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Personal profile


I am Professor of Human Computer Interaction.  I am currently the Head of Department - Computer Science - at Aston University.  I joined the Computer Science department at Aston University as a lecturer and designer/director of the Aston Interactive Media (AIM) Lab in June, 2009.  I am also an Adjunct Professor with the Faculty of Interdisciplinary Studies at the University of New Brunswick, Canada.  For almost 7 years prior to moving to Aston University, I worked as a Research Officer with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) where I designed and managed a state-of-the-art mobile human computer interaction evaluation lab within the NRC facility.

I obtained a B.Sc. (Hons) in Software Engineering from Glasgow University in 1996, from where I also later graduated with a Ph.D. in HCI in 2001.  Both during and subsequent to my Ph.D. term, I worked as a research assistant within the Department of Computer Science at Glasgow University.


Research Interests

My research activities cover many aspects of human computer interaction.  Most recently I have been focussing on trust in e-Commerce and on mobile human computer interaction design and associated evaluation techniques. I have been investigating novel approaches to participatory design involving users who are vulnerable or who have special needs.  I have a keen interest in using mobile technologies in novel capacities (e.g., as assistive devices) and in designing novel interaction techniques for mobile technologies.  I have an ongoing research interest in audio feedback design and how we can use audio feedback to enhance or completely replace visual-based I/O, especially in non-standard contexts of use (e.g., motor racing).  I have an interest in decision support systems.  My research is very practical in nature, and can be applied across a range of domains, including but not limited to motorsport, healthcare, education, smart cities, etc.


Teaching Activity

I oversee and coordinate all HCI-related teaching here at Aston, having designed all HCI-related modules across all programmes/levels to integrate and thus provide a cohesive learning experience.  The modules which I lead are:


  • CS3040: Mobile Design & Development (20-credit, final-year module, designed and co-taught with Dr Beaumont)

  • CS4040: Mobile Design & Development (15-credit, MEng module, designed and co-taught with Dr Beaumont)

  • CS3410: Interaction Design (10-credit, final-year module, designed and teach)

  • DC3410: Interaction Design (10-credit, degree apprenticeship distance learning module, designed and teach)
  • CS4650: Interaction Design (15-credit, MSc module, designed and teach)

  • CS4655: Advanced HCI (15-credit, MSc module, designed and teach)

  • CS4665: Human Computer Interaction (15-credit, MSc module, designed and teach for both CS and Product Design programmes)

  • GGE6800: User Centred Design (PhD module, Univeristy of New Brunswick, Canada, designed and teach on demand)


Modules which I designed but which are now led by colleagues include:


  • CS2260: Human Computer Interaction (10-credit, second-year module, designed the module which I taught and now assist (in a limited capacity) in the teaching of with Dr Lilit Hakobyan) 

  • DC2260: Human Computer Interaction (10-credit, degree apprenticeship, distance learning module, designed the module which I taught but is now taught by Dr Lilit Hakobyan)



  • B.Sc. with First Class Honours in Software Engineering, Glasgow University, Scotland, 1996

  • Ph.D. in Human Computer Interaction, Glasgow University, Scotland, 2001

  • Diploma in University Teaching, University of New Brunswick, Canada, 2006


  • 2021 – current: Professor of Human Computer Interaction, Head of Department (Computer Science) and Director of the Aston Interactive Media (AIM) Lab, School of Engineering & Physical Sciences, Aston University
  • 2015 – 2021: Reader and Director of the Aston Interactive Media (AIM) Lab, School of Engineering & Physical Sciences, Aston University
  • 2012 – 2015: Senior Lecturer and Director of the Aston Interactive Media (AIM) Lab, School of Engineering & Applied Science, Aston University

  • 2009 – 2012: Lecturer and Director of the Aston Interactive Media (AIM) Lab, School of Engineering & Applied Science, Aston University
  • 2002 – 2009: Research Officer and Mobile HCI Lab Manager, National Research Council of Canada

  • 1996 – 2002: Research Assistant, Department of Computer Science, Glasgow University

Professional/editorial offices

Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Mobile HCI (IJMHCI)the only journal dedicated to the design and evaluation of the user interface aspects of mobile technologies

PhD Supervision

Current Ph.D Supervision
  • Semui Salawu: Detection and Prevention of Cyberbullying on Online Social Networks (co-supervisor, Yulan He (Warwick University))
  • Muhammad Zaman: Supporting Joint Decision Making to Enhance Early Cochlear Implantation in Children with Higher Degrees of Hearing Loss (working title) (co-supervisor Amanda Hall (LHS))
Graduated Ph.D. Students
  • Nicholas Powell (2018): Performance-Based Audio Feedback for Accelerated Skills Acquisition in Motorsport/Driver Training (associate supervisor, Harry Goldingay)
  • Lilit Hakobyan (2016): Self-Monitoring, Ability-Reactive Technology for Age-Related Macular Degeneration (associate supervisors Dympna O’Sullivan (City University, London) & Rachel Shaw (LHS))
  • Victoria Lush (2014): Visualisation of Quality Information for Geospatial and Remote Sensing Data (associate supervisor, Lucy Bastin)
  • Will Plant (2013): Effective Search for Colour Images (co-supervisor Ian Nabney)
  • Linda Duffett-Leger (2011): Developing a Web-Based Approach for Promoting Cervical Health in Young Women [University of New Brunswick, Canada] (co-supervisor B. Paterson)

I have also supervised to completion six 2-year, Masters by research students at the University of New Brunswick.

I am always interested to hear from well-qualified students who are dedicated to pursuing a Ph.D. in a research area aligned with my interests.  Students with strong backgrounds in computer science, human-computer interaction, and/or psychology and who have empathy with users and excellent communication skills are encouraged to contact me.  In particular, I would be very keen to hear from prospective students or post-docs who have an interest in all aspects of research associated with the design, delivery, and evaluation of mobile assistive technologies and/or innovative interaction with mobile technology.


I assume a number of roles of responsibilty within Aston, some of which are listed below:

  • Head of Department, Computer Science
  • I have a passion for human subject research ethics and am the Chair of the Ethics Committee for the School of Engineering & Physical Sciences (July 2019 to present) having previously served in various advisory roles related to ethics.
  • I am the Director of the Aston Interactive Media (AIM) Lab.
  • I lead the Human Computer Interaction (HCI) Research Group.
  • I am committed to a fair workplace and from Sept 2017 to July 2019 served as Chair/Deputy Chair of the Equality and Diversity Working Group (EDWG) for the School of Engineering & Applied Science.
  • I am a member of the Computer Science Management Team.
  • I am a member of the Computer Science Programme Committee.
  • I am committed to the welfare of students and am honoured to serve as a Senior Tutor for students in the School of Engineering & Applied Science.
  • I am co-PI and management team member of the ALIVE Lab, a multidisiplinary lab for immersive virtual environments.


I deliver consultancy related to Human Computer Interaction - including software usability evaluation and bespoke training - to companies within the West Midlands region and beyond. If you are interested in discussing consultancy needs in this area, please contact me.

Education/Academic qualification

PG Dip, University of New Brunswick

Award Date: 1 Dec 2006

PhD, University of Glasgow

Award Date: 1 Feb 2001

BSc, University of Glasgow

Award Date: 1 Jul 1996

External positions

Adjunct Professor (Honorary), University of New Brunswick


  • Q Science (General)
  • Computer Science
  • Human Computer Interaction
  • Mobile Devices
  • Innovative Interaction Technologies


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