Beth Ober

Position Title
Professor Emerita | Human Development and Family Studies


Research Interests 
Memory and Cognition in normal and abnormal aging, Alzheimer's disease, cognitive neuropsychology of aging.

Diversity Statement 
My research focuses on populations of adults that have been discriminated against (i.e., older adults) and/or that have special needs (i.e., dementia patients). My research participants come from ethnically diverse populations of cognitively normal and cognitively-impaired older adults, as well as ethnically diverse populations of young adults. Sixty to 75 percent of the undergraduate student trainees in my Cognition and Aging Lab are non-Caucasian and/or non-native speakers of English; 25 - 40 percent of these students are the first in their family to be enrolled in college. The graduate students whom I have mentored also comprise a diverse group, including students in the McNair Scholars Program (the goals of which are to increase the number of first-generation, low-income and/or underrepresented students in PhD programs). I am currently a faculty mentor/investigator for UCD’s recently-funded NIA (National Institute on Aging) initiative "Advancing Diversity in Aging Research".

Selected Publications 

Nguyen, L.A., Ober, B.A., & Shenaut, G.K. (2012). Odor recognition memory: Two encoding trials are better than one. Chemical Senses, 37: 745-754.


Ober, B.A. (2010). Memory brain and aging: The good, the bad and the promising. California Agriculture (Special Issue on "California Aging") 64, 174-182, 2010. DOI# 10.3733/ca.v064n04 p174

Ober, B.A. and Shenaut, G.K., Semantic Memory, In M. Traxler & M. A. Gernsbacher (Eds.), Handbook of Psycholinguistics, 2nd Edition, Elsevier, 2006

Ober, B.A. RT and non-RT methodology for semantic priming research with Alzheimer’s disease patients: A critical review. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, 24: 883-911, 2002.

Minzenberg, M.J.; Ober, B.A.; and Vinogradov, S. Semantic priming in schizophrenia: A review and synthesis. Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 8:699-720, 2002.

Ober, B.A. and Shenaut, G.K. Well-organized conceptual domains in Alzheimer’s disease. Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 5:676-684, 1999.

Heine, M.K.; Ober, B.A.; and Shenaut, G.K. Naturally occurring and experimentally induced tip-of-the-tongue experiences in three adult age groups. Psychology and Aging, 14:445-457, 1999.