Matthew Thompson  from Murdoch University in Perth Australia.
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9360 6450

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Matthew.Thompson@murdoch.edu.au

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    Dr Matthew Thompson

    Lecturer

    About me

    I am fascinated by perceptual expertise. I am Lecturer in Cognition at Murdoch University, and formerly a Research Scholar at UCLA, and Postdoctoral Fellow at The University of Queensland and at Harvard Medical School. I am a Fulbright ScholarYoung Tall PoppyAmerican-Australian Association FellowNational Three Minute Thesis WinnerSmart Futures Scholar, and Endeavour Fellow.  I am working to reduce error in safety-critical decision making in forensics and medicine, and to better understand the nature and development of perceptual expertise.

    Along with Jason Tangen, I run one of the most popular Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) on the planet—The Science of Everyday Thinking—on edX.

    I travel and take pictures for fun, and am passionate about communicating science, especially to young people. You can read my latest news here, check out my research here, access my publications herefollow me on twitter, or peruse my Academic Curriculum Vitae.

    Positions:
    Postdoctoral Fellow – Harvard Medical School
    Postdoctoral Fellow – The University of Queensland
    Former advisors: Dr Jason TangenProfessor Penelope SandersonProfessor William ThompsonProfessor Jennifer MnookinProfessor Jeremy Wolfe

    Teaching area

    Psychology: Cognitive Processes (PSY294)
    In this unit, we will explore how the mind works. We will work to understand basic processes such as how memories are encoded and retrieved, and how our attention is focused and allocated. We will also work to understand higher-level processes, such as how we create language, and how our experiences shape our perception. Broadly, we will investigate topics relevant to our everyday experience, including Perception, Illusions, Memory, Learning, Attention, Neuroscience, Language, and Thinking.

    Building Blocks for Science Students (BSC100) 
    Now more than ever we look to science to help overcome major challenges facing the world we live in. Effective preparation for science requires an understanding of the scientific method and skills. This unit will facilitate your transition into university and give you the framework of skills you need for lifelong learning including: literacy, numeracy and information technology; the ability to collect, analyse and evaluate information; think clearly, critically and creatively; and discipline-specific skills in scholarly research, communication and ethical practice.

    Think101 – The Science of Everyday Thinking – Massive Open Online Course
    We explore the nature of everyday thinking. You will learn how to evaluate claims, make sense of evidence, understand why we so often make irrational choices, and how to make better decisions. We will examine topics such as pareidolia, subliminal persuasion, cancer cluster, paranormal phenomena, alternative medicine, placebos in medicine, miracles, and more. This course will provide you with tools for how to think independently, how to be skeptical, and how to value data over personal experience. You will begin to rely on slow, deliberative, and logical thinking rather than fast, emotional, and stereotypical thinking. We will examine the mental shortcuts and rules-of- thumb that people use and misuse, and apply this knowledge to everyday situations to help you make better decisions.

    Awards and grants

    Australian Research Council Linkage Grant $1.3m in-kind, $534,188 cash
    Creating the next generation of perceptual experts in Australia’s policing and security agencies.

    Australian Government, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade $295,000
    Sanderson, P., Haslam, A, Tangen, J., Viller, S., Matthews, Greenaway, K., Peters, K., Parker, S., Steffens, Thompson, M. B., Searston, R., & Santomauro K. (2015). COMPASS: Improving passport processing for the Australian Passport Office.

    American Australian Association, Postdoctoral Fellowship $40,000
    Thompson, M. B. (2014). Understanding visual expertise to establish minimum scientific and legal standards of evidence.

    Australian Government, Endeavour Postdoctoral Fellowship $26,500
    Thompson, M. B. (2014). Visual expertise in forensic identification and diagnostic medicine.

    The University of Queensland, Postdoctoral Research Fellowship $287,945
    Thompson, M. B. (2014). Towards evidence-based evidence: Understanding forensic expertise to establish minimum scientific and legal standards.

