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Usability and EyeTracking Laboratory

Think of all the ways that you will use your eyes today! You might drive a car. You might read a magazine. You might surf the Internet or search the aisles of a grocery store or play a video game or complete a training exercise or watch a movie or look at pictures on your mobile device. We use our eyes almost constantly, and understanding how we use them has become an extremely important consideration in research and design.

The Engineering Psychology’s Eye Tracking/ Usability laboratory provides cadets with four state-of-the-art eye tracking systems. Eye tracking data is collected using either mobile, desktop mounted, or head mounted eye tracker connected to a computer. While there are many different types of non-intrusive eye trackers, they generally include two common components a light source and a camera. The light source (usually infrared) is directed towards the eye. The camera tracks the reflection of the light source along with visible ocular features such as the pupil. This data is used to extrapolate the rotation of the eye and ultimately the direction of gaze. Additional information such as blink frequency and changes in pupil diameter are also detected by the eye tracker.

The Engineering Psychology’s Eye Tracking/ Usability laboratory houses four Applied Sciences Laboratory mobile eye- trackers, two FaceLab desktop mounted eye trackers, one EyeLink II head mounted eye tracker, Ascension finger sensors, the Innsport Motion Capture System, eight Vicon Nexus cameras, and a desktop force plate. Explore this lab!

Currently, the Engineering Psychology Department is using the Motion Monitor System and Toolbox to track right eye, left eye, 3D gaze, and cyclopean eye vectors of participants. In this study, researchers are studying how individuals eye positions and eye movement varies while reading, listening, and typing different sentences. Along with eye tracking, researchers are using the desktop mounted forceplate and Ascension finger sensors to also detect position and movement of hands and fingers.

This image shows the visual systems in the brain. Notice the red and green sections of the eye and optic nerves and how the green - or left - side of both eyes tracks to the left hemisphere of the brain and the red - or right - side of both eyes tracks to the right hemisphere of the brain.