Current Projects

Co-therapy Tools for Supportive Relationships

My dissertation work focuses on designing mobile and web tools for new social practices that promote mental health. I work with Morgan Dixon, Michael Toomim, and Lydia Chilton to build tools for peers to learn skills that relieve troubling emotions and strengthen social connection. Kristen Lindgren, Stephen Schueller, Jacob O. Wobbrock, and Wanda Pratt advise this work.

Q-Methodology as a Research and Design Tool for HCI

I am working with Jacob O. Wobbrock to develop an approach to using Q-methodology in HCI research and design. While Q-methodology is a well-established method in psychology and other disciplines, it has not been optimized for use in HCI contexts until now. In our approach, called HCI-Q, designers reflect on their assumptions about the social and personal implications of a design, and stakeholders evaluate those assumptions according to personal significance. Future work will focus on producing software that helps deisgners to use this method effectively and creatively to engage diverse stakeholders in design projects. We have recently developed Qollate, a software tool for distributed implementations of HCI-Q.

Past Projects

Personalized Video-Based Communication Technology for Children with Autism

I worked on designing software to enable preverbal children with autism to acquire verbs. I worked with Eve A. Riskin in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Richard Ladner in Computer Science and Engineering as well as many talented undergraduates to develop this technology, see . The prototype, Vid2Speech, is developed for Android tablets and features video icons representing verbs that can be tapped to trigger speech output. Future work will investigate how personalized video icons compare to animated icons developed by the Autism Language Program team at the Boston Children's Hospital. Current funding is provided by Intel.

On-Ramps Into Academia: Success Stories

I worked as a Research Assistant for Eve A. Riskin in the Department of Electrical Engineering as part of her National Science Foundation ADVANCE grant to advance women and underrepresented minorities in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields. I interviewed women about their success stories transitioning to faculty positions at top universities in the nation from government and industry positions. I also helped to write an NSF PAID grant called Lead-it Yourself! that was awarded $700,000 for developing an online learning community of higher education leaders devoted to promoting diversity.