. (2021). Automating creativity assessment with SemDis: An open platform for computing semantic distance. Behavior Research Methods, 53, 757-780. https://doi.org/10.3758/s13428-020-01453-w
Beaty, R. E., & Kenett, Y. N. (2023). Associative thinking at the core of creativity. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 27(7), 671-683. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2023.04.004
Frith, E., Elbich, D. B., Christensen, A. P., Rosenberg, M. D., Chen, Q., Kane, M. J., Silvia, P. J., Seli, P., & Beaty, R. E. (2021). Intelligence and creativity share a common cognitive and neural basis. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 150(4), 609–632. https://doi.org/10.1037/xge0000958
Patterson, J. D., Merseal, H. M., Johnson, D. R., Agnoli, S., Baas, M., Baker, B. S., Barbot, B., Benedek, M., Borhani, K., Chen, Q., Christensen, J. F., Corazza, G. E., Forthmann, B., Karwowski, M., Kazemian, N., Kreisberg-Nitzav, A., Kenett, Y. N., Link, A., Lubart, T., . . . Beaty, R. E. (2023). Multilingual semantic distance: Automatic verbal creativity assessment in many languages. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 17(4), 495–507. https://doi.org/10.1037/aca0000618
Roger Beaty
Roger Beaty


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