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Associate Professor Neil Harrison

0151 291 3504

My research focuses on the study of human visual perception and attention.

One line of my research aims to further our understanding of how the brain processes emotional stimuli, using EEG (electroencephalography). In particular, I investigate how expectations and uncertainty influence emotion processing, and how emotion regulation techniques modify neural activity.

Another line of my research focusses on aesthetics, in relation to both art and nature. I investigate eye movement behaviour when viewing art, and how this is influenced by personality factors. I am particularly interested in investigations of these aspects in real gallery settings. Additionally, I investigate aesthetic evaluations of nature, for example looking at the effects of connectedness to nature and mindfulness on aesthetic experiences. I also conduct research on drawing, in particular the types of errors people commonly make when they draw portraits and objects. 

My teaching covers the following main areas: Psychology of Aesthetics and the Arts, Cognitive Neuroscience (Year 3 options) and biological psychology. I supervise undergraduate and postgraduate dissertations, and am very willing to discuss potential PhD supervision.


Some recent publications: 

Horsfall, R., Harrison, N., Meyer, G., & Wuerger, S. (2024). Perceived Audio-Visual Simultaneity Is Recalibrated by the Visual Intensity of the Preceding Trial. Multisensory Research, 37(2), 143-162.

Harrison, N.R. (2023). Level of attention mediates the association between connectedness to nature and aesthetic evaluations of photographs of nature. PeerJ - Life and Environment, 11:e14926.

Palumbo, L., Harrison, N. R., Trawinski, T., Kass, J., Metelmann, A. C., Bari, R. S. G., & Donnelly, N. (2023).  Visual exploration mediates the influence of personal traits on responses to artworks in an art gallery setting. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts. Advance online publication.

Felisberti, F.M., & Harrison, N. (2022). Effects of the COVID-19 lockdowns on aesthetic and affective evaluations of natural and urban scenes. PsyEcology, 13, 377-408 

Harrison, N.R,. & Clark, D.P.A. (2020). Mindful awareness, but not acceptance, predicts engagement with natural beauty. Ecopsychology, 12, 1-9.

Parr, J.V.V., Gallicchio, G., Harrison, N.R., Johnen, A-K., & Wood, G. (2020). All talk? Challenging the use of left-temporal EEG alpha oscillations as valid measures of verbal processing and conscious motor control. Biological Psychology,155, 107943. 

Johnen, A-K., & Harrison, N. (2020). Level of uncertainty about the affective nature of a pictorial stimulus influences anticipatory neural processes: An event-related potential (ERP) studyNeuropsychologia, 146, 1-8.

Harrison, N., & Chassy, P. (2019). Habitual use of reappraisal to regulate emotions is associated with decreased amplitude of the late positive potential (LPP) elicited by threatening pictures. Journal of Psychophysiology, 33, 22-31.

Johnen, A-K., & Harrison, N. (2019). The effects of valid and invalid expectations about stimulus valence on behavioural and neural responses to emotional picturesInternational Journal of Psychophysiology, 144, 47-55.

Parr, J. V. V., Vine, S. J., Wilson, M. R., Harrison, N. R., & Wood, G. (2019). Visual attention, EEG alpha power and T7-Fz connectivity are implicated in prosthetic hand control and can be optimized through gaze training. Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation, 16(1), 52.

Parr, J., Vine, S., Harrison, N., & Wood, G. (2018). Examining the spatiotemporal disruption to gaze when using a myoelectric prosthetic hand. Journal of Motor Behavior, 50, 416-425.