Prerna ChikersalI’m a Masters student at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotic’s Institute and a Graduate Research Assistant at the Human-Computer Interaction Institute, where I’m advised by Prof. Laura Dabbish. In my current research, I’m studying the physiological and behavioral underpinnings of collaboration, with the goal of developing interventions to make teams smarter. I draw on machine learning to model collaborative performance and communicative phenomena in datasets containing data from multiple modalities (or sources) like audio, video, transcriptions (text), electrodermal activity, heart rate, motion capture, and EEG. I plan to use these models to inform intelligent systems, thereby enabling them to intervene in the interaction by giving the participants feedback on their collaboration. For this project, I often collaborate with Prof. Anita Wolley, Prof. LP Morency, Dr. Maria Tomprou, and Dr. Young Ji Kim.

In May 2015, I graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Science and a specialization in Intelligent Systems, from Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore. I was advised by Prof. Erik Cambria for my bachelor thesis on “Modeling Public Sentiment in Twitter”.

During my undergraduate, I also worked as a research intern at the Computer Graphics Lab and the Computer Vision Lab at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland, where I was advised by Dr. Andrea Tagliasacchi and Dr. Horesh Ben Shitrit. I was awarded a research scholarship by EPFL for NTU-EPFL’s research exchange program, and was one of the 50 candidates out of 1500 chosen to participate in the Summer@EPFL program in 2013.

My research interests include:

  • Modeling affective and communicative phenomena by fusing data from multiple modalities (or sources)
  • Developing technological interventions informed by these models, to augment our interactions with each other and with machines