Jian Chen

Supervisors: Dr Jason Forte, Prof Robert Reeve

"I am a PhD student in the Numerical Cognition Lab at MSPS since September 2014, I completed my master's degree at Tsinghua University and my undergraduate at Suzhou University of Science and Technology, China.

My PhD project is about the neural mechanisms of subitizing and counting, which are two important concepts in enumeration. Subitizing refers to a rapid and accurate enumeration of small number of visual items (usually less than 4), such process is traditionally thought to be attention independent. On the contrary, counting requires attention and usually is error-prone. A key question is that, are different mechanisms sub-serving subitizing and counting? or do they rely on a single mechanism? To address this question, the key role of attention in subitizing and counting is examined. Measurements include behavioral performance, eye movements, as well as EEG. This project aims to contribute to our understanding of enumeration. The project is supervised by Dr. Jason Forte and A/P Robert Reeve.

Besides the PhD project, I also have a broad research interest in psychology: attention and consciousness, amusia, theory of mind, and so on. I have publications on these topics and have several projects in hand. I also have passion on popularization of science, as I believe it can help real people and can educate the public, especially in mental health. Recently, my book on the topic of schizophrenia is out in China (July 2018). This book is translated from the well-known Surviving Schizophrenia: A Family Manual and aims to help the patients and family members in mainland of China.

In leisure time, I enjoy reading, coding, hiking and photography. I am also a big fan of aviation, jet engines, heavy rockets, and astronomy (aesthetic perspective). "