William D. "Scott" Killgore, PhD

Professor, Psychiatry
Professor, Psychology
Professor, Medical Imaging

Dr. William "Scott" Killgore is a clinical neuropsychologist whose research focuses on understanding the brain systems involved in emotional processes and cognitive performance. His work combines neurocognitive assessment with state-of-the-art neuroimaging methods to study the role of emotion in complex cognitive processes such as moral judgment, decision-making, and risk-taking. He is also interested in how these brain-behavior systems may be affected by environmental and lifestyle factors such as insufficient sleep, nutrition, light exposure, physical activity, and stimulants such as caffeine. In particular, Dr. Killgore has explored the role of sleep as a mediator of psychological and emotional health and the potential role of insufficient sleep as a contributor to psychiatric disturbance, emotional dysregulation, and risk-related behavior.

His current research is funded by the Department of Defense and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, with the aim of addressing critical performance and mental health needs of active military personnel and returning combat veterans.

Dr. Killgore also has over 13 years of military service, including 5 years on active duty as a Medical Service Corps officer and Research Psychologist in the United States Army during Operation Iraqi Freedom/Operation Enduring Freedom. While stationed at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in Washington, DC, Dr. Killgore served as Chief of the Neurocognitive Performance Branch and Special Volunteer with the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders within the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Killgore continues to remain active as a Research Psychologist in the U.S. Army Reserve, currently holding the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

  • PhD: Texas Tech University,1996
  • MA: Texas Tech University, 1992
Honors and Awards
  • Young Faculty Award in Neuroscience, Defense Advance Research Projects Agency (DARPA), 2012
  • 2011 Top Poster Award in Clinical and Translational Research, Society of Biological Psychiatry, 2011
  • Harvard Medical School-McLean Hospital, Neuroimaging, 1999-2000
  • University of Pennsylvania Medical School, Clinical Neuropsychology, 1997-1999
  • University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Clinical Neuropsychology, 1996-1997
  • Yale School of Medicine, Clinical Psychology, 1995-1996

Select Publications


Smith, R., A. Alkozei, and W. D. S. Killgore, "Conflict-related dorsomedial frontal cortex activation during healthy food decisions is associated with increased cravings for high-fat foods.", Brain Imaging Behav, 2017 Apr 27.
Killgore, W. D. S., R. Smith, E. A. Olson, M. Weber, S. L. Rauch, and L. D. Nickerson, "Emotional intelligence is associated with connectivity within and between resting state networks.", Soc Cogn Affect Neurosci, 2017 Sep 04.