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Department of Psychology

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Lixia Yang


Associate Professor


PhD, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences




416-979-5000 x6522

Email Address:


Curriculum Vitae


Keywords: Cognition; Aging; Cognitive Plasticity; Memory; Culture

I received my doctorate in psychology from the Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences. After graduate school, I started my post-doctoral fellowship at the Max-Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin, Germany. Then I continued my post-doctoral fellowship in the Department of Psychology at the University of Toronto. In 2005, I joined the Department of Psychology at Ryerson University as an assistant professor.

My teaching interests focus on courses in cognitive psychology, developmental psychology, and aging. I have taught a couple of undergraduate courses (e.g., Child Development, Adult Development, Introduction to Psychology, and Advanced Cognition Seminar) and a graduate course (i.e., Advanced Seminar in Cognition). Meanwhile, I have been actively involved in supervising undergraduate honors thesis, practicum students, undergraduate research assistants, and independent research projects in Psychology.


My research interest covers three related areas:

  1. The effect of aging and emotion on attention and memory in young and older adults.
  2. Cognitive training, plasticity, and learning ability in older adults, including those in oldest-old age.
  3. The effect of age and culture on cognitive functions, such as memory binding.


Selected Publications:

Yang, L. & Ornstein, T. J. (2011) The effect of emotion-focused orientation at retrieval on emotional memory in young and older adults, Memory, 19 (3), 305-313, doi: 10.1080/09658211.2011.561803.

Yang, L., & Hasher, L. (2011). Age differences in the automatic accessibility of emotional words from semantic memory. Cognition & Emotion, 25 (1), 3-9, doi: 10.1080/02699930903523348.

Yang, L. (2010). Review of the book “Aging and Cognition: Research methodologies and empirical advances” (Eds. Bosworth & Hertzog, 2009). Canadian Psychology, 51, 219-220, doi: 10.1037/a0020344.

Yang, L., & Krampe, R. T. (2009). Long-term maintenance of retest learning in young old and oldest old adults. Journals of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, 64B(5), 608-611, doi:10.1093/geronb/gbp063.

Yang, L., & Reed, M., Russo, F., & Wilkinson, A. (2009). A new look at retest learning in older adults: Learning in the absence of item-specific effects. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, 64B(4),470-473, doi: 10.1093/geronb/gbp040.


Hot! Psych Feature:

"Keep your mind sharp and running, dear grandparents!"

Faculty Information

Mailing Address:

Department of Psychology
Ryerson University
350 Victoria Street
Toronto, Ontario
M5B 2K3, Canada

Fax: 416-979-5273


Campus Location

Offices: 380 Victoria St. [map]
Research Labs: 105 Bond St. [map]


Faculty Positions