Research Students

Prospective Students

Make sure you also take a look the list of possible future PhD project topics. These are meant to provide a starting point for ideas and discussion of research areas I am interested in, not an ultimate list of these are the only possible projects.

I also believe it is very important that a supervisor and PhD student discuss and agree on expectations and responsibilities before embarking on a 3-year PhD project. I have tried to put my thoughts and approaches down in this Statement of Supervisory Expectations to give you an idea of my approach to research student supervision. Please read it carefully. I am not claiming this to be the one and only right approach, but this is my approach.

My current research interests are largely in computer vision, multimodal human-computer interaction (HCI), affective computing and related areas. In particular, I am interested in:

Far-infrared image showing the
skin temperature distribution on my face
  • Computer Vision:
    • Face and facial feature tracking
    • Gesture recognition (Face, body, hand)
    • Face and object recognition
    • Background subtraction, novelty detection
    • Object tracking (e.g. pedestrian detection and tracking, other vehicle tracking from within a (moving) car)
    • Driver assistance technology, e.g. scene analysis for threat assessment (traffic crossing the car’s path)
    • Thermal (far-infrared) imaging for health care applications
    • Tracking for surveillance systems
  • Affective Sensing / Computing
    • Affective state recognition using video (visible range, infrared), audio, and physiological measures (temperature, skin conductivity, ECG), in particular with applications to mental health
    • Computational behaviour analysis (social interactions, engagement, joint attention, autism spectrum disorders)
  • Multimodal human-computer interaction (HCI)
    • Audio-Video Speech Processing (AVSP) for automatic speech recognition
    • Multimodal user authentication
    • Human-robot interaction (HRI)
  • Image Processing
    • Image completion, image inpainting
  • Multimodal signal processing, in particular aspects of integrating multiple signals (aka fusion, integration)

I strongly believe that, as computer systems more and more form an integral part of our daily life, the issues of human-computer interaction and user-adaptive systems are highly important. In the past, the user had to adapt to the hardware, but the trend nowadays is clearly towards more human-like interaction through user-sensing systems. Such interaction is inherently multi-modal. Through multi-modality we achieve robustness in real-world situations.

My research interests can largely be summarised as being in vision for HCI and related signal processing areas. As the cost of camera technology is dropping, vision systems are employed in many more application areas. Fundamental to many of these is the ability to detect and track objects, and to estimate their path. Also, in real-world applications, we must be able to handle changing environmental conditions (e.g. illumination) and non-rigid objects (varying in shape, texture, and pose.

Much of my research is use-inspired and application-driven, yet I believe it is equally important to have a sound theoretical base. Currently, my work is related to applications of improved HCI technology, applications of computer vision and pattern recognition, thermal imaging for night vision and health care applications, sports science, and driver assistance technology (“Smart Cars”). A new area of research is affective computing, i.e. the ability of computer systems to sense and adapt to the affective state (mood, emotion, stress level) of a person which, for example, has applications in monitoring staff in safety-critical operations (e.g. air-traffic controllers). Such technology also has applications in health care, medicine and human performance analysis.

These are just a few examples of application areas of research in vision and multimodal HCI. If you are interested in doing research in HCI or a related area and would like to do a research project, please feel free to email me at any time. Research projects are possible at the levels of an honours degree, masters degree, or PhD degree. A list of possible future PhD project topics can be found here.

Graduate Research Student Applications

In general, applications will have to come through the appropriate UC channels, but please keep me informed of your intentions by sending me an email. For prospective graduate students (PhD, Masters), you will normally need to apply for both admission as well as a scholarship. Some useful UC webpages:

Scholarships for PhD study are unfortunately always very limited. Australian students and international students with a permanent resident status can apply for an Australian Postgraduate Award (APA) which provides a stipend for living expenses. These students also do not need to pay tuition fees as they are covered by the Australian government. Applicants from Australia or New Zealand with a first-class honours degree have generally very good chances of getting an APA scholarship.

For international applicants, please note that competition for scholarships is always very fierce and that the number of scholarships is fairly small in comparison to the number of applicants. Applicants can therefore not rely on getting a scholarship from the University of Canberra, and more generally in Australia, and should explore all avenues for getting a scholarship elsewhere as well, e.g. from their home country. The Deparment of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations of the Australian government also has a number of scholarships for Postgraduate Studies. While the Endeavour International Postgraduate Research Scholarships (EIPRS) are administered through your UC application process, other scholarships, such as the Endeavour Postgraduate Awards and region-specific scholarships, require an application directly to DEEWR. Other scholarships include the AusAID Australian Development Scholarships and the Australian Leadership Awards which may only be available to applicants from certain countries. Please note that application deadlines for these scholarships may differ from the UC application deadline.


Summer Scholars, Visiting Students and Internships

If you are interested in a summer scholar research project, a project as a visiting student (for example, to do research for a Masters project at an overseas university) or a research internship under my supervision, you should contact me by email as early as possible. In particular, overseas students should do so at least 6 months before the intended start date, as it takes that time to sort out visa issues.

Please note that projects must have a minimum length of 4-6 months full-time. Please also note that students for such projects must provide their own funding.

Current Students

  • Dinesh Kumar (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2016-present) – Co-Supervisor (Chair: Prof Dharmendra Sharma)
  • Shalini Bhatia (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2016-present) – Chair
  • David Hinwood (Honours student, UC, Canberra, 2016-present) – Chair
  • Tariq Alzyadat (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2016-present) – Co-supervisor (Chair: A/Prof Girija Chetty)
  • Farnaz Akther (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2016-present) – Co-supervisor (Chair: A/Prof Girija Chetty)
  • Padma Priya Venkataramanan (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2016-present) – Co-supervisor (Chair: A/Prof Girija Chetty)
  • Hafsa Ismail (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2014-present) – Chair
  • Shyam Sundar Rajagopalan (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2013-present) – Chair

Past Students

  • Ron Smith (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2010-present) – Co-Supervisor (Chair: Prof Keith Lyons)
  • Ramana Oruganti Venkatesh (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2012-2015) – Chair
  • Behzad Bozorgtabar (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2012-2015) – Chair
  • Jyoti Joshi (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2011-2015) – Chair
  • David Vandyke (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2011-2014) – Co-Supervisor (Chair: Prof Michael Wagner)
  • Ibrahim Radwan (PhD student, UC, Canberra, 2011-2014) – Chair
  • Emdad Hossain (Master student, UC, Canberra, 2010-2014) – Co-Supervisor (Chair: Dr Girija Chetty)
  • Anurag Sharma (PhD Student, UC, Canberra, 2010-2014) – Co-Supervisor (Chair: Prof Dharmendra Sharma)
  • Abhinav Dhall (PhD Student, ANU, Canberra, 2010-2014) – Primary Supervisor
  • Farlin Mohideen (MPhil student, ANU, Canberra, 2011-2013) – Co-Supervisor (Chair: Prof Richard Hartley)
  • Akshay Asthana (PhD Student, ANU, Canberra, 2008-2012)
  • Asim Khwaja (PhD Student, ANU, Canberra, 2007-2011)
  • Quang Anh Nguyen, (PhD Student, ANU, Canberra, 2006-2010)
  • Desmond Chik, (PhD Student, ANU, Canberra, 2006-2009),
  • Surya Prakash, (PhD Student, ANU, Canberra, 2006-2009)
  • Tim Raupach , (Masters Student, ANU, Canberra, 2006-2009)
  • Gordon McIntyre (PhD Student, ANU, Canberra, 2005-2010)
  • Jason Saragih , (PhD Student, ANU, Canberra, 2004-2008)
    Thesis: The Generative Learning and Discriminative Fitting of Linear Deformable Models
  • Akshay Asthana (Summer Scholar, Jaypee Institute of Information Technology (JIIT), Noida, India, 2006-2007)
  • Huy Tho Ho (Summer Scholar, University of Adelaide, 2006-2007)
  • Henri Kan John (Summer Scholar, Victoria University, 2006-2007)
  • Matthias Winkler (Visiting Masters Student doing his Masters Thesis, University of Applied Science Karlsruhe, Germany, 2005-2006)
  • Tobias Lott (Visiting Masters Student doing his Masters Thesis, University of Applied Sciences Konstanz, Germany, 2005-2006)
  • Arne Arnold (Visiting Masters Student doing his Masters Thesis, University of Applied Science Mannheim, Germany, 2005-2006)
  • Damitha Gunawardena (Summer Scholar, University of Adelaide, 2005-2006)
  • Akshat Bal Dikshit (Research Intern, IIT Bombay, Mumbai, India, 2005)
  • Ian Wilson (Summer Scholar, ANU, Canberra, 2004-2005)
  • Ronny Kaeding (Masters student (Diplom-Informatiker), Uni Rostock / Fraunhofer IGD, 2003-2004)
  • Karsten Wagenknecht (Masters student (Diplom-Informatiker), Uni Rostock / Fraunhofer IGD, 2002-2004)
  • Quynh Nhu “Numi” Tran (Summer Scholar, ANU, Canberra, 2000-2001)