Gillian Rhodes

Professor, BSc Cant., MSc Auck., PhD Stan.

  • The University of Western Australia (M304), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


  • 8961 Citations
  • 51 h-Index
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Personal profile


Gillian Rhodes received her PhD from Stanford University in 1986 and is currently a Professor of Psychology at the University of Western Australia. She leads the Person Perception Program of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders. Her research focuses on how we perceive, read, and recognize faces. She is the author of Superportraits: Caricatures and recognition, and has co-edited several volumes on face perception, including most recently, The Oxford Handbook of Face Perception.
She has held two ARC Professorial Fellowships (2003-2012) and an ARC Discovery Outstanding Researcher Award (2013-16).

Roles and responsibilities

Book Series Editor, Oxford Series in Visual Cognition (previously Advances in Visual Cognition), Oxford University Press (2003 continuing)

Editorial Board, Perception (2006 continuing)

Attention & Performance Advisory Council, Member (2011 continuing)

International Advisor, Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Cognitive Science (2008 continuing)

Panel Member, Canada Research Chairs program (2003 continuing)

Previous positions

Australian Professorial Fellow, School of Psychology, University of Western Australia, 2003-2012
Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Western Australia, 1996-2002
Visiting Scientist, Vision Sciences Laboratory, Harvard University, April-May, 2000
Visiting Researcher, Advanced Telecommunications Research Laboratories, Human Information Processing Laboratory, Kyoto, Japan, Sep-Dec 1999
Senior Lecturer, Department of Psychology, University of Canterbury, NZ, 1994-1996
Visiting Professor, Department of Psychology, Queen's University, May-Aug, 1992
Visiting Scientist, Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Aug-Dec, 1992
Visiting Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Oregon (Eugene), Jan-March, 1993
Lecturer, Department of Psychology, University of Canterbury, NZ, 1987-1993
Lecturer, Department of Psychology, University of Otago, NZ, 1986-87


Faces convey a wealth of information that guides our social interactions. At a glance we can assess a person’s identity, gender, ethnicity, age, attractiveness, emotional state and focus of attention. This fluency is remarkable given the difficulty of the discriminations required. We aim to understand the mechanisms (perceptual, cognitive, neural and evolutionary) of person perception and how they relate to other cognitive abilities and social functioning. A major new focus is on how person perception skills emerge during typical development and in children with autism. Our long-term goal is to develop interventions to enhance person perception, and ultimately, social functioning and quality of life in individuals with person perception difficulties. Our work is conducted in the FaceLab, which hosts the Person Perception program for the ARC Center of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders.


  • Face perception
  • Visual cognition

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

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Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 1997 2019

Research Output 1997 2018

Adaptive Face Coding Contributes to Individual Differences in Facial Expression Recognition Independently of Affective Factors

Palermo, R., Jeffery, L. R., Lewandowsky, J. F., Fiorentini, C., Irons, J., Dawel, A., Burton, N. S., McKone, E. & Rhodes, G. I., Apr 2018, In : Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance. 44, 4, p. 503-517

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Facial Expression
Autistic Disorder
Recognition (Psychology)
2 Citations
Open Access
Access to Information
3 Citations

Ensemble coding of faces occurs in children and develops dissociably from coding of individual faces

Rhodes, G. I., Neumann, M., Ewing, L. A., Bank, S. R., Read, A. J., McLaughlin Engfors, L., Emiechel, R. & Palermo, R. G., 2018, In : Developmental Science. 21, 2, e12540

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Access to Information
Social Behavior
Psychological Adaptation
Nuclear Family
Open Access
Facial Expression
Autistic Disorder