Jessy Ceha (website | cv)
Ph.D. Student

Jessy's current research interest is on teachable agents and the promotion of curiosity, engagement, and learning in students. Most recently, she has investigated curiosity-driven learning with robot-embodied conversational agents. Jessy obtained her M.Sc. cum laude, in Human-Machine Communication from the University of Groningen, the Netherlands, in 2016, and her B.Sc. in Cognitive Systems: Cognition and Brain from the University of British Columbia, in 2014. For her masters thesis, she worked within the Institute of Artificial Intelligence and Cognitive Engineering, and the Department of Experimental Psychology, to develop an EEG neurofeedback system to enhance voice perception for cochlear implant users. She went on to conduct psychoacoustic experiments at the University Medical Centre. She interned at Philips Consumer Lifestyle in Drachten, the Netherlands, where she manufactured and tested an innovative consumer electronics product. Jessy was the recipent of the Provost Doctoral Entrance Award for Women and the University of Waterloo Entrance Scholarship in September 2017, and the Avril McDonald Prize in August 2016.
Sangho Suh (website | cv)
Ph.D. Student

Sangho's current research focuses on programming education and search engine for education, with a particular focus on leveraging concreteness fading and curiosity, respectively. Before joining Waterloo, Sangho earned a B.S. in Computer Science from Korea University. His research on topic modeling and visual analytics for convolutional neural network have been published at ICDM, KDD, and NIPS. He received Best Student Paper Award in ICDM'16, SK Creative Challenge Award in HCI Korea'16, as well as a few other research/project awards and scholarships while at Korea University. Sangho has also received Go-Bell Scholarship, David R. Cheriton Graduate Scholarship, Ontario Trillium Scholarship, and International Doctoral Student Award from the University of Waterloo. More recently, he has received Learning Innovation and Teaching Enhancement (LITE) Full Grant in support of his research on programming education.
Amy Gabriela Debanne (website | cv)
Masters Student

Amy's research interests include human computer interaction, intelligent user interface, and health informatics. She is currently a Global Business and Digital Arts student with a Computer Science minor at the University of Waterloo. She initially developed a strong interest in human computer interaction while doing user experience (UX) research at the Felt Lab at REAPWaterloo. She later worked as a UX Developer at Trillium Health Partners on Care Connector, a clinical communication and collaboration platform developed to support interprofessional and patient-centered care. At Care Connector, she worked on a NLP research project and learned how AI can play a big role in improving workflow efficiency and information retrieval. Most recently, she worked as an Application Developer at Bell Canada on various automation projects where she applied UX knowledge to help improve workflow efficiency.
Apoorva Chauhan (website | cv)

Dr. Chauhan's research focuses on Human-Computer Interaction (HCI). She graduated with a Ph.D. in Computer Science (CS) from Utah State University (USU) in July 2019. For her dissertation work, she identified who contributes to online crisis information, what they contribute, and how people evaluate the trustworthiness of these contributions. In addition to HCI, she also has experience in conducting research in 'learning sciences' and 'usable security.' For excellence in research, Dr. Chauhan was named the '2018 PhD Researcher of the Year' and the '2018 Outstanding Engineering Graduate Scholar' in the USU College of Engineering. In 2018, she also received the ‘Outstanding Graduate Researcher' award in the USU CS department.
Ken Jen Lee (website | cv)
Ph.D. Student

Ken Jen's research focuses on designing a tool to allow for easy configuration of expressive speech in robots and utilizing crowdsourcing to improve that process. He is passionate about HCI, extended reality and how design can improve user immersion. He is currently a Computer Engineering student at the University of Waterloo and is a recipient of the Undergraduate Research Fellowship by the Cheriton School of Computer Science. His previous work experiences include working at Capital One as a Data Scientist to design an end-to-end machine learning pipeline tool and at KA Imaging as an Embedded Software Developer for multi-energy X-ray detectors. In 2019, he received the undergraduate research fellowship (URF) and NSERC undergraduate student research award (USRA) to pursue full-time research for a semester, working with us on the teachable robot project.
Jarvis Xie (website | cv)
Undergraduate Student

Jarvis is a 3rd year undergraduate Computer Science student at the University of Waterloo. He has a strong research interest in human-computer interaction. Jarvis has previously worked on the CrowdCurio project at Davis Lab at Harvard University as an undergraduate research intern. Currently, he is an undergraduate research assistant at the Human Computer Interaction Lab at the University of Waterloo.

