Research Interests:

Fully automated, highly diagnostic behavioral screens for malfunctions in the cognitive mechanisms that enable animals to locate themselves in time and space and remember simple abstract quantities like rates and proportions. Genetic approaches to the neurobiological mechanism of memory. Animal cognition: spatial, temporal and numerical learning and reasoning.


Screening Method described in International Innovations 2013:

(click here to view PDF)


Data Analysis Software:

Bayesian Software & Computation

Matlab Code for Matching Simulations (JEAB, 2007)

Tutorial on Matlab's Statistics Toolbox. This is the core of my Advanced Statistics Course, which emphasizes familiarity with the different distributions and the use of relative likelihood methods. Zipped folder contains executable Matlab .m file and a .pdf version of same with inserted figures and captions.

Matlab, Excel & Stand-Alone implementations of the Change-Point Algorithm.


New book:

Gallistel, C. R. & King, A. P. (2009). Memory and the computational brain: Why cognitive science will transform neuroscience. New York: Wiley/Blackwell.(see Table of Contents )


Online preprints and reprints:

Kalmbach, A., Winiger, V., Jeong, N., Asok, A., Gallistel, C. R., Balsam, P. D., & Simpson, E. H. (2022). Dopamine encodes real-time reward availability and transitions between reward availability states on different timescales. Nature Communications, 13(1), 3805. doi:10.1038/s41467-022-31377-2

Gallistel, C. R. (2022). Navigation in real and scientific waters. In R. Casati (Ed.), The sailing mind (pp. 167-184). Cham Switzerland: Springer Nature

Gallistel, C. R. (2021). The approximate number system represents magnitude and precision. Commentary on Clarke & Beck The number sense represents (rational) numbers. Behavioral and  Brain Sciences, 44, 29-30. doi:10.1017/S0140525X21000959

Gallistel, C. R. (2021).The physical basis of memoryCognition, 213(Aug), ???-??? doi:10.1016/j.cognition.2020.104533

Gershman, S. J., Balbi, P. E. M., Gallistel, C. R., & Gunawardena, J. (2021). Reconsidering the evidence for learning in single cells. eLife, 10. doi:10.7554/eLife.61907

Gallistel, C.R. (2021). Robert Rescorla: Time, Information and ContingencyRevista de historia de la psicología, 42, 7-21.

Langille, J. J., & Gallistel, C. R. (2020). The search for the engram: Should we look for plastic synapses or information-storing molecules? Neurobiology of Learning and Memory. doi:10.1016/j.nlm.2020.107164

Gallistel, C. R. (2020). Where meanings arise and how: Building on Shannon’s foundations Mind and Language

Gallistel, C. R., & Papachristos, E. B. (2019). Number and time in acquisition, extinction and recovery Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior. doi:10.1002/jeab.571

Gallistel, C. R. (2019). Our understanding of neural codes rests on Shannon’s foundations: Comment on Brette, R. Is coding a relevant metaphor for the brain? Behavioral and  Brain Sciences, 42. doi:10.1017/S0140525X19001249, e0

Gallistel, C. R., Craig, A., Shahan, T.A. (2019). Contingency, Contiguity and Causality in Conditioning: Applying Information Theory and Weber’s Law to the Assignment of Credit Problem. Psychological Review(Aug 29). doi:10.1037/rev0000163

Kalmbach, A., Chun, E., ., Taylor, K., Gallistel, C. R., & Balsam, P. D. (2019). Time-scale-invariant information-theoretic contingencies in discrimination learning. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning & Cognition, 45(3), 280-289. doi:10.1037/xan0000205

Light, K. R., Cotten, B., Malekan, T., Dewil, S., Bailey, M. R., Gallistel, C. R., & Balsam, P. D. (2019). Evidence for a Mixed Timing and Counting Strategy in Mice Performing a Mechner Counting Task. Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, 13(109). doi:10.3389/fnbeh.2019.00109

Gallistel,  C. R., Balci, F., Freestone, D., Kheifets, A. & King, A. (2017) Cognitive neurogenetics screening system with a data-analysis toolbox. In V. Tucci (Ed) Handbook of neurobehavioral genetics and phenotyping. Wiley. Chap 20

Queenan, B. N., Ryan, T. J., Gazzaniga, M. S., & Gallistel, C. R. (2017). On the research of time past: The hunt for the substrate of memory. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences(The Year in Cognitive Neuroscience). doi:10.1111/nyas.13348

Wilkes, J. T., & Gallistel, C. R. (2017, in press). Information Theory, Memory, Prediction, and Timing in Associative Learning. In A. Moustafa (Ed.), Computational Models of Brain and and Behavior. New York: Wiley/Blackwell.

