Jack Loomis was on the Psychology faculty at UCSB from 1974 until his retirement in 2012. His primary research areas were perception and spatial cognition. His research in perception was unusually broad, covering the spatial senses of vision, hearing, and touch. Within visual perception, he did research on a variety of topics, including visual space perception, visual control of action, character recognition, color vision, and perception of shape from motion. He and his former student, Andy Beall, introduced virtual reality as a research tool at UCSB and later, joined by Jim Blascovich, promoted its use in perception, spatial cognition, and social psychology. In 1985, Jack invented a GPS-based navigation system for blind people and directed a research project on this topic for over 20 years (along with Reginald Golledge and Roberta Klatzky). Much of his research dealing with virtual reality, visual space perception, and spatial cognition was based on the longstanding philosophical view that the "external world" of everyday life is not the physical world itself but an elaborate internal representation. Jack is the author of over 150 publications.
- Loomis, J. M. & Lederman, S. J. (1986). Tactual perception. In Boff, K., Kaufman, L., & Thomas, J. (Eds.), Handbook of Perception and Human Performance, Volume II, Chapt. 31.
- Loomis, J. M. (1990) A model of character recognition and legibility. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 16, 106-120.
- Loomis, J. M., Da Silva, J.A., Fujita, N., & Fukusima, S. S. (1992) Visual space perception and visually directed action. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 18, 906-921.
- Loomis, J. M. (1992) Distal attribution and presence. Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments, 1, 113-119.
- Loomis, J. M. & Beall, A. C. (1998). Visually-controlled locomotion: Its dependence on optic flow, 3-D space perception, and cognition. Ecological Psychology, 10, 271-285.
- Loomis, J. M., Klatzky, R. L., Golledge, R. G., & Philbeck, J. W. (1999). Human navigation by path integration. In R. G. Golledge (Ed.), Wayfinding: Cognitive mapping and other spatial processes (pp. 125-151). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins.
- Loomis, J. M., Golledge, R. G., & Klatzky, R. L. (2001). GPS-based navigation systems for the visually impaired. In W. Barfield & T. Caudell, (Eds.), Fundamentals of Wearable Computers and Augmented Reality, (pp. 429-446). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
- Loomis, J. M. & Philbeck, J. W. (2008). Measuring spatial perception with spatial updating and action. In R. L. Klatzky, M. Behrmann, & B. MacWhinney (Eds.), Embodiment, ego-space, and action (pp 1-43). New York: Taylor & Francis.
- Loomis, J. M., Klatzky, R. L., & Giudice, N. A. (2012). Sensory substitution of vision: Importance of perceptual and cognitive processing. In R. Manduchi & S. Kurniawan (Eds.) Assistive Technology for Blindness and Low Vision. Boca Raton: FL: CRC Press.
- Loomis, J. M., Klatzky, R. L., & Giudice, N. A. (2013). Representing 3D space in working memory: Spatial images from vision, hearing, touch, and language. In S. Lacey & R. Lawson (Eds.), Multisensory imagery: Theory and applications. New York: Springer.