Research News

UW-Madison’s Vlach receives William Chase Memorial Award

May 29, 2015

UW-Madison’s Haley Vlach recently received the William Chase Memorial Award.

This honor is an early career award in cognitive science that is given out biennially to a young scholar who conducts research that exemplifies the scientific values of the late Bill Chase. 

Haley Vlach
Vlach is an assistant professor with the School of Education’s top-ranked Department of Educational Psychology. Her work resonates with Chase's emphasis on a deep understanding of processes underlying learning and performance.  In particular, Vlach's research has outlined how children's rapid forgetting of information supports, rather than deters, their ability to learn language, categories and concepts. (To learn more about her work on forgetting, check out this paper authored by Vlach for the September issue of Child Development Perspectives.)

“I first learned about Bill Chase's seminal research on memory in college, which inspired me to continue learning about how we remember information,” says Vlach. “I can safely say that as an undergraduate student I never thought I would later receive the early career award in Bill's name. I am extremely honored to have been selected as the 2015 Chase Award recipient.”

Vlach will be presenting an invited address, the Chase Lecture, at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh during the Spring 2016 semester.

Chase is an alumnus of UW-Madison, having earned his master’s in 1965 and Ph.D. in 1969, with both degrees in psychology.  He spent 15 years as a professor of psychology at Carnegie-Mellon University and is credited with demonstrating that good memory is an acquired skill. He also made important contributions to a range of areas in cognition and left behind seminal publications on sentence comprehension, perception and chess, and memory span.