Iain Gilchrist

Iain Gilchrist

Iain Gilchrist took his first degree in Psychology (BSc) at the University of Durham (1989-1992) and then studied for a PhD at the University of Birmingham (1992-1995). He then worked as a Research Associate at the University of Durham (1995-1998) before joining the Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol as Lecturer in Neuropsychology in 1998, became Reader in 2002 and Professor in 2007.

Iain is a member of the: Experimental Psychology Society, Applied Vision Association and British Ocular Motor Group. He is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society and an Associate Member of The Centre for Vision and Visual Cognition, University of Durham.

Iain’s research is focused on how humans gather information about their visual environment. Vision provides information so that we can interact with the world but that information is often not immediately available. As a result we have to sample the world to find the goal relevant information. This sampling involves a range of motor systems including eye, arm, head, and whole body movements and is a decision making process. One major focus of his work has been to understand how and why we move our eyes to sample the world; another is the mechanisms that support human foraging.

AVA Annual Meeting 2007: Active Vision: Asking the Right Questions about Human Vision

Iain highlights how it is vital that we study saccadic eye movement when researching vision. He demonstrates how many in the Vision Science community ignore two basic properties of vision that are intrinsically connected; (1) the eyes move (2) visual sensitivity is highly heterogeneous across visual space. By discussing the arguments for ignoring these two aspects he shows us how in fact there is no argument. From this, we can understand how the types of questions we ask and experiments we do should change, and that a complete and useful model of vision has to include saccades and fixations.



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