A/Prof. Bernd ROHRMANN     Department of Psychology, University of Melbourne     January 2009

Principal research areas:

Environmental psychology, applied social psychology, and research methodology; including: decision processes, risk issues, hazards and safety, residential behavior, environmental stress (e.g., noise), music soundscapes, appraisal of simulated images of environments, teaching quality, survey methods, and structural frameworks.

Selected suggestions for thesis topics:

Appraisal of Internet/WWW-based approaches to risk communication
        <assessing the utility of websites re hazards such as fires, floods, storms>
The effects of verbal versus visual information on disaster preparedness
        <looking at the impacts on brochures, videos, websites>
The influence of cultural background and profession on risk attitudes
        <comparing pertinent groups of people, utilizing risk questionnaires>
Relation and interaction between risk orientations and actual risk-taking
        <measuring and analysing correlation b/w risk attitudes and behaviors>
The influence of decision-making styles in dealing with risks
        <applying several pertinent scales; developing a model>
Validity of computer-simulations of environments in assessment tasks
        <using 'virtual reality' presentations of real built or natural env's>
The influence of beliefs and motivations on gambling behavior
        <e.g., perceived chances; looking at regular &  problem gambling>
Comparison of scaling approaches (CA/FA/MDS) to hazard perception
        <to be done for a set of hazards investigated previously>
Empirical evaluation of the usefulness of decision-aiding systems
        <employing some existing DAS software>
Sign-posting and way-finding on a university campus
        <How are way-finding problems solved? Impacts of sign-posting?>
The relevance of environmental quality for residential choice
        <incl. a comparison to BR's respective research in Germany>
Perception and evaluation of 'quietness' vs 'noiseness' in public places
        <e.g., trains, offices, restaurants, pubs, shopping venues, waiting rooms>
Preferred sound levels for different types of music
        <considering personal factors (preferences) and situation/context (venue)>
Customer response to music & messages in telephone interactions
        <do people like it or not, and why so; interference caused>
Cross-cultural differences in expressing delight and praise
        <using a set of situations, a set of words, and several nationalities>
The psychological functions of 'virtual' relationships
        <looking at internet-based interactions between two people>
Allocation of personal time: intentions and behaviors
        <decision-making about time in occupational & private contexts>
Psychometric impacts of questionnaire formats in WWW-based surveys
        <comparing "paper-and-pencil" surveys with data collection via the internet>
Psychological factors of responses to course evaluation surveys
        <incl. re-analyses of existing data sets> 

Further suggestions are welcome if they fit into my research areas - feel free to contact me.

Important message:

Because of my due retirement, my supervision of students will cease in 2009. However, I may be available for co-supervision

BR 31-01-09