Closeup of McKenna Williams

McKenna Williams, M.S.

Pronouns: she, her

Doctoral Student

SDSU / UC San Diego Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology

San Diego

Areas of Research

Genetic and Environmental Influences, Cognitive Aging, Early (Midlife) Markers, Alzheimer’s Disease, Related Dementias, Physiological Markers, Risk Factors, Protective Factors, Healthy Aging


Broadly, I’m interested in the relation between genetic and environmental influences on cognitive aging. My research focuses on characterizing early (i.e., midlife) cognitive and physiological markers of risk for Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, along with identifying protective factors associated with healthy aging.


  1. M.S., Clinical Psychology
    San Diego State University
  2. M.A., Psychology
    San Diego State University
  3. B.A., Cognitive Science
    UC San Diego
  1. Williams, M. E., Graves, L. V., DeJesus, S. Y., Holden, H. M., DeFord, N. E., & Gilbert, P. E. (2019). Spatial memory ability during middle age may depend on level of spatial similarity. Learning & Memory, 16(1), 20-23. doi:10.1101/lm.048280.118
  2. Graves, L. V., Simone, S., Williams, M. E., Courville, T., Mattson, S. N., Delano-Wood, L., Bondi, M. W., Salmon, D. P., Corey-Bloom, J., Delis, D. C., & Gilbert, P. E. (2019). Revisiting total recognition discriminability in Huntington’s and Alzheimer’s disease: New insights from the CVLT-3. Applied Neuropsychology: Adult. doi: 10.1080/23279095.2019.1605993
  3. Van Etten, E.J., Graves., L.V., Taylor, B.P., Holden, H.M., Lopez, F.V., Williams, M.E., Pirogovsky-Turk, E., Corey-Bloom, J. Filoteo, J.V., Delis, D.C., & Gilbert, P.E. (2019, in press). Recall and recognition discriminability in Huntington’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Journal of Huntington’s disease.