After earning a BA in anthropology at the University of California at Riverside, I moved to Boston to work at a large psychiatric hospital. I found the work with patients fascinating and rewarding and set  my sights on a career in research on clinical interventions. However,  courses in experimental psychology at Harvard awakened a stronger interest in basic research. I switched to experimental, focusing on the determinants of choice in pigeons and rats and the behavioral effects of dopaminergic drugs. In this research, I used simple mathematical models to evaluate widely held ideas regarding motivation and the manner in which dopaminergic drugs changed behavior. My PhD advisors were Richard Herrnstein and Duncan Luce. After earning my degree, I took a post-doctoral position in the Department of Pharmacological and Physiological Sciences at the University of Chicago. The psychopharmacological studies led to a research position at a pharmaceutical company. There, I ran an animal lab that tested drugs for the treatment of anxiety, depression, and age-related cognitive decline. In 1987, I returned to teaching and research at Harvard and from there moved to my present position at Boston College. My current research interests include a new method for measuring the allocation of attention  and making use of existing epidemiological data to evaluate the etiology and correlates of addiction and drug overdoses. See publications for reprints and preprints.

Gene Heyman CV