Archived News


Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on August 18, 2020

Today, Prof. Roberts along with her collaborator, Prof. Jennifer McDermott, presented results from their interdisciplinary research project entitled 'ADHD and Teen Driving' to the AAA Northeast Safe Behind the Wheel Webinar. You can see a video of the webinar here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on July 19, 2020

Today, Yalda Ebadi successfully defended her PhD dissertation!

Congratulations Yalda! We look forward to all of the amazing work you will do as a newly minted PhD!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on May 5, 2020

Today, Fangda Zhang received a Dissertation Research Grant from the UMass Graduate School! Fangda will use the $1000 to assist in funding his dissertation research.



Congratulations Fangda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on April 14, 2020

Today, Prof. Roberts was featured in TRB's "Tell Us Your Story" about her experience in transportation. You can find her comments here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on April 1, 2020

Today, Prof. Roberts research proposal, with Prof. McDermott in Psychology, entitled "Attention and Adaptation of Teen Drivers with ADHD to Driving Automation Systems" that was submitted to the SaferSim University Transportation Center was selected for funding!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on January 29, 2020

Today, Yalda Ebadi received the Helene M. Overly Memorial/Ann Hershfang Memorial Scholarship from WTS Boston.



Congratulations Yalda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on January 13, 2020

Today, Fangda Zhang presented his research poster entitled "Perceptions of automated driver assistance systems (ADAS): Using text mining to uncover insights from drivers with real-world ADAS experience" at the 2020 TRB Annual Meeting in DC, which was held from January 12-16.



Congratulations Fangda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on November 13, 2019

Today, Prof. Roberts presented her research and served on a panel during the Future of Work Listening Session in Framingham, MA. Prof. Roberts discussed the results of her NSF Workshop during the listening session.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on November 7, 2019

Today, Yalda Ebadi passed her preliminary proposal defense. Congratulations Yalda!


Yalda will move on to the next stage of the PhD process and will begin to collect and analyze data for her dissertation.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on October 30, 2019

Today, Fangda Zhang presented his poster entitled "A Simulator Study on Drivers’ Response and Perception Towards Vehicle Cyberattacks" at the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting. You can read more about the research paper here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on October 16, 2019

Today, Prof. Roberts received the Stephanie Binder Young Professional Award from the Surface Transportation Technical Group of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES). You can find out more here.

Also, Fangda Zhang's paper entitled "Perceptions of automated driver assistance systems (ADAS): Using text mining to uncover insights from drivers with real-world ADAS experience" was accepted for presentation at the 2020 Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting.

Congratulations Prof. Roberts and Fangda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on October 7, 2019

Prof. Roberts research proposal, with PI Eric Gonzales in Civil Engineering, entitled "The Future of the Curb" was selected for funding by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on September 4, 2019

Today, Prof. Roberts presented her research on distracted driving (both detection and mitigation techniques) during the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety's Workshop on the Effectiveness of Countermeasures Against Distracted Driving in Los Angeles.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on August 23, 2019

Prof. Roberts presented her research on driving automation systems in Europe this week! The first presentation was on August 19 at the Safer Vehicle and Traffic Safety Centre at Chalmers in Gothenburg, Sweden and the second presentation was on August 23 at the University of Leeds in Leeds, England.

We are all glad to see our work being dissimenated broadly to other parts of the world!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on August 2, 2019

Today, Aliecia Bottali presented her poster describing her summer REU project on "Does Cautious Driving help Prepare you for Cybersecurity Emergencies?".



Alex Partridge presented his poster for his REU project entitled "Do Drivers React Safely to Vehicle Cyberattacks?".




Both Alex and Aliecia has provided the foundation for great research for us to pursue in the future and we wish them the best of luck as they continue on the path towards their engineering degrees!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on July 30, 2019

Today, Fangda Zhang passed his qualifying exam. Congratulations Fangda!


Fangda will move on to the next stage of the PhD process and will begin to solidify his dissertation on automated driving systems.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on July 29, 2019

Today, Shashank Mehrotra passed his qualifying exam. Congratulations Shashank!


Shashank will move on to the next stage of the PhD process and will begin to solidify his dissertation on young drivers.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on July 20, 2019

Today, Fangda Zhang and Shashank Mehrotra's journal article entitled "Driving distracted with friends: Effect of passengers and driver distraction on young drivers’ behavior" was accepted for publication in Accident Analysis & Prevention!


Congratulations Fangda and Shashank!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on June 25, 2019

Today, Fangda Zhang presented his poster entitled "A Survey Study Measuring People's Preferences Towards Automated and Non-automated Ridesplitting" at the 10th International Driving Symposium (DA2019).


Congratulations Fangda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on June 10, 2019

Prof. Roberts and Yalda Ebadi were featured in a UMass Video about their collaborative work with the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences that examines how young adults with ADHD interact with technology while driving!

You can find out more about the project here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on May 10, 2019

Today, Shashank Mehrotra graduated with his MS in Industrial Engineering. Congratulations Shashank!

