Call: Free online Friday May 6: Human Factors and VR Training with Professor Bob Stone

Call for Participation

Human Factors and VR Training with Professor Bob Stone
An event by Immerse Australia
Friday, May 6, 2022
Livestream available via link below at 5.30pm AEST, 3.30pm AWST [8:30am in London]
If you’re based in Brisbane there will also be an in-person meetup and networking event to watch the livestream: Brisbane Meetup: 5.00pm to 7.00pm AEST
Google Calendar / ICS
[Source: ]

Link for Livestream via Teams:
Venue for Brisbane Meetup: Compono Pty Ltd, Level 3, 32 Duncan St, Fortitude Valley, QLD
Cost: Free

The study of Human factors is concerned with understanding human capabilities, and then applying this knowledge to the design of equipment, tools, systems, and processes of work, and in our case, VR Training. Understanding these factors can help us to create effective, usable training that is a better fit for more people.

Some of the topics that will be covered

  • Definition of Human Factors including brief history
  • The importance of Human Factors and VR (early NASA Ames R&D)
  • VR for Surgical Skills Training – an important early Human Factors experience – lessons learned
  • VR and Defence Systems Training – early Human Factors experiences and lessons learned (and the value of considering Mixed Realty solutions)
  • Human Factors – key approaches and standards
  • Example – Mixed Reality Medical Emergency Response Team (MERT) Trainer


Professor Bob Stone is a Human Factors specialist and a 35-year “veteran” of the international Virtual, Augmented and Mixed Reality community. He currently holds the position of Emeritus Professor in eXtended Realities (XR) and Human Factors at the University of Birmingham.

In 1993, whilst researching VR and robotics at the UK’s National Advanced Robotics Centre, Bob established the world’s first industrial VR team, launching a countrywide collaborative VR initiative, wholly funded by industries large and small and across may sectors, including aerospace, nuclear, defence, retail and healthcare. To support the importance and value of Human Factors in simulation and XR-based training, Bob’s research has taken him from Royal Navy vessels conducting close-range weapons and missile trials to underwater operations onboard submarines and rescue submersibles; and from search-and-rescue helicopter missions to operating theatres and medical units throughout the UK, US and South Africa.

Between 2003 and 2012, Bob and his University Team played a major role in the UK’s Human Factors Integration Defence Technology Centre programme. Here his team developed a huge portfolio of VR concept capability demonstrators, in subjects as diverse as submarine safety and rescue training, IED awareness for Middle East village patrols, vehicle and manipulator control training for EOD robotics, the design and evaluation of future naval command stations and procedural trauma training for defence medics.

Today Bob works closely with the Royal Centre for Defence Medicine and various UK hospitals, researching the use of VR and MR for physical and mental health restoration and rehabilitation, and for the training of future military Medical Emergency Response Teams (MERTs). He also has a passion for the Virtual Heritage arena, exploiting VR and AR to help make invisible rural and oceanic historic sites visible once again, particularly around the Plymouth area where he was born and bred.

Bob is a Fellow of the UK’s Chartered Institute of Ergonomics & Human Factors, a Chartered Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society and an ACM Siggraph Pioneer. Bob and his Team have received numerous awards over the past 30 years, including five from the Chartered Institute of Ergonomics & Human Factors, most recently the Institute’s 2020 Innovation Award for their Mixed Reality MERT training work. In 2011, he was awarded the Ministry of Defence Chief Scientific Advisor’s Commendation for his contributions to Defence Science & Technology.

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