Elise Cleary


Dodging Dodgy Decisions

I'm from: Tasmania
Current Location: Hobart, Tasmania
Position: PhD Candidate, School of Medicine, University of Tasmania.
Field of research/work: Behavioural Neuroscience
YTS Years: 2024

Elise Cleary's Notable career moments

  • I was begging my mum for at home science kits

  • Highschool; I had a really great science teacher. Wanted to know everything about everything

  • First year of university! Started studying Medical Research (fell in love with blood and guts

  • Finished studying Medical Research

  • Science and I broke up for a bit, but I worked in a bar and I was really good at mixing drinks which is basically chemistry

  • I missed science, and I set my heart on neuroscience

  • I graduated from Kmart science kits to doing science full time as a job!

About Elise Cleary

All day every day, you’re making hundreds (maybe even thousands!) of decisions. Cereal or toast? What should I wear? Should I finish my homework or watch TV? Have you ever made a decision and then wondered to yourself, wait, why did I just do that? Those are the roots of what my research is! I’m a brain scientist (neuroscientist if you want to be fancy), and a LOT of my research is questioning why we do what we do, and how information and memories are stored in the brain.

I’m interested in how we make decisions, and why different people make different decisions. Decision making in your brain is a step-by-step process that involves collecting information about the world around you and using prior knowledge to help guide what you do. In a more breakfast related example, you’d likely ask yourself a tonne of questions that guide your decision making; do you have cereal at home? Is it too cold to have cereal? Do I have milk? Is the cereal tasty cereal?

Cereal decisions aside, I always loved science as a kid (and still do as an adult). In deciding (haha) to be a scientist, I now get to ask my own questions and find my own answers about why we’re all wired the way we are!

Elise Cleary's Photo Gallery