Join us each Thursday during the semester as we present interesting speakers on topics ranging from current areas of interest in the HCI field, software demos/reviews, study design, proposed research topics and more.
The BBL is the one hour a week where we all come together and provide HCIL members the opportunity to build collaborations, increase awareness of each other’s activities and generally just have a bit of fun together. There is no RSVP; simply show up!
Details to join us:
When: Every Thurs during the semester from 12:30p – 1:30p ET
Where: Via Zoom at this same link each week — https://umd.zoom.us/j/92820973827
If you would like to give (or suggest) a talk, presentation, workshop, etc., send an email to lab coordinator email@example.com and briefly describe your proposed talk title, a brief abstract and your bio.
Fall 2020 Semester
9/10 | Niklas Elmqvist
— Meet & Greet
9/17 | Megan Boddum
— Best Practices For Designing and Implementing Kids User Research
Bio. Megan Boddum has over ten years of diverse experience working in different facets of children’s technology ranging from research to outreach, program management, curriculum design and production. Megan specializes in qualitative research that helps teams build innovative and positive digital experiences for kids and families. Megan has worked in research for Leapfrog, WestEd, YouTube Kids and other various Bay Area startups. Currently Megan is working as an independent consultant focusing on helping companies and individuals with various children’s technology, media, education and research initiatives. With her own practice Megan has designed and developed a set of creative methodologies to meet the unique needs of the products and industries served.
Abstract. How to better take into consideration and implement children’s feedback when it comes to product development
With the ongoing emergence of kids tech and media, it is important to understand how kids’ feedback and participation in the co-design process can be pivotal in the creative development and, ultimately, the success of products. How can companies better incorporate children’s feedback in the creative process to best design products that resonate and reach a wider audience?
For this session Megan will give an overview of kids user research and best practices. She will present on designing effective kids’ research for various media types, followed by a review of a few case studies.
9/24 | Kathy Weaver, Emmett Ryan, Donal Heidenblad, Nathan Bos
— UMD Data Challenge Panel
Kathy Bio. Dr. Kathy Weaver is a Senior Lecturer in the College of Information Studies at UMD. In addition to teaching both InfoSci and graduate courses, she has hosted the information challenges for the iSchool during the past 6 years. Dr. Weaver has taught and worked in education in a variety of settings for over 30 years, including industry, higher education, and elementary schools. Her extensive experience in Information Management, has included 6 implementations of SAP focused on Information Assurance, Quality Assurance, and User Management, redesigning and managing an Intellectual Property website at the Boeing Corporation, and working with the King County Libraries in Washington.
Emmet Bio. Emmet Ryan is a junior at UMD. He is currently working towards a bachelor’s degree in information science with a minor in sustainability, and has taken part in the Data Challenge for the past two years. Emmet’s team received the Best Presentation of Results award from the 2020 Challenge. Most recently, Emmet was an IT analyst intern at the Government Accountability Office (GAO) where he worked with two teams on privacy and cybersecurity audits of the 2020 Census. After graduation, Emmet plans to apply his data science knowledge to his interest in policy, possibly through a full-time analyst position at GAO.
Donal Bio. Donal Heidenblad is a lecturer at the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland where he teaches information technology, programming, and data courses. Donal is interested in how to effectively incorporate ethics instruction into STEM courses. Donal earned his M.S. in Information Systems from UMBC. Before coming to the iSchool, Donal worked in a variety of roles including training engineer, project manager, and software developer.
Nathan Bio. Dr. Nathan Bos is a senior research associate at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory with more than 20 years of experience working in the applied behavioral sciences. Nathan’s research is in human-computer interaction, behavioral modeling, and advanced analytics. He has also worked in the area of applied data science for nonprofits. His recent work includes research in counterfactual forecasting, explainable AI and causal reasoning. Nathan has more than 50 publications in peer-reviewed conferences and journals in information science, psychology, education and engineering. He has served as a judge for two Data Challenges.
Abstract. UMD Data Challenge is a week-long data exploration event at the University of Maryland hosted by The College of Information Studies. During the week, students will gain analytical experience by solving challenging problems exploring datasets provided by professional organizations, build technical aptitude integrating datasets to create multidisciplinary knowledge, and obtain real-world team-building experience. This week long distributed format allows for sufficient time to evaluate, formulate a question about the dataset, and conduct dataset integration, analysis, and results preparation.