Gallistel, C. R. (2017). The neurobiological bases for the computational theory of mind. In R. G. d. Almeida & L. Gleitman (Eds.), On Concepts, Modules, and Language (pp. 275-296). New York: Oxford University Press.

Gallistel, C.R. (2017). Navigation: Whence our sense of direction? Current Biology (a Dispatch), 27(3), R108-R110

Gallistel, C. R. (2017). The coding question. Trends in Cognitive Science, 21(7), 498-508. doi:10.1016/j.tics.2017.04.012

Gallistel, C. R. (2017). Numbers and brains. Learning & Behavior. doi:10.3758/s13420-017-0272-3

Ricci, M., & Gallistel, C. R. (2017). Accurate Step-Hold Tracking of Smoothly Varying Periodic and Aperiodic Probability. Attention, Perception and Psychophysics 79, 1480-1494

Kheifets, A., Freestone, D., & Gallistel, C. R. (2017). Theoretical Implications of Quantitative Properties of Interval Timing and Probability Estimation in Mouse and Rat. Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 108(1), 39-72.

Gallistel, C. R. (2017 in press). Finding numbers in the brain. Proceedings of the Royal Society (London). Series B, xxx, xxx-xxx. 

Baker, S. T., Leslie, A. M., Gallistel, C. R., & Hood, B. M. (2016). Bayesian change-point analysis reveals developmental change in a classic theory of mind taskCognitive Psychology. doi:10.1016/j.cogpsych.2016.08.001

Gallistel, C. R. (2017). Learning and representation Learning and memory: A comprehensive reference (2 ed., Vol. 1, pp. 141-154).

Baker, S. T., Leslie, A. M., Gallistel, C. R., & Hood, B. M. (2016). Bayesian change-point analysis reveals developmental change in a classic theory of mind task. Cognitive Psychology. doi:10.1016/j.cogpsych.2016.08.001

APS Observer May/June 2016: What We Have and Haven't Learned?

APS Observer March 2016: The Minimum Description Length Principle

Wilkes, J. T., & Gallistel, C. R. (2016). Information Theory, Memory, Prediction, and Timing in Associative Learning (original long version)

Gallistel, C. R., & Wilkes, J. T. (2016). Minimum description length model selection in associative learning. Current Opinion in Behavioral Science, 11, 8-13.

APS Observer Nov 2015: Bayes for Beginners - 3

APS Observer Oct 2015: Bayes for Beginners - 2

APS Observer Sept 2015: Bayes for Beginners - 1

Foreword to Evolutionary origins and early development of number processing. Elsevier/Academic 2015

Here's Why Most Neuroscientists Are Wrong About the Brain, Gallistel, C. R., Nautilus 2015

Cheeseman, J. F., C. D. Millar, et al. (2014). "Way-finding in displaced clock-shifted bees proves bees use a cognitive map." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Gallistel, C. R. and P. D. Balsam (2014). "Time to rethink the neural mechanisms of learning and memory." Neurobiology of Learning and Memory 108: 136-144.

Gallistel, C. R., V. Tucci, et al. (2014). "Cognitive assessment of mice strains heterozygous for cell-­adhesion genes reveals strain-­specific alterations in timing precision." Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society. B. 369(1637): Article 8.

Gallistel, C. R., F. Balci, et al. (2014). "Automated, quantitative cognitive/behavioral screening of mice: For genetics, pharmacology, animal cognition and undergraduate instruction." Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE)(84), e51047.

Gallistel, C. R., M. Krishan, Liu, Y., Miller, R.R., & Latham, P.E. (2014). "The perception of probability." Psychological Review 121: 96-123.

Gallistel CR, Craig AR, & Shahan TA (2013) Temporal contingency.Behavioural processes.

Gallistel CR, Matzel LD. (2013) The neuroscience of learning: Beyond the Hebbian Synapse. Annual Review of Psychology 64: 169-200

Gallistel, C.R. (2012) Machinery of cognition. Chapter 3 in Evolution and the mechanisms of decision making: A Strungman Forum Report, ed. P Hammerstein, JR Stevens. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press

Gallistel, C.R. (2012) Contingency in learning. In N. Seel (Editor) Encyclopedia of the Sciences of Learning. New York, Springer.

