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Professor Mike Colombo

Head of Department

Mike Colombo

Email psyhod@psy.otago.ac.nz
Phone 64 3 479 7644

Professor Mike Colombo has 20 years of university teaching experience, at both graduate and undergraduate levels, as well as 27 years of research experience. His current research interests are in neural mechanisms of visual processing, the neural mechanisms of learning and memory, and comparative animal cognition. He has authored over 50 journal articles and 1 book, and has received numerous awards for his teaching.

Mike received his undergraduate degree in Molecular Biology and Psychology from the University of Colorado. He received his PhD in 1989 from Rutgers University with a research emphasis on comparative animal cognition and neuroscience. Following his PhD, he was awarded an NIH Postdoctoral Fellowship to study the neural mechanisms of visual processing in monkeys at Princeton University. He joined the University of Otago in 1992 and was appointed Head of Department of Psychology in January 2014.

Teaching

Research Interests

  • Neural mechanisms of visual processing
  • Neural mechanisms of learning and memory
  • Comparative animal cognition

Find out more about Professor Colombo's research

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Publications

Kouwenhoven, M., & Colombo, M. (2016). The differential outcomes effect in pigeons (Columba livia): Is it truly anticipatory? PLoS ONE, 11(3), e0150510. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0150510

Scarf, D., Stuart, M., Johnston, M., & Colombo, M. (2016). Visual response properties of neurons in four areas of the avian pallium. Journal of Comparative Physiology A, 202(3), 235-245. doi: 10.1007/s00359-016-1071-6

Staniland, J., Colombo, M., & Scarf, D. (2015). The Generation Effect or simply generating an effect? Journal of Comparative Psychology, 129(4), 329-333. doi: 10.1037/a0039450

Scarf, D., Millar, J., Pow, N., & Colombo, M. (2014). Inhibition, the final frontier: The impact of hippocampal lesions on behavioral inhibition and spatial processing in pigeons. Behavioral Neuroscience, 128(1), 42-47. doi: 10.1037/a0035487

Scarf, D., Terrace, H., Colombo, M., & Magnuson, J. S. (2014). Eye movements reveal planning in humans: A comparison with Scarf and Colombo's (2009) monkeys. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, 40(2), 178-184. doi: 10.1037/xan0000008

Authored Book - Research

Rovee-Collier, C., Hayne, H., & Colombo, M. (2000). The Development of Implicit and Explicit Memory. Pennsylvania, USA: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 292p.

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Chapter in Book - Research

Scarf, D., Terrace, H. S., & Colombo, M. (2011). Planning abilities of monkeys. In R. M. Williams (Ed.), Monkeys: Biology, behavior and disorders. (pp. 137-150). New York: Nova.

Colombo, M., & Hayne, H. (2010). Episodic memory: Comparative and developmental issues. In M. S. Blumberg, J. H. Freeman & S. R. Robinson (Eds.), Oxford handbook of developmental behavioral neuroscience. (pp. 617-636). Oxford University Press.

Colombo, M., Gulya, M., & Rovee-Collier, C. (2006). The development of serial-order behaviour: Knowledge of ordinal position. In J. R. Marrow (Ed.), Focus on child psychology research. (pp. 43-58). New York: Nova Science.

Colombo, M., Gulya, M., & Rovee-Collier, C. (2006). The ontogeny of serial-order representation. In C. M. Fletcher-Flinn & G. M. Haberman (Eds.), Cognition and language: Perspectives from New Zealand. (pp. 191-206). Brisbane, Australia: Australian Academic Press.

