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The Australian National University

Associate Professor Anne Aimola Davies

PhD, PGDipClinPsych
ANU College of Health and Medicine

Areas of expertise

  • Biological Psychology (Neuropsychology, Psychopharmacology, Physiological Psychology) 170101
  • Sensory Processes, Perception And Performance 170112
  • Health, Clinical And Counselling Psychology 170106

Available student projects

My research interests are in cognitive neuropsychology, specifically of visual and somatosensory attention, and belief formation. These aspects of cognition can be investigated by studying individuals following right-hemisphere stroke, especially those suffering from unilateral neglect, sensory loss, or anosognosia for motor impairments, and/or by studying neurologically healthy individuals. For example, the neuropsychological condition of unilateral neglect may be regarded as a pathological form of inattentional blindness, a phenomenon in which neurologically healthy participants fail to notice, respond to, or report something even though it is presented in full view. Drawing on the methods of cognitive neuropsychology, clinical neuropsychology and cognitive neuroscience, my research includes work on:

  • inattentional blindness
  • directional and non-directional aspects of attention
  • visual awareness and overt/covert attention in neglect
  • viewer-, stimulus- and object-centered reference frames in neglect
  • hemispheric specialisation in global and local processing
  • expectation as a factor in self-touch enhancement following sensory loss
  • anosognosia, and the role of impairments of executive function
  • neuroanatomical basis of neglect and anosognosia
  • neurorehabilitation.

Recently published Honours projects (with the Honours students in italics) are available on request:

Bultitude, J. H., & Aimola Davies, A. M. (2006). Putting attention on the line: Investigating the activation-orientation hypothesis of pseudoneglect. Neuropsychologia, 44, 1849-1858.

McKone, E., Aimola Davies, A. M.Fernando, D., Wickramariyaratne, T., Aalders, R., Leung, H., & Platow, M. (2010). Asia has the global advantage: Race and visual attention. Vision Research, 50, 1540-1549.

White, R. C., & Aimola Davies, A. M. (2008). Attention set for number: Expectation and perceptual load in inattentional blindness. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 34, 1092-1107.

White, R. C., Aimola Davies, A. M., Halleen, T. J., & Davies, M. (2010). Tactile expectations and the perception of self-touch: An investigation using the rubber hand paradigm. Consciousness and Cognition, 19, 505-519.

Current student projects

PhD/DPhil Students

Jhana de Silva (ANU, due to submit 2019) – Anosognosia for motor impairments: Body-awareness and the mechanisms involved in the self-other distinction. 

Michael Spratt (ANU, due to submit 2017) – Object versus space: A new attention paradigm.

Matthew Tompkins (University of Oxford, due to submit 2017) – Observations on invisibility: Investigating expectation, attention, and awareness through the magicians’ false transfer trick.

Past student projects

PhD/DPhil Students

Laura Hughes (Macquarie University, 2005) – Visual perception, attention and action.

Judy Buchholz (ANU, 2008) – Visual attentional processes in adults with dyslexia.

Rebekah White (University of Oxford, 2011) – When I touch my hand it touches me back: An investigation of the illusion of self-touch.

Monica Skjerve (ANU, 2012) – An investigation of viewer-, stimulus-, and object-centred neglect in the visual and tactile modalities.

Rachel Lacey (ANU, 2013) – Lifting the fog on ‘chemobrain: A prospective cohort study of chemotherapy-related cognitive changes in woman with early breast cancer (Joint Supervisor with Professor Don Byrne).

Janette Chow (University of Oxford, 2015) – Language mediated visual attention in 2-year old infants (Joint Supervisor with Professor Kim Plunkett). 

 

Research Masters Students

Rebekah White (ANU, 2008) – Expectation and perceptual load in the inattentional blindness phenomenon.

Matthew Tompkins (University of Oxford, 2012) – What drives inattentional blindness? An investigation of categorical attentional set and the semantic-congruency effect.

 

Clinical Masters Students

Caroline Chauvet (UWS, 1998) – Depressive realism, personality, and procedural learning.

Monica Kaoutal (UWS, 1998) – The relationship between identity styles/ethnic identity and general well-being in university students.

Sonia Zadro (UWS, 1998) – What to do when cognitive-behavioural treatment for obsessive-compulsive disorder fails to make a difference: Prescribe the symptom?

Cathy Egan (UWS, 1999) – Therapeutic alliances in brief therapy.

Michael Gock (UWS, 1999) – Expectation, imaginative suggestibility and the miracle question.

Lucy Sorbello (UWS, 1999) – Miracle question: The role of hope in brief therapy.

Anna Bednarek (UWS, 2002) – The relationship between laterality and hierarchical coding in object-based processing.

Joanne Del Riccio (UWS, 2002) – Attentional biases in letter identification and parity judgements: Implications for object-centred neglect.

Monica Skjerve (ANU, 2004) – The effect of object orientation on the allocation of visual attention in neurologically healthy individuals.

