Matthew S. Cain, Ph.D.



Matthew S. Cain head shot Current Positions:
Research Psychologist on the Cognitive Science team
U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development, & Engineering Center

Visiting scientist in the Gabrieli Lab
MIT Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences

Previous Positions:
Postdoc in the Visual Attention Lab
Brigham & Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School

Postdoc in the Laboratory for Cognitive & Perceptual Learning
Brown University Department of Cognitive, Linguistic, & Psychological Sciences

Postdoc in the Duke Visual Cognition Lab
Duke University Center for Cognitive Neuroscience

Graduate student in the Shimamura Lab
University of California, Berkeley Psychology Department
Personal Info:
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Research

I'm a cognitive neuroscientist studying how human cognitive and perceptual performance is affected by context. Contextual effects can occur at many levels and I am interested not only in identifying contextual influences at a given level, but also in understanding how influences interact across levels. At the most immediate contextual level, I have examined factors like the rules and responses used on previous experimental trials (e.g., post-error slowing; task switching) and the distribution of stimuli in experimental environments (e.g., multiple-target visual search and optimal foraging theory). At a slightly broader level, I am interested in factors like task-specific practice, vigilance, and motivation. At the broadest level, I am interested in the personality and expertise factors (i.e., individual differences) that participants bring with them to an experiment (e.g., personality traits like extroversion or impulsiveness; experiences with real-world activities like on-the-job training, playing video games, and consuming media). I believe that a multi-level, multi-disciplinary approach is needed to truly understand human behavior in a complex world.

As a research psychologist with the NSRDEC, I am studying questions of attentional capture, control, and engagement in both controled laboratory enviroments and more applied field environments. With the Visual Attenion Lab at Brigham & Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School I studied multiple-target visual search and its connections with optimal foraging theory. Previously, as a postdoc in the Brown University Laboratory for Cognitive & Perceptual Learning I was investigating the interactions between sleep, reward, and perceptual learning using behavioral, electrophysiological, and neuroimaging methods. Before that, I waas a postdoc in the Duke Visual Cognition Lab, and studied the effects of contexts such as anxiety, environmental statistics, specialized training, and media experience on visual search and visual attention. For my dissertation work in the Shimamura Lab, I investigated how contexts such as sleep-based memory consolidation interact with cognitive control and trial-history effects.


Papers

Cain, M. S., Biggs, A. T., Darling, E. F., & Mitroff, S. R. (2014). A little bit of history repeating: Splitting up multiple-target visual searches decreases second-target miss errors. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 20(2), 112–125. [PDF]

Cain, M. S., Prinzmetal, W., Shimamura, A. P., & Landau, A. N. (2014). Improved control of exogenous attention in action video game players. Frontiers in Cognition, 5:69. [Open Access]

Clark, K., Cain, M. S., Adcock, R. A., & Mitroff, S. R. (2014). Context Matters: The structure of task goals affects accuracy in multiple-target visual search. Applied Ergonomics. 45(3), 528–533. [PDF]


Cain, M. S., Adamo, S. H., & Mitroff, S. R. (2013). A taxonomy of errors in multiple-target visual search. Visual Cognition. 21(7), 899–921. [PDF]

Adamo, S. H., Cain, M. S., & Mitroff, S. R. (2013). Self-Induced Attentional Blink: A Cause of Errors in Multiple-Target Search. Psychological Science. 24(12), 2569–2574

Cain, M. S. & Mitroff, S. R. (2013). Memory for found targets interferes with subsequent performance in multiple-target visual search. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance. 39(5), 1398–1408. [PDF]

Appelbaum, L. G., Cain, M. S., Darling, E. F., & Mitroff, S. R. (2013). Action video game playing is associated with improved visual sensitivity, but not alterations in visual sensory memory. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics. 75(6), 1161–1167. [PDF]

Biggs, A. T., Cain, M. S., Clark, K., Darling, E. F., & Mitroff, S. R. (2013). Assessing visual search performance differences between Transportation Security Administration Officers and nonprofessional visual searchers. Visual Cognition. 21(3), 330–352. [PDF]


Cain, M. S., Vul, E., Clark, K., & Mitroff, S. R. (2012). A Bayesian optimal foraging model of human visual search. Psychological Science. 23(9), 1047–1054. [PDF]

