CSLA: Joel Ellwanger

College of Natural and Social Sciences
Department of Psychology



Joel W. Ellwanger
Assistant Professor of Psychology


Office: KH D3089
Phone: (323) 343-2266
FAX: (323) 343-2281
Email: jellwan@calstatela.edu

WebPage: Human Psychophysiology Laboratory



Introduction  | Teaching Interests  | Research Interests
Publications  | Educational Background  | Schedule & Office Hours


Introduction

I

joined the Psychology Department at Cal State LA in Fall 2002. My specialization is psychophysiology and I am a long time member of the Society for Psychophysiological Research. The goal of psychophysiology is to examine interrelationships between  psychological and physiological aspects of behavior. Before coming to Cal State LA I worked as a Research Scientist at the San Diego Veteran Affairs Hospital and as an Assistant Professor at the University of Missouri, St. Louis.  My goal as a professor at Cal State LA is  to contribute to the field of psychology through teaching, research,  and the mentoring of students who will go on to make their own contributions to the field. 

Teaching Interests

I currently teach undergraduate and graduate level courses in physiological psychology, cognitive neuroscience, psychopharmacology, statistics, and research methods. In the future I also plan to  teach courses in cognitive psychology and human memory.  I enjoy teaching psychology courses because I enjoy  doing psychological research.   I think an important goal for all students of psychology is to develop research skills so that they can do psychological research and ask their own research questions.  Therefore, I make the teaching of research skills and an appreciation for the creative aspects of research a focus of my teaching. In my courses I also try to engage students in defining their own interests and goals as students of psychology. I enjoy collaborating with students on research projects inside and outside of classes and find that mentoring students in the research process is one of the most rewarding aspects of my job.

Courses

  • Psychology 170 : INTRODUCTORY PHYSIOLOGICAL PSYCHOLOGY

  • Psychology 302: STATISTICAL METHODS IN PSYCHOLOGY  W LAB

  • Psychology 304A: EXPERIMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY W LAB

  • Psychology 401: PHYSIOLOGICAL PSYCHOLOGY

  • Psychology 424: COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY

  • Psychology 490: HUMAN MEMORY

  • Psychology 506: GRADUATE SEMINAR IN PHYSIOLOGICAL PSYCHOLOGY


Research Interests

Psychophysiology of Attention, Memory, and Emotion

My research interests include the study of attention, memory, and emotion through the use of physiological indices of mental processes. One of the primary reasons I use physiological indices of cognition and emotion in my research is to measure processes that are automatic or take place outside of normal awareness. I am interested in whether physiological measures related to attention, memory, and emotion can be used to enhance forensic diagnosis and to develop cognitive models of psychopathology. The physiological measures I use include event-related potential (ERP) measures of brain activity, pupil size, skin conductance, and startle eyeblink modification.  My current research projects include 1) studies characterizing information processing deficits and biases in special populations (trauma survivors, schizophrenia patients, chronic pain patients) and examining what role these deficits and biases play in psychological disorders 2) studies using  psychophysiological measures in assessing eyewitness recognition, deception, and simulation of cognitive deficit, 3) studies of emotion and emotional aspects of social evaluation.


Representative Professional Activities

JOURNAL ARTICLES and BOOK CHAPTERS

  1. Carleton, N.R, Asmundson, G.J.G., Collimore, K.C. , & Ellwanger, J. (2006). Strategic and automatic threat processing in patients with chronic musculoskeletal pain: a startle probe investigation. Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, 35, 236-247.

  2. Ellwanger, J. (2006).  Processing of own versus other names differentially affects startle reflex modification. International Journal of Psychophysiology, 62, 233-237.

  3. Braff, D.L., Light, G.A., Ellwanger, J., Sprock, J, & Swerdlow, N.R. (2005).  Female schizophrenia patients have prepulse inhibition deficits.  Biological Psychiatry, 57, 817-820.

  4. Ellwanger, J., Geyer, M. A., & Braff, D.L. (2003). The relationship of age to prepulse inhibition and habituation of the acoustic startle response. Biological Psychology, 62, 175-195.

  5. Caligiuri, M., & Ellwanger, J. (2000).  Motor and cognitive aspects of motor retardation in depression.  Journal of Affective Disorders, 57, 83-93.