    Australian-American Fulbright Commission, Fulbright Scholarship $46,000
    Thompson, M. B. (2012). Assessing error in fingerprint identification: Establishing scientific and legal standards of evidence.

    Queensland Government, Smart Futures Award $22,500
    Thompson, M. B. (2009). Revealing structure in images: Assisting identification in forensics.

    National ICT Australia, Research Project Award $24,846
    Thompson, M. B. (2009). Revealing structure in images: Assisting identification in forensics.

    Australian Government, Australian Postgraduate Award $90,440
    Thompson, M. B. (2009). Revealing structure in images: Assisting identification in forensics.

    Publications

    Journals

    • Edmond, G., Towler, A., Growns, B., Ribeiro, G., Found, B., White, D., Ballantyne, K., Rachel A. Searston, R., Thompson, M., Tangen, J., Kemp, R., Martire, K., (2017), Thinking forensics: Cognitive science for forensic practitioners, Science & Justice, 57, 2, pages 144 - 154.
    • Thompson, M., Tangen, J., Rachel A. Searston, R., (2014), Understanding expertise and non-analytic cognition in fingerprint discriminations made by humans, Frontiers in Psychology, 5, 737, pages 1 - 3.

    Journal Publications

    Palada, H.*, Searston, R. A.*, Persson, A., Ballard, T.**, & Thompson, M. B.** (under review). An evidence accumulation model of perceptual discrimination with naturalistic stimuli. [*These authors contributed equally to this work. **Shared senior authorship.] Preprint: 10.31234/osf.io/zr8wd OSF: https://osf.io/kyp4b/

    Carter, A.,  Richards, L. J., et al., Thompson, M. B.  (in press) A neuroethics framework for the Australian Brain Initiative. Neuron.

    Searston, R. A., Thompson, M. B., Vokey, J. R., French, L., & Tangen, J. M. (in press). How low can you go? Detecting style in extremely low resolution images. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance.
    Preprint: 10.31234/osf.io/zx2gs OSF: https://osf.io/thk2a

    Beisley, J. M., House, P., & Thompson, M. B. (2018). Electronic monitoring of curfew compliance for violent offenders—An evidence-based policing approach. Police Science, 3(1) [PDF]

    Edmond, G., Towler, A., Growns, B., Riberio, G., Found, B., White, D.,  Ballantyne, K., Searston, R., Thompson, M., Tangen, J., Kemp, R. I., Martire, K. (2017). Thinking forensics: Cognitive science for forensic practitioners. Science & Justice. 57(2), 144–154. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scijus.2016.11.005 [PDF]

    Edmond, G., Found, B., Martire, K., Ballantyne, K., Hamer, D., Searston, R., Thompson, M. B., Cunliffe, E., Kemp, R., San Roque, M., Tangen, J., Dioso-Villa, R., Ligertwood, A., Hibbert, B., White, D., Porter, G., & Roberts, A. (2016). Model forensic science. Australian Journal of Forensic Sciences. 48(5), 496–537. doi: 10.1080/00450618.2015.1128969 [PDF]

    Drew, T., Aizenman, A. M., Thompson, M. B.,  Kovacs, M. D., Trambert, M., Reicher, M., Wolfe, J. M. (2016). Image toggling saves time in mammography. Journal of Medical Imaging, 3(1). doi: 10.1117/1.JMI.3.1.011003

    Thompson, M. B. & Tangen, J. M. (2014). The nature of expertise in fingerprint matching: Experts can do a lot with a little. PLOS ONE. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0114759 [osf.io/8bd2r]

    Edmond, G., Martire, K., Found, B., Kemp, R., Hamer, D., Hibbert, B., Ligertwood, A., Porter, G., San Roque, M., Searston, R., Tangen, J., Thompson, M., & White, D. (2014). How to cross-examine forensic scientists: A guide for lawyers. Australian Bar Review, 39. [PDF]

    Thompson, M. B. & Tangen, J. M. (2014). Generalization in fingerprint matching experiments. Science & Justice.  doi: 10.1016/j.scijus.2014.06.008

