Marc G Berman

Marc G Berman
University of Chicago | UC · Department of Psychology

About

166
Publications
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Publications

Publications (166)
Article
A polygenic risk score (PRS) for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has been found to be associated with ADHD in multiple studies, but also with many other dimensions of problems. Little is known, however, about the processes underlying these transdiagnostic associations. Using data from the baseline and 1-year follow-up assessments of...
Article
Full-text available
Resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC) measured with fMRI has been used to characterize functional brain maturation in typically and atypically developing children and adults. However, its reliability and utility for predicting development in infants and toddlers is less well-understood. Here, we use fMRI data from the Baby Connectome Project...
Article
Individual differences in children's cognitive abilities impact life and health outcomes. What factors influence these individual differences during development? Here, we test whether children's environments predict cognitive performance, independent of well‐characterized socioeconomic effects. We analyzed data from 9002 9‐ to 10‐year olds from the...
Article
Background Early life stressors can adversely affect the developing brain. While hierarchical modeling has established the existence of a general factor of psychopathology, no studies have modeled a general factor of environmental stress and related this factor to brain development. Using a large sample of children from the Adolescent Brain Cogniti...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: In this rapidly digitizing world, it is becoming ever more important to understand people's online behaviors in both scientific and consumer research settings. The current work tests the feasibility of inferring personality traits from mouse movement patterns as a cost-effective means of measuring individual characteristics. Method: M...
Article
Scale invariant neural dynamics are a relatively new but effective means of measuring changes in brain states as a result of varied cognitive load and task difficulty. This study tests whether scale invariance (as measured by the Hurst exponent, H) can be used with functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) to quantify cognitive load, paving the...
Preprint
Research has shown differences in pro-social and pro-environmental behaviors after exposure to different physical environments. In this within-subject design, we used repeated surveys to measure social and environmental thought content throughout one-hour environmental explorations of a nature conservatory and an indoor mall. At each survey, partic...
Article
Compared to urban environments, interactions with natural environments have been associated with several health benefits including psychological restoration and improved emotional well-being. However, dichotomizing environments as either natural or urban may emphasize between-category differences and minimize potentially important within-category v...
Chapter
Recent research has quantified aspects of the built environment to understand which visual features may play a role in environmental preferences and behavior. The occurrence of different low-level (e.g., spatial and color properties) and mid-level features (e.g., objects) that mimic patterns seen in nature may influence the quality of pedestrian ex...
Preprint
Full-text available
Scale invariant neural dynamics are a relatively new but effective means of measuring changes in brain states as a result of varied cognitive load and task difficulty. This study is the first to test whether scale invariance (as measured by the Hurst exponent, H ) can be used with functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) to quantify cognitive...
Preprint
Full-text available
In this rapidly digitizing world, it is becoming ever more important to understand people’s online behaviors in both scientific and consumer research settings. A cost-effective way to gain a deeper understanding of these behaviors is to examine mouse movement patterns. This research explores the feasibility of inferring personality traits from thes...
Preprint
Full-text available
The Hurst exponent ( H ) isolated in fractal analyses of neuroimaging time-series is implicated broadly in cognition. The connection between H and the mathematics of criticality makes it a candidate measure of individual differences in cognitive resource allocation. Relationships between H and multiple mental disorders have been detected, suggestin...
Chapter
Environmental neuroscience is a field which uses multiple scales of analysis to elucidate the ways in which the physical environment interacts with neural processing to affect behavior. One environment that is heavily studied by environmental neuroscientists is the natural environment and how interacting with more natural environments (e.g., a city...
Article
Full-text available
It is commonly assumed that cities are detrimental to mental health. However, the evidence remains inconsistent and at most, makes the case for differences between rural and urban environments as a whole. Here, we propose a model of depression driven by an individual’s accumulated experience mediated by social networks. The connection between obser...
