Endel Tulving


World authority on human memory function

"Don’t listen to authorities. Find out what the problem is, get the facts, and make up your own mind. Use the scientific method to work things out. The scientific method can solve many problems. Experiment. Trust your feelings and try out various things."

May 26, 1927


Toronto, Ontario

Family Members
  • Father: Juhan
  • Mother: Linda
  • Spouse: Ruth Mikkelsaar
  • Children: daughters Elo Ann and Linda

creative, impatient, positive, optimistic

Favorite Music
Dvorak New World Symphony, opening movement; anything by Sibelius

Other Interests
Tennis, walking, chess, history of science

Rotman Research Institute, Baycrest Centre, North York, Ontario


  • BA (Honours Psychology), University of Toronto, 1953
  • MA (Psychology), University of Toronto, 1954
  • PhD (Experimental Psychology), Harvard University, 1957

  • Izaak Walton Killam Memorial Scholarship, Canada Council 1976;
  • Howard Crosby Warren Medal, Society of Experimental Psychologists, 1982
  • Distinguished Scientific Achievement Award, American Psychology Association 1983
  • Foreign Honorary member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 1986
  • Guggenheim Fellowship, 1987
  • Foreign Associate, U.S. National Academy of Sciences, 1988
  • William James Fellow, American Psychological Society, 1990
  • Foreign Member, Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, 1991
  • Fellow, Royal Society of London, 1992
  • Killam Prize, Canada Council, 1994
  • Gold Medal Award for Lifetime Achievement, American Psychological Foundation, 1994
  • Foreign Member, Academia Europaea, 1996
  • McGovern Award, American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1996
  • Foreign Member, Estonian Academy of Sciences, 2002
  • Gairdner International Award, 2005
  • Officer of the Order of Canada, 2006
  • Canadian Medical Hall of Fame, 2007


Tulving had no "official" advisor at either the University of Toronto or Harvard. His MA thesis was read by E. A. Bott, who was the Head of the Department of Psychology at U Toronto, and his "unofficial" advisor at Harvard, who knew about what he was doing for his dissertation, was E.G. Heinemann, an Instructor in the Department of Psychology.

Last Updated
May 10, 2011


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