Dr Anna Law

School of Psychology

My research seeks to understand the cognitive demands of multitasking and media-multitasking.

Multitasking involves the co-ordination of a number of diverse tasks within a limited period of time. Many everyday domestic situations require multitasking, such as cooking and shopping, and it is also essential in many jobs. Computers and smart phones have created additional opportunities for people to multitask, often for leisure or social reasons. One strand of my research investigates the cognitive demands of multitasking, including the contributions of working memory, prospective memory and spatial planning. I am also interested in factors that may impair the ability to multitask, such as cognitive ageing, autistic spectrum disorders or chronic pain. Another strand of my research focusses on the media-multitasking behaviour of students, and how this relates to academic performance and individual differences.

I am module leader for the first year module Studying Psychology, and Programme Leader for BSc Psychology.

I am also Associate Dean for Education in the Faculty of Health.

Degrees

2012, Liverpool John Moores University, United Kingdom, PG Cert in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education (Distinction)
2004, University of Aberdeen, United Kingdom, PhD in Psychology "Human adult multitasking: Developing and applying a methodology"
2000, University of Glasgow, United Kingdom, M. A. (Hons.) Psychology

Highlighted publications

Law A, Stock R. 2019. Learning approach and its relationship to type of media use and frequency of media multitasking Active Learning in Higher Education, 20 :127-138 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Seddon AL, Law AS, Adams AM, Simmons FR. 2018. Exploring the relationship between executive functions and self-reported media-multitasking in young adults Journal of Cognitive Psychology, 30 :728-742 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Moore DJ, Law A. 2017. The disruptive effects of pain on multitasking in a virtual errands task The Scandinavian Journal of Pain, 16 :29-35 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Seddon A, Law A, Adams AM, Simmons F. Individual differences in media multitasking ability: the importance of cognitive flexibility DOI Public Url

Journal article

Seddon A, Law A, Adams AM, Simmons F. 2021. Individual differences in media multitasking ability: the importance of cognitive flexibility Computers in Human Behavior Reports, 3 DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Law A, Stock R. 2019. Learning approach and its relationship to type of media use and frequency of media multitasking Active Learning in Higher Education, 20 :127-138 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Seddon AL, Law AS, Adams AM, Simmons FR. 2018. Exploring the relationship between executive functions and self-reported media-multitasking in young adults Journal of Cognitive Psychology, 30 :728-742 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Moore DJ, Law A. 2017. The disruptive effects of pain on multitasking in a virtual errands task The Scandinavian Journal of Pain, 16 :29-35 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Stock RS, Law A. 2015. Media use, learning approaches and achievement New Vistas, 1 :40-43 Public Url

Trawley SL, Law AS, Brown LA, Niven EH, Logie RH. 2014. Prospective memory in a virtual environment: Beneficial effects of cue saliency Journal of Cognitive Psychology, 26 :39-47 DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Cooper RM, Law AS, Langton SRH. 2013. Looking back at the stare-in-the-crowd effect: Staring eyes do not capture attention in visual search Journal of Vision, 13 DOI Author Url Public Url

Law AS, Trawley SL, Brown LA, Stephens AN, Logie RH. 2013. The impact of working memory load on task execution and online plan adjustment during multitasking in a virtual environment. Q J Exp Psychol (Hove), 66 :1241-1258 DOI Author Url Public Url

Logie RH, Trawley S, Law A. 2011. Multitasking: multiple, domain-specific cognitive functions in a virtual environment. Mem Cognit, 39 :1561-1574 DOI Author Url Public Url

Trawley SL, Law AS, Logie RH. 2011. Event-based prospective remembering in a virtual world. Q J Exp Psychol (Hove), 64 :2181-2193 DOI Author Url Public Url

Rajendran G, Law A, Logie RH, van der Meulen M, Fraser D, Corley M. 2011. Investigating multitasking in high-functioning adolescents with autism spectrum disorders using the Virtual Errands Task Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 41 :1445-1454 DOI Author Url Public Url

Riby LM, Law AS, Mclaughlin J, Murray J. 2011. Preliminary evidence that glucose ingestion facilitates prospective memory performance NUTRITION RESEARCH, 31 :370-377 DOI Author Url Public Url

Logie RH, Law A, Trawley S, Nissan J. 2010. MULTITASKING, WORKING MEMORY AND REMEMBERING INTENTIONS PSYCHOLOGICA BELGICA, 50 :309-326 DOI Author Url Public Url

Law AS, Langton SRH, Logie RH. 2010. Assessing the impact of verbal and visuospatial working memory load on eye-gaze cueing VISUAL COGNITION, 18 :1420-1438 DOI Author Url Public Url

Saito S, Logie RH, Morita A, Law AS. 2008. Visual and phonological similarity effects in verbal immediate serial recall: A test with kanji materials Journal of Memory and Language, 59 :1-17 DOI

Langton SRH, Law AS, Burton AM, Schweinberger SR. 2008. Attention capture by faces Cognition, 107 :330-342 DOI Public Url

Law AS, Logie RH, Pearson DG. 2006. The impact of secondary tasks on multi-tasking in a virtual environment. Acta Psychol (Amst), 122 :27-44 DOI Author Url Public Url

Law AS, Freer Y, Hunter J, Logie RH, McIntosh N, Quinn J. 2005. A comparison of graphical and textual presentations of time series data to support medical decision making in the neonatal intensive care unit. J Clin Monit Comput, 19 :183-194 DOI Author Url

Law AS, Logie RH, Pearson DG, Cantagallo A, Moretti E, Dimarco F. 2004. Resistance to the impact of interruptions during multitasking by healthy adults and dysexecutive patients. Acta Psychol (Amst), 116 :285-307 DOI Author Url Public Url

Conference publication

Law A, Langton S. 2008. Disrupting face biases in visual attention INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGY, 43 :321-321 Author Url

Law A, Langton S. 2008. The impact of working memory load on eye-gaze cueing INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOLOGY, 43 :600-600 Author Url

Dataset

Seddon A, Law A, Adams AM, Simmons F. Individual differences in media multitasking ability: the importance of cognitive flexibility DOI Public Url

External committees:

Peer Review College, The Economic and Social Research Council, Member. 2010

Award:

Multitasking: An experimental study of the complexities of everyday cognition, Leverhulme Trust, http://www.psy.ed.ac.uk/people/strawley/MT/index.html. 2008

Fellowships:

Executive control of attention to faces and eye-gaze cueing, Economic and Social Research Council, http://www.esrcsocietytoday.ac.uk/ESRCInfoCentre/ManageAwardPage.aspx?data=v9XrjLJ6xhEJUEqg9wyX5g%3d%3d&xu=16186&isAwardHolder=True&isProfiled=&AwardHolderID=75285&Sector=Academic. 2007

Membership of professional bodies:

Member, Experimental Psychology Society, http://www.eps.ac.uk/. 2007

Graduate Member, British Psychological Society, http://www.bps.org.uk/. 2002

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