Graduate Students | Learning Technologies


Galyna Arabadzhy is a PhD student in Learning Technologies.  She holds an M.A. in Teaching English as a Second Language from St. Cloud State University. Prior to commencing her graduate studies in the US, Galyna worked as Lead Instructional Designer at an edtech startup. 

Her extensive experience in synchronous and asynchronous online education shaped her interest in online learning and language education.


Rukmini Manasa Avadhