• Associate Professor, Industrial & Systems Engineering
  • Affiliated Faculty, Environmental & Occupational Health
  • Phone: 979-458-2340
  • FAX: 979-458-2340
  • Email: tferris@tamu.edu
  • Office: ETB 4081
Thomas Ferris

Educational Background

  • Ph.D., Industrial & Operations Engineering (Cognitive Ergonomics), University of Michigan - 2010

Research Interests

  • Dr. Thomas Ferris' research interests are in human factors and cognitive ergonomics, and can be described as the study of cognition in human-machine engineered systems. His primary focus involves human information processing and design to support attention and interruption management. In particular, he investigates novel interface design techniques, employing alternative display modalities such as the sense of touch. Other research interests include human error, decision making under time pressure and human-automation interaction. He has interest and experience in applying his research to the domains of medicine (anesthesiology), military operations (command and control, UV control and operations), aviation (cockpit automation and air traffic control) and ground transportation.

Awards & Honors

  • Distinguished Achievement Award, University of Michigan College of Engineering, 2010
  • World Haptics ’09 Award for Best Paper in Haptics Science, 2009
  • HFES Student Member with Honors recognition, 2009
  • National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship, 2005 - 2008
  • HFES Alphonse Chapanis Best Student Paper Award, 2007
  • First place, Oral presentation competition, UM Engineering Grad Symposium, 2007 and 2009
  • Rackham Graduate School Conference Travel Grant, 2006, 2007 and 2009
  • Dwight F. Benton Departmental Fellowship (U of Michigan IOE Department), 2004 - 2005
  • Valedictorian of graduating engineering class, University of Iowa, December 2003
  • Outstanding Senior Award, University of Iowa College of Engineering, 2003
  • Presidential Scholar, University of Iowa, 1999 - 2003
  • President’s List, University of Iowa, 7 semesters, 1999 - 2003
  • College of Engineering’s Dean’s List, University of Iowa, 8 semesters, 1999 - 2003
  • Golden Key Scholar, and Golden Key Scholarship Winner, 2001

Selected Publications

  • Ferris, T. and Sarter, N. (2011). Continuously-informing vibrotactile displays in support of attention management and multitasking in Anesthesiology. Human Factors, 53(6), 600-611. Runner up, 2011 Human Factors Prize
  • Ferris, T. and Sarter, N. (2010). When content matters: The role of processing code in tactile display design. IEEE: Transactions on Haptics, 3(3), 199-210.
  • Hameed, S., Ferris, T., Jayaraman, S., and Sarter, N. (2009). Using informative peripheral visual and tactile cues to support task and interruption management. Human Factors, 51 (2), 126-135.
  • Ferris, T. and Sarter, N. (2008). Crossmodal links among vision, audition, and touch in complex environments. Human Factors, 50 (1), 17-26. 135.
  • Ferris, T. and Shepley, M. (invited contribution, in preparation). Design considerations for a human-centered incubation system. To be submitted to Journal of Perinatology.
  • Ferris, T. and Sarter, N. (in preparation). Peripheral visual and spatialized vibrotactile cues support attention management in UAV surveillance operations. To be submitted to Human Factors.
  • Ferris, T., Sarter, N., and Wickens, C. D. (2010). Cockpit automation: Still struggling to catch up…. In E. Salas, T. Allard, and D. Maurino (Eds.) Human Factors in Aviation (2nd edition). Elsevier Science Publishers.