Lexie Topete

Lexi Topete

Graduate Student



Mary Hegarty

Research Area

Cognition, Perception, and Cognitive Neuroscience


Lexie Topete completed her B.S. in Psychology and Human Factors certificate from the University of Utah in 2019. She moved to Santa Barbara and started her graduate studies at UCSB under the supervision of Dr. Mary Hegarty in 2020, after a year of working in tech. Having grown up in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, Lexie enjoys hiking and exploring. Her interest in navigation partially stems from the fact that she was forced to learn to navigate without a GPS (because cell service is nonexistent in the canyons).


My broad research is in spatial cognition, with an emphasis on large-scale navigation ability. Specifically, I am interested in determining how various factors are associated with our ability to acquire spatial knowledge of an environment, such as the way we use and rely on GPS, the role of endocrine aging (i.e., the role of estradiol in pre-, peri-, and post-menopausal stages), and the structure of an environment in which we are navigating.