Appelbaum, L. G., Cain, M. S., Schroeder, J. E., Darling, E. F., & Mitroff, S. R. (2012). Stroboscopic Visual Training Improves Information Encoding in Short-Term Memory. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics, 74(8), 1681–1691. [PDF]

Cain, M. S., Landau, A. N., & Shimamura, A. P. (2012). Action video game experience reduces the cost of switching tasks. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics. 74(4), 641–647. [PDF]

Appelbaum, L. G., Cain, M. S., Darling, E. F., Stanton, S. J., Nguyen, M. T., Mitroff, S. R. (2012). What is the identity of a sports spectator? Personality and Individual Differences. 52, 422–427. [PDF]


Cain, M. S. & Mitroff, S. R. (2011). Distractor filtering in media multitaskers. Perception. 40(10), 1183–1192. [PDF]

Appelbaum, L. G., Schroeder, J. E., Cain, M. S., Mitroff, S. R. (2011). Improved visual cognition through stroboscopic training. Frontiers in Psychology, 2, 276. [Open Access]

Cain, M. S., Dunsmoor, J. E., LaBar, K. S., & Mitroff, S. R. (2011). Anticipatory anxiety hinders detection of a second target in dual-target search. Psychological Science, 22(7), 866–871. [PDF]


Moon, S. Y., Barton, J. J. S., Mikulski, S., Polli, F. E., Cain, M. S., Vangel, M., Hämäläinen, M. S., & Manoach, D. S. (2007). Where left becomes right: a magnetoencephalographic study of sensorimotor transformation for antisaccades. Neuroimage, 36, 1313–1323.

Manoach, D. S., Thakkar, K. N., Cain, M. S., Polli, F. E., Edelman, J. A., Fischl, B., & Barton, J. J. (2007). Neural activity is modulated by trial history: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study of the effects of a previous antisaccade. Journal of Neuroscience, 27(7), 1791–1798.

Polli, F. E., Barton, J. J., Cain, M. S., Thakkar, K. N., Rauch, S. L., & Manoach, D. S. (2005). Rostral and dorsal anterior cingulate cortex make dissociable contributions during antisaccade error commission. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the U.S.A.,102(43), 15700–15705.

Manoach, D. S., Cain, M. S., Vangel, M. G., Khurana, A., Goff, D. C., & Stickgold, R. (2004). A failure of sleep-dependent procedural learning in chronic, medicated schizophrenia. Biological Psychiatry, 56(12), 951–956.


Chapters

Clark, K., Cain, M. S., & Mitroff, S. R. (in press). Perception and human information processing in visual search. In R. Hoffman, J. Szalma, P. Hancock, R. Parasuraman, & M. Scerbo (Eds.), Cambridge University Handbook on Applied Perception Research. Cambridge University Press.

Clark, K., Cain, M. S., Adamo, S. H., & Mitroff, S. R. (2012). Overcoming Hurdles in Translating Visual Search Research Between the Lab and the Field. In M. D. Dodd & J. H. Flowers (Eds.), The Influence of Attention, Learning, and Motivation on Visual Search (Vol. 59, pp. 147–181). New York: Springer.


Peer-Reviewed Conference Papers

Salazar, E., Cain, M. S., Darling, E. F., Mitroff, S. R., & Carin, L. (2012, June). Inferring Latent Structure From Mixed Real and Categorical Relational Data. Proceedings of the 29th International Conference on Machine Learning. Edinburgh, Scotland, UK.

Hubal, R., Cain, M. S., & Mitroff, S. R. (2011, December). Simulating a vigilance task: Technology for valid homeland security research. Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation and Education Conference. Orlando, FL.

Cain, M. S., Vul, E., Clark, K., & Mitroff, S. R. (2011, July). Optimal models of human multiple-target visual search. In L. Carlson, C. Hölscher, & T. Shipley (Eds.), Proceedings of the 33rd Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society. Boston, MA: Cognitive Science Society.

Hubal, R., Mitroff, S. R., Cain, M. S., Scott., B., & DeWitt, R. (2010, November). Simulating a vigilance task: Extensible technology for baggage security assessment and training. IEEE Conference on Technologies for Homeland Security. Waltham, MA.


Talks

Cain, M. S., Boettcher, S. E. P., & Wolfe J. M. (2014, November). Hybrid Foraging Search: Visual Search for Multiple Examples of Multiple Target Types Held in Memory. To be presented at the Psychonomic Society annual meeting, Long Beach, CA.

Cain, M. S., Finn, A. S., Gabrieli, J. D. E., & Mitroff, S. R. (2013, November). Cognitive, Personality, and Neuroimaging Correlates of Media Multitasking. Psychonomic Society annual meeting, Toronto, ON.

Appelbaum, L. G., Cain, M. S., Schroeder, J. E., Darling, E. F., & Mitroff, S. R. (2013, May). Improving visual cognition through stroboscopic training. Vision Sciences Society Meeting, Naples, FL.

Adamo, S. H., Cain, M. S., & Mitroff, S. R. (2012, November). Self-Induced Attention Blink: A Cause of Errors in Multiple-Target Visual Search. Object, Perception, Attention, and Memory, Minneapolis, MN.

Salazar, E., Cain, M. S., Darling, E. F., Mitroff, S. R., & Carin, L. (2012, June). Inferring Latent Structure From Mixed Real and Categorical Relational Data. Proceedings of the 29th International Conference on Machine Learning. Edinburgh, Scotland, UK. [PDF]

Cain, M. S., Vul, E., Clark, K., & Mitroff, S.R. (2011, July). An optimal foraging model of human visual search. Cognitive Science Society, Boston, MA. [PDF]

Cain, M. S., Vul, E., Clark, K., & Mitroff, S.R. (2010, November). Human search strategies are informed by complex target distribution statistics. Object Perception, Attention, and Memory, St. Louis, MO.

Cain, M. S. & Shimamura, A. P. (2008). When Practice Doesn't Make Perfect: Practice-Induced Task Switching Costs. Bay Area Memory Meeting, Davis, CA.

Cain, M. S. & Shimamura, A. P. (2008). When Practice Doesn't Make Perfect: Practice-Induced Task Switching Costs. Cognitive Science Association for Interdisciplinary Learning, Hood River, OR.

Cain, M. S. & Shimamura, A. P. (2007). Distinct Sub-regions of the Dorsal Anterior Cingulate Cortex Subserve Different Types of Conflict. Berkeley-Stanford Talks, Stanford, CA.

Cain, M. S. & Shimamura, A. P. (2006). Asymmetric Task Switching Effects in the Anterior Cingulate Cortex. Cognitive Science Association for Interdisciplinary Learning, Hood River, OR.

Shimamura, A.P. & Cain, M. S. (2005). Selecting Stimulus Features and Response Decisions: Behavioral and Neural Consequences of Multiple Inhibitory Control Processes. Cognitive Science Association for Interdisciplinary Learning, Hood River, OR.

Stickgold, R., Cain, M., Goff, D. C., & Manoach, D. S. (2003). Schizophrenic patients do not show sleep-dependent motor skill learning. Associated Professional Sleep Societies, Chicago, IL.


Posters

Cain, M. S., Boettcher, S. E. P., & Wolfe, J. M. (2014, May). When Does the Aardvark Move to the Next Anthill? Foraging search with moving targets. Vision Sciences Society, St. Pete Beach, FL. [PDF]

Cain, M. S., Sato, S. D., Watanabe, T., & Sasaki, Y. (2013, May). Hemifield-specific offline learning of coherent motion detection. Vision Sciences Society, Naples, FL. [PDF]

Berard, A. V., Cain, M. S., Watanabe, T., & Sasaki, Y. (2013, May). Do video game players resist interference with perceptual learning by training on a new task? Vision Sciences Society, Naples, FL.

Clark, K., Biggs, A. T., Darling, E. F., Cain, M. S., Jackson, T. H., Samei, E., Baker, J., & Mitroff, S. R. (2013, May). Visual expertise: Insights gained by comparing professional populations. Vision Sciences Society, Naples, FL.

