technological innovations for inclusive learning & teaching

Marcelo Worsley

Principal Investigator

I am an assistant professor of Learning Sciences and Computer Science at Northwestern's School of Education and Social Policy and the McCormick School of Engineering. The goal of my research is to advance society's understanding of how students learn in complex learning environments by forging new opportunities for using multimodal technology.


Sarah Lee

Research Study Coordinator

Sarah is from Rogers Park, Chicago. She is interested in hands-on making in informal learning environments and the spaces around: memory, memorials, and museums, meaningful making, agentic memory identities and citizenship.

Graduate Students

Emily Q. Wang

Emily is a PhD student in the Technology and Social Behavior program. Her research in human-computer interaction focuses on creating accessible groupware systems for Deaf and hearing professionals. Before coming to Northwestern, Emily completed a self-designed engineering major with coursework in computer science, human-centered design, and psychology at Olin College of Engineering.

JaCoya Thompson

JaCoya is a PhD student in the Department of Computer Science at Northwestern University. She graduated from Fayetteville State University (FSU) with a Bachelors of Science degree in Computer Science with a minor in Mathematics and a Masters of Science degree in Mathematics. She’s currently building and using current technologies that allow 6-12th grade students to create, learn, and engage with data science. Her area of interest includes using technologies to improve and enhance methods of instruction and investigating instructional strategies that promote equal access to individuals from culturally diverse populations.


Michael Smith

Born and raised in Cincinnati, OH, Michael Smith is a Computer Science BS/MS Student at Northwestern University, and a National GEM Consortium Master’s Fellow. His interests include exploring the intersections of technology & education, software engineering, data science, games as an interactive medium, AI/ML, problem solving, and inclusivity.


Kit Martin

Kit grew up in Sudan, a country in a civil war. From there he moved around a lot. These travels motivated him to notice the gross disparities. This motivation got him started working with disadvantaged youth in Nashville back in the ’90s and running a mentoring program in Upstate New York in the 2000s. This motivation has taken him into simulation through agent based models, especially models dealing with social systems that demonstrate the intersubjective development of inequality. Kit has an M.A. in international development and experience working overseas implementing field projects in loan provision, agricultural systems transformation and recycling efforts. Kit also has experience teaching biology, population dynamics and computer programming through ant based models in schools in Nashville, Tennessee with Vanderbilt. Kit is currently interested in multi-modal sensors. He sees them as a bridge between agent based methods and his other evaluations frameworks.

Stephanie Jones

Stephanie is a Ph.D. Student in Computer Science and Learning Science from the Philadelphia area. She's a graduate of Villanova University where she studied Computer and Electrical Engineering. She is interested in increasing access to STEM for underrepresented youth through informal learning opportunities. She is additionally interested in the intersections of socio-cultural theories, constructionism, and multi modal analytics. When not doing research she can be found laughing at her own jokes, watching YouTube, or using Slack reacts.


David Bar-El

Originally from Tel-Aviv, Israel and currently working on my PhD in Learning Sciences at Northwestern's School of Education and Social Policy. I am interested in out of school learning and particularly how children learn around popular culture and media.

Connor Bain

Connor is a Ph.D. student in Computer Science and Learning Sciences originally from Columbia, SC. He's a proud University of South Carolina alumnus who studies how to help teachers integrate computation into their classrooms and how to get students to think with computation.

Khalil Anderson

Born in Bronxville, New York and raised in Ellicott City, Maryland, Khalil, a UMBC Alum, is a Computer Science PhD student with interests in Machine Learning. More specifically with interests in Reinforcement Learning, NLP, and how Machine Learning can help augment, not necesarily replace, humans in task and jobs such as driving, learning, manufacturing, and any other area.

Undergraduate Students

Aimee van den Berg

Aimee is a first year in McCormick majoring in Computer Science with an adjunct major in International Studies. She is interested in artificial intelligence and computer vision as well as robotics. Outside of engineering, she is passionate about languages and plays Ultimate Frisbee on Northwestern’s Women’s Team. During her free time she enjoys listening to music, exploring restaurants with friends, and baking!

Elana Stettin

Elana is a fourth year in the McCormick School of Engineering studying computer science. She is currently a research assistant at the lab looking at Minecraft in educational contexts. Elana is passionate about the intersection of education and technology and how software can be used to close the gaps in education for students with different learning styles.

Nathan Reiff

Nathan is a fourth year undergraduate at Northwestern studying Learning Sciences with a concentration in the design of learning environments. He is also receiving a certificate in design from the Segal Design Institute and is interested in utilizing UX design and emerging technologies to improve learning environments and processes. In his free time, Nathan can be found listening to music, hiking, and playing board games!

Melissa Perez

Melissa is a fourth year studying Computer Science, with minors in Latino Studies and Sociology. Melissa is involved in the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers and Women in Computing, and is a Peer Mentor for a few intro CS classes. Melissa's favorite pasttimes are going to Chicago and eating with friends.

Tim Mwiti

Tim is a junior majoring in Computer Science in the McCormick School of Engineering. He works as a research assistant at the lab. He is from Kenya and is passionate about how technology can be utilized to hasten development of third world countries.

Durell Gill

Durell is a fourth year studying computer science in Weinberg who is mostly interested in web development.

Bobbie Burgess

Bobbie is originally from the San Francisco Bay Area (Burlingame to be precise) and is now at Northwestern as an undergraduate student (fourth year- winter '19) studying Manufacturing and Design Engineering. I am passionate about STEM education in MakerSpaces and how maker environments and curriculums can be crafted to empower students and teachers alike to be creative and make!

Sam Arrants

Sam is a third year studying Computer Science, currently working on the Sony Project. He is particularly interested in user experience and creating simple and impactful education technology. He is also pretty interested in a good bowl of cereal. And dogs.