Department of Psychology
Department of Psychology

James Curley

Associate ProfessorPh.D., University of Cambridge

James Curley



Social Dynamics, Social Neuroscience, Social Networks, R Programming


Professor Curley is accepting graduate students for admission in Fall 2018. Please contact him directly for more information.

I received my B.A. in Human Sciences at The University of Oxford (UK) in 1999. I was a member and scholar of Somerville College, Oxford. In 2003, I received a PhD in Zoology from the University of Cambridge (UK). My Ph.D research was conducted at the Department of Animal Behaviour, Cambridge, on the effects of imprinted genes on brain and behavioral development, particularly maternal and sexual behavior.

I then completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Cambridge for four years researching behavioral development, particularly how early life experiences shape individual differences in behavior. I was also the Charles & Katharine Darwin Research Fellow of Darwin College, Cambridge.

Following this work I joined the Psychology Department at Columbia University, where I continued to work on the development of social and maternal behavior. From 2012-2017, I was a faculty member in the Department of Psychology at Columbia University. There, I established a research group studying social dynamics and social dominance hierarchies.

Our lab at UT focuses on the neurobiological basis of social behavior in groups, as well as the long-term plastic changes in the brain and peripheral physiology that occur as a consequence of social status. We also are interested in developing novel methods for the study of social hierarchies and networks.


PSY 394U • R Progrmming Behavioral Sci

43060 • Fall 2018
Meets W 9:00AM-12:00PM SEA 5.106

Seminars in Cognitive or Perceptual Systems. Three lecture hours a week for one semester. May be repeated for credit when the topics vary. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and consent of instructor.

PSY 418 • Statistics And Research Design

42697-42699 • Spring 2018
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM SEA 2.108

Students may not enroll in Psychology 418 more than twice. Survey of statistics, including central tendency, variability and inference, and scientific methodology used in psychological research. Three lecture hours and two discussion hours a week for one semester. Prerequisite: Psychology 301 with a grade of at least C and credit for one of the following: Mathematics 302, 303D, 403K, 305G, 408C, 408K, 316; or Statistics and Scientific Computation 302, 303, 304, 305, 306, 318.

PSY 394U • R Progrmming Behavioral Sci

43397 • Fall 2017
Meets W 9:00AM-12:00PM SEA 5.106

This seminar will provide graduate students with R programming skills in organizing, analyzing and visualizing data. Students will learn how to use R and RStudio to undertake fully reproducible data analysis and reporting. Topics will extend from basic introductory programming tasks to intermediate tools such as using Git, RMarkdown, RNotebooks and package development. No previous knowledge of R or RStudio is required."


Recent Relevant Publications

Williamson C, Lee W & Curley JP, 2016, Temporal Dynamics of Social Hierarchy Formation and Maintenance in Male Mice. Animal Behaviour. 115:259-72.

Curley JP, 2016, Temporal Pairwise-Correlation Analysis Provides Empirical Support for Attention Hierarchies in Mice, Biology Letters. 12(5):20160192.

Williamson C, Franks B & Curley JP, 2016, Mouse Social Network Dynamics and Community Structure are Associated with Brain Plasticity-Related Gene Expression. Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience. 10:152.

Williamson C, Romeo R & Curley JP, 2017, Dynamic changes in social dominance and mPOA GnRH mRNA expression in male mice following social opportunity. Hormones & Behavior. 87:80-88.

Williamson C, Lee W, Romeo R & Curley JP, 2017, Relationships between mouse dominance rank and plasma testosterone and corticosterone are dependent upon social context. Physiology & Behavior. 171:110-119.

Curley JP & Oschner K, 2017, How the brain represents social networks, Nature Human Behavior. 1:0104.

Lee W, Khan A, & Curley JP, 2017, Major urinary protein levels are associated with male social status and social context in mouse social hierarchies. Proceedings Royal Society. B. 284: 20171570.

Curriculum Vitae

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