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Raymond Phinney, Ph.D.

Neuroscience Certificate

Chair of Undergraduate Psychology, Associate Professor of Psychology
On Faculty since 2004

Office: BGC M213
Phone: (630)752-5159
Fax: (630)752-7033


Ph.D., Washington State University, 1995

M.S. Psychology, Washington State University, 1991

B.A. Psychology, Puget Sound University, 1987

About Raymond Phinney

I am interested in a variety of issues concerning visual perception, ranging from how humans use motion and depth perception to understand their peri-personal space to how visual attention deficits may contribute to dyslexia to how visual science and visual art (especially painting and movie-making) have informed and affected one another.

I also love music. I learned saxophone in school and taught myself guitar/bass. I've been playing now for almost 20 years. I also program drums and keyboards and do multitrack recording at home. I'm also the bassist for worship at my church, FaithBridge Church, and folk group Five In A Box.

Office Hours

You can book office hours with me at: professorphinneyofficehrs.youcanbook.me

Courses Taught

  • Introduction to Psychology
  • Learning
  • Sensation and Perception
  • Sport Psychology
  • Cognition
  • Visual Science and Visual Art
  • Theories and Methods of Integration
  • Cognition and Emotion

Membership in Professional Societies

  • Society for Neuroscience
  • Vision Sciences Society
  • Association for Psychological Science 

Research Interests

I am generally interested in how humans process motion and depth information and how they use this information to interact with the world. I am currently finishing some human neuroimaging studies investigating what cortical areas are involved with complex visual motion processing. Two broad areas of research in my lab now involve visual masking and illusory line-motion. In visual masking, a visual stimulus that is clearly perceived when presented alone is less perceivable (or even unperceivable) when a second stimulus is presented nearby in time or space (but not overlapping). In illusory line-motion, a line which is drawn all at once, is perceived to be incrementally drawn from whichever side was nearest to an attentional cue presented just before the line. Understanding these phenomena can better help us understand the role of attention in visual perception.

Publications and Presentations

Articles and Papers

Scott, R. & Phinney Jr., R. E. (2012). Relating body and soul: Insights from development and neurobiology. Perspective on Science and the Christian Faith, 64 (2), pg 90-107.

Zinszer, B., & Phinney, R. (2009). Effects of mask-to-target energy ratio on cyclopean metacontrast masking [Abstract]. Journal of Vision, 9(8):296, 296a, http://journalofvision.org/9/8/296/, doi:10.1167/9.8.296.

Huddleston, W. E., Lewis, J. W., Phinney, R. E. & DeYoe, E. A. (2008). Auditory and visual attention-based apparent motion share functional parallels. Perception & Psychophysics. 70(7):1207-1216.

Krueger, A. R., Dobelbower, T. P. & Phinney, R.E. (2006). Type B cyclopean metacontrast masking: Implications for theories of masking. Program Number 640.19. 2006 Neuroscience Meeting Planner. Atlanta, GA: Society for Neuroscience. Online.

Lewis, J. W., Phinney R. E., Brefczynski ,J. A., DeYoe, E. A. (2006). Lefties get it “right” when hearing tool sounds. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 18(8),  Lewis, J. W, Brefczynski, J. A., Phinney, R. E., Janik, J. J., DeYoe, E. A. (2005). Distinct cortical pathways for processing tool versus animal sounds. Journal of Neuroscience 25(21), 5148-58.

Lewis, J. W, Wightman, F., Brefczynski, J. A., Phinney, R. E., Binder, J. R., DeYoe, E. A. (2004). Human brain regions involved in recognizing environmental sounds. Cerebral Cortex 14(9), 1008-1021.


Phinney, R. E., Green, J., Lee, S., & Hughes, T. (2013, May 23). Differences in illusory line motion strength reflect visual field asymmetries. Poster presented at the Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Science, Washington, D.C.

Phinney, R. (2012, Oct 15). Monism: Complementary Biblical and Scientific Understanding of the Self. Keynote talk presented to the Christian Neuroscience Society Satellite Event at the Society for Neuroscience.

Green, J., Lee, S., Miller, I., & Phinney, R. (2012, Oct 5). Illusory line motion reveals anisotropies in spatial attention. Poster presented at the Wheaton College Summer Research Symposium, Wheaton, IL

Phinney Jr., R.E., Miller, I., Lee, S. & Gordon, J. (2012, May 24). Anisotropies in illusory line motion. Poster presented at the Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Science, Chicago, IL

Phinney Jr., R. E. (2012, May 8). Mind over homework matters: How research on learning can maximize your student’s effectiveness. Address to Covenant Classical School parents, children, and board of directors. (Naperville, IL).

Riggs, S. & Phinney, R. E. (2008, Oct 28). Effects of mask duration on cyclopean metacontrast masking. Poster presented at the Wheaton College Summer Research Symposium, Wheaton, IL 

Phinney, R. E. & Homolka, S. J. (2008, May 25). Type-B, u-shaped cyclopean masking function at mask-to-target energy ratio of 1. Poster presented at the Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Science , Chicago, IL.

Nichols, K. R. & Phinney, R. E. (2008, May 22). Illusory Line motion is not an isotropic effect of cue distance. Poster presented at the Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Science , Chicago, IL

Phinney, R.E. (2008, April 19). The use of victim’s recovered memory in establishing allegations of childhood sexual abuse in missions. Missiology Conference at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, “Sex and Missions” track