Sara Cordes, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Boston College

Dr. Sara Cordes
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Contact Information


Mailing address:
Boston College
Department of Psychology
300 McGuinn Hall
140 Commonwealth Ave.
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467

Office address:
345 McGuinn Hall

Phone: 617-552-4112
Fax: 617-552-0523

Publications - Peer Reviewed

Cordes, S., Gelman, R., Gallistel, C. R., & Whalen, J. (2001). Variability signatures distinguish verbal from nonverbal counting for both large and small numbers. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 8(4), 698-707.

Brannon, E. M., Lutz, D., & Cordes, S. (2006). The development of area discrimination and its implications for numerical abilities in infancy. Developmental Science, 9(6), F59-F64.

Cordes, S., King, A. P., & Gallistel, C. R. (2007). Time left in the mouse. Behavioural Processes, 74(2), 142-151.

Cordes, S., Gallistel, C. R., Gelman, R., & Latham, P. (2007). Nonverbal arithmetic in humans: Light from noise. Perception and Psychophysics, 69(7), 1185-1203.

Cordes, S., Williams, C. L., & Meck, W. H. (2007). Common representations of abstract quantities. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 16(3), 156-161.

Cordes, S., & Gallistel, C. R. (2008). Interval timing in circadian clock mutants. Brain Research, pp. 120-127.

Cordes, S., & Brannon, E. M. (2008a). The difficulties of representing continuous extent in infancy: Using number is just easier. Child Development, 79(2), 476-489.

Cordes, S. & Brannon, E. M. (2008b). Quantitative competencies in infancy. Developmental Science, 11(6), 803-808.

Cordes, S. & Brannon, E. M. (2009a). Crossing the divide: Infants discriminate small from large numerosities. Developmental Psychology, 45(6), 1583-1594.

Cordes, S. & Brannon, E. M. (2009). The relative salience of discrete and continuous quantities in infants. Developmental Science, 12(3), 453-463.

Cantlon, J. F., Cordes, S., Libertus, M. E. & Brannon, E. M. (2009). Comment on “Log or linear? Distinct intuitions of the number scale in western and Amazonian Indigene cultures”. Science, 323, 38b.

Cantlon, J. F., Cordes, S., Libertus, M. E., & Brannon, E. M. (2009). Numerical abstraction: It ain’t broke. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 32(3-4), 331-332.

Buhusi, C. V. & Cordes, S. (2011). Time and number: The privileged status of small values in the brain. Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience, 5(67).

Cordes, S. & Brannon, E. M. (2011). Attending to one of many: when infants are surprisingly poor at discriminating an item's size. Frontiers in Psychology, 2(65), 1-8. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2011.00065.

Pleil, K., Cordes, S., Meck, W. H., & Williams, C. L. (2011). Sex differences in timing: Possible neuroendocrine mechanisms. Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience, 5(63), 1-16. doi: 10.3389/fnint.2011.00063.

Anderson, U. S. & Cordes, S. (2013). 1 < 2 and 2 < 3: Nonlinguistic appreciations of numerical order. Frontiers in Psychology, 4(5). doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00005.

Cordes, S. & Meck, W. H. (2013). Ordinal abilities in the rat: An understanding of 'longer' and 'shorter' for supra-second, but not sub-second, durations. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General.

Young, L. N. & Cordes, S. (2013). Fewer things, lasting longer: The effects of emotional stimuli on quantity judgments. Psychological Science, 24(6), 1057-1059.

Young, L. N., Cordes, S., & Winner, E. (2013). Arts Involvement Predicts Academic Achievement Only When the Child Has a Musical Instrument. Educational Psychology: An International Journal of Experimewntal Educational Psychology, 34(7), 849-861.

Young, L. N., Winner, E., & Cordes, S. (2013). Heightened incidence of depressive symptoms in adolescents involved in the arts. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 7(2), 197-202.

Cordes, S., Goldstein, A., & Heller, E. (2014). Sets within sets: The influence of set membership on numerical estimates. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 40(1), 94-105.

Hurst, M., Monahan, K. L., Heller, E., & Cordes, S. (2014). 123s & ABCs: Developmental shifts in logarithmic to linear responding reflect fluency with sequence values. Developmental Science, 17(6), 892-904. (watch video abstract)

Cantrell, L., Boyer, T. W., Cordes, S., & Smith, L. B. (2015). Signal clarity: an account of the variability in infant quantity discrimination tasks. Developmental Science, 1-7.

Posid, T. & Cordes, S. (2015). Verbal counting moderates perceptual biases found in children’s cardinality judgments. Journal of Cognition and Development. doi:10.1080/15248372.2014.934372

Posid, T., Fazio, A., & Cordes, S. (2015). Being sticker-rich: Numerical context influences children's sharing behavior. PLOS ONE.

Hurst, M. & Cordes, S. (in press). Comparing fractions, decimals, and whole numbers: Rational number understanding in adults. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance.

Submitted Manuscripts

Hamamouche, K.*, Niemi, L.* & Cordes, S. (submitted). Quantifying a threat: Evidence of a numeric processing bias.

Hurst, M. & Cordes, S. (submitted). The relationship between algebra and notation-specific rational number understanding in adults.

Hurst, M. & Cordes, S. (submitted). When being good at math isn't enough: How students' beliefs about the nature of mathematics impact decisions to pursue optional math education.

Niemi, L., Woodring, M., Young, L., & Cordes, S. (submitted). The math we do to make ourselves feel better: Downplaying the opponent's big lead in the polls.

Posid, T. & Cordes, S. (submitted). How high can you count? Probing the limits of young children's counting.

Publications - Book Chapters

Gelman, R., & Cordes, S. (2001). Counting in animals and humans. In E. Dupoux (Ed.), Language, Brain, and Cognitive Development: Essays in Honor of Jacques Mehler, (p. 279-303). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Cordes, S. & Gelman, R. (2005).The young numerical mind: When does it count? In J. Campbell (Ed.), Handbook of Mathematical Cognition. London: Psychology Press, (pp. 127-142).

Gallistel, C. R., Gelman, R., & Cordes, S. (2006). The cultural and evolutionary history of the real numbers. In S. Levinson & P. Jaisson (Eds.), Evolution and Culture: A Fyssen Foundation Symposium. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press (pp. 247-274).

Posid, T. & Cordes, S. (2014). The small-large divide: A case of incompatible numerical representations in infancy. In D. Geary, D. Berch, & K. Mann-Koepke (Eds.), Evolutionary Origins and Early Development of Basic Number Processing.

Conference Proceedings

Young, L. N. & Cordes, S. (2012). Time and number under the influence of emotion. Visual Cognition, 20(9), 1048-1051.

* indicates equal author contribution