Research questions that Just has addressed include:
Our research examines a variety of "understanding" processes involving visual thinking, language comprehension, and problem-solving processes. To find out what goes on in a person's mind during such thinking, our lab uses several methodologies, such as reaction time studies, verbal protocol analysis, and eye movement monitoring during comprehension and visual thinking. The experiments determine the nature of the on-line psychological processes that occur during understanding and thinking. The research examines the thinking of both normal subjects as well as patients with brain damage, to determine the organization of the underlying cognitive mechanisms. The various performance measures are used to construct theoretical models, often expressed in computational terms, that perform the same task and exhibit similar performance characteristics as human subjects.Just, M. A., & Carpenter, P. A. (1987). _The psychology of reading and language comprehension_. Newton, MA: Allyn and Bacon.
The specific topics that our research addresses include sentence and text comprehension, coordinated comprehension of text and diagrams, and the role of working memory in comprehension and problem-solving. The topics in visual cognition include visual problem-solving, mental kinematics, and mental models of dynamic events. In addition to studying various kinds of understanding, we also examine why individuals differ in the strategies and cognitive resources that they bring to bear on a task, attempting to explain why some people are better thinkers than others.
Just, M. A., & Carpenter, P. A. (1992). A capacity theory of comprehension: Individual differences in working memory. _Psychological Review_, _99_, 122-149.
Hegarty, M., & Just, M. A. (1993). Constructing mental models of machines from text and diagrams. _Journal of Memory and Language_.