  6. Ellwanger, J., Tenhula, W. N., Sweet, J. J., & Rosenfeld, J. P. (1999). Identifying simulators of cognitive deficit through combined use of neuropsychological test performance and event-related potentials. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, 21, 866-879.

  7. Rosenfeld, J. P., Ellwanger, J., Nolan K., Wu, S., Bermann, R. G., & Sweet, J. (1999). P300 scalp amplitude distribution as an index of deception in a simulated cognitive deficit model.  International Journal of Psychophysiology, 33, 3-19.

  8. Ellwanger, J., Rosenfeld, J. P., Hankin, B.L.,  & Sweet, J.J. (1999). P300 as an index of recognition in a standard and difficult match-to-sample test:  A model of amnesia in normal adults.  The Clinical Neuropsychologist, 13, 100-108.

  9. Rosenfeld, J. P., & Ellwanger, J. (1999). Cognitive psychophysiology in detection of malingered cognitive deficit. In J. J. Sweet (Ed.) Forensic neuropsychology: Fundamentals and practice (pp. 283-302) Lisse, The Netherlands: Swets & Zeitlinger.

  10. Rosenfeld, J. P., Reinhart, A., Bhatt, M., Ellwanger, J., Gora, K., Sekera, M. & Sweet J. J. (1998).  P300 correlates of simulated amnesia on a simple matching to sample task:  Topographic analyses of deceptive vs. truthful responses. International Journal of Psychophysiology, 28, 233-247.

  11. Ellwanger, J., Rosenfeld, J. P., & Sweet, J. (1997). P300 event-related brain potential as an index of recognition response to autobiographical and recently learned information in closed-head-injury patients. The Clinical Neuropsychologist, 11, 428-432.

  12. Ellwanger, J., Rosenfeld, J. P., Sweet, J., & Bhatt, M. (1996). Detecting simulated amnesia for autobiographical and recently learned information using the P300 event related potential.  International Journal of Psychophysiology, 23, 9-23.

  13. Rosenfeld, J. P., Sweet, J., Chuang, J., Ellwanger, J., & Song, L. (1996).  Detection of simulated malingering using forced choice recognition enhanced with event-related potential recording. The Clinical Neuropsychologist, 10, 163-179.

  14. Ellwanger, J. (1996).  Detecting simulated amnesia for autobiographical and recently learned information using the P300 event related potential. The IllinoisPsychologist, 33, 12-13.

  15. Rosenfeld, J. P., Ellwanger, J., & Sweet, J. (1995). Detecting malingered amnesia with event related potentials. International Journal of Psychophysiology, 19, 1-11.

CONFERENCE PRESENTATIONS

  

  1. Ellwanger, J., & Scher, C. D. (2006). Attentional bias among interpersonal violence survivors: An examination using dot probe reaction time and startle modification.  Psychophysiology, 43, Suppl. 1, 36-37. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Psychophysiological Research, Vancouver , Canada.

  2. Ellwanger, J., & Scher, C. D. (2006). Startle eyeblink modified by emotion words distinguishes interpersonal violence survivors from controls.  Psychophysiology, 43, Suppl. 1, 37-37. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Psychophysiological Research, Vancouver , Canada.

  3. Ellwanger, J., & Mirzakhanian, H. (2006). Using affective startle modification to investigate the facial feedback hypothesis.  Psychophysiology, 43, Suppl. 1, 37-37. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Psychophysiological Research, Vancouver , Canada.

  4. Segura , W., Gonzalez, A. V., & Ellwanger, J. (2006) Using startle reflex methodology to investigate the facial feedback hypothesis.  Presentation made at the annual meeting of the Western Psychological Association, Palm Springs , CA.

  5. Scher, C.D., & Ellwanger, J. (2005). Negative cognitions and disaster impact are related to emotional and physical health following the 2003 southern Californiawildfires. Presentation made at the annual meeting of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, Washington , DC.

  6. Braff, D.L., Ellwanger, J., Cadenhead, K., Sprock, J. & Swerdlow, N.R. (2004). A nonlinear approach to sexual dimorphism in prelulse inhibition and schizophrenia: Are men too fixed in their ways?  Biological Psychiatry, 55, 78.  Paper presented at the annual meeting of  the Society for Biological Psychiatry.

  7. Scher, C. D., Ellwanger, J., & Hunter A. K. (2004).  Effortful and automatic processing of trauma-related information among interpersonal violence survivors: Preliminary data.  Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for Advancement of Behavior Therapy, New Orleans , LA.

