Mara Breen

  • Professor of Psychology and Education
  • Co-Chair of Psychology and Education
Mara Breen

Courses Taught:

  • Introduction to Psychology
  • Cognitive Psychology
  • Psychology of Music
  • Visual and Auditory Perception
  • Seminar in Perception and Cognition: Language and Thought


  • Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • B.A., Hampshire College

Happening at Mount Holyoke

Recent Campus News

Mount Holyoke juniors Shreya Nair and Shuyang Lin co-authored a paper that won third at an international conference for visual communication.

Professor Mara Breen studies how we “hear” the words we read, and what happens when the brain expects one word but gets another.

Recent Grants

Received an R15 grant from the National Institutes of Health for “Why does oral fluency predict silent reading comprehension? Neurocognitive markers of implicit meter as a potential mediator.” The project is for three years. (2022)

Recent Publications

Tierney, A., Patel, A. D., Jasmin, K., & Breen, M. (2021). Individual differences in perception of the speech-to-song illusion are linked to musical aptitude but not musical training. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 12, 1681.

Breen, M., Fitzroy, A.B., & Oraa Ali, M. (2019). ERP evidence of implicit metric structure during silent reading. Brain Sciences. 

Breen, M. (2018). Effects of metric hierarchy and rhyme predictability on word duration in The Cat in the Hat. Cognition, 174.

Breen, M.,Kaswer L, Van Dyke JA, Krivokapic J and Landi N (2016). Imitated prosodic fluency predicts reading comprehension ability in good and poor high school readers.Frontiers in Psychology, 7:1026.

Breen, M. (2014). Empirical investigations of the role of implicit prosody in sentence processing. Language and Linguistics Compass. (2) 37-50.

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