- 2010 – Ph.D. Computer Science. Texas A&M University
- 2002 – Master of Computer Science. Texas A&M University
- 1996 – B.S. Computer Science. Universidad Rafael Landivar, Guatemala
I am a Research Scientist with the Department of Computer Science at Rice University, working with Dr. Chris Jermaine’s group on the Pliny project. I work on what I call Learninformatics (term coined during the NSF Big Data Ideas Lab Oct 2013), which can be defined as: An interdisciplinary approach to develop and improve methods for storing, curating, organizing and analyzing learning data.
Previously, I worked as Data Scientist for STEMscopes™, where my work focused on learning analytics and the big data generated by nearly half a million students and over 50,000 teachers that use STEMScopes™ as on-line science curriculum. For more than fifteen years, I have worked on numerous interdisciplinary collaborations with domain experts in various disciplines such as education, linguistics, art history and nautical archaeology. In the fall of 2010, I embedded a forensic science game based on the TV series CSI in a virtual world (Wyville.net) with nearly six million users, and studied the ways in which teenagers explore a science topic.
Prior to joining Rice University, my research at the Center for the Study of Digital Libraries at Texas A&M contributed to the creation and development of various digital repositories related to literature collections, art history (Pablo Picasso) and maritime archaeology. I received my B.S. from Universidad Rafael Landívar (Guatemala), followed by masters and Ph.D. degrees from Texas A&M University, all in Computer Science. In my undergraduate thesis, I implemented a genetic algorithm-based scheduler, for which I received an Outstanding Computer Science Thesis National Award in 1996. In my doctoral dissertation, I created an algorithm for improving information contextualization in maritime archaeology, enhancing document retrieval by combining domain knowledge and a specialized ontology, helping archaeologists to reconstruct ancient sunken ships.
I am a member of the International Network of Guatemalan Scientists, the Association for Computing Machinery, the Association for Linguistic and Literary Computing and the IEEE Computer Society. I also serve as reviewer for conferences and journals related to data mining, learning analytics, linguistic computing, and digital humanities. In addition, I have published in various peer-reviewed journals, conference proceedings and book chapters, and have presented in the United States, Europe and Latin America.