Brian Guerrero is a graduate student who’s interested in trying to bring some of the more emerging medias into educational mindsets. While video games have been around for quite some while, virtual reality, and mobile gaming have become much more feasible and easier to create learning environments for everyone, regardless of age. Previously he has studied a wide array of fields, studying agricultural economics, majoring in public policy and law, minoring in informatics and taking a big interest in computer science during my undergrad years. Brian still has a great interest in studying video games and education and would be interested in any projects that might come up.
Susan Kelly is a 3rd Ph.D. student who brings experiences in both informal and formal teaching environments to her interest in science and collaborative learning across both contexts. She is a member of the Mercier lab, and is interested in how groups create joint understanding when using technology. She is exploring middle students’ reasoning and decision-making skills when using data related to the environmental footprint of food, http://www.foodforthought.illinois.edu/.
Todd Lash is a doctoral student in the Department of Special Education at the University of Illinois. Previously he worked for seventeen years as a k-5 classroom teacher, interventionist, library media specialist and instructional coach for computer science and computational thinking at the elementary level. He is the co-founder of EdCampCU, which aims to bring community members with diverse viewpoints to together to discuss education-related issues.
Todd’s research interests are around increasing equity in and access to high-quality computer science education for all students. Over the last year, he served as a writer for the 2016 Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) Standards Revision team and as a writer for the k12cs.org Framework project. Todd is also an active member of the CSTA K-8 task group.
Lu Lawrence is a Master’s of Arts student in Curriculum and Instruction, whose background in graphic design inspired her interest in the visual design of educational technology. She is currently exploring how incremental design modification impacts learning.
Nicholas Linares is a graduate student in the DELTA program areas whose research interests lie at the intersection of the visual and performing arts, middle level education, open world gaming, and mixed and virtual reality. Prior to attending Illinois, he studied fine art, music, and middle level mathematics education at the University of Louisville, and taught eighth grade mathematics at a public middle school.
Nitasha Mathayas is a graduate research assistant who has worked previously as a science content developer and consultant with several elementary and middle schools in India. She has also taught in an elementary school. She is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction where she studies students’ sense making of mixed reality simulations and is a research assistant on project GRASP (http://grasp.education.illinois.edu/). Her research interests include science education, digital learning environments, and embodied learning.
Jason Morphew is a PhD Student in Educational Psychology and a graduate research assistant on multiple projects in Curriculum and Instruction, Educational Psychology, Physics, and Engineering. He holds a M.A. in Educational Psychology from Wichita State University and a Bachelor’s in Secondary Education from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, with 11 years experience teaching math and science at the middle school, high school, and community college levels.
Saadeddine Shehab is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction. His research focuses on studying student-student collaborative interactions in student-centered learning environments such as problem-based learning.
Ross Toedte is a doctoral student in Educational Psychology who came to UIUC because of his interest in understanding the ways that K-12 students learn and appreciate science. His decision to come to UIUC was informed, in no small measure, by the fusion of education through the College of Education and technology through the National Center for Supercomputing Applications. Such commingling of strong programs in close proximity to one another is rare. The DELTA program enables him to explore educational issues using new strategies and novel tools. In short, DELTA offers boundless avenues to look at problems and this freedom is important to him as a new researcher.
Rob Wallon draws upon his experience as a high school science teacher to inform his research on educational technologies for science teaching and learning. Rob currently works as a research assistant on the GRASP Project, and his dissertation research aims to study the gesture augmented simulations developed from that project in middle school classrooms.
Sherry Yi is a 1st year PhD student interested in the overlap between technology and our everyday lives. She got her BA in English with a minor in informatics, followed by an EdM in curriculum and instruction (DELTA) with a focus on the appeal and educational potential of Minecraft. She is a member of the Mercier lab, and is currently investigating STEM-based project collaboration among middle schoolers. Her research interests largely revolve around culture, video games, and sociable robotics. Urbana is her hometown.