Associate Professor Jason Tangen

I’m an Associate Professor of Cognitive Science in the School of Psychology at The University of Queensland.

I spend most of my time investigating the cognitive processes involved in learning new skills. For example, we’ve been working closely with policing and security agencies to help experts interpret evidence more effectively and reduce the amount of time that it takes to train examiners. I take great pleasure in working across multiple domains from basic visual processes to high level decision making, misinformation, and insight moments.

I received a BASc in Philosophy and Psychology from The University of Lethbridge, in Alberta, Canada where I grew up, and a PhD in Psychology from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, before moving to Sydney in 2004 for a postdoctoral fellowship at UNSW, and joined The University of Queensland in 2006.

I work with some outstanding collaborators, and I have been fortunate to have many wonderful honours and PhD students in my lab.

Current PhD Students

Kirsty Kent

I have a range of interests in the fields of cognitive and relational psychology. I have worked on projects studying the role of collective intelligence in fingerprint expertise, the state of open science in law and legal psychology, the way critical thinking is conceptualised in higher education, and how human attachment styles shape neural processes that impact our wellbeing.

Hilary Grimmer

I am interested in how our feelings provide information about reality and guide our decisions. My research focuses on ‘Aha’ moments and false insights, where I investigate the mechanisms by which we gauge the veracity and reliability of our thoughts.

Brooklyn Corbett

I’m a PhD candidate in the School of Psychology at The University of Queensland. I’m particularly interested in the mechanisms that support the development of expertise: how learners can develop as self-regulated learners and how educators can develop as evidence-based practitioners. On a practical level, I’m interested in the translation and application of the learning sciences in complex learning environments such as forensic investigation.

Ryan Metcalfe

My research is focussed on understanding more about the roles that intuition and deliberation play in our ability to distinguish fact from fiction, and whether it is possible to train people to improve at this task. Beyond my research, I am also interested in evidence-based teaching and learning and how I can apply this to my own teaching practices with both high school and undergraduate students.

Samuel Robson

I am a PhD student at UQ investigating the effect of training on perceptual skills such as visual search and inattentional blindness. I work closely with forensic examiners across the country and compare their abilities to novices.

Research Assistants

Amy Cramb

I am a psychological science student and research assistant at The University of Queensland. My academic interests lie in the realm of how people make decisions, what influences those decisions, and how to best optimise learning to allow for better decisions in the future.

Jade Butterworth

I am a psychological science student at The University of Queensland and an edX forum moderator for The Science of Everyday Thinking. My academic focus spans evolutionary, cognitive, and neuropsychology.

Previous PhD Students

Gianni Ribeiro 2020 Communicating error and expertise in forensic expert testimony
Ruben Laukkonen 2018 The phenomenology of truth the psychological functions of the insight experience
Rachel Searston 2016 The emergence of expertise with novel objects
Wen Wu 2014 Natural categorisation on the basis of style non analytic concept learning of natural scenes
Matthew Thompson 2013 On expertise in fingerprint identification

Previous Honours Students

Team Thesis 2020 Developing a masterclass on cognitive forensics
Luke Gao 2018 Considering the alternative a training method to improve expertise with fingerprints
Hilary Grimmer 2018 Can eliciting feelings of insight influence judgements of fake news
Naomi Hunt 2018 The role of feature lists in fingerprint identification
Kenyon Turner 2018 Cause and effect: Investigating the efficacy of causal mechanisms for improving fingerprint identification discriminability
Brooklyn Corbett 2017 The role of progressive challenge in the development of perceptual expertise
Daniel Ingledew 2017 Objective Aha! moments: Measuring insight using a dynamometer
Kirsty Kent 2017 Harnessing our hidden wisdom: Making use of crowds in fingerprint identification
Benjamin Matthews 2017 Deep structure in visual category learning
Ryan Metcalfe 2017 A handful of identities: Examining the nature of identity categorisation in fingerprints
Yinnam Chan 2016 How does image resolution affect memory confidence bias and response time judgements of visual category membership?
Luke French 2016 Pixels in place of pictures: Exploring the effect of image resolution on discrimination between visual categories
Samuel Robson 2016 Faces from different dimensions: The role of distinctiveness in the flashed face distortion effect
Liuissa Zhen 2016 Effects of practice testing on learning to discriminate visual categories
Jessica Marris 2015 From novice to expert: Investigating the effect of exemplars on learning
Freya Young 2015 Domain specificity vs generality: What upside-down fingerprints can tell us
Jessica Baird 2012 Investigating the nature of fingerprint expertise
Charles Driver 2012 Memory for choices
Hannah Haysom 2012 Could Comic Sans make you smarter? An exploration of the effects of disfluency on learning outcomes
Ruben Laukkonen 2012 Pupil dilation as a physiological indicator of perceptual expertise
Rachel Searston 2012 Guilty by association: An investigation of bias in fingerprint identification
Elise Jones 2011 Fingerprint identification: The biasing effect of search strategy
Jane Sexton 2011 Proficiency Tests in forensic science: A step towards identifying expertise
Billy Sung 2011 When pretty girls turn ugly: The flash face distortion effect
Cindy Theresiana 2011 Associative learning under a low level of contingency awareness and its implication in brand image formation
Alice Towler 2011 Charts and fingerprints: A match made in court
Elizabeth Whitehouse 2011 An investigation into disfluency effects: Depth of learning and affective outcomes
Sean Murphy 2010 Recognising faces with low levels of information
Jacqueline Seah 2010 The effect of context on brand choice
Merryn Constable 2009 Simplifying learning: Bridging the gap between expression and comprehension
Kathleen Ivison 2009 The underlying processes involved in fingerprint identification
Bridie James 2009 Forming attitudes under a low level of awareness
Renée Treloar 2009 Lineup and be counted: The role of memory and presentation mode in the perception and judgement of fingerprints
Katherine Woodward 2009 Investigating the cheater and danger frameworks using a change detection task
Phillip Gee 2008 The perception of fingerprints: Style over specifics
Carly Seymour 2008 The preliminary psychophysics of shoeprint identification
Wen Wu 2008 Visual discrimination on the basis of style: Evaluation of low levels of awareness in human discrimination
Stephanie Goodhew 2007 Judgements of style: People, pigeons, and Picasso
David Miles 2007 A flexible interpretation of events: The effects of outliers, expectancy and the causal model on human contingency judgements
Roxana Pearson 2007 When more causes less: An examination of people s intuitive judgements of negative continuous relationships
Stephen Rollings 2007 Similar causes similar effects: How causal judgements are influenced by similarity