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Dr Deborah Talmi PhD

Photograph of Deborah Talmi

Senior lecturer

Room 1.28 Zochonis, first floor; turn right from the stairwell and through the double doors.


I am a senior lecturer at the School of Psychological Science, and a member of the Brain, Behaviour and Mental Health institute. Please see below for informaiton on my research and teaching. 

I serve as the programme director for the joing honours course in Cognitive Neuroscience and Psychology.

Please visit my lab webpage for informatio on my team, our research and how you can get involved.


The core of my research is the emotional value of the events that we experience. How can we measure and quantify this value? What factors influence it? How does our brain compute emotional value?

My research also aims to understand the interaction between emotion and cognition (thinking, paying attention, relating things to each other). How does cognition influence emotion? How does emotion influence cognition? I focus on two cognitive domains: memory and decision making.

Emotional events are remembered better than neutral ones. What is the underlying brain mechanism that allows for this important adaptive effect? Does this effect depend on the way we think about the event, and how much attention we pay to it? Or is emotional memory depend solely on how strongly aroused we are?

Decision making
How do we decide between two choice options - one that we desire, and one that is optimal one given some other considerations? For example, a mountain climber might ignore her desire to rest in order to reach the peak. Or a dieter may quench his desire for chocolate cake. In my research I ask how the brain trades off costs and benefits to decide between conflicting courses of action.

For more information please see my lab web page and profiles on Google scholar and ReserchGate..

Research Opportunities

Deborah is still building up her research group. If you are interested in a PhD or a postdoc opportunity please contact her directly.

Methodological Knowledge

How do we carry out experiments to answer our research questions? At the lab we use a mix of cognitive neuroscience methods, including experimental psychology, neuroimaging (funciontal Magnetic Resonance Imaging - fMRI, Electroencephalography - EEG), and psychophysiological recordings (Skin Conductance Response).


Psychology undergraduate:

2nd year: Cognitive Neuroscience

3rd year: Emotion (module leader)

Psychology postgraduate

Mres: Advanced research methods (Psychophysiological measures)

Cognitive Brain Imaging Mres: Cognitive and social neuroscience (module leader)

Social Responsibility

Public engagement: I co-host Manchester Cafe Scientifique, lead a session at the Big Brain summer school on emotional decisions, and speak to the public about my research. Follow this link to my Tedx talk. 

I've lead a team at the School of Psychological Sciences to win an environmental accredatation called the Green Impact Silver Award.

I have been involved in winning the Athena Swan Silver award for the School in recognition of our commitment to advancing women's careers in Science. 



M.A. in Psychology (Tel Aviv University)

Ph.D. in Psychology (University of Toronto)

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy



  • Barnacle, G., Montaldi, D., Talmi, D., & Sommer, T. (2016).

    The list-composition effect in memory for emotional and neutral pictures: Differential contribution of ventral and dorsal attention networks to successful encoding. NEUROPSYCHOLOGIA. . Publication link: 0eba5618-a1fa-43b9-91ba-045189a6a4da


  • Maehr, A. M., Watts, G. R., Hanratty, J., & Talmi, D. (2015).

    Emotional response to images of wind turbines: A psychophysiological study of their visual impact on the landscape.Landscape and Urban Planning, 142, 71-79. . Publication link: 1ab67c9e-713f-457e-a727-a791918966aa
  • Talmi, D., & Barnacle, G. (2015).

    Emotionally arousing context modulates the ERP correlates of neutral picture processing: An ERP test of the 'Glutamate Amplifies Noradrenergic Effects (GANE)' model.Behavioural Brain Research. . Publication link: d294060c-20d2-4430-8d2b-a6c294378e03
  • Talmi, D., Caplan, J. B., Richards, B., & Moscovitch, M. (2015).

    Long-term recency in anterograde amnesia. PLOS one.Unknown Journal, 10(6), e0124084.. . Publication link: c130d539-7e2f-49a5-8d84-ece8e5c62203












Research projects