Alex Williams (website | cv) - Graduated (Now Assistant Professor @ University of Tennessee Knoxville)
Ph.D. Student

Alex's research focuses on designing, building, and studying intelligent systems that guide attention both in and around the workplace. He has completed multiple internships at Microsoft Research AI and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and was a Research Scientist at the University of Oxford before joining Waterloo. Alex has been recognized as a recipient of both the David R. Cheriton Graduate Scholarship and the International Doctoral Student Award, and was a national finalist in the Vanier Graduate Scholarship competition.
Mike Schaekermann (website | cv) Graduated (Now Applied Scientist @ Amazon - Crowdsourcing + Augmented AI)
Ph.D. Student

Mike's research focuses on developing methods to capture and utilize the structure of ambiguous classification problems, with a special focus on medical data analysis (see He recently received a Best Paper award for his work published at CSCW. Mike has a dual background in medicine and computer science, having received a medical degree from the University of Marburg, Germany, and a Bachelor of Science in Engineering at Salzburg University of Applied Sciences, Austria. In support of his studies, Mike has received the 2018 Google Ph.D. Fellowship in HCI, Graduate Excellence Scholarship and David R. Cheriton Graduate Scholarship from UWaterloo, several merit-based scholarships from Salzburg University of Applied Sciences and an engineering scholarship from the Economic Chamber of Salzburg. He was also a nominee for the German National Academic Foundation. Mike has completed two internships at Google, including a research internship at Google Brain, and currently conducts research at Google AI Healthcare.
Alexandra Vtyurina (website | cv) - (Now Research Scientist in Human Behaviour at Kira Systems)
Ph.D. Student

Alexandra's research interests are in the area of voice-based conversational assistants. In particular, she is studying the language people use when interacting with intelligent assistants and how the user experience can be improved. She has interned in Microsoft Research in Redmond in 2017 and was invited as a visiting scholar at Emory University in 2016. She received her Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the Southern Federal University, Rostov-on-Don, Russia.
Colin Vandenhof (website | cv) - Graduated (Now ML Engineer at a Robotics Startup)
Masters Student

Colin's research explores how human intelligence can be integrated into machine learning systems. He is currently working on human-in-the-loop systems for identifying unknown unknowns in predictive models, and safe reinforcement learning with guidance from a teacher. Prior to his Master's at Waterloo, Colin graduated with a Bachelor of Health Sciences (Honours) from McMaster University, and studied Computer Science at Dalhousie University. Colin is a recipient of the David R. Cheriton Graduate Scholarship (2018-2020).
Nalin Chhibber (website | cv) - Graduated (Now Engineer @ Amazon)
Masters Student

Nalin's research interest lies in the intersection of Human-Computer Interaction, Intelligent User Interfaces, and Human Computation. He holds a Bachelors degree in Computer Science(B.Tech) from Indraprastha University, India. Nalin has interned at GS-Scientific Information Service group in CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research), worked as a SPARK scholar at CSIR-4PI Bangalore(Council of Scientific and Industrial Research- Fourth Paradigm Institute) and has been a part of Crowdresearch collective by Stanford HCI group. He likes creating games, contributing to open-source projects and staying curious about technology.
Kexin Yang (website | cv)
Masters Student (Transitional) - Transferred (Soon a Ph.D. Student at Carnegie Mellon University HCI Institute)

