Dr. Min Liu is Professor in the Learning Technologies Program at the University of Texas at Austin. Her teaching and research interests center on educational uses of new media and other emerging technologies, particularly the impact of such technologies on teaching and learning; and the design of new media enriched interactive learning environments for learners at all age levels. She supervises and directs all aspects of the Alien Rescue project. By engaging students in this hands-on opportunity, she believes this project serves as an excellent training platform for future instructional designers, multimedia developers, and educational researchers. More info about Dr. Liu can be found at: http://www.edb.utexas.edu/minliu/
Lucas Horton is a doctoral candidate in the Learning Technologies program and Educational Technology Project Manager in the Center for Teaching and Learning at The University of Texas at Austin. He has been a member of the Alien Rescue project since 2005. His interests are in the design and development of immersive learning environments using game, 3D, and web technologies and the creation of tools that support problem-based learning in the classroom. At the Center for Teaching and Learning, he is involved in research and development efforts around technology-based and online learning as well as the OnRamps college readiness project. He holds an M.A. in Instructional Technology from UT-Austin.
Jina has been a member of the Alien Rescue project since 2010. Since she holds an M.A. in Learning Technologies and M.S. in Astronomy, her contributions are focused on developing content and teachers' manual. One of her research interests is how to efficiently deliver content (specifically science related) in order to motivate students learning in a game-based learning environment. Currently, she is interested in visualizing students' paths in AR, in order to improve the environment and also to help teachers track students' learning paths. She is currently pursuing doctoral work in the Learning Technologies program at the UT at Autsin and working as a teaching assistant for the classes related to design strategies and multimedia production.
Sa Liu is a doctoral student in Curriculum and Instruction specializing in Learning Technologies. She has a master's degree in Educational Technology and a B.S. in Computer Science. She is a big fan of all kinds of games and joined Alien Rescue project in 2013 Spring. Her current research interests include serious games and game based learning, especially on how to scaffold play-learner's cognitive process in the problem-based learning serious game environment.
Chenglu Li is a master’s student in the Learning Technologies program. Before his study in UT, he worked for a video game company in China as a marketing specialist. In the Alien Rescue program, he was engaged with 3D modelling and game engine, and is now co-designing a new official website for Alien Rescue. Python and Swift are his favorite programming languages. His main interest is in the use of video games to enhance learning.
Wenting Zou is a doctoral student in the Learning Technologies program at The University of Texas at Austin. She earned her master’s degree in Educational Technology from the University of Hong Kong. Wenting joined Alien Rescue Team in 2015. She is contributing to the front-end development of the latest web-based version of the game. Her research interests include the use of Web 2.0 tools to enhance teaching & learning, and learning analytics in serious games.
Sukanya Moudgalya is a Masters student of Learning Technologies in UT Austin. She has a Bachelors degree in Biotechnology. Prior to UT, Sukanya was working as a content generator for a course development project in Public Health, in India. She joined the Alien Rescue team in 2015 and has been involved in 3D modeling, animation, and web designing. She is passionate about problem-based learning, game-based learning, and the design of learning environments. Her research interests also include examining ways to reduce compartmentalization of 'subjects' and to have instead holistic learning approaches.
Siqi Yi is a master’s student in the Learning Technologies program at the University of Texas at Austin. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in English Language and Literature. She has been a part of Alien Rescue since February 2016 and concentrates on 3D modeling and animation. Her research interests include integration of interactive multimedia in Education, game-based learning as well as web design. She has helped create alien model videos and participated in game design for the next new version of AR.
Former team members
Jeff Hodson is a doctoral student in the Learning Technologies program at The University of Texas at Austin. He has a master’s degree in Instructional Design and Educational Technology from the University of Utah. Jeff joined Alien Rescue during the fall 2015 semester, and his primary role has been front-end web development for cognitive tools. His research interests include motivation, self- regulated learning, self-efficacy, problem-based learning, and collaborative learning.
Yajun Qiu is a graduate student in Learning Technologies program. He joined Alien Rescue team in fall 2014. His interests include immersive learning environment design, Web development and 3D modeling and animation. He takes a leading role in 3D design group and creating over 10 models and characters for Alien Rescue 5th version - WebGL. In addition, he was engaged in students and teachers interviewing and filmed school observation in spring 2015. In addition to his research, he is serving as a graduate assistant in UT Health Services, performing the duty of a computer programmer and Web developer.
Peishan Xu is a master’s student in the Learning Technologies program at the University of Texas at Austin and has a B.S. degree in Education Technology. She has been a part of Alien Rescue since 2014 and concentrates on 3D modeling, game design and web design. Her research interests include integration of interactive multimedia in Education, game-based learning, e- learning as well as human computer interaction. She worked on rebuilding the website and 3D models for Salamander Rescue. She is fond of exploring strategies of creative design and production in the context of better learning experience.
Caroline Cancelosi is a master's student in Learning Technologies and a Graduate Research Assistant at the College of Education's Office of Instructional Innovation. She joined the Alien Rescue team in 2014 and is currently redesigning the user interface. Caroline also helps design the overall game aesthetic in collaboration with the 3D modeling team. Her interests include the gamification of learning, visual design, and adaptive instructional technologies.
Sara is a master’s student in the Learning Technologies program. She joined the Alien Rescue team in the fall of 2015 and has worked on design of the interface, user experience, and teacher professional development portal. She is interested in game-based learning, immersive learning environments, and the use of VR/AR in instruction. She believes that one of the most important aspects of effective technology- and game-integration in the classroom is informed teacher adoption, and is currently working with the AR team to develop the best tools to aid in teacher use of Alien Rescue.
