Dr Mel McKendrick


    Assistant Professor

    Having completed an MA (Hons) Psychology (1st class) at the University of Glasgow in 2006, I worked as a Research Assistant in Higher Education research before joining the University of Strathclyde in 2007 where I completed an MRes and PhD under the supervision of Dr Stephen Butler and Professor Madeleine Grealy. Whilst completing my PhD I worked as a Research Assistant (2011-12) on a range of commercial eye tracking projects before beginning my post docs as a Research Associate (2012-13) and Research Fellow (2013-14) on the EC FP7 funded project 'Human Factors in Risk-Based Ship Design Methodology' which involved the design, implementation and analysis of eye-tracking and virtual reality experiments in a maritime context. I coordinated the University of Glasgow Psychology Access course from 2008-2010 and designed and delivered the entire Psychology curriculum for the International Study centre, based at The University of Strathclyde in 2014. I joined Heriot-Watt University in 2014 as an Assistant Professor.


    I am the Course Coordinator for two Level 2 undergraduate courses: Human Development & Intelligence and Research Methods & Analysis and for one level 3 course: Social Cognition and Personality. I am also currently supervising 6 Honours dissertation students on projects themed around Autistic Spectrum Disorders.


    I have two main research stream interests. The first of these includes social cognition, face processing and attention. Stemming from my PhD research in which I used eye tracking to investigate attention and cognitions in response to facial expressions and social gestures, I am also interested in developing methods to facilitate social confidence. My second primary research interest is in human factors testing, cognitive performance and attention in engineering contexts including naval architecture, energy, defence and medical sectors. I am particularly interested in operator performance and in optimising interface design and am a member of the Rising Star programme at the University of Strathclyde Enterprise Hub, where I am developing a suite of training products and commercial eye-tracking services.

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    Edinburgh Campus
    Room G5
    Mary Burton Building
    +44 (0) 131 451 3550

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