Caitlin McGill (ANU, 2015) – Implicit awareness, reasoning and assessment within the two-factor model of anosognosia for hemiplegia.

 

Honours Students

Noël Wight-Boycott (UWS, 1999) – The effects of object asymmetry on visual attention in neurologically healthy participants.

Kathleen Stark (UWS, 2002) – The efficacy of part salience on directing attention towards an object: A study of object-centred reference frames.

Kelly Wainwright (ANU, 2002) Determining the preattentive just noticeable difference for motion direction (Joint Supervisor with Professor Mark Edwards).

Rachel Aalders (ANU, 2003) – Hemispheric specialisation for processing global-local objects: The effects of post-stimulus masking and target-letter symmetry.

Janet Bultitude (ANU, 2004) – Putting attention on the line: Investigating the action-orientation hypothesis of pseudoneglect.

Anna Dolgaleva (ANU, 2004) – The effects of sex, symmetry, and stimulus category on hemispheric specialisation for the global-local paradigm.

Hannah Krijnen (ANU, 2004) – Competing for attention: Investigating egocentric reference frames.

Michael Spratt (ANU, 2005) Framed in space? Object effects in a visual attention paradigm.

Hildie Leung (ANU, 2006) – Hemispheric differences in global-local processing: The effects of stimulus category and culture.

Rebekah White (ANU, 2006) – Bridging the great divide: Expectations and attention in the inattentional blindness phenomenon.

Aaron Tan (ANU, 2007) – Inattentional blindness: Setting attention across multiple dimensions.

Terri Halleen (ANU, 2008) – My finger is a brush! Tactile expectations and the rubber hand illusion.

Stephen Waterman (University of Oxford, 2009) – Implicit attentional set in a dynamic inattentional blindness paradigm.

Samantha Mansell (University of Oxford, 2011) – When we can’t see the ZOO for the animals: The A to Z of inattentional blindness.

Ava Forkert (University of Oxford, 2012) – It’s a bird, it’s an animal, it’s undetected: A semantic congruency effect for inattentional blindness.

Eloise Page (University of Oxford, 2012) – A spoke in the wheels for ‘attentional set’ theory?: Importance of features as a mediator of inattentional blindness.

Huili Koh (ANU, 2013) – You see TIGER and I see ?? but will we see FARM (??)? An investigation of inattentional blindness from a cultural perspective.

Meghan Smith (ANU, 2013) – The rubber hand illusion: Orientation and spatial limitations.

Laura Birchall (ANU, 2014) – Switching sides: Hemispheric asymmetries for global and local processing of letters, objects and non-verubalisable stimuli.

Megan Fraser (ANU, 2014) – Looking on the right side: Disambiguating viewer-, stimulus, and object-centred pseuodneglect under visual working  memory load.

Heo Min Quan (ANU, 2014) – Effects of culture on global versus local processing.

Julian Wong (ANU, 2014) – Exploring cultural differences in inattentional blindness: Specificity of attentional set and a new categorisation model 

Jhana de Silva (ANU, 2015) – The mirror rubber-hand illusion and vision-touch synaesthesia: Alterations in body awareness.

Sebastian Tsui (ANU, 2015) –  Hemispheric asymmetry: The effects of stimulus category and race.

Kelly Battocchio (ANU, 2016) – The role of expectation and perceptual similarity outisde of semantic category.

Aflaha Khan (ANU, 2016) – Looking up: Investigating pseudoneglect under high visual working memory load.

Li Low (ANU, 2016) –  Effects of bilingualism on interference resistance, conflict monitoring, and hemispheric asymmetry in global-local processing.

Jingyuan (Wendy) Pan (ANU, 2016) – Effect of semantic relatedness in global-local processing of hierarchichal Chinese characters.

Simone Ray (ANU, 2016) – Looking at the finer details in later life: Hemispheric asymmetry and age-related changes in attentional processing.

 

Summer Research Scholarships

Janet Bultitude (ANU, Summer 2003) – Prism adaptation.

Rebekah White (ANU, Summer 2005) – Anosognosia for motor impairments: Motivational factors?

Vanessa Carr (University of Oxford, Summer 2011) – Cognitive impairments in patients with anosognosia for motor impairments.

 

Two-Year Academic Foundation Research Training Post for Medical Students

Dr George Hadjipavlou (University of Oxford, 2010) – Inattentional blindness: Does looking help? 

 

Library Dissertation Students

Francesca Nagle (University of Oxford, 2009) – Is there such a phenomenon as object-centred neglect? 

Emily Purser (University of Oxford, 2010) – Going out on a limb: Supernumerary phantom limbs: A new model and the phenomenon explained. 

Charlotte Jug (University of Oxford, 2011) – Role of the insula in anosognosia for hemiplegia.

 

Visiting Student Program

Jennifer Weinberg (University of Oxford, 2012) – Eliciting the illusion of self-touch in anatomically implausible conditions.

Publications

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Updated:  20 September 2017 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers