Douglas Johnson

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Douglas Johnson

Dean of Academic and Curricular Affairs; William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences

Department/Office Information

Psychological and Brain Sciences, Dean of the Faculty/Provost

Douglas Johnson received his BA from Washington University in St. Louis, and his MA and PhD from Johns Hopkins University. As a scholar, he studies human cognition, with an emphasis on attention, memory, and the development of expertise. He has published in a variety of professional journals, including Psychological Science, Memory and Cognition, Neuropsychopharmacology, Psychopharmacology, and The Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance.

Prof. Johnson joined Colgate’s Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences in 1996. Within the department, he teaches a variety of courses, including Introduction to Psychology, Human Cognition, Research Methods, Statistics, and Attention and Memory. Within Colgate's Core Curriculum, he has taught two Core Sciences courses (one on the malleability of human memory, and another on the psychology of sport and exercise). He has won numerous teaching awards at Colgate, including the Jerome Balmuth Award for Teaching, the Colgate Alumni Corporation Distinguished Teaching Award, and the Phi Eta Sigma “Professor of the Year”.

Professor Johnson has served a variety of administrative roles at Colgate. In addition to considerable committee work, he has served as associate dean of faculty (2007-2010; 2019-2023), chair of the scientific perspectives program (2004-2007), and director of the Center for Learning, Teaching, and Research (2014-2017).  As of July 1, 2023 he serves as Colgate's inaugural Dean of Academic and Curricular Affairs.

Students performing senior research with Professor Johnson have gone on to careers in business, medicine, and law, as well as graduate school in psychology and neuroscience (including Princeton, UVA, and Cornell).

Professor Johnson is married to Mary (Molly) Treadway Johnson, PhD, JD, and they have two children, Daniel and Sarah.

  • BA, Washington University in St. Louis, 1987 
  • MA (1990), PhD (1992), The Johns Hopkins University
  • Introduction to psychology
  • Experimental psychology
  • Statistics
  • Human cognition
  • Memory
  • Information processing

Most recent:

  • Martinez, J.A., Johnson, D.N. & Jones, J.A. (2015). A cocktail of extracurricular activities (ECAs): Different ECA combinations and their association with heavy drinking in two college cohorts. Journal of College Student Development, 56, 392-396.
  • Martinez, J.A., Roth, M.G., Johnson, D.N. & Jones, J.A. (2015). How robustly does cannabis use associate to college grades?: Findings from two cohorts. Journal of Drug Education, 45, 56-67. PMID: 26224748
  • Other peer-reviewed articles appear in: Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, Psychopharmacology, Memory and Cognition, Psychological Science, and others.

Post-doctoral fellow, National Institutes of Health, 1992-1996

  • The Jerome Balmuth Award for Teaching, 2014
  • Colgate Alumni Corporation Distinguished Teaching Award, 2014
  • Phi Eta Sigma Colgate Professor of the Year 2001
  • Intramural Research Training Award, National Institutes of Health 1992-1994