Amherst lecture series to discuss connections in health, safety, performance

Amherst lecture series to discuss connections in health, safety, performance
The University of Massachusetts Amherst recently scheduled its 2016-17 series of Distinguished Faculty Lectures for Oct. 18 to discuss how humans process visual information and use it to make decisions about health, safety and performance.

Donald Fisher, professor and former head of the mechanical and industrial engineering department at the university, will begin the series. His lecture is called “The Eyes Have It: A Window Into the Mind.” It starts at 4 p.m. and will be held in the Bernie Dallas Room in Goodell Hall.

In his presentation, Fisher will hypothesize that a common thread connects questions about cognitive science, transportation, gerontology and health care. For instance, cognitive scientists want to better understand whether individuals should leave cell phones alone while driving; transportation experts want to understand why older and younger drivers have more crash rates; gerontologists want to study cognitive processes that change as humans age; and health care leaders want to look at why 100,000 deaths every year are linked to medical errors.

Fisher believes studying these questions can change how humans use information. It could help to show the latent cognitive processes that determine human actions.

After giving his presentation, Fisher will formally accept the Chancellor’s Medal, which is the highest honor granted for service on the campus.

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