Featured day in the life of: Jordan, PhD candidate in human factors.

Hi everyone! My name is Jordan Rogers and I’m a PhD Candidate at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, FL. My degree is in Human Factors which is a blend of psychology and engineering and centers around informing product and system design through understanding human limitations and capabilities. My research and career interests involve optimizing medical device design and healthcare processes. My dissertation focuses on understanding how advanced robotic technology in the operating room may impact surgical team dynamics and outcomes.20

7:45am – On the way to school

I usually wake up around 6:30am (give or take 30 minutes) and try to leave for school by 7:30am. I like getting in before 8am to avoid parking issues and to get a head start on the day before campus gets busy. I live approximately 20 minutes from school so my commute isn’t bad. I work remotely at times for various reasons (i.e., my husband lives out of state so I’ll occasionally spend a week with him). But, I really really like coming into the office because I find that it helps me to focus; I LOVE my dual monitor set-up and it’s great to have quick access to my advisor and other committee members for any questions that pop up.


8am – Loading up on coffee and getting into work

Having my first cup of coffee and starting the day. I usually have at least one cup and will sometimes indulge in two. My work for the day usually involves working on my dissertation. For my dissertation, I’m conducting two separate but related studies. One of which is a survey for surgical team members on their perceptions of team dynamics in the different types of surgery (i.e., open, lap, and robotic). I’m using Qualtrics (an online survey platform) to develop my survey. It has been an awesome tool, but I continue to be amazed with how much time I can sink into editing my survey items and flow. Now that I’ve received IRB approval (both from my university and the hospital where I’ll be collecting the data), any updates need to be written up as IRB amendments as well. So today I am tackling that as well as working on my second study which involves analyzing videos of teams performing surgery. For this, I’m working with two research assistants. I hugely underestimated the time that would be involved in combining, comparing, and coming to consensus on our coding.


10:00 – Handing out a few holiday treats

I love this time of year! I put together a few little treats for my lab mates and advisors. It’s nice to work on something more creative and fun.


10:30 – Enjoying some more coffee

Dipping into another cup of coffee! My husband gifted me with this little single-serve coffee maker and it has been a complete game-changer


12pm – Attending the graduate student forum

Each semester, our Student Government Association (SGA) puts on an event for graduate students. This year, that catered Indian food and had a raffle for goodies from our university bookstore. To enter the raffle, students had to write down an idea or suggestion for future events. I suggested hosting a Three-Minute Thesis event where graduate students could succinctly describe their research. I ended up winning one of the raffle gifts which was so exciting! I also hope my suggestion can become a reality – I think it is so powerful to be able to distill your work in an intelligent and thoughtful manner.


6:30pm – Leaving campus

The end of daylight savings time is painful for this very reason! It’s tough to leave campus at a semi-reasonable time and have it be pitch black outside. This is a beautiful building on our campus that I walked by on the way to my car.

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