Kexin's research focuses on HCI in the field of learning sciences and technology. Specifically, her recent research is about teachable agents, intelligent tutoring system (ITS), and language technology in education. Her research also involves how crowdsourcing and teacher-sourcing can be applied to improve ed-tech development and design process and increase teachers' configurability. Kexin has an interdisciplinary background in English language education, educational technology and human-computer interaction. She obtained her M. Sc. in Educational Technology and Applied Learning Sciences from Human-Computer Interaction Institute in Carnegie Mellon University. In her capstone at CMU, she worked with Renaissance Learning Inc., an international learning analytics company where her work in user-centered research and data-mining contributed to a comparative analytic dashboard enabling performance and growth comparison for similar schools. Kexin have also worked at Knovva Academy as an instructional designer, FLTRP as digital media editor and as an English teacher in one of the top public high schools in China, Beijing 101 High School.
Stephanie Lin (website | cv) - Graduated (Now Product Designer @ Shopify)
Undergraduate Student

Stephanie's research interests are on curiosity and human-robot interaction. She is currently a Mathematics Student with a Fine Arts minor and Computer Science minor at the University of Waterloo. She has previously worked as an interaction design intern at BlackBerry, working on their core Android apps. Stephanie is passionate about creating intuitive and human-centered experiences.
Helga Jiang (website | cv) - Graduated (Now Product Designer @ Facebook)
Undergraduate Student

Helga's research focuses on interaction design and its effects on user performance in crowdsourcing tasks. She is fascinated with how design can shape a user's experience with a task or product, and how it can ultimately affect society and the world at large. Helga is a Fine Arts student with a Computer Science minor at the University of Waterloo and has previously worked as a design intern at Shopify, helping improve the ecommerce platform. Last summer, she completed a product design internship at MailChimp. She is now a product designer at Facebook.
Greg D'Eon (website | cv) - Graduated (Now Ph.D. Student @ Univeristy of British Columbia)
Masters Student

Greg's research analyzes group-based crowdsourcing tasks through the lens of cooperative game theory. He earned a B.Eng. in Computer Engineering at Dalhousie University, where he received a University Medal for his 1st-in-class GPA. His previous research experience includes one year working with NewAE Technology, where he studied side channel analysis of cryptographic hardware. Greg currently holds an Ontario Graduate Scholarship, and he previously held an NSERC CGS-M scholarship. He was the recipient of Waterloo's Distinguished Teaching Assistantship Award (2018) and Dalhousie's John G. Bruce Scholarship and Bob Walter Award (2014).
William Callaghan (website | cv) - Graduated (Now Data Engineer @ Borealis AI)
Masters Student

William's research interests are at the intersection of computer science and healthcare, with a focus on how input from multiple sources (crowd, machines, and experts) influence the reliability and accuracy of medical data analysis. William has a background in both Computer Science and Microbiology & Immunology, graduating with an Honors Bachelors of Science from the University of Western Ontario where his previous research focused on constructing functional brain networks as diagnostic markers for neurological disease. His current and previous research are motivated by time-series related problems across various domains, and in addition to his primary research, he is also interested in how such temporal data can be represented and analyzed with graphs. William is the recipient of merit-based scholarships from both the University of Western Ontario and Raytheon Canada, and has previously interned at eSentire where he built a platform for rapid analysis of large-scale time-series data.
Louis Kuang (website | cv) - Graduated (Now @ Google Waterloo)

Louis' research interests lie in the intersection of Machine Learning and Human-Computer Interaction. Currently, he is focusing on designing interfaces and techniques to help people make sense of machine learning systems by means of interaction. He earned his B.Sc in Computer Science (First Class Honours) from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Louis is a recipient of the David R. Cheriton Graduate Scholarship (2017 - 2019).
Meng Dong (website | cv)
Undergraduate Student - Graduated (Now Graduate Student @ Harvard)

Meng is a 3rd year undergraduate student in the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. Her research interest is at the intersection of information retrieval and human computer interaction. She has strong interest in research, having worked as a research intern in Distributed Information Systems Lab at EPFL, and currently involved in a project related to document retrieval using active learning.