I am a Senior Lecturer and perception researcher in the School of Psychology.
My primary research interest is in understanding how we perceive the world—what are our visual capacities and how are they realised in the brain.
The overall goal of my research is to understand how the patterns of light are communicated in the brain to allow our perception of the visual environment. To investigate this, we show human observers particular patterns on computer screens and ask them to make judgements about what they see. Often, the observers do this while inside an MRI scanner, which allows us to gather snapshots of the distribution of activity levels within their brain while they're perceiving such patterns.
Some examples of ongoing research questions are:
I welcome students interested in conducting research to contact me regarding supervision. I am open to discussing potential topics, and I encourage students to have a look at my website to get an idea of my past research and/or contact me for further details. As my research is often conceived with reference to ongoing/future neuroimaging studies, students with an interest in this area are particularly encouraged to consider discussing potential research projects.
Research into visual perception is a diverse endeavour, and incorporates insights from fields such as psychology, neuroscience, biology, statistics, and computer science. Prospective students should look forward to reading widely, approaching problems from different perspectives, and having the opportunity to contribute to our understanding of a fundamental aspect of everyday experience.
On a practical level, I encourage prospective students to gain skills and experience in computer and graphics programming—from making a quick 'demo' and tinkering with visual stimuli to writing complex data analysis and modeling routines, such abilities are tremendously useful in vision science research. Just as important, however, is to also develop an understanding and appreciation of the psychology of visual perception and how we use vision in our everyday lives.
2016: Australian Psychological Society "Outstanding Lecturer of the Year" (School of Psychology, UNSW)
2010-2012: Rachel C. Atkinson postdoctoral fellowship, Smith-Kettlewell Eye Research Institute, San Francisco, USA
2011: Tasman-Lovell Medallion for the best Doctor of Philosophy thesis in 2010 in the School of Psychology at the University of Sydney