Skip to main content

Piccirilli presents research at Cognitive Neuroscience Society conference

Share on:

Posted on Wednesday, June 5, 2024

Recent Westminster College graduate Hannah Piccirilli presented research about late positive potential (LPP) at the 20th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society in Toronto, Canada, in April.

Piccirilli, an honors student who graduated summa cum laude in May, presented “Is the Late Positive Potential (LPP) a Marker of Emotional Memory Encoding and Consolidation.” Her project investigated the LPP, a component of the human brain response measured with electroencephalography (EEG) that is generated by emotional stimuli like words and pictures.

Piccirilli’s results provided evidence for a novel theory of the LPP—that it is related to a process by which memories for emotional stimuli are “tagged” so that they are later consolidated more strongly. These results advance our understanding of the neural basis of improved memory for emotional information.

Dr. Eric Fields, assistant professor of neuroscience and psychology, supervised Piccirilli’s research and co-authored the conference presentation.

“Most presentations at the Cognitive Neuroscience Society conference are given by graduate students and postdoctoral researchers. It is impressive that Hannah was able to complete a project of this quality and present it at CNS,” said Fields.

Piccirilli received grant funding from the Westminster College Drinko Center for Undergraduate Research to aid in her research. The Drinko Center financially supports undergraduate research through various grants aimed at either the undertaking of research and creative projects at Westminster or the external presentation and dissemination of research and creative works at conferences.

Piccirilli, who earned a Bachelor of Science degree in neuroscience and a Bachelor of Arts degree in international studies, is from Erie, Pa.

To learn more about Westminster’s neuroscience program, please visit