Welcome to The Human-automation Interaction and Cognition Lab (THInC) home page. Our research is conducted primarily in the context of highly complex event-driven domains, such as aviation, the military, space operations, medicine, and the automotive industry. Our main research interests include:

  • Design and evaluation of multimodal interfaces (including sight, sound, and touch) in support of human-computer interaction and computer-supported collaborative work
  • Support for attention and interruption management through adaptive notifications and preattentive reference
  • Design of decision aids that support trust calibration and adaptive function allocation
  • Human error and error/disturbance management


Lab News

  • 5/02/19 Congratulations to Dr. Yuzhi Wan who submitted his dissertation and passed his defense!
  • 04/02/19 Congratulations to Dr. Sarter for being appointed as the Richard W. Pew Collegiate Professor of Industrial and Operations Engineering!
  • 03/26/19 Congratulations to Kevin Lieberman for winning the 2019 Grad Student of the Year Award from the University of Michigan Student Life’s Michigan Difference Student Leadership Awards!
  • 03/12/19 Congratulations to Kevin Lieberman for winning the Graduate Student Distinguished Leadership Award from the College of Engineering!
  • 02/07/19 Congratulations to Dr. Sarter for being elected as a new member of the National Academy of Engineering! (read)
  • 12/10/18  Kevin Lieberman was a featured speaker at the Department of Defense Basic Research Office’s Science, Technology, and Innovation Exchange (STIx), where he spoke on ” Supporting Trust, Transparency, and Joint Performance in Human-Robot Teams.”  Washington, DC.
  • 10/01/18 Yidu Lu and Yuzhi Wan presented their work at the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Conference in Philadelphia, PA.
  • 09/25/18 Dr. Sarter was a featured speaker at the 2018 Society of Information Display (SID) Conference where she presented a paper titled “Design of automation behavior and interfaces in support of human-machine teaming”.
  • 09/20/18 Dr. Sarter was elected a member of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES) Fellow Selection Committee.
  • 09/03/18 The THInC lab is getting started on two new research efforts:
    (1) Air Force grant for work on ‘Supporting trust calibration and attention management in human-machine teams’
    (2) NASA/NAI grant (with Dr. Ella Atkins in Aeronautical Engineering) on ‘Paths to Autonomous Vehicle Operations for Urban Air Mobility’ 
  • 07/05/18 Congratulations to Yidu Lu for winning the Student Author Presentation Support Award (SAPSA) from the HFES Council of Technical Groups!
  • 02/25/18 Dr. Sarter gave an invited presentation on “Human Systems Integration: Engineering and Design at the Intersection of Humans and Complex Technologies” at Vanderbilt University. Nashville, TN.
  • 02/15/18 Dr. Sarter gave an invited presentation on “Trust and Attention Management in Human-Machine Teaming” to the NASA Human Systems Integration Division. Mountainview, CA. 
  • 01/10/18  Dr. Sarter gave an invited presentation on ‘Human Factors Issues of UAV Ground Controller Station Design” to the NAS (National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine) workshop on ‘Human-Automation Interaction Consideration for Unmanned Aerial System Integration’ in  Washington, DC. 
  • 11/14/17 Congratulations to Yuzhi Wan for winning the 1st Prize in the IOF-1 session of the Michigan 2017 Engineering Graduate Symposium! (read)
  • 12/13/17 Congratulations to Kevin Lieberman who just passed his preliminary exam!
  • 11/9/17 Congratulations to Yidu Lu who just passed her preliminary exam!
  • 10/11/17 Yuzhi Wan presented his work at the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Conference in Austin, TX.
  • 10/10/17 Dr. Sarter served on a discussion panel at the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Conference in Austin, TX.
  • 7/19/17 Congratulations to Dr. Sarter who has been elected to Fellow status in the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES)!
  • 6/13/17 Dr. Sarter gave a plenary talk on “Human-automation interaction : Lessons learned across domains” at the 10th International Meeting on Nuclear Plant Instrumentation, Control & Human-Machine Interface Technologies (NPIC & HMIT) in San Francisco, CA.
  • 5/9/17 Yuzhi Wan presented his research at the International Symposium on Aviation Psychology in Dayton, OH. 
  • 4/28/17 Dr. Sarter gave a seminar on “Attention management in complex data-rich domains” at the University of Wisconsin (Industrial and Systems Engineering Department) in Madison, WI.
  • 4/25/17 Dr. Sarter gave an invited presentation on “Human factors in complex system failures: The example of Asiana Airlines flight 214” at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO.
  • 2/22/17 Dr. Sarter gave an invited presentation on “Trust and attention management in UAS control” at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (WPAFB) in Dayton, OH.
  • 1/23/17 Dr. Sarter gave an invited presentation to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine Committee on Aviation Safety Assurance titled “Cognitive Engineering Aspects of Aviation Safety Assurance” in Washington, DC.


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