With a keen interest in psychology and technology, Chris has found the perfect balance as he completes his PhD with the Human Centred Computing Research Group.
“As a big consumer of technology, I love the idea of being able to help influence and shape the development of better and more useful technology,” said Chris.
“My research involves interactive studies to observe how users make relevance judgments of online material, and collect a range of signals such as eye movements or heart rate activity. This allows me to design algorithms that can analyse the data and automatically detect when user’s find something of significance to them – even if they aren’t explicitly aware of it. Ultimately my goal is to help users navigate the vast amounts of data out there and find what’s important to them by leveraging off the body’s more subtle or unconscious cues” explains Chris.
Having the opportunity to engage in research projects as an undergraduate, Chris has been able to foster strong working relationships giving him the confidence and interest in pursuing higher degree research.
“Across the university and with industry partnerships there’s a lot of people who are well respected within the field, so it’s great to work alongside them on current issues.”
“Across the university and with industry partnerships there are a lot of people who are well respected within the field, so it’s great to work alongside them on current issues”, said Chris.
While completing his PhD, Chris is working as a cyber security analyst with the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC). His placement is aligned with his current studies with his research skills, critical thinking, communication and personal responsibility a driving factor in his workplace success.
“Understanding human aspects of technology is an important part of cyber security, therefore the skills and knowledge that I build as part of my studies are directly relevant to my work,” said Chris.
As he looks to the future Chris is confident he has found his passion, and his PhD research has given him the skills necessary to chase it.
“I think my PhD has been an amazing opportunity to hone my technical skills and network with other researchers and industry contacts. I’ve been lucky enough to be involved in a range of projects that have opened up potential career pathways for the future,” said Chris.
Chris’ advice on how best to balance work and study, “Don’t take on too much, develop a routine and then stick to it as much as possible.” Learn more about studying a PhD at the ANU College of Engineering, Computing and Cybernetics.