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & Searston, R. A. (2014). Understanding expertise and non-analytic cognition in fingerprint discriminations made by humans. Frontiers in Psychology. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00737 [PDF]

    Edmond, G., Thompson, M. B., & Tangen, J. M. (2013). A guide to interpreting forensic testimony: Scientific approaches to fingerprint evidence. Law, Probability & Risk. doi: 10.1093/lpr/mgt011 [PDF]

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & McCarthy, D. J. (2013). Human matching performance of genuine crime scene latent fingerprints. Law and Human Behavior38(1), 84–93. doi: 10.1037/lhb0000051 [PDF]

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & McCarthy D. J. (2013). Expertise in fingerprint identification. Journal of Forensic Sciences, 58(6), 1519–1530. doi: 10.1111/1556-4029.12203 [PDF]

    Tangen, J. M., Murphy, S. C., & Thompson, M. B. (2011). Flashed face distortion effect: Grotesque faces from relative spaces. Perception, 40, 628–630. doi: 10.1068/p6968
    [Abstract] [Blog Post] [Movie 1] [Movie 2] [PDF]

    Tangen, J. M., Thompson, M. B., & McCarthy D. J. (2011). Identifying fingerprint expertise. Psychological Science, 22(8), 995–997. doi: 10.1177/0956797611414729
    [Video Abstract] [Press Release] [Blog Post] [PDF]

    Thompson, C., Sanderson, P., Watson, M., Thompson, M., Muthukrishna, M., & Murphy, S. (2010). Testing auditory alarm effectiveness with three different alarm sets. Anaesthesia and Intensive Care, 38(4), 769–769.

    Thompson, M. B., Tear, M. J., & Sanderson, P. M. (2010). Multisensory integration with a head-mounted display: Role of mental and manual load. Human Factors, 52(1).
    doi: 10.1177/0018720810367914 [PDF]

    Harrison, W. J., Thompson, M. B., & Sanderson, P. M. (2010). Multisensory integration with a head-mounted display: Background visual motion and sound motion. Human Factors, 52(1).
    doi: 10.1177/0018720810367790 [PDF]

    Thompson, M. B., & Sanderson, P. M. (2008). Multisensory integration with a head-mounted display: Sound delivery and self-motion. Human Factors, 50(5), 789–800.
    doi: 10.1518/ 001872008X312323 [PDF]

    Conference Publications

    Palada, H., Searston, R. A., Thompson, M. B., Persson, A., & Ballard, T. (2018). Evidence Accumulation in a Complex Visual Domain: Applying the Linear Ballistic Accumulator to Fingerprint Discrimination. Proceedings of The 59th Annual Meeting of the Psychonomic Society. New Orleans, Louisiana: 15–18 November, 2018. [PDF]

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen J., Searston, R., Edmond, G., Eva, K., Osborn, S., McCarthy, D., Hayes, R., Wilson-Wilde, L., Byard, G., & Hennessy, P. (2018). Creating the next generation of perceptual experts in Australia’s policing and security agencies. Proceedings of the 24th International Symposium on the Forensic Sciences of the Australian and New Zealand Forensic Science Society (ANZFSS). Perth, WA:9–13 September 2018. [Keynote Presentation]

    Thompson, M. B., Searston, R. A. Ribeiro, G., & Tangen, J. M., (2017). Alternative statistical frameworks for communicating the strength of forensic evidence in court. Proceedings of Australian Mathematical Psychology Conference. Perth, WA: 13–15 February 2018.

    Searston, R. A., Tangen, J. M, & Thompson, M. B., (2017). Collapsing across categories, contexts and cognitive tasks as an alternative to replication. Proceedings of The 44th Australasian Experimental Psychology Conference. Newcastle, NSW: 19–22 April 2017.

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M, & Edmond, G. (2015). How should forensic experts express evidence to the fact finder? Proceedings of The 5th International Conference on Evidence Law and Forensic Science. Adelaide, SA: 22–23 July 2015.