Shashank has done great work in the lab thus far and we are excited to have him continue on for his PhD!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on May 10, 2019

Yalda Ebadi will receive honorable mention in the Honda Outstanding Student Paper Award during the Driving Assessment Conference for her paper entitled "Can Virtual Reality Headsets be Used to Measure Accurately Drivers’ Anticipatory Behaviors?". Congratulations Yalda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on May 6, 2019

Fangda Zhang's paper entitled "What Would You Do if Your Vehicle was Hacked?: Observation and Interview of Drivers Who Experience Vehicle Cyberattacks" was accepted for presentation at the 2019 Human Factors Annual Meeting. Congratulations Fangda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on March 7, 2019

Prof. Roberts research proposal entitled "Training to Improve Situational Awareness Regarding Operational Design Domain in Driving Automation Systems" that was submitted to the SaferSim University Transportation Center was selected for funding!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on February 25, 2019

Yalda Ebadi's paper entitled "Impact of Cognitive Distractions on Drivers’ Hazard Anticipation Behavior in Complex Scenarios" was accepted for publication in the Transportation Research Record. Congratulations Yalda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on February 7, 2019

Fangda Zhang's paper entitled "A Survey Study Measuring People's Preferences Towards Automated and Non-automated Ridesplitting" was accepted for presentation at the 2019 Driving Assessment Conference. Congratulations Fangda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on January 18, 2019

Both Yalda Ebadi and Prof. Roberts presented their research at the 2019 TRB Annual Meeting in DC, which was held from January 13-17. Yalda's poster was entitled "Impact of Cognitive Distraction on Drivers' Hazard Anticipation Behavior in Complex Scenarios".


For her work on another paper entitled "Can Virtual Reality Headsets Be Used to Measure Accurately Drivers’ Hazard Anticipation Performance: The Promise of VR Headsets", Yalda, along with her 4 co-authors, won the award for best paper in the AND30 Committee Meeting! You can find out more about it here.


Prof. Roberts presented her work on two projects that addressed "Driver's Behavior in Unexpected Vehicle Situations". Prof. Roberts won the award for best poster presentation!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on November 26, 2018

Today, Federico Vaca, MD, MPH from Yale University visited campus to give a presentation entitled "The Complexity of Factors Influencing the Risk of Crash Injury in Adolescents and Young Adults" for the Tay Gavin Erickson Lecture Series.


His presentation highlighted the importance of research examining disparities in teenage driving behavior and gets us excited about future research opportunities!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on November 18, 2018

Today, Yalda Ebadi presented her poster entitled "Observing Transfer of Control Behavior in Driving Automation Systems for Different Road Geometries" at the SaferSim Posium.


For the second time in a row, Yalda won the award for best poster presentation!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on October 25, 2018

Prof. Roberts was featured in a UMass Video about her work on automated vehicles!

You can see it here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on October 7, 2018

Yalda Ebadi's paper entitled "Impact of Cognitive Distractions on Drivers’ Hazard Anticipation Behavior in Complex Scenarios" was accepted for presentation at the 2019 Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting. Congratulations Yalda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on October 1, 2018

Today, Fangda Zhang presented his poster entitled "Examining the Effect of Social Influence on Young Drivers’ Behavior" at the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting.


Yalda Ebadi and Shashank Mehrotra also gave podium presentations at the Annual Meeting.


Congratulations to all!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on August 3, 2018

Today, Sakaiza Rasolofomanana Rajery presented her poster describing her summer research project on "The Effect of Socioeconomic Background on Adolescents' Driving Behavior".


Sakaiza has provided the foundation for great research for us to pursue in the future and we wish her the best as she starts her Junior Year at Smith College!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on July 9, 2018

Today, Prof. Roberts gave a presentation describing her NSF project on the Human Factors of Vehicle Cybersecurity during the Cybersecurity Breakout Session at the Automated Vehicle Symposium.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on June 4, 2018

Today, Yalda Ebadi successfully passed her PhD Qualifying Exam. Congratulations Yalda!

Yalda will move on to the next stage of the PhD process and will begin to solidify her dissertation research experiment.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on May 29, 2018

Today, Prof. Roberts served on a panel to discuss current research as it relates to Human Factors Needs for Autonomous Vehicles. You can find out more about it here or here.

Her comments from the panel were featured in the Daily Hampshire Gazette and on WWLP Channel 22 News.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on May 21, 2018

Shashank Mehrotra successfully defended his MS thesis today, entitled "Evaluation and Validation of Distraction Detection Algorithms on Multiple Data Sources". Congratulations Shashank!

Shashank has done great work in the lab thus far and he is excited to start his summer internship at IBM Research in New York. We are excited to have him return to UMass in the Fall to begin his PhD!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on May 11, 2018

Fangda Zhang graduated with his MS in Mechanical Engineering. Congratulations Fangda!

Fangda has done great work in the lab thus far and we are excited to have him continue on for his PhD!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on April 9, 2018

Prof. Roberts was featured in a UMass Women in Science Video!

You can see it here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on April 6, 2018

We just wrapped up our workshop "Understanding Emerging Technologies, Racial Equity, and the Future of Work". You can read the news release here or you can find out more about the workshop here.