Preprint
Full-text available
Sustained attention and working memory are central cognitive processes that vary between individuals, fluctuate over time, and have consequences for life and health outcomes. Here we characterize the functional brain architecture of these abilities in 9– 11-year-old children using models based on functional magnetic resonance imaging functional con...
Chapter
Nature exposure, broadly defined, has been repeatedly shown to engender a more positive affective state. In this chapter, a detailed overview of the type of research that has been conducted in this field is provided, focusing on how the effects of nature differ by modality (i.e. nature walks, virtual reality, videos, and images) and by measurement...
Article
Full-text available
The current outbreak of COVID-19 poses an unprecedented global health and economic threat to interconnected human societies. Strategies for controlling the outbreak rely on social distancing and face covering measures which largely disconnect the social network fabric of cities. We demonstrate that early in the US outbreak, COVID-19 spread faster o...
Article
Full-text available
Many eye-tracking data analyses rely on the Area-of-Interest (AOI) methodology, which utilizes AOIs to analyze metrics such as fixations. However, AOI-based methods have some inherent limitations including variability and subjectivity in shape, size, and location of AOIs. In this article, we propose an alternative approach to the traditional AOI dw...
Article
Full-text available
The developing brain is marked by high plasticity, which can lead to vulnerability to early life stressors. Previous studies indicate that childhood maltreatment is associated with structural aberrations across a number of brain regions. However, prior work is limited by small sample sizes, heterogeneous age groups, the examination of one structure...
Article
Full-text available
Crime is a costly societal issue. While many factors influence urban crime, one less-studied but potentially important factor is neighborhood greenspace. Research has shown that greenspace is often negatively associated with crime. Measuring residents’ use of greenspace, as opposed to mere physical presence, is critical to understanding this associ...
Preprint
Full-text available
Lack of self-control has been theorized to predict an individual’s likelihood to engage in antisocial behaviors such as impulsive aggression upon provocation, but existing measures have not allowed for the specific examination of costly, reactive aggression. We introduce a novel paradigm, the Retaliate or Carry-on: Reactive AGgression Experiment (R...
Article
Full-text available
Societal responses to crises require coordination at multiple levels of organization. Exploring early efforts to contain COVID-19 in the U.S., we argue that local governments can act to ensure systemic resilience and recovery when higher-level governments fail to do so. Event history analyses show that large, more urban areas experience COVID-19 mo...
Article
Full-text available
Neuroimaging research frequently demonstrates load-dependent activation in prefrontal and parietal cortex during working memory tasks such as the N-back. Most of this work has been conducted in fMRI, but functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is gaining traction as a less invasive and more flexible alternative to measuring cortical hemodynam...
Article
Childhood is an important time for the manifestation of psychopathology. Psychopathology is characterized by considerable comorbidity which is mirrored in the underlying neural correlates of psychopathology. Both common and dissociable variations in brain volume have been found across multiple mental disorders in adult and youth samples. However, t...
Article
Background Executive functions (EF) are important partly because they are associated with risk for psychopathology and substance use problems. Because EF has been linked to white matter microstructure, we tested the prediction that fractional anisotropy (FA) and mean diffusivity (MD) in white matter tracts are associated with EF and dimensions of p...
Poster
Full-text available
We experience our neighborhoods and cities through our streets. An essential question is what street features contribute to a superior pedestrian experience? Further, can interacting with urban streetscapes improve cognitive functioning, as interacting with nature does? To answer these questions, large urban street perception databases are enormous...
Article
Reports an error in "Criterion validity and relationships between alternative hierarchical dimensional models of general and specific psychopathology" by Tyler M. Moore, Antonia N. Kaczkurkin, E. Leighton Durham, Hee Jung Jeong, Malerie G. McDowell, Randolph M. Dupont, Brooks Applegate, Jennifer L. Tackett, Carlos Cardenas-Iniguez, Omid Kardan, Gab...