10/1 | Joel Chan, Caro Williams-Pierce
— “What does a successful process for an HCI researcher look like? In terms of personal development, week to week / day to day, moving ideas forward, etc.? Special Pandemic Edition“
Joel Bio: Joel Chan is an Assistant Professor in the University of Maryland’s College of Information Studies (iSchool) and Human-Computer Interaction Lab (HCIL), and Senior Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study of Communities and Information (CASCI). Previously, he was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow and Project Scientist in the Human-Computer Interaction Institute (HCII) at Carnegie Mellon University, and received his PhD in Cognitive Psychology at the University of Pittsburgh. His research investigates how to build systems for innovation that are open and sustainable. His long-term goal is to help create a future where any person or community can design the future(s) they want to live in. His research has received funding from the National Science Foundation and the Institute for Museum and Library Sciences, and received Best Paper awards from the ASME Conference for Design Theory and Methodology, the journal of Design Studies, and the ACM SIGKDD Conference On Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining (KDD).
Caro Bio: Caro Williams-Pierce is an Assistant Professor at University of Maryland’s College of Information Studies (iSchool), a member of the Human-Computer Interaction Lab (HCIL) and the Youth eXperience (YX) Lab. She received her joint masters degree in Mathematics and Mathematics Education, and her PhD in Mathematics Education, from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Her research focuses on designing for mathematical play and learning in a variety of informal contexts, but she also researches mathematics learning, embodied cognition, and games and learning more broadly. She has published in the Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, Information & Learning Sciences, Contemporary Educational Psychology, Frontiers in Education, and Science, among others.
10/8 | Sarah McGrew
— Who is Behind This? Teaching Students to Evaluate Online Information
Bio. Sarah McGrew is an Assistant Professor in the College of Education at the University of Maryland, College Park. Her research focuses on young people’s civic online reasoning—how they search for and evaluate online information on contentious social and political topics—and how schools can better support students to learn effective evaluation strategies. Dr. McGrew has developed assessments of students’ online reasoning, conducted research on fact checkers’ strategies for evaluating digital content, and tested curriculum designed to teach these strategies to secondary and college students. In addition to investigating online reasoning curricula in secondary and college classrooms, Dr. McGrew’s current research focuses on how best to support teachers to learn online reasoning themselves and how to design lessons in online reasoning that are rooted in civic and community issues that students know and care about. She has a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Teacher Education from Stanford University and previously taught high school history in Washington, DC.
Abstract. Young people often turn to the Internet for information, where they face nearly constant questions about what to trust. In this talk, I will argue that educational innovations are a necessary component of efforts to combat the spread of online mis- and disinformation. However, few research-based resources exist to support teachers and students to learn to effectively evaluate online information. I will outline a curricular approach designed to teach strategies that professional fact checkers use to evaluate online sources and explore students’ progress in learning these strategies with findings from a series of intervention studies in high school and college classrooms. I’ll discuss possibilities and hurdles for teaching evaluation strategies and consider how technological solutions might accompany educational innovations.
10/15 | Karen Holtzblatt
— The Jerk Project
Bio. Karen Holtzblatt is CEO of InContext Design, a thought leader, industry speaker, and author. As a recognized leader in requirements and design, Karen has developed transformative design approaches throughout her career. Contextual Design, co-developed with Hugh Beyer, is the industry standard for understanding the customer and organizing that data to drive innovative product and service concepts. Her newest book Contextual Design 2nd Edition Design for Life is used by companies and universities worldwide. In recognition of her impact on the field, Karen was awarded the first Lifetime Award for Practice by ACM SIGCHI. In 2018 she founded the non-profit WITops to focus on the challenges of retaining women in high tech companies.
Abstract. The Valuing and Jerk Project.
For the last 40 years we’ve been encouraging women to choose technology careers. But today the quit rate for women in tech is 41% compared to 17% for men. The number of WIT has fallen from 31% in 1990 to 25% in 2014. Research points to cultural dimensions of tech companies that create a work environment of bias, hostility and devalue. Overall women and people of color report a significantly more negative workplace experience. These interpersonal dynamics create more stress and work against feelings of belonging and value. It is not surprising that our research finds that women “thinking of leaving their job” score lower on key factors necessary for women to thrive.
In this talk Karen shares the research and some of the interventions to identify the explicit behaviors which create or undermine the experience of connection and value in the workplace. Field research identified 15 key valuing and 15 key jerk behaviors. A subsequent survey helped to determine the relative value of each behavior for men and women. We share our data and unveil our interventions including fun awareness posters, a self-assessment checklist, and workshop ideas. All work was done by world-wide professional and student volunteers, including many from UMD.