Thanks to my collaborators Laurel Smith-Doerr, Henry Renski, Anna Branch, and Shlomo Zilberstein for such great work!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on April 4, 2018

Prof. Roberts research proposal, with co-PI Jennifer McDermott in Psychology, entitled "Discerning Risk and Individual Variation in Driving Behavior among Young Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)" was selected for funding through the UMass Institute of Diversity Sciences! You can find out more about the awards here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on April 3, 2018

Two papers submitted by Shashank Mehrotra and Fangda Zhang were accepted for presentation at the 2018 Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting.

Congratulations Shashank and Fangda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on March 29, 2018

Mechanical and Industrial Engineering students selected Professor Roberts as the Industrial Engineering Faculty of the Year!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on March 27, 2018

Prof. Roberts research proposal entitled "Training and Feedback Systems to Improve Vehicle Cybersecurity" was selected for funding by NSF! You can find out more about the project here or read the press release here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on March 20, 2018

Prof. Roberts research proposal, with co-PI Philip Thomas in Computer Science, entitled "Improving Warning Systems of Driving Automation Systems through Reinforcement Learning" was selected for funding through the UMass Armstrong Fund for Science! You can read the press releases here and here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on March 7, 2018

Prof. Roberts was selected as one of six CRF Family Research Scholars for 2018-2019! You can read the news release here.

Through the Scholars Program, Prof. Roberts will participate in a year long faculty seminar that will aid in the submission of a large grant proposal focused on teenage driving.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on February 26, 2018

Prof. Roberts research proposal entitled "Development and Testing of an In-Vehicle Interface for Use in Automated Driving Contexts" that was submitted to the SaferSim University Transportation Center was selected for funding!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on February 12, 2018

Fangda Zhang and Yalda Ebadi, both PhD students, presented their research at the Safer-Sim Poisum in Orlando Florida on February 6. Yalda won the prize for best poster presentation!

Congratulations Yalda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on January 2, 2018

Fangda Zhang, PhD student, was selected as one of 50 Traffic Safety Scholars and received a scholarship to attend the 2018 Lifesavers Conference on Highway Safety Priorities. You can read the press release here.

Congratulations Fangda!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on November 20, 2017

We are always recruiting participants for driving simulator studies! Experiments lasts between 1 and 1.5 hours and participants are compensated around $20 an hour. You can sign up here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on October 27, 2017

Today, Prof. Roberts gave a presentation describing her dissertation research during the INFORMS Student Chapter Speaker Series.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on October 13, 2017

Shashank Mehrotra's research on text mining of the NHTSA complaint database has been accepted for presentation at the 2018 Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting. Congratulations Shashank!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on October 13, 2017

Prof. Roberts was awarded $1000 through the MSP (Massachusetts Society of Professors) Research Fund to assist in pursuing professional development activities.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on September 12, 2017

Prof. Roberts was invited to present during the CCubed Conference on research related to the importance of social influence for young drivers.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on August 3, 2017

Massachusetts Secretary of Transportation, Stephanie Pollack, visited the HPL driving simulator. You can see her tweet here or the Mass DOT's Communication Director's tweet here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on June 16, 2017

Prof. Roberts provided input for a WalletHub article on teenage driving. You can find her comments here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on May 31, 2017

The Human Performance Laboratory has a new driving simulator, which will allow us to explore new territory with respect to the interaction between drivers, their vehicle, and the roadway. The new driving simulator has a full Ford Fusion Cab, a 330 degree field of view, and a 17 inch touch screen center stack.


Please email Prof. Roberts if you are interested in working with the new driving simulator.

Posted by Shannon C. Robertson May 15, 2017

On May 12, Rose Kelly graduated with her BS in Industrial Engineering. Congratulations Rose!

Rose has done some great work in the Group since her arrival in January 2017. We wish you the best of luck in your new career at UTC!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on April 21, 2017

On April 21, Shashank Mehrotra will be presenting his work on the use of text mining to uncover key themes from NHTSA data at the HFES New England Chapter Student Conference.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on March 6, 2017

On March 24 from 12:30 to 2 PM, Prof. Roberts will gave a presentation describing her dissertation research during the CSSI (Computational Social Science Institute) Seminar Series. The presentation will be in CS 150/151.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on March 3, 2017

Prof. Roberts was awarded $1000 through the MSP (Massachusetts Society of Professors) Research Fund to assist in conducting exploratory research with students.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on February 6, 2017

Our paper on the effect of glance sequence on glance duration was just published in PLOS ONE! You can read the article here.

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on December 28, 2016

Shashank Mehrotra, MS student, was selected as one of 41 Traffic Safety Scholars and received a scholarship to attend the 2017 Lifesavers Conference on Highway Safety Priorities.

Congratulations Shashank!

Posted by Shannon C. Roberts on November 7, 2016

Prof. Roberts will gave a presentation describing her dissertation research during the MIE seminar series.

Posted by Shannon C Roberts on September 1, 2016

Prof. Shannon C. Roberts has arrived on the UMass campus!