Lock, A. J., & Colombo, M. W. (1996). Comparative studies of cognitive abilities. In A. J. Lock & C. Peters (Eds.), Handbook of Human Symbolic Evolution. (pp. 596-643). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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Journal - Research Article

Kouwenhoven, M., & Colombo, M. (2016). The differential outcomes effect in pigeons (Columba livia): Is it truly anticipatory? PLoS ONE, 11(3), e0150510. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0150510

Scarf, D., Stuart, M., Johnston, M., & Colombo, M. (2016). Visual response properties of neurons in four areas of the avian pallium. Journal of Comparative Physiology A, 202(3), 235-245. doi: 10.1007/s00359-016-1071-6

Staniland, J., Colombo, M., & Scarf, D. (2015). The Generation Effect or simply generating an effect? Journal of Comparative Psychology, 129(4), 329-333. doi: 10.1037/a0039450

Scarf, D., Millar, J., Pow, N., & Colombo, M. (2014). Inhibition, the final frontier: The impact of hippocampal lesions on behavioral inhibition and spatial processing in pigeons. Behavioral Neuroscience, 128(1), 42-47. doi: 10.1037/a0035487

Scarf, D., Terrace, H., Colombo, M., & Magnuson, J. S. (2014). Eye movements reveal planning in humans: A comparison with Scarf and Colombo's (2009) monkeys. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, 40(2), 178-184. doi: 10.1037/xan0000008

Koenen, C., Millar, J., & Colombo, M. (2013). How bad do you want it? Reward modulation in the avian nidopallium caudolaterale. Behavioral Neuroscience, 127(4), 544-554. doi: 10.1037/a0033551

Scarf, D., Gross, J., Colombo, M., & Hayne, H. (2013). To have and to hold: Episodic memory in 3- and 4-year-old children. Developmental Psychobiology, 55(2), 125-132. doi: 10.1002/dev.21004

Scarf, D., Imuta, K., Colombo, M., & Hayne, H. (2012). Social evaluation or simple association? Simple associations may explain moral reasoning in infants. PLoS ONE, 7(8), e42698. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0042698

Colombo, M., & Scarf, D. (2012). Neurophysiological studies of learning and memory in pigeons. Comparative Cognition & Behavior Reviews, 7, 23-43. doi: 10.3819/ccbr.2012.7002

Scarf, D., Hayne, H., & Colombo, M. (2011). Pigeons on par with primates in numerical competence. Science, 334(6063), 1664. doi: 10.1126/science.1213357

Scarf, D., Danly, E., Morgan, G., Colombo, M., & Terrace, H. S. (2011). Sequential planning in rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta). Animal Cognition, 14(3), 317-324. doi: 10.1007/s10071-010-0365-2

Scarf, D., Miles, K., Sloan, A., Goulter, N., Hegan, M., Seid-Fatemi, A., … Colombo, M. (2011). Brain cells in the avian 'prefrontal cortex' code for features of slot-machine-like gambling. PLoS ONE, 6(1), e14589. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0014589

Scarf, D., & Colombo, M. (2011). Knowledge of the ordinal position of list items in pigeons. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, 37(4), 483-487. doi: 10.1037/a0023695

Scarf, D., & Colombo, M. (2010). The formation and execution of sequential plans in pigeons (Columba livia). Behavioural Processes, 83(2), 179-182. doi: 10.1016/j.beproc.2009.12.004

Browning, R., Overmier, J. B., & Colombo, M. (2010). Delay activity in avian prefrontal cortex — sample code or reward code? European Journal of Neuroscience, 33(4), 726-735. doi: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2010.07540.x

Scarf, D., & Colombo, M. (2010). Representation of serial order in pigeons (Columba livia). Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, 36(4), 423-429. doi: 10.1037/a0020926

Scarf, D., & Colombo, M. (2010). A positional coding mechanism in pigeons after learning multiple three-item lists. Animal Cognition, 13, 653-661. doi: 10.1007/s10071-010-0315-z

Scarf, D., & Colombo, M. (2009). Eye movements during list execution reveal no planning in monkeys (Macaca fascicularis). Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes, 35(4), 587-592. doi: 10.1037/a0014020

Bingman, V. P., Gasser, B., & Colombo, M. (2008). Responses of pigeon (Columba livia) Wulst neurons during acquisition and reversal of a visual discrimination task. Behavioral Neuroscience, 122(5), 1139-1147. doi: 10.1037/a0012586

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