Caitlin Mills, PhD

Caitlin Mills joined UNH in 2018 as an assistant professor of psychology. She earned a B.A. in psychology from Christian Brothers University (2010), followed by a M.S. (2014) and Ph.D. (2016) from the University of Notre Dame. Dr. Mills then completed a two-year postdoc in the Psychology Department at the University of British Columbia. Her research mainly focuses on constructs related to mind wandering and engagement – in that, their neural correlates, relationship to affect, and impact on learning. Dr. Mills’ interdisciplinary research program incorporates theoretical and methodological approaches from cognitive psychology, computer science, cognitive neuroscience, and education. She is currently pursuing three main lines of research: 1) Using educationally relevant paradigms to characterize when mind wandering occurs and how it influences learning; 2) Building machine learning detectors that can predict and respond when someone goes off-task in real-time; and 3) Conducting studies to uncover the dynamic brain network interactions that give rise to spontaneous thought. Other ongoing research interests include how emotions and other affective states impact comprehension in educational contexts, such as complex problem solving and reading.