Prospective PhD Students

I support phd student in three areas: CS, Data Science and Learning Sciences and Technologies.    The requirement are different.  

When reviewing Ph.D. student applications, I look for students who have at least one of these: 
(1) a strong background in cognitive science, 
(2) a strong math background (probability, statistics, machine learning, data mining), and 
(3) research experience and publications. 

I do not accept students who wish to do pure machine learning.  I support student focused on 1) educational data mining 2) software engineering that will be used to create tools that can be used to run randomized controlled trials on student learning and 3) folks that have some teaching experience.  

Two students of mine that symbolize combining the first two goals are Seth and Xiaolu, where each built their own systems (PLACEments and ARRS respectively), and both have lots of skills that allow them to: 1) do predictive analytics  (educational data mining, like how does the data from this feature help us better predict state test scores or student knowledge),  and 2) run randomized controlled trials. For PLACEments we have many RCTs going to answer research questions of the following nature: i. Is a particular feature good?  ii. Can we figure out what arcs in a prerequisite graph are good and useful in and of themselves? A feature is defined as "good" when it works, improves student learning and teachers see value in it. We also use its popularity when determining goodness.  For ARRS results check out this here.
 
They both have built good publication records.  Seth has a nice list of pubs.  So does Xiaolu.  

I do also have three full time middle school math teachers getting their PhD's in LS&T.  What I look for in such students is totally different as they are not going to go write code. Looking at  Kim Kelly or maybe Korinn Ostrow are useful example

Prospective students should read my recent papers and look at my recent activities (workshop presentations, etc.) to determine if there's a good match of interests.

I respond to email inquiries only if our mutual interests seem strong and the student has the qualifications listed above.
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