Distinguished Alumnus Speaker

anne collins mclaughlin

Augment, Diminish, Remap Reality: Freeing the Mind and its Resources

Speaker: Anne Collins McLaughlin, Ph.D., Professor in the Department of Psychology at North Carolina State University

Date: 2023-10-30 12:30 pm

Technology Square Research Building (TSRB, 1st Floor Ballroom)
85 Fifth Street NW
Atlanta, GA 30308

Our senses and minds construct our reality. Both are inherently limited and we naturally seek tools to improve our experiences. Anyone who covers their ears as a siren roars past, turns on closed captions, or dons sunglasses on a bright day has altered ‘reality.’ As technology advances, we can also control reality with cutting-edge extended reality (XR) technologies, which add to, subtract from, and remap sounds and visuals in our world. This presentation will cover the perceptual and mental processes underlying XR cognition aids, with methods of testing the effectiveness of these aids, current domains of inquiry, and results from several laboratory experiments on how altering visual and auditory reality can improve a person’s performance and experience.

Anne Collins McLaughlin (MS, PhD Engineering Psychology, 2007) is a Professor in the Department of Psychology at North Carolina State University. She has received awards for her teaching and research from NC State and was chosen as a Faculty Scholar in 2016. Her work has been funded by NSF, NASA, NIH, and other organizations. She is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. She has been the President of Division 21 of the American Psychological Association and was an Associate Editor for the journal Human Factors, the flagship journal of the field from 2018-2022. She co-authored a book for practitioners wishing to design technologies for older persons, Designing Displays for Older Adults. She has also recently published a book introducing human factors psychology to the general public, All Too Human. Her current research focuses on the design and use of cognition aids to improve performance and learning of challenging tasks. When she’s not thinking about that next research project, she loves rock climbing and teaching other women to do the same.