Jake Henson is a second semester Masters student at the University of Texas at Austin in the Education Learning Technologies program. Before that he was a 9-12 grade Audio/Visual Production teacher for 3 years, a free-lance grip and production assistant, a substitute teacher, a UT undergraduate film and english student, a lifeguard for 9 years, and a dairy hand for 3 years. As a 6th grader he read Greek and Egyptian mythology books, Animorphs, The Lord of the Rings, X-Men comics, played more video games than he should have, learned to play Chess, loved Star Wars, and won an award for reading all of that year's Bluebonnet books. At the time he was determined to draw and write Superhero comics.
Jason Harron is a doctoral student in the Learning Technology program at The University of Texas at Austin. He holds an M.M. in Saxophone Performance and an M.B.A. from the University of North Texas. Jason is an experienced K-12 educator and works for the UTeach program as a Teaching Assistant training pre-service math and science teachers. When Jason's not building, inventing, programming, or tinkering he enjoys cycling around Austin, performing on saxophone or piano, and repairing pinball machines. Jason joined the Alien Rescue team in July of 2014 and is currently leading the development of the ThreeJS-based engine for the next generation of AR. His research interests include mobile devices for immersive virtual reality, design thinking, the Maker Movement, creativity, and how we build capacities for failure as we learn to persevere.
Ryan Myers is a Ph.D. student in the Learning Technologies program at the University of Texas at Austin. He joined the Alien Rescue team in August 2013. Before coming to UT, Ryan taught middle school social studies for six years. He has a master’s degree in instructional design and technology, and bachelor’s degrees in social studies teaching and psychology. His research interests here at UT are digital game-based learning and problem-based learning. His main role on the Alien Rescue team is 3D modeling.
Amy is a master’s student in the Learning Technologies program within the Curriculum and Instruction department. She has a BA in mathematics, and taught math at the high school level for eight years. She has been a part of Alien Rescue for one year, and hopes to bring more math concepts into Alien Rescue. She is also interested in providing teachers with the best tools to monitor students’ progress within the game as well as alternative ways to assess learning.
Jaejin is a PhD student in Learning Technologies program at UT Austin and GRA at IDEAStudio, LTC in College of Education. He has 10 years of experience in the field of educational technology and 20 years of experience in the RC modeling hobby. He taught several classes such as Teaching Method and Educational Technology and Distance Education in South Korea. He joined Alien Rescue project in 2008 and is responsible for 3D modeling and animation. His research interest focuses on fantasy and 3D visual effect for educational game. He is also interested in expanding his profession in 3D modeling to 3D fantasy art and aero-design for hobby aircraft.
Mengwen Cao is a graduate student in Learning Technologies Program and a GRA at the Knight Center Journalism in the Americas at the University of Texas at Austin. Her interests are in the relationship between technology and education, including MOOC(Massive Open Online Courses), multimedia and interactive learning experience. She has been in the Alien Rescue and Salamander Rescue team since September 2012, which has given her opportunities to learn and sharpen different skills. She has helped redesign the AR site, filmed and edited the AR videos, photographed school observation. She has been working on 3D models as well as 2D designs. She also participated in game design, 3D modeling and user testing in SR. At the Knight Center, she has been maintaining the website and facilitating MOOCs.
Elena Winzeler is a master’s student in the Learning Technologies program. She currently works for the Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk developing computer-based instructional interventions for children who struggle with reading comprehension. A member of the AR team since 2013, she is passionate about designing maximally effective digital learning environments, integrating such features as adaptivity, game-based and gamified learning, and stealth assessment. Her work with AR has centered on improving teachers’ experiences; she has worked to design a digital handbook and developed screencasts to guide teachers in using the program. She has also participated in research using learning analytics and data visualization to study players’ in-game behaviors. This work is leading her to design an interactive digital dashboard that will provide students’ gameplay data to teachers for assessment and monitoring purposes.
Jason is an educational technologist at St. Edward’s University and has twenty years of experience in the field of educational technology. He recently co-taught a class in Global Social Problems at SEU that was recognized with a Hudspeth Award for Innovative Instruction. He has a Master’s degree in educational technology and is currently pursuing doctoral work in UT’s Learning Technologies program. His research interests focus on the role of sound in our experience of educational games. Jason enjoys designing sound and writing music for games like AR and is teaching a Digital Music and Audio class at SEU this Fall.
Matt O'Hair has been a part of the Alien Rescue team since the Fall of 2011, which has given him the opportunity to learn 3D modeling, 2D design and computer game design. His contributions include creating many of the 3D and 2D graphics in the Alien Research Database, designing the Alien Rescue logo and giving feedback and suggestions about game design and user experience. Going forward, he plans to focus his efforts on the development of another learning game spearheaded by Dr. Liu called Salamander Rescue. (Matt graduated in May 2013 with a masters degree from UT-Austin.)
Chu-Wei Lu is a second-year graduate student in Learning Technologies masters program. She is currently working part-time as a graphic/web designer and pre-K Chinese teacher. Her interests are teaching and designing interactive multimedia programs to facilitate learning. She joined AR development team in October 2011 and started to work on SR project in January 2012. She edited AR video and is working on probe redesign. Her responsibilities in SR include developing game concepts, storyboarding and 3D modeling. (Chu-Wei graduated in May 2013 with a masters degree from UT-Austin.)