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Beth Adelson


Professor Beth Adelson, a cognitive scientist studying insight and discovery phenomena, received her PhD in psychology from Harvard University.  She is currently Professor Emerita of Psychology and Computer Sciences at Rutgers University.  Dr. Adelson has held positions at MIT and CMU and the National Science Foundation.  She is a reviewer for Cognitive Science, Interacting with Computers, NIH and NSF. She has received numerous research grants and published several dozen scholarly journal articles and book chapters.

Dr. Adelson’s current Buddhist research, endorsed by the Dalai Lama, looks at the results of Brahma Vihara practice in every-day life in conflict resolution situations.

Her current cognitive research focuses on creative insight in scientific problem-solving and the resolution of conflict.   Her conflict resolution research looks at ways in which beneficial solutions can be reached through analyses which participants feel are fair.    The work looks at the processes  which lead to balancing the needs of self and others; giving help while building stable relationships.

Dr. Adelson has served on the executive board of ACM’s special interest group for Computer-Human Interaction, has co-chaired the CHI and Cognitive Science conferences and is Past Chair of the Franklin Institute’s Computer and Cognitive Science Cluster within its Committee on Science and the Arts.

Dr. Adelson is currently teaching Theravadan and Tibetan meditation.  This work includes rendering the original texts into language useful in society today.  This allows her to develop meditation practices which help with concerns like chronic pain, interpersonal relations,  and eating disorders.

Dr. Adelson has a long-term daily meditation practice, which focuses on Jhana, meditative absorption and the Brahma Viharas, the transformative qualities of the heart.


  • Spring 2006: Psychology of Women
  • Fall 2006: Negotiations Seminar
  • Fall 2006: Psych Lit
  • Fall 2006: Conflict Resolutions Seminar
  • Fall 2007: Cognitive Processes