Cain, M. S. & Mitroff, S. R. (2012, November). Found Targets are Powerful Distractors in Multiple-Target Search. Psychonomic Society, Minneapolis, MN. [PDF]

Cain, M. S., Adamo, S. H., & Mitroff, S. R. (2012, May). What eye-tracking can tell us about multiple-target visual search. Vision Sciences Society, Naples, FL. [PDF]

Adamo, S. H., Cain, M. S., & Mitroff, S. R. (2012, May). Targets need their own personal space. Vision Sciences Society, Naples, FL. [Abstract]

Mitroff, S. R., Biggs, A. T., Cain, M. S., Darling, E. F., Clark, K., Adamo, S. H., & Dowd, E. W. (2012, May). Visual search at the airport: Testing TSA officers. Vision Sciences Society, Naples, FL. [Abstract]

Cain, M. S., Mitroff, S. R. (2011, November). Relationships between attentional traits and media multitasking behavior. Presented at Object Perception, Attention, and Memory, Seattle, WA. [PDF]

Cain, M. S., Dunsmoor, J., LaBar, K., & Mitroff, S. R. (2011, May). Accuracy in dual-target visual search is hindered by anticipatory anxiety. Vision Sciences Society, Naples, FL. [PDF]

Cain, M. S., Dunsmoor, J., LaBar, K., & Mitroff, S. R. (2011, April). Anticipatory anxiety decreases accuracy in dual-target visual search. Nebraska Symposium on Motivation, Lincoln, NE.

Cain, M. S., Mitroff, S. R. (2010, November). Impact of media multitasking on attentional filtering and disengagement. Psychonomics Society, St. Louis, MO. [PDF]

Cain, M. S., Mitroff, S. R. (2010, May). Distractor filtering in media multitaskers. Vision Sciences Society, Naples, FL. [PDF]

Cain, M. S., Landau, A. N., Prinzmetal, W., Robertson, L. C., & Shimamura, A. P. (2009). Attention processes in action video game players. Vision Sciences Society, Naples, FL. [PDF]

Cain, M. S. & Shimamura, A. P. (2008). Practiced induced asymmetric task-switching costs: comparing pre-experimental experience with within-experiment training. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC. [PDF]

Cain, M. S. & Shimamura, A. P. (2008). Asymmetric Task Switching Coasts Generated by Task Practice. Cognitive Neuroscience Society, San Francisco, CA. [PDF]

Cain, M. S. & Shimamura, A. P. (2007). Flanker and task switching conflict produce separable dorsal anterior cingulate cortex activations: a high resolution fMRI investigation. Society for Neuroscience, San Diego, CA. [PDF]

Cain, M. S. & Shimamura, A. P. (2006). Distinct sub-regions of the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex subserve different types of conflict. Society for Neuroscience, Atlanta, GA. [PDF]

Cain, M. S. & Shimamura, A. P. (2006). Asymmetric Task Switching Effects in the Anterior Cingulate Cortex. Cognitive Neuroscience Society, San Francisco, CA. [PDF]

Manoach, D. S., Cain M. S., Thakkar, K. N., Polli, F. E., Barton, J. J. S. (2005). An fMRI study of the inter-trial effects of antisaccades. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Polli, F. E., Cain M. S., Thakkar, K. N., Barton, J. J. S., Manoach, D. S. (2005). Intact task-induced deactivation but decreased performance evaluation during antisaccade errors in schizophrenia. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Thakkar, K. N., Polli, F. E., Barton, J. J. S., Cain M. S., Joseph, R. M., Hadjikhani, N., Manoach, D. S. (2005). Abnormal anterior cingulate activity during error processing in autism spectrum disorder. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Polli, F. E., Barton, J. J. S., Cain, M. S., & Manoach, D. S. (2004). Antisaccade errors are associated with activation in the anterior cingulate cortex, prefrontal cortex and insula. Human Brain Mapping, Budapest, Hungary.

Manoach, D. S., Cain, M. S., Polli, F. E., & Barton, J. J. S. (2004). Saccadic inhibition and task-switching are associated with distinct spatiotemporal patterns of fMRI activation. Human Brain Mapping, Budapest, Hungary.

Polli, F. E., Barton, J. J. S., Cain, M. S., & Manoach, D. S. (2004). Saccadic errors associated with activation in anterior cingulate and prefrontal cortices. 12th Annual Research Day, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.