Article
Full-text available
Nature interactions have been demonstrated to produce reliable affective benefits. While adults demonstrate strong preferences for natural environments over urban ones, it is not clear whether these affective benefits result from exposure to nature stimuli per se, or result from viewing a highly preferred stimulus. In one set of studies (Study 1 an...
Article
It has recently been shown that the perception of visual features of the environment can influence thought content. Both low-level (e.g., fractalness) and high-level (e.g., presence of water) visual features of the environment can influence thought content in real-world and experimental settings where these features can make people more reflective...
Article
Full-text available
Computer vision-based research has shown that scene semantics (e.g., presence of meaningful objects in a scene) can predict memorability of scene images. Here, we investigated whether and to what extent overt attentional correlates, such as fixation map consistency (also called inter-observer congruency of fixation maps) and fixation counts, mediat...
Preprint
Full-text available
Neuroimaging research frequently demonstrates load-dependent activation in the prefrontal cortex during working memory tasks such as the N-back. Most of this work has been conducted in fMRI, but functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is gaining traction as a less invasive and more flexible alternative to measuring cortical hemodynamics. Few...
Preprint
Full-text available
It is commonly assumed that cities are detrimental to mental health. However, the evidence remains inconsistent and, at most, makes the case for differences between rural and urban environments as a whole. Here, we propose a model of depression driven by an individual's accumulated experience mediated by social networks. The connection between obse...
Preprint
Societal responses to crises require coordination at multiple levels of organization. Exploring early efforts to contain COVID-19 in the U.S., we argue that local governments can act to ensure systemic resilience and recovery when higher-level governments fail to do so. Event history analyses show that large, more urban areas experience COVID-19 mo...
Preprint
Full-text available
Many eye-tracking data analyses rely on the Area-of-Interest (AOI) methodology, which utilizes AOIs to analyze metrics such as fixations. However, AOI-based methods have some inherent limitations including variability and subjectivity in shape, size, and location of AOIs. In this article, we propose an alternative approach to the traditional AOI dw...
Article
Full-text available
One of the central questions of neuroethology is how specialized brain areas communicate to form dynamic networks that support complex cognitive and behavioral processes. Developmental song learning in the male zebra finch songbird (Taeniopygia guttata) provides a unique window into the complex interplay among sensory, sensorimotor, and motor netwo...
Article
Psychopathology can be viewed as a hierarchy of correlated dimensions. Many studies have supported this conceptualization, but they have used alternative statistical models with differing interpretations. In bifactor models, every symptom loads on both the general factor and 1 specific factor (e.g., internalizing), which partitions the total explai...
Preprint
Individual differences in children’s cognitive abilities have significant consequences for life and health outcomes. What factors influence individual differences in cognitive performance during development? Here we test the hypothesis that children’s environments predict their cognitive performance, independent of well-characterized effects of soc...
Preprint
Full-text available
Although practicing a task generally benefits later performance on that same task (practice effect), there are large, and mostly unexplained, individual differences in reaping the benefits from practice. One promising avenue to model and predict such differences comes from recent research showing that brain networks can extract functional advantage...
Preprint
Full-text available
Psychopathology can be viewed as a hierarchy of correlated dimensions. Many studies have supported this conceptualization, but they have used alternative statistical models with differing interpretations. In bifactor models, every symptom loads on both the general factor and one specific factor (e.g., internalizing), which partitions the total expl...
Article
Full-text available
Despite being intuitive, cognitive effort has proven difficult to define quantitatively. Here, we proposed to study cognitive effort by investigating the degree to which the brain deviates from its default state, where brain activity is scale-invariant. Specifically, we measured such deviations by examining changes in scale-invariance of brain acti...
Preprint
Full-text available
Nature interactions have been demonstrated to produce reliable affective benefits. While adults demonstrate strong preferences for natural environments over urban ones, it is not clear whether these affective benefits result from exposure to nature stimuli per se, or result from viewing a highly preferred stimulus. In one set of studies (Study 1 an...