  8. Ellwanger, J., Mirzakhanian, H., Corona, M., & Flores, D., (2004).  The Relationship of Sensorimotor Gating Asymmetry to Schizotypal Characteristics.  Paper presented at the 16th annual convention of the American Psychological Society, Chicago , IL.

  9. Scher, C. D., Ellwanger, J., & Hunter A. K. (2004).  Effortful and automatic processing of trauma-related information among interpersonal violence survivors: Preliminary data.  Paper presented at the 24th National Conference of Anxiety Disorders Association of America, Miami , FL.

  10. Mirzakhanian, H., Corona, M., Flores, D., & Ellwanger, J. (2004).  The Relationship of Sensorimotor Gating Asymmetry to Schizotypal Characteristics.  Paper presented at the 84th annual meeting of the Western Psychological Association, Phoenix , AZ.

  11. Garcia, D., Orozco, A., Flores, D., & Ellwanger, J. (2003).  Measuring preattentive processing of personal names using startle reflex modification.  Paper presented at the 83rd annual meeting of the Western Psychological Association, VancouverCanada.

  12. Flores, D., Orozco, A., Garcia, D., & Ellwanger, J. (2003).  Prepulse inhibition of the startle response, attention, and schizotypal characteristics.  Paper presented at the 83rd annual meeting of the Western Psychological Association, VancouverCanada.

  13. Granholm, E., Ellwanger, J., Morris, S., Braff, D., Verney, S., & Perivoliotis, D. (2002).  Pupillary response measures of cognitive overload and attentional filtering deficits in negative symptom patients with schizophrenia.  International Journal of Psychophysiology, 45, 42. Paper presented at the 11th World Congress of Psychophysiology, Montreal , Canada

  14. Ellwanger, J., Grillo, A. N., Kluegel, G. M., & Sellers, G. M. (2001).  The relationship of prepulse inhibition of the startle response to attentional performance and schizotypal characteristics. Psychophysiology, 38, Suppl. 1, s39. Paper presented at the 41st annual meeting of the Society for Psychophysiological Research, Montreal , Canada.

  15. Ellwanger, J., Granholm, E., Verney, S., & Vukov, B. (2000). Parasympathetic and sympathetic contributions to the pupillary orienting response. Psychophysiology, 37, Suppl. 1, s38. Paper presented at the 40th annual meeting of the Society for Psychophysiological Research, San Diego , CA.

  16. Ellwanger, J., & Braff, D. L. (2000). Schizophrenia patients and normal controls demonstrate a similar effect of sex on prepulse inhibition of the startle reflex. Biological Psychiatry, 47, 154S.   Paper presented at the 45th annual conference of the Society for Biological Psychiatry, Chicago , IL.

  17. Ellwanger, J., Granholm, E., Cole, D.L., Jeste, D.V., & Braff D.L. (1999).  Pupillary responses as a measure of cognitive overload in older schizophrenia patients.  Biological Psychiatry, 45, 35S-36S. Paper presented at the 44th annual conference of the Society for Biological Psychiatry, WashingtonD.C.

  18. Ellwanger, J., & Braff, D.L. (1999).  Startle eyeblink non-responsivity increases with age in schizophrenia patients and controls. Schizophrenia Research, 36, 253-254.  Paper presented at the seventh International Congress On Schizophrenia Research, Santa Fe , New Mexico, April 1999.

  19. Caligiuri, M.P., Lohr, J.B., & Ellwanger, J. (1998).  Effects of depression on psychomotor and neuromotor slowing.  Biological Psychiatry, 43, Suppl., 86S. Paper presented at the 43rd annual conference of the Society for Biological Psychiatry, Toronto , Canada.

  20. Caligiuri, M.P.,  & Ellwanger, J. (1998).  Dissociation of psychomotor and neuromotor abnormalities in older patients. Poster presented at the 11th annual meeting of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry, San Diego , California.


Education

1999     Post Doctoral Study in Geriatric Mental Health
             University of California, San Diego

1997      Doctor of Philosophy, Psychobiology
              Northwestern University

1994      Master of Science, Psychobiology
              Northwestern University

1989      Bachelor of Arts, Psychology
              University of Wisconsin-Madison


Summer 07  Office Hours

Mon Tue Wed Thr Fri
  4:30 -530 pm   4:30 - 5:30 pm