10/22 | Jinjuan Heidi Feng
— ARMStrokes: using mobile technology to support everyday stroke rehabilitation
Bio. Dr. Jinjuan Heidi Feng is a professor at the Computer and Information Sciences Department at Towson University. She conducts research in the area of Human-Computer Interaction, accessible computing and Health-informatics. She works with national and local communities to improve the quality of life of people with disabilities through information technology. Her current research projects focus on assistive technologies for people with cognitive disabilities, mobile applications for healthcare related services, and accessible security techniques for individuals with visual or cognitive disabilities. Dr. Feng has served as treasurer/secretary for the ACM Special Interest Group on Accessible Computing (SIGACCESS) since 2015. She is associate editor for the International Journal of Human-Computer Studies and the ACM Transactions on Accessible Computing. As the Director of the School of Emerging Technologies at Towson University, she promotes interdisciplinary research and curriculum development through collaboration both within and beyond Towson University.
Abstract. Stroke is a major contributor to adult disability in many countries. Stroke often causes long-term disabilities that affect cognitive, physical, and speech functions. Intensive rehabilitation exercise is critical for stroke recovery during the early stage of a stroke. However, only 31 percent of stroke survivors actually complete the recommended exercises due to a variety of factors including lack of motivation. Working closely with stroke survivors and therapists, we investigated the use of mainstream smart phone-based technology in supporting everyday stroke rehabilitation under the supervision of medical professionals. Rather than using specialized sensors to track user movements, we focused on developing an approach without the need for any additional hardware. ARMStrokes supports customized exercise plans to fit each stroke survivor’s specific functionalities in different recovery stages. Longitudinal evaluations with stroke survivors and therapists suggested the application played positive roles in motivating the patients to complete rehabilitation exercises. Design challenges were also identified through the evaluation studies.
10/29 | Leo Zhicheng Liu
— Towards a grammar for animated data graphics
Bio. Zhicheng “Leo” Liu is an assistant professor in the department of computer science at University of Maryland. Prior to joining UMD in August 2020, he was a research scientist at the Creative Intelligence Lab, Adobe Research. Leo received his PhD in the Human-Centered Computing program from Georgia Tech and was a postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Computer Science of Stanford University. His research focuses on developing effective and scalable tools to support data analysis and communication. His works have received multiple paper awards at IEEE InfoVis, IEEE VAST and ACM CHI.
Abstract. Animated data graphics are becoming popular for data-driven storytelling. However, creating such animated graphics remains challenging and time consuming. In this talk, I will present research results on understanding the design space and authoring paradigms of animated data graphics, and describe our first attempt at designing a tool for authoring animated transitions based on the keyframing paradigm. The ultimate goal of this line of research is to develop a visualization grammar that can power the creation of expressive animated narratives, and provide a foundation for developing authoring and design tools.
11/5 | Pardis Miri
— Facilitating Affect Regulation Using a Vibrotactile Technology
Bio. Pardis Miri, PhD, is a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University, where she is working at the intersection of human computer interaction and affective science. Such research is highly interdisciplinary, and involves computer systems, human-computer interaction, psychology, and behavioral science. She is being advised by Professor Keith Marzullo at the University of Maryland iSchool, whose research is on distributed systems, and by Professor James Gross, whose research underlies much of what we now know about emotion regulation. She is also working with Professor Antonio Hardan of the Stanford School of Medicine, whose research is on children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Dr. Miri leads a multidisciplinary research team in the Stanford Psychophysiology Lab (the WEHAB team) aimed at the design, engineering, and evaluation of technologies to help people to successfully manage their emotions, moods, and stress responses. She is interested in both neurotypical and neurodiverse populations. Specifically, her work focuses on using theoretically-grounded and data-driven approaches to engineer end-to-end systems that empower people to regulate their unwanted affective experiences and behaviors in their everyday lives. Then, by running carefully-designed clinical experiments, she examines both the average effect (whether the system was effective in changing affect) and the heterogeneous effect (for whom the system was effective). The results of this research will inform practice about what types of interventions are more useful for what type of trait and state individual differences, and will reduce the use of drugs in personalized mental healthcare. To know more, please visit https://wehab.stanford.edu.
Abstract. Dr. Miri will discuss her work on designing vibrotactile technologies to facilitate affect regulation. Specifically, she will cover how she designed, engineered, and evaluated a vibrotactile breathing pacer to help with stress reduction in a population of young college students. She will discuss whether the pacer was effective in anxiety reduction (both in self report and psychophysiology measures) and, where effective for whom it was effective (e.g., for those low on Big Five Openness, the device was more effective). She will then discuss how she built on the knowledge gained from a college student population, and is currently targeting her research for children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.