Gary E. Starr, Ph.D. 1996

Research Interests

My main research interests are in the areas of human perception and memory, and I am primarily interested in how perceptual phenomena such as grouping influence our retention of events. The majority of my research has investigated this topic using auditory stimuli. I am interested in comparing my results with that of the results of similar research using visual information so that a more general picture of human information processing can be developed. I am currently investigating our ability to recognize the race of a talker.


Dr. Gary E. Starr, B.A. in psychology from San Diego State Unviersity; M.A. and Ph.D. in Cognitive/Experimental Psychology with a research specialization in human perception and memory from The Ohio State University.

While at Ohio State I worked in the laboratory of Dr. Mark Pitt on projects on auditory perception and memory. I completed my doctorate in 1996.

Immediately out of graduate school I worked as an assistant professor of psychology at Wingate University in North Carolina for the next two years. During that time I helped to create an experimental psychology program at the Unviersity and also aided in the development of a research internship program within the department. I also was instrumental in the revision of the psychology curriculum and also in overseeing student research projects.

In 1999 I joined the faculty of Metropolitan State University when I currently work as an assistant professor of psychology and also as the director of the psychology research laboratory. I am responsible for overseeing the psychology research facility and also for directing all student research internships. Our laboratory serves the needs of the entire psychology population providing such needs as research programs, statistical support and computer workstations. In addition at Metro State I serve as the Chair of the University Technology Committee and Academic Steering Committee. I also concurrently hold a position as a Visiting Professor of Psychology at the University of Minnesota.

Teaching Interests

I teach psychology courses such as research methods, learning, memory, and cognitive psychology. I also teach a Biopsychology course in conjunction with the Biology Department at Metropolitan State. And for those who really care, teaching is my passion and I enjoy the interaction with the students here at Metro.


Starr, G.E., & Pitt, M.A. (1997). Interference effects in short-term memory for timbre. Journal fo the Acoustical Society of America, 102, 486-494.


When I am not doing research or teaching I can often be found enjoying the outdoors of Minnesota. I love the lakes and enjoy riding my bike (road and mountain), playing with my somewhat insane dog, and working out at a local gym. I am also quite a music enthusiast as anyone who walks by my office can attest (yes I know my stereo is too loud). I also love travelling and the beach. Mountains are fine but nothing can top the sunset at the ocean.

Contact Information

Email Address:

gary.starr[at] (just replace 'at' with '@')