    Thompson, M. B. & Tangen, J. M. (2015). Visual expertise and identification. Symposium presented at the Annual Meeting of The Society for Applied Research in Memory and Cognition. Victoria, British Columbia: 24–27 June 2015.

    Thompson, M. B. & Tangen, J. M. (2015). The gist of a match: Fingerprint expert decision making in the blink of an eye. Proceedings of The 42nd Australasian Experimental Psychology Conference. Sydney, Australia: 8–11 April, 2015.

    Thompson, M. B. (2015). Communicating visual expertise. Proceedings of the Unfamiliar Face Matching Research Meeting. Sydney, Australia: 17–18 February, 2015.

    Drew, T., Aizenman, A. M., Thompson, M. B., Kovacs, M. D., Trambert, M., Reicher, M., & Wolfe, J. M. (2015). Image shuffling saves time in mammography. Proceedings of The Medical Image Perception Conference. Ghent, Belgium: 3–5 June, 2015.

    Aizenman, A., Thompson, M. B., Ehinger, K. A., & Wolfe, J. M. (2015). Visual search through a 3D volume: Studying novices in order to help radiologists. Proceedings of The Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting. Naples, Florida: 15–20 May, 2015.

    Thompson, M. B. & Tangen, J. M. (2014). Diagnostics or Bayesian statistics? A contemporary model of forensic testimony based on non-analytic cognition in human fingerprint matching. Proceedings of The 55th Annual Meeting of the Psychonomic Society. Long Beach, California: 20–23 November, 2014.

    Tangen, J. M., Searston, R. A., & Thompson, M. B. (2014). Visual Expertise and Identification. Proceedings of The 55th Annual Meeting of the Psychonomic Society. Long Beach, California: 20–23 November, 2014.

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & McCarthy D. J. (2013). Decision making, expertise, and non-analytic cognition in human fingerprint matching. Proceedings of The 54th Annual Meeting of the Psychonomic Society. Toronto, Canada: 14–18 November, 2013.

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & McCarthy D. J. (2013). Expertise, memory, and non-analytic cognition in fingerprint matching: Experts can discriminate prints in noise, spaced in time, and in the blink of an eye. Proceedings of The 40th Australasian Experimental Psychology Conference. Adelaide, Australia: 3–4 April, 2013. [PDF] [Slides]

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & McCarthy, D. J. (2013). Evidence for expertise in fingerprint identification and the ramifications for the future study of forensic expertise. American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS) Annual Meeting. Washington, DC: 18–23 February, 2013. [PDF] [Slides]

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & McCarthy, D. J. (2012). Evidence for expertise and accuracy in fingerprint identification. Proceedings of the 21st International Symposium on the Forensic Sciences of the Australian and New Zealand Forensic Science Society (ANZFSS). Hobart, Australia: 23–27 September, 2012.
    [Invited Discipline Keynote and Best Presentation Award Winner]

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & McCarthy, D. J. (2012). Evidence for expertise in the matching performance of human fingerprint examiners. Proceedings of the 6th European Academy of Forensic Science Conference (EAFS). The Hague, the Netherlands: 20–24 August, 2012.

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & McCarthy, D. J. (2012). Evidence for expertise in fingerprint identification. Proceedings of the 97th International Educational Conference of the International Association for Identification. Phoenix, Arizona: 22–28 July, 2012.

    Tangen, J. M., Murphy, S. C., & Thompson, M. B. (2012). When pretty girls turn ugly: The flashed face distortion effect. The Best illusion of the Year Contest, 12th Annual Meeting of the Vision Science Society (VSS). Naples, Florida: 14 May, 2012.
    [Second place for Best Illusion of the Year, 2012] [Nature News] [New Scientist TV] [Abstract] [Illusion 1] [Illusion 2]

    Sung, B. C. Y., Thompson, M. B. & Tangen, J. M. (2012). When pretty girls turn ugly: The boundary conditions of the flashed face distortion effect. Proceedings of the 39th Australasian Experimental Psychology Conference. Sydney, Australia: 12–15 April, 2012.

