Illinois State University
Dr. Valeri Farmer-Dougan earned her Ph.D. in experimental psychology from Washington State University, completed a re-specialization internship in developmental disabilities at the University of Massachusetts, and post-doctoral training in Behavioral Systems at Indiana University. She currently serves as professor of psychology and director of the Canine Behavior and Cognition Laboratory at Illinois State University. Dr. Farmer-Dougan has a long history working and conducting research in both experimental and applied settings, conducting research in autism and developmental disabilities, behavioral neuroscience, and applied animal behavior. She has worked with a wide variety of individuals from nursing students, individuals with developmental disabilities, laboratory rats and pigeons, captive wild animals, and most recently, shelter and service dogs. Unifying this widely varied work is identifying the direction and magnitude of reinforcement effects, and the neurobiology of reward. She has distinguished herself as leader in understanding and predicting reinforcement effects in both experimental and applied settings, and has published more than 40 peer-reviewed articles and chapters. Dr. Farmer-Dougan has received funding from the National Institute of Drug Abuse, the International Foundation for Ethical Research and Head Start. Her leadership positions include chairing the Illinois State University Institutional Animal Care and use Committee, as an editorial board member of multiple journals, and through her involvement in ABAI, to name a few. Dr. Farmer-Dougan is a Karen Pryor Certified Training Partner, and Associate Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist, and a member of the Association for Professional Dog trainers.