Kheifets A. & Gallistel C. R.(2012) Mice take calculated risks.Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA) doi: 10.1073/pnas.120513110)

Ward, R. D., Gallistel, C. R., Jensen, G., Richards, V. L., Fairhurst, S., & Balsam, P. D. (2012) Conditional Stimulus Informativeness Governs Conditioned Stimulus—Unconditioned Stimulus Associability. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes.

Gallistel, C. R. (2012) On rationalism and optimality: Responses to the Miller and Nevin Commentaries. Behavioural Processes, 90, 87-88.

Gallistel, C. R. (2012) On the evils of group averaging: Commentary on Nevin's "Resistance to extinction and behavioral momentum".Behavioural Processes, 90, 98-99.

Gallistel, C. R. (2012) Extinction from a rationalist perspective.Behavioural Processes, 90, 66-88.

Gallistel, C. R. (2011) Prelinguistic thought. in Language learning and development, 7, 253-262.

Gallistel, C. R. (2011) "Response to Donahoe's Review of Memory and the Computational Brain" in Behavior & Philosophy

Gallistel, C. R. (2011). Mental magnitudes. Space, Time and Number in the Brain: Searching for the foundations of mathematical thought.S. Dehaene and L. Brannon. New York, Elsevier: 3-12.

Gallistel, C.R. (2010). Review of Carey’s “The Origin of Concepts” in Lingua. doi:10.1016/j.lingua.2010.08.004

Balsam, P. D., M. R. Drew, et al. (2010). Time and Associative Learning. Comparative Cognition & Behavior Reviews 5: 1-22.

Gallistel, C. R., King, A. P., Daniel, A. M., Freestone, D., Papchristos, E. B., Balci, F., et al. (2010). Screening for learning and memory mutations: A new approach. Acta Psychologica Sinica 41(1).

Durgin FH, Akagi M, Gallistel CR, & Haiken W (2009) The precision of human odometery.Experimental Brain Research 193(3):429-436.

Gallistel, C.R. (2009). The importance of proving the null.Psychological Review. 116(2), 439-453.

Balci, F., Freestone, D., & Gallistel, C. R. (2009). Risk assessment in man and mouse. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science U S A, 106(7), 2459-2463.

Balsam, P. & Gallistel, C. R. (2009). Temporal maps and informativeness in associative learning. Trends in Neurosciences, 32(2), 73-78.

Balci, F., Allen, B. D., Frank, K., Gibson, J., Gallistel, C. R. & Brunner, D. (2009). Acquisition of timed responses in the peak procedure., Behavioral Processes, 80 , pp. 67-75.

Gallistel, C.R. (2009), The foundational abstractions. in Piattelli-Palmirini, M, Uriagereka, J.. & Salaburu, P. (Eds) Of minds and language: A dialogue with Noam Chomsky in the Basque country.New York: Oxford University Press, pp. 58-73

Gallistel, C.R., King. A.P., Daniel, A.M., Papachristos, E.B., Balci, F. (2008). Fully Automated 24/7 Behavioral Screening for Mutations in Targeted Cognitive Mechanisms in the Mouse in Proceedings of Measure Behavior (Maastricht, The Netherlands) , pp. 55-56.

Gallistel, C. R. (2008). The neural mechanisms that underlie decision making, in P. W. Glimcher, C. F. Camerer, E. Fehr & R. A. Poldrack (Eds.), Neuroeconomics: Decision making and the brain , pp. 419-424. New York: Elsevier/Academic.

Leslie, A. M., Gelman, R., Gallistel, C. R. (2008). The generative basis of natural number concepts, in Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 12(6) , pp. 213-218.

Cordes, S., Gallistel, C. R. (2008). Intact interval timing in circadian CLOCK mutants, in Brain Research, 1227 , pp. 120-127.

Balci, F., Papachristos, E.B., Gallistel, C.R., Brunner, D., Gibson, J. & Schumyatsky, G.P. (2008). Interval timing in genetically modified mouse: a simple paradigm. Genes, Brains and Behavior , 7, 373-384

Gallistel, C.R. (2008) Learning and representation., in R.Menzel (Ed.),Learning theory and behavior Vol. 1 of Learning and memory: A comprehensive reference. (Vol. 1. Learning theory and behavior, pp. 227-242). Oxford: Elsevier.

Gallistel, C. R. (2008). Learning and memory. In G. O. Mazur (Ed.), Thirty-year commemoration of the life of A.R. Luria (pp. 49-61). New York: Semenenko Foundation.

Leslie, A. M., Gelman, R., Gallistel, C. R. (2007). Where Integers Come From, , in Carruthers, P., Laurence, S., Stich, S., (Eds) The Innate Mind, Vol. 3: Foundations and the Future., New York: Oxford University Press, (7), pp. 109-138.

Gallistel, C. R. (2007). Comment on Machado and di Silva, inAmerican Psychologist, (62) , pp. 682-685.

Gallistel, C. R. (2007). Commentary on Le Corre & Carey, inCognition, 105(2), pp. 439-445.

Cordes, S., King, A.P., & Gallistel, C.R. (2007) Time left in the mouse. Behavioural Processes, 74, pp. 142-151.

Gallistel, C.R. (2007) Learning Organs. English original of L'apprentissage de matières distinctes exige des organes distincts. In J. Bricmont & J. Franck (Eds) Cahier n° 88: Noam Chomsky. Paris: L'Herne, pp. 181-187

Cordes S., Gallistel C.R., Gelman R., & Latham P. (2007). Nonverbal arithmetic in humans: Light from noise, in Perception & Psychophysics, 69, 1185-1203.

Gallistel, C.R., King, A.P., Gottlieb, D., Balci, F., Papachristos, E.B., Szalecki, M., Carbone, K.S. (2007) Is matching innate? Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 7(2), 161-199.

Matlab Code for Matching Simulations (JEAB, 2007)

Gallistel, C. R. (2006). Dopamine and reward: Comment on Hernandez et al., in Behavioral Neuroscience, 120(4), pp. 992-994.

Papachristos, E. B., & Gallistel, C.R. (2006) Autoshaped Head Poking in the Mouse: A Quantitative Analysis of the Learning Curve., in Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior,85, pp. 293-308.

Balsam, P.D., Fairhurst, S., & Gallistel, C.R. (2006) Pavlovian contingencies and temporal information. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, 32(3),284-294.

Gallistel, C.R. (2006) The nature of learning and the functional architecture of the brain. In Q. Jing, et al (Eds) Psychological Science Around the World, vol 1. Proceedings of the 28th International Congress of Psychology. Sussex: Psychology Press. pp. 63-71

Balci, F. & Gallistel, C.R. (2006) Cross-Domain Transfer of Quantitative Discriminations: Is it All a Matter of Proportion?Psychonomic Bulletin and Review, 13, pp. 636-642

Gallistel, C.R. (2005) Deconstructing the law of effect., in Games and Economic Behavior. R 52(2), 410-423

C. R. Gallistel, Rochel Gelman (2005) Mathematical Cognition
In K Holyoak & R. Morrison (Eds) The Cambridge handbook of thinking and reasoning. Cambridge University Press (pp 559-588) 2005

Tutorial on Matlab's Statistics Toolbox. This is the core of my Advanced Statistics Course, which emphasizes familiarity with the different distributions and the use of relative likelihood methods. Zipped folder contains executable Matlab .m file and a .pdf version of same with inserted figures and captions.

Cheng, K., & Gallistel, C.R. (2005) Shape parameters explain data from spatial transformations: Comment on Pearce et al. (2004) and Tomassi & Polli (2004). Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, 31(2), pp. 254-259

Gallistel, C. R., Gelman, R., & Cordes, S. (2005). The cultural and evolutionary history of the real numbers, in S. Levinson & P. Jaisson (Eds.), Culture and evolution. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Gelman, R., & Gallistel, C. R. (2004). Language and the origin of numerical concepts, in Science, 306, 441-443.

Gallistel, C. R., Balsam, P. D., & Fairhurst, S. (2004). The learning curve: Implications of a quantitative analysis., in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 101(36), 13124-13131.

Matlab, Excel & Stand-Alone implementations of the Change-Point Algorithm.

Gallistel, C.R., King, A., McDonald, R. (2004) Sources of variability and systematic error in mouse timing behavior, in Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, 30(1), pp. 3-16

Gallistel, C. R. (2002). Conception, Perception, and the Control of Action: Response to Majid, in TICCS, 2002, 6, 504.

Gallistel, C. R. (2002). Frequency, contingency and the information processing theory of conditioning, in P. Sedelmeir & T. Betsch (Eds.),Frequency processing and cognition. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, pp. 153-171.

S. Fairhurst, C. R. Gallistel, & J. Gibbon (2003) Temporal landmarks: Proximity prevails, in Animal Cognition, 6(2), pp. 113-120.

Gallistel, C. R. (2003) Conditioning from an information processing perspective, in Behavioural Processes. 61(3) 1234 1-13

Gallistel, C. R. Time has Come, in Neuron, Vol. 38, 1-20 April 24, 2003

Gallistel, C. R. Rate Estimation Theory Model Excel Implementation and Instruction. 2003 April 15.

Gallistel, C.R. (2002) The principle of adaptive specialization as it applies to learning and memory, in R.H. Kluwe, G. Lüer, F. Röser (Eds) Principles of learning and memory Berlin: Birkhäuser. pp. 250-280

Cordes, S., Gelman, R., & Gallistel, C. R. (2002). Variability signatures distinguish verbal from nonverbal counting for both large and small numbers, in Psychological Bulletin and Review, 8, 698-707.

Gallistel, C.R. (2002) Language and Spatial Frames of Referencein Mind and Brain, in News & Views in TICCS, 6, 321-322

Gallistel, C.R., Brannon, E.M, Gibbon, J., Wusthoff, C.J. (2001).Commentary, Response to Dehaene, in American Psychological Society, Vol. 12(3), p. 247

King, A. S., McDonald, R., & Gallistel, C. R. (2001) Screening for mice that remember incorrectly, in International Journal of Comparative Psychology, 14: 232-257

Gallistel, C. R., Mark, T. A., King, A. P., & Latham, P. E. (2001). The rat approximates an ideal detector of changes in rates of reward: Implications for the law of effect, in Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, 27, 354-372.

Gallistel, C. R., & Gibbon, J. (2001). Computational Versus Associative Models of Simple Conditioning, in Current Directions in Psychological Science, 10, 146-150.

Brannon, E. M., Wusthoff, C. J., Gallistel, C. R., & Gibbon, J. (2001).Numerical subtraction in the pigeon: Evidence for a linear subjective number scale, in Psychological Science, 12(3), 238-243.

Gallistel, C. R. (2001). Mental representations, psychology of, Encylopedia of the Behavioral and Social Sciences. New York: Elsevier.

Gallistel, C. R. (2000) The replacement of general-purpose learning models with adaptively specialized learning modules, in M.S. Gazzaniga, Ed. The Cognitive Neurosciences. 2d ed. (1179-1191) Cambridge, MA. MIT Press.

Gallistel, C. R., & Gibbon, J. (2000). Time, rate and conditioning, inPsychological Review, 107, 289-344.

Gallistel, C. R., & Gelman, R. (2000). Non-verbal numerical cognition: From reals to integers, in Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 4, 59-65.

Whalen, J., Gallistel, C. R., and Gelman, R. (1999). Non-verbal counting in humans: The psychophysics of number representation.Psychological Science (pp. 130-137).

Gallistel, C. R. (1999). Can a decay process explain the timing of conditioned responses? in Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 71(2), 264-271.

Gallistel, C. R. (1999). Coordinate transformations in the genesis of directed action, in B. O. M. Bly & D. E. Rummelhart (Eds.), Cognitive science (pp. 1-42). New York: Academic.

Gallistel, C.R. (1998) Symbolic processes in the brain:The case of insect navigation, in D. Scarorough & S Sternberg (Eds) Methods, models and conceptual issues. Vol 4 of An invitation to cognitive science. 2nd edition (D. Osherson, General Editor) Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Gibbon, J., C. Malapani, et al. (1997). Toward a neurobiology of temporal cognition: Advances and challenges, in Current Opinion in Neurobiology 7(2): 170-184.

Gallistel, C. R., and Gelman, R. (1992). Preverbal and verbal counting and computationCognition, 44, 43-74.

Gallistel, C.R., and Gelman, R. (1991).   Subitizing: The preverbal counting process, in Craik, F., Kessen W., and Ortony A. (Eds.),Essays in honor of George Mandler Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum Associates, (pp. 65-81).

Gallistel, C. R., Shizgal, P., & Yeomans, J. S. (1981) A portrait of the substrate for self-stimulation, in Psychological Review, 88(3) pp. 228-273.

Gallistel, C.R. (1981) Bell, Magendie, and the Proposal to Restrict the Use of Animals in Neurobehavioral Research, in American Psychologist, Vol. 36(4) pp. 357-360.

Gallistel, C.R. (1980) "From muscles to motivation.", in American Scientist, Vol. 68(4) pp. 398-409.