Rice professor available to discuss astronaut training


David Ruth

Rice professor available to discuss astronaut training

HOUSTON – (June 14, 2017) – NASA announced its newest class of astronaut candidates this month, and a Rice University expert on astronaut training programs is available to discuss what’s in store for the astronauts. Eduardo Salas, the Allyn R. and Gladys M. Cline Chair of Psychology and professor of psychology, has conducted NASA-funded research that helps inform astronaut selection and training.

“Talent, expertise and motivation are necessary but not sufficient for mission success,” Salas said. “Long-duration space exploration is a team sport, and teamwork matters. Coordination, cooperation, communication, cognition, team resilience and adaptation capacity will be paramount to a safe journey.”

Salas’ research focuses on what facilitates teamwork and team effectiveness in organizations; how and why team training works; how to optimize simulation-based training; and how to design, implement and evaluate existing training and development systems and generate evidence-based guidance for those in practice.

“These brilliant candidates will engage in training not only aimed at getting the right task work skills, but how to transform themselves from a team of experts to an expert team. And there is a science to help – industrial and organizational psychology and human factors. At Rice, we are contributing to the growing body of knowledge by providing evidence-based guidance, tools, interventions and principles for space exploration.”

To arrange an interview with Salas, contact David Ruth, director of national media relations at Rice, at 713-348-6327 or david@rice.edu.

Rice University has a VideoLink ReadyCam TV interview studio. ReadyCam is capable of transmitting broadcast-quality standard-definition and high-definition video directly to all news media organizations around the world 24/7.


This news release can be found online at http://news.rice.edu/.

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Related Materials:

Eduardo Salas bio: https://psychology.rice.edu/Content.aspx?id=4294967302

Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,879 undergraduates and 2,861 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice is ranked No. 1 for happiest students and for lots of race/class interaction by the Princeton Review. Rice is also rated as a best value among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. To read “What they’re saying about Rice,” go to http://tinyurl.com/RiceUniversityoverview.

About Amy McCaig

Amy is a senior media relations specialist in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.