Marvin S. Cohen, President

    Marvin Cohen, Ph.D.

    4200 Lorcom Lane
    Arlington, VA 22207
    Voice: (703)524-4331
    Fax: (703)527-6417


Dr. Marvin Cohen received his Ph.D. in experimental psychology from Harvard University in 1980 and founded Cognitive Technologies, Inc., in 1990, where he is president and chief scientist. Dr. Cohen's recent research has focused on understanding and training critical thinking and leadership, through the integration of dialogue theory and cognitive models of thinking and decision making. He is also designing decision aids that support critical thinking and decision making in time-constrained and uncertain environments. Other work involves development and testing of methods for cognitive task analysis, modeling real-time decision making in a variety of domains (based on data from experiments, interviews, and naturalistic observation), training and evaluating critical thinking performance, computer simulation of real-time decision making, formal inference systems, decision aids that adapt to users, training users to assess appropriate trust in decision aid outputs, and knowledge-based collaborative information management.

Human-Computer Cognitive Interface Design
Dr. Cohen has developed a framework for decision aid design, called Personalized and Prescriptive Aiding, which uses cognitive theory to design aids that are compatible with user processing strategies, and uses normative theory to mitigate potential errors. That framework has been applied and tested in a number of projects managed by Dr. Cohen: methods for adapting display and analysis systems to user-preferred modes of representing knowledge and making decisions (ONR), techniques for manipulating and displaying uncertainty in expert systems (RADC), the design of cognitively compatible cockpit aids for commercial airline pilots (NASA) and for Air Force pilots (WPAFB), research on the optimal allocation of cognitive tasks between users and computer aids (ARI), and the experimental testing of human factors principles for adaptive decision aiding (ONR/NUSC). In other projects, Dr. Cohen has developed techniques for assessing the value of competing information sets for inclusion in large data base systems and for the intelligent real-time selection of data for display (DARPA), managed a human factors review of submarine advanced combat system designs (NUSC), and managed a human factors review of a surface weapons system for the Navy (NSWC). Dr. Cohen taught a graduate-level course at George Washington University on the design of user-friendly interfaces for interactive computer systems. The course included design options in displays, input devices, and decision aiding; cognitive, linguistic, perceptual, and motor considerations in the selection of design options; and system testing and evaluation.

Decision Aid Development
Dr. Cohen has managed projects in which computer-based decision aiding systems advanced from conceptualization through stages of design, quantitative validation, and testing with potential users. Two tactical decision aids developed by Dr. Cohen for attack submarine command staff are under active testing by a Navy laboratory (NUSC) and a Navy prime contractor. Other systems developed in projects initiated and directed by Dr. Cohen include a route planning aid for tactical air force mission planners (RADC), a pilot's aid for in-flight situation reassessment (WPAFB), an intelligent assistant for making selections from a large database of options (ONR), a database system to support inferences about uncertainty by intelligence analysts, and a generic expert-system inference shell that utilizes principles of non-monotonic reasoning to revise assumptions in a numerical uncertainty model (ETL). More recently, Dr. Cohen has focused on the link between training and decision aids. In the Navy's Tactical Decision Making under Stress program (NAWCTSD), he has developed concepts for the support of critical thinking by a decision aid, and has developed and tested critical thinking training for users of the aid. For the Army's Rotorcraft Pilot's Associate program (AATD), Dr. Cohen has developed, applied, and tested a methodology for training decision aid users.

Inference and Artificial Intelligence
Dr. Cohen directrd a project at CTI on the development of a hybrid connectionist-symbolic architecture for learning higher-level decision making skills (Office of Naval Research). In the past, Dr. Cohen has directed a number of research projects on the development of alternative representations of uncertainty and processes of inference for AI systems. Dr. Cohen developed an inference system, called the Non-Monotonic Probabilist, for resolving conflict among different items of evidence or lines of reasoning. NMP embeds a numerical belief calculus within a higher-order process of reasoning about the structure and assumptions of the model. That concept has been applied in an expert system for image understanding (ETL), in an information management system for intelligence analysts, and in an in-flight pilot decision aid (WPAFB). Dr. Cohen managed a 2-week course on decision making and inference for Intelligence Community Staff; and was an invited panel member in a 3-day symposium on Bayesian inference and artificial intelligence in intelligence analysis.

Positions held

Cognitive Technologies, Inc., Arlington, Virginia (1990-) - President, Senior Principal Scientist.

National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council (1994-present) - Member of the Panel on Human Factors in Air Traffic Control Automation.

Decision Science Consortium, Inc., Reston, VA (1979-1982; 1983-1990) - Vice President, Senior Principal Scientist, Director of Cognitive Science & Decision Systems.

National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council (1985-1986) - Member of the Committee on Tactical Battle Management of the Air Force Studies Board.

The George Washington University, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Washington, D.C. (1983-1984) - Assistant Professorial Lecturer.

The MAXIMA Corporation, Bethesda, MD (1982-1983) - Program Manager. Fee Control Group, Ltd., Washington, D.C. (l983) - Consultant, partner.

Harvard University, Department of Psychology, Cambridge, MA (1971-1979) - Research Psychologist, Teaching Fellow.

Copyright © 2000-2011 Cognitive Technologies, Inc.
Questions? Comments? Contact