Lab: Visual Perception and Cognition Lab

Chinese Academy of Science, Ph.D., 2001
Beijing Normal University, B.S., 1996

Current Instructor: Research Methods


Academic Interests and Expertise

The primary goal of my research is to understand how humans process the visual information of 3D world at perceptual and cognitive levels, and how this visual information processing is utilized in everyday activities, such as driving, walking, and playing sports. My research involves a series of projects on distance perception, motion perception, and visual attention in 3D space, age-related changes in perception and cognition, driving safety for novice drivers and older drivers, human performance in virtual environments, and automated vehicles and human drivers. Recently, I have been developing and testing training procedures, which aim at improving driving-related visual functions, driving performance, and preventing falls among older adults.

If you are an undergraduate, have a GPA of 3.0 and above, plan to apply for graduate school, and can commit 6-9 hours per week to research in my lab for at least one full semester, you are welcome to work with me as an Undergraduate Research Assistant.

I am currently recruiting new graduate students to work on a driving & aging research project funded by NIH for almost $1.8M. Learn more about this project here.

Areas of Research Interest

Research Interests: Visual perception and cognition in 3D space, Driving, Aging, Psychological and Physical Training, Autonomous Vehicles and Drivers


Selected Publications:

  1. Bi, F., Ni, R., & Chen, Y. (2017, July). Spatial constraints of binocularly matched information on perceived depth resulted from temporal interocular asynchrony. In Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC), 2017 39th Annual International Conference of the IEEE (pp. 966-969). IEEE.
  2. Plummer, J., Chaparro A., & Ni, R. Dividing Attention Modulated by Contrast and Eccentricity. In revision.
  3. Weber, B. & Ni, R. Effect of Viewing Angle on 3-D Multiple-Object Tracking. Proceedings of 2015 International Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. California, USA, 2015
  4. Yotsumoto, Y., Chang, L. H., Ni, R., Pierce, R., Andersen, G. J., Watanabe, T., & Sasaki, Y. (2014). White matter in the older brain is more plastic than in the younger brain. Nature communications, 5, 5504.
  5. He, J., Chaparro, A., Nguyen, B., Burge, R. J., Crandall, J., Chaparro, B., Ni, R., & Cao, S. (2014). Texting while driving: Is speech-based text entry less risky than handheld text entry?. Accident Analysis & Prevention, 72, 287-295.
  6. Ni, R. & Andersen, G. J. (2012). Age related performance in driving: Steering and collision detection. In A. G. Gale (Ed) Vision in Vehicles XI (pp. 29-36). Loughborough University Enterprises: Loughborough Great Britain.
  7. Ni, R., Bian, Z., Guindon, A., & Andersen, G. J. (2012). Aging and the detection of imminent collisions under simulated fog conditions. Accident Analysis & Prevention, 49, 525-531.
  8. Andersen, G. J., Ni, R., Bian, Z., & Kang, J. (2011). Limits of spatial attention in three-dimensional space and dual-task driving performance. Accident Analysis & Prevention, 43(1), 381-390. (PDF)
  9. Ni, R., Chen, L., & Andersen, G. J. (2010). Visual constraints for the perception of quantitative depth from temporal interocular unmatched features. Vision research, 50(16), 1571-1580.
  10. Ni, R., Kang, J. J., & Andersen, G. J. (2010). Age-related declines in car following performance under simulated fog conditions. Accident Analysis & Prevention, 42(3), 818-826.
  11. Andersen, G. J., Ni, R., Bower, J. D., & Watanabe, T. (2010). Perceptual learning, aging, and improved visual performance in early stages of visual processing. Journal of vision, 10(13), 4-4.
  12. Vaux, L. M., Ni, R., Rizzo, M., Uc, E. Y., & Andersen, G. J. (2010). Detection of imminent collisions by drivers with Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease: a preliminary study. Accident Analysis & Prevention, 42(3), 852-858.
  13. Ni, R., & Andersen, G. J. (2008). Detection of collision events on curved trajectories: optical information from invariant rate-of-bearing change. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics, 70(7), 1314-1324. (PDF)
  14. Andersen, G. J., & Ni, R. (2008). Aging and visual processing: Declines in spatial not temporal integration. Vision research, 48(1), 109-118. (PDF)
  15. Kang, J., Ni, R., & Andersen, G. (2008). Effects of reduced visibility from fog on car-following performance. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, (2069), 9-15
  16. Ni, R., Braunstein, M. L., & Andersen, G. J. (2007). Scene layout from ground contact, occlusion, and motion parallax. Visual Cognition, 15(1), 48-68. (PDF)
  17. Ni, R., Braunstein, M., & Andersen, G. (2005). Distance perception from motion parallax and ground contact. Visual Cognition, 12(6), 1235-1254. (PDF)
  18. Ni, R., Braunstein, M. L., & Andersen, G. J. (2004). Perception of scene layout from optical contact, shadows, and motion. Perception, 33(11), 1305-1318. (PDF)