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

    6009 Perth


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Personal profile

Roles and responsibilities

Graduate Research Coordinator, School of Psychological Science, UWA

Co-Director, Human Factors and Applied Cognition Laboratory, UWA



As a human factors researcher, my research develops our understanding of how humans interact with technological systems – from simple tools through to complex technology such as power plants and transportation systems. My ongoing program of research uses basic psychological principles of cognition, attention and perception to investigate how we interact with a range of technological systems, and to help design systems that are safe, productive, and error-free. In the transportation domain, this includes research which reduces unsafe driving behaviours, such as speeding and driver distraction. I also conduct research aimed at improving automation system design and developing solutions for high degree automated support in air traffic control, defence, and other complex work settings. Overall, I am interested in how best to design technological systems which optimize human operator situation awareness and workload in a range of contemporary workplace settings where humans interact with technology. I am currently accepting new PhD students.

Funding overview

Defence Science Centre, Defence and Research Teaming (2022) Grant for $32,869, Understanding and assessing diver cognition, perception, and performance in future operating environments. Investigators: Bowden, V., Visser, T., & Thompson, M.

Defence Science Centre, Research Higher Degree Student Grant (2021) Grant for $10,000, Enhancing Human Performance by Predicting the Magnitude and Duration of Post-Distraction Impairments in a Transportation Setting. Investigators: Bowden, V. & Howard, Z.

Defence Science Centre, Research Higher Degree Student Grant (2021) Grant for $15,000, Designing Transparent Automation to Improve How Humans Use Automated Advice. Investigators: Loft, S., Bowden, V. & Tatasciore, M.

Defence Science Centre, Research Higher Degree Student Grant (2020) Grant for $7,500, Automation & Wellbeing. Investigators: Fruen, L. & Bowden, V.

Department of Defence, Australian Army (2020) Grant for $201,403, Evaluating app-based cognitive capability testing to improve selection and training in the Australian Army. Investigators: Visser, T., Bowden, V., & Loft, S.

Defence Science Technology Group (2020) Grant for $205,172, Hybrid approaches to evaluating the effectiveness of battlefield displays and augmented-reality systems for the dismounted combatant. Investigators: Visser, T., Badcock, D., Bell, J., & Bowden, V.

Neurotrauma Research Program, Perron Institute (2019). Grant for $92,706, Improving the executive decision-making process using non-invasive brain stimulation in older adults: A step towards reducing traffic accidents, Investigators: Fujiyama, H., Tang, A., Loft, S., Tan, J. & Bowden, V.

Neurotrauma Research Program, Harry Perkins Institute (2016). Grant for $68,123, How long are you distracted? An investigation of ongoing impairments arising from driving interruptions, Investigators: Bowden, V., Visser, T., & Loft, S.

Neurotrauma Research Program, Harry Perkins Institute (2015). Grant for $65,510, Reducing speeding by improving driver prospective memory, Investigators: Bowden, V., Visser, T., & Loft, S.

Teaching overview

Human Factors (PSYC5542) - Postgraduate Unit Coordinator

Psychology of Training (PSYC5573) - Postgraduate Unit Coordinator

Industrial and Organisational Psychology (PSYC2209/3309) - Undergraduate Lecturing

Perception and Sensory Neuropsychology (PSYC2209/3309) - Undergraduate Lecturing

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Research expertise keywords

  • Human factors
  • Applied psychology
  • Visual perception
  • Distraction
  • Driver safety
  • Automation


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