Adam Larson, Ph.D.

Adam Larson, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Psychology
Year started at UF: 2013
Contact Information
Office Location: 200 Howard St Room H
Telephone: 419-434-5817
B.S., Psychology, Iowa State University, 2006
M.S., Psychology, Kansas State University, 2010
Ph.D., Psychology, Kansas State University, 2012
  • Academic Credentials:

    Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology, Kansas State University
    Master of Science in Psychology, Kansas State University
    Bachelor of Science in Psychology with Distinction, Iowa State University


    Dr. Larson received his B.S. in Psychology with Honors from Iowa State University in 2006.  Afterwards, he attended Kansas State University and studied visual cognition with Dr. Lester Loschky.  Upon completing his Ph.D., he worked as a Post-Doctoral Research Associate at Kansas State University where he contributed to research funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Office of Naval Research (ONR).  In 2013, Dr. Larson came to the University of Findlay so that he could teach in a liberal arts setting, mentor students to become critical thinkers, and provide students with training for their future careers. 


    Research Focus
    The opening shot of a film presents the viewer with a very large visual scene containing characters performing actions in a setting.  The psychological task for the viewer is to comprehend the story, but the key unanswered question is how the viewer accomplishes this task.  Due to the design of the eye, only one specific point in the visual world can be fixated at a time.  Therefore, the viewer’s comprehension of the shot is based solely on the visual information extracted during that single eye fixation.  Likewise, the viewer’s current understanding of the shot will influence what is fixated next in the scene.  This interaction between visual perception and cognition are the emphasis of my research program.  Namely, how does visual perception lead to cognition (i.e., comprehension)?  Likewise, how does cognition influence visual perception?  In order to address these questions, I have used numerous methods which address specific research questions in the area of visual perception and cognition.  Some of these visual perception questions include: How our representation of a scene image changes over a single eye fixation?  How does our central and peripheral visual field contribute to scene categorization?  Alternatively, some of the cognition research questions include: Are eye movements sensitive to the cognitive task involved in comprehending a visual narrative?  How are comprehension, memory, and event perception influenced by the organization of a visual narrative?  My goal is to synthesize these two areas of research to develop an overarching theory of visual comprehension.

    ​Link to my Google Scholar profile:

  • ​Rouinfar, A., Agra, E., Larson, A.M., Rebello, N. S., & Loschky, L. C. (2014). Linking attentional processes and conceptual problem solving: Visual cues facilitate the automaticity of extracting relevant information frm diagrams.  Frontiers in Psychology, 5, ArtID 1094.

    Loschky, L.C., Ringer, R., Johnson, A., Larson, A.M., Neider, M., & Kramer, A. (in press).  Blur detection is unaffected by cognitive load. Visual Cognition.

    Larson, A. M., Freeman, T. E., Ringer, R. V., & Loschky, L. C. (2014).  The spatiotemporal dynamics of scene gist recognition.  Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 40(2), 471-487.

    Pannasch, S., Helmert, J.R., Hansen, B. C., Larson, A. M., & Loschky, L. C. (2014). Commonalities and differences in eye movement behavior when exploring aerial and terrestrial scenes. In M. Buchroithner, N. Prechtel & D. Burghardt (Eds.), Cartography from Pole to Pole (pp. 421-430). Berlin: Springer-Verlag

    Magliano, J. P., Loschky, L. C., Clinton, J., & Larson, A. M. (2013). Is viewing a narrative the same as reading a narrative? Differences and similarities in processing narratives across textual and visual media. In B. Miller, L. Cutting, and P. McCardle (Eds.), Unraveling the Behavioral, Neurobiological, & Genetic Components of Reading Comprehension, Baltimore, MD: Brookes Publishing Co.

    Madsen, A., Rouinfar, A., Larson, A. M., Loschky, L. C., & Rebello, N. S. (2013). Can short duration visual cues influence students’ reasoning and eye movements in physics problems?. Physical Review Special Topics-Physics Education Research, 9(2), 020104-1 - 020104-16.

    Ramkumar, P., Pannasch, S., Hansen, B. C., Larson, A. M., & Loschky, L. C. (2012). How does the brain represent visual scenes? A neuromagnetic scene categorization study. In G. Langs, I. Rish, M. Grosse-Wentrup & B. Murphy (Eds.), Machine Learning and Interpretation in Neuroimaging (Vol. 7263, pp. 93-100). Berlin: Springer.

    Madsen, A. M., Larson, A. M., Loschky, L. C., & Rebello, N. S. (2012). Differences in visual attention between those who correctly and incorrectly answer physics problems. Physical Review Special Topics-Physics Education Research, 8(1), 010122.

    Loschky, L. C., & Larson, A. M. (2010). The natural/man-made distinction is made before basic-level distinctions in scene gist processing. Visual Cognition, 18(4), 513 – 536.  

    Larson, A. M., & Loschky, L. C. (2009). The contributions of central versus peripheral vision to scene gist recognition. Journal of Vision, 9(10):6, 1-16.

    Loschky, L. C. & Larson, A. M. (2008). Localized information is needed for scene categorization, including the natural/man-made distinction.  Journal of Vision, 8(1):4, 1-9.