Article
Environmental neuroscience is an emerging field devoted to the scientific study of brain-mediated, bidirectional relationships between organisms and their social and physical environments. A key feature of environmental neuroscience is the rigorous quantification of environmental features that affect the brain and subsequent behavior. In addition,...
Article
Full-text available
Although violence is a frequently researched topic, little is known about how different social features influence information gathering from violent interactions. Regions of an interaction that provide contextual information should receive more attention. We predicted the most informative features of a violent social interaction would be faces, poi...
Article
Full-text available
Math anxiety -- negative feelings toward math -- is hypothesized to be associated with the avoidance of math-related activities such as taking math courses and pursuing STEM careers. However, there is little experimental evidence for the math anxiety-avoidance link. Such evidence is important for formulating how to break this relationship. We hypot...
Preprint
Full-text available
Crime is costly economically, socially, and psychologically for all societies, especially in urban areas. While there are many well-studied environmental and social influences on crime such as poverty and marginalization, one less studied, but important factor is the effect of neighborhood greenspace. Prior research has shown that greenspace is neg...
Preprint
Full-text available
It has recently been shown that the perception of visual features of the environment can influence thought content. Both low-level (e.g., fractalness) and high-level (e.g., presence of water) visual features of the environment can influence thought content, in real-world and experimental settings where these features can make people more reflective...
Article
Past work demonstrates that humans behave differently towards women across their menstrual cycles, even after exclusively visual exposure to women's faces. People may look at women's faces differently as a function of women's menstrual cycles. Analyses of participants' scanpaths (eye movement patterns) while they looked at women at different phases...
Article
Full-text available
To assess environmental preferences in a wide age range of children, a tablet-based task was developed which can be used with children as young as 4-years-old. The current method uses images which have been rated on aesthetic preference in a separate adult sample to ensure that the nature and urban images shown are matched on aesthetics, allowing f...
Article
Full-text available
Interactions with natural environments and nature-related stimuli have been found to be beneficial to cognitive performance, in particular on executive cognitive tasks with high demands on directed attention processes. However, results vary across different studies. The aim of the present paper was to evaluate the effects of nature vs. urban enviro...
Article
Adults demonstrate aesthetic preferences for natural environments over urban ones. This preference has influenced theories like Biophilia to explain why nature is beneficial. While both adults and children show cognitive and affective benefits after nature exposure, it is unknown whether children demonstrate nature preferences. In the current study...
Article
Many people have the intuition that interacting with natural environments benefits their psychological health. But what has research actually demonstrated about the benefits of nature experience and the potential mechanisms underlying those benefits? This article describes empirical research on the cognitive benefits of interacting with natural env...
Preprint
Much as humans acquire speech in early childhood, the zebra finch ( Taeniopygia guttata ) songbird learns to sing from an adult "tutor" during the first three months of life. Within a well-defined critical period (CP), juvenile zebra finches memorize a tutor song that will guide subsequent motor patterning. This sensory learning process is mediated...
Article
Full-text available
Rationale The behavioral and reward-related effects of stimulant drugs have been studied extensively; yet the effect of stimulants on sensory processing is still relatively unknown. Prior brain imaging studies have shown that single doses of stimulant drugs increase neural function during cognitive and attentional processes. However, it is not clea...
Preprint
Full-text available
Math anxiety-negative feelings towards math-is hypothesized to be associated with the avoidance of math-related activities such as taking math courses and pursuing STEM careers. Surprisingly, however, there is little experimental evidence for the math anxiety-avoidance link. Such evidence is important for formulating how to break this relation. Her...
Article
People across the world seek out beautiful sounds in nature, such as a babbling brook or a nightingale song, for positive human experiences. However, it is unclear whether this positive aesthetic response is driven by a preference for the perceptual features typical of nature sounds versus a higher‐order association of nature with beauty. To test t...