    Tangen, J. M., Thompson, M. B., & McCarthy, D. J. (2011). Forensic reasoning and uncertainty: Identifying fingerprint expertise. Impressions and Expressions: Expert Opinion Evidence in Reports and Courts, AAFS Conference. Sydney, Australia: 3–4 December, 2011.

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & McCarthy, D. J. (2011). Accuracy and expertise in human fingerprint identification. Proceedings of the 38th Australasian Experimental Psychology Conference. Auckland, New Zealand: 28–30 April, 2011. [PDF]

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., & McCarthy, D. (2010). Enhancing performance in human decision making: The role of similarity in forensic identification. Proceedings of the 20th International Symposium on the Forensic Sciences of the Australian and New Zealand Forensic Science Society (ANZFSS). Sydney, Australia: 5–9 April.
    [Awarded Best Paper in Management and Quality Assurance] [PDF]

    Tangen, J. M., Thompson, M. B., McCarthy, D., & Tear, M. J. (2010). Ground truth: On certainty in forensic decision-making research. Proceedings of the 20th International Symposium on the Forensic Sciences of the Australian and New Zealand Forensic Science Society (ANZFSS). Sydney, Australia: 5–9 April.

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., Treloar, R., & Ivison, K. J. (2010). Humans matching fingerprints: Sequence and Size. Proceedings of the 54th Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. San Francisco, CA: September 27–October 1.
    [Awarded 3rd place for Best Student Paper in CEDM] [PDF]

    Thompson, M. B., Tangen, J. M., Ivison, K. J., & Treloar, R. (2010). Expertise in matching fingerprints and faces. Proceedings of the 37th Australasian Experimental Psychology Conference. Melbourne, Australia: 8–10 April. [PDF]

    Tear, M. J., Thompson, M. B., & Tangen J. M. (2010). The importance of ground truth: An open-source biometric repository. Poster presented at the 54th Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. San Francisco, CA: September 27–October 1. [PDF]

    Thompson, C., Sanderson, P., Watson, M., Thompson, M., Muthukrishna, M., & Murphy, S. (2010). Testing auditory alarm effectiveness with three different alarm sets. Poster presented at the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists Annual Scientific Meeting (ANZCA ASM). Christchurch, NZ: 1–5 May 2010.
    [Selected for reprinting in Anaesthesia and Intensive Care, 38(4), 769–769.] [URL] [PDF]

    Tear, M., Harrison, W., Thompson, M., & Sanderson, P. M. (2009). Head-mounted displays and multisensory integration: Replications and challenges. Proceedings of the 53rd Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. San Antonio, TX: 19–23 October, 2009, 1131–1135
    [Shortlisted for HFES Alphonse Chapanis Best Student Paper Award] [PDF]

    Jenkins, S., Liu, D., Thompson, M. B., & Sanderson, P. M. (2009). Managing the risks of display evaluation studies in the OR. Abstract for Society for Technology in Anesthesia (STA2009) Annual Meeting. San Antonio, TX: 14–17 January, 2009. [Poster] [Abstract]

    Thompson, M. B., & Sanderson, P. (2008). Multisensory integration with a head-mounted display and auditory display. Proceedings of the 52nd Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. New York, NY: 22–26 September, 2008, 1292–1296 [PDF]

    Thompson, M., Lowe, S., & Sanderson, P. (2007). Role of motion and sound in use of head-mounted displays (Abstract). Proceedings of the 8th International Multisensory Research Forum (IMRF2007). Sydney, 5–7 July, 2007. [Abstract]

    Other

    Thompson, M. B. (2014). On expertise in fingerprint identification. Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia. [PDF]

    Thompson, M. B. (2007). Crossmodal integration with a head-mounted display and auditory display options: Is there cause for concern? Unpublished Honours Thesis, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia.
    [Awarded First Class Honours] [PDF]