Jesse Rissman


Jesse Rissman

Associate Professor
Ph.D.: University of California, Berkeley
Primary Area: Cognitive Psychology
Secondary Area: Behavioral Neuroscience
Address: 8534 Pritzker Hall
Phone: (310) 825-4084

Research and Teaching Interests:

My research investigates the influence of goal-directed attention on memory at both short and long timescales. I am interested in how top-down attentional control processes govern which mental representations are maintained in an active state on a moment-to-moment basis while ensuring that distracting stimuli are appropriately ignored. And I am also interested in how an individual’s goals and associated attentional states serve to guide the formation of a more durable mnemonic record of select experiences or facilitate the retrieval of relevant episodic details from one’s past. To characterize the neural systems subserving human memory, I have developed and applied novel fMRI analysis techniques that exploit the richness of the data. Rather than simply using fMRI to isolate the functional contributions of individual brain regions, my work has also sought to elucidate the role of dynamic interactions between brain regions, as well as to decode the informational content of distributed brain activity patterns. Please visit my lab website for more information and a complete listing of publications:

Representative Publications:

  • Walsh, C.R. and Rissman, J. (in press). Behavioral representational similarity analysis reveals how episodic learning is influenced by and reshapes semantic memory. Nature Communications.
  • Han, L.T., Cohen, M.S., He, L.K., Green, L.M., Knowlton, B.J., Castel, A.D, and Rissman, J. (2023) Establishing a causal role for left ventrolateral prefrontal cortex in value-directed memory encoding with high-definition transcranial direct current stimulation. Neuropsychologia, 181, 108489.
  • Essoe, J. K. Y., Reggente, N., Ohno, A. A., Baek, Y. H., Dell’italia, J., and Rissman, J. (2022). Enhancing learning and retention with distinctive virtual reality environments and mental context reinstatement. npj Science of Learning, 7, 31.
  • Reggente, N., Essoe, J.K-Y., Baek, H.Y-J., and Rissman, J. (2020). The Method of Loci in virtual reality: Explicit binding of objects to spatial contexts enhances subsequent memory recall. Journal of Cognitive Enhancement, 4, 12-30.
  • Westphal, A.J., Chow, T.E., Ngoy, C., Zuo, X., Liao, V., Storozuk. L.A., Peters, M.A.K., Wu, A.D., and Rissman, J. (2019). Anodal transcranial direct current stimulation to left rostrolateral prefrontal cortex selectively improves source memory retrieval. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 31(9), 1-12.
  • Reggente, N., Essoe, J.K-Y., Aghajan, Z.A., Tavakoli, A.V., McGuire, J.F., Suthana, N.A., and Rissman, J. (2018) Enhancing the ecological validity of fMRI memory research using virtual reality. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 12, 408.
  • Chow, T.E., Westphal, A.J., and Rissman J. (2018) Multivoxel pattern classification differentiates personally experienced event memories from secondhand event knowledge. NeuroImage, 176, 110-123.
  • Bainbridge, W.A. and Rissman J. (2018) Dissociating neural markers of stimulus memorability and subjective recognition during episodic retrieval. Scientific Reports, 8, 8679.
  • Westphal, A.J., Wang, S., and Rissman, J. (2017) Episodic memory retrieval benefits from a less modular brain network organization. Journal of Neuroscience, 37(13), 3523–3531.
  • De Shetler, N.G. & Rissman, J. (2017) Dissociable profiles of generalization/discrimination in the human hippocampus during associative retrieval. Hippocampus, 27, 115-121.
  • Westphal, A.J., Reggente, N., Ito, K., and Rissman, J. (2016) Shared and distinct contributions of rostrolateral prefrontal cortex to analogical reasoning and episodic memory retrieval. Human Brain Mapping, 37, 896-912.
  • Rissman, J., Chow, T.E., Reggente, N., and Wagner, A.D. (2016) Decoding fMRI signatures of real-world autobiographical memory retrieval. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 28(4), 604–620.
  • Rissman, J. and Wagner, A.D. (2012) Distributed representations in memory: Insights from functional brain imaging. Annual Review of Psychology, 63, 101-128.
  • Rissman, J., Greely, H.T., and Wagner, A.D. (2010) Detecting individual memories through the neural decoding of memory states and past experience. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, 107, 9849-9854.
  • Rissman, J., Gazzaley, A., and D’Esposito, M. (2008) Dynamic adjustments in frontal, hippocampal, and inferior temporal interactions with increasing visual working memory load. Cerebral Cortex, 18, 1618-1629.
  • Rissman, J., Gazzaley, A., and D’Esposito, M. (2004) Measuring functional connectivity during distinct stages of a cognitive task. NeuroImage, 23, 752-763.

Rissman Lab Website