Research topics

My academic research can be grouped into two broad categories. First, as a cognitive scientist, I am interested in how people acquire new knowledge and reason about the world; and as a mathematical psychologist my approach to studying this is to employ a mix of computational modelling and experimental work. The second broad topic I write about is methodological. What is the relationship between scientific and statistical inferences? How should researchers choose between competing theoretical models? I spend quite a lot of my time thinking about these questions. Some recent papers that I really like:

Texts and tutorials

One of my joys in life is writing tutorial articles and technical documentation for open source projects. In addition to writing the surprisingly successful learning statistics with R textbook, I’m currently collaborating with Hadley Wickham and Thomas Lin Pederson to write a third edition of the ggplot2 book. I am also weirdly passionate about creating accessible data science tutorials that I post on my youtube channel, and making my data science course materials open and freely available to the general public


I have several R packages at varying stages of development.

R-Ladies Sydney

R-Ladies is a worldwide organisation that promotes gender diversity within the R community. The organisation is explicitly LGBTIQ friendly and trans-inclusive, and aims to provide support in across the entire spectrum of roles whether as leaders, package developers, conference speakers, conference participants, educators, or users. In collaboration with Jen Richmond, Lisa Williams, Steph Stammel I helped to co-found the Sydney R-Ladies chapter in 2018, and it’s been one of the most rewarding professional activities I’ve ever been involved in.

Other community activities

I currently hold editorial positions at one of the top scientific journals (Science) and one of the top journals in psychology (Psychological Review). I previously served as an associate editor at three top journals in cognitive science and cognitive psychology: Cognitive Science, Behavior Research Methods, and Open Mind.