Maryellen Hamilton, Ph.D.

Professor & Chair of Psychology

Headshot of Maryellen  Hamilton

Contact Info

About Dr. Hamilton

Dr. Hamilton is currently chair of the Psychology department, the Projector Director of the $3,800,000 Department of Education Title III STEM grant (SURGE), the secretary of the Faculty Senate, and the treasurer of the Eastern Psychological Association. Since joining Saint Peter’s in 2000, she has served as Faculty Senate President, Faculty Senate Vice President, and President of the AAUP. She is a Cognitive Psychologist whose research area focuses on unconscious processes in memory and learning. She is an alumni of the Ignation Colleagues Program and former chair of SPU Institutional Examen.

“I believe in personalizing the learning experience by trying to make the material relevant to the lives of those I teach. Memory theories suggest that material that is meaningful to you has a better chance of being remembered. I try to make the material I present in my courses meaningful to my students by using as many real life examples as possible.”

Research Interests

  • Memory and learning strategies including those specific to bilingual populations

Student Organizations and Clubs

Career & Accomplishments


  • Stony Brook University, Ph.D.

  • Stony Brook University, M.A.

  • Hofstra University, B.A.


  • George F Johnson, SJ Faculty Award

  • Honorary Cross Keys

  • Spur Society

  • AAUP Beatrice G. Konheim Award

  • Psi Chi National Service Award

  • Phi Beta Kappa

  • Phi Theta Kappa


Mindfulness Meditation in College Students to Advance Health Equity
S Bryan, M Hamilton, E Finn – OBM Integrative and Complementary Medicine, 2018

Effect of distinctive frames on memory for pictures
KM Ensor, M Hamilton – Empirical Studies of the Arts, 2014

Examining the response competition hypothesis of age effects in implicit memory
L. Geraci, M Hamilton – Aging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition, 2009

Goats don’t wear coats: An examination of semantic interference in rhyming assessments of reading readiness for English language learners
S Moreira, M Hamilton – Bilingual Research Journal, 2006

The picture superiority effect in conceptual implicit memory: A conceptual distinctiveness hypothesis
M Hamilton, L Geraci – The American Journal of Psychology, 2006

Converting an experimental laboratory course from paper and pencil to computer
M Hamilton, L Geraci – Teaching of Psychology, 2004

States of awareness across multiple memory tasks: Obtaining a “pure” measure of conscious recollection
M Hamilton, S Rajaram – Acta Psychologica, 2003

Distinguishing states of awareness from confidence during retrieval: Evidence from amnesia
S Rajaram, M Hamilton, A Bolton – Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience, 2002

The concreteness effect in implicit and explicit memory tests
M Hamilton, S Rajaram – Journal of Memory and Language, 2001