Dr. Mark Neider in the Department of Psychology has been awarded an equipment grant in the amount of $596,000 from the U.S. Department of Defense. The awarded proposal was developed in partnership with Drs. Corey Bohil, Florian Jentsch, Amie Newins, Joe Schmidt, Mindy Shoss and Melissa Dagley.
Application Title: Building Laboratories Without Limits: Bringing Behavioral and Neurophysiological Measurement to Real and Virtual Environments
The current grant represents a concerted effort to tear down the wall between lab-based behavioral research and the real world by employing the latest generation of ambulatory behavioral and neurophysiological measurement tools to study humans where they exist: either in the physical world itself, or in very close approximations to it. Importantly, our work will consider not only humans acting in isolation, but also in small groups. These themes are woven together in the form of a new interdisciplinary research lab we call IMMERSE (Ideas for Merging Measures in Enhanced Reality and Social Environments). With equipment purchased through this grant, UCF researchers will have the opportunity to conduct use-inspired research with state of the art fully mobile and integrated measurement platforms, including eye tracking, physiological (e.g., galvanic response, respiration, gait), and neurophysiological (EEG, fNIRS) recording equipment, in the environment of their choice, ranging from reality, to virtual reality (VR), to augmented reality (AR). This incredible flexibility will allow UCF researchers to take their behavioral work to new levels of external validity that will aid in providing answers to today’s important practical questions, while simultaneously advancing our basic understanding of human behavior to facilitate solving tomorrow’s applied problems.
UCF was able to submit a proposal for this grant as a result of being designated a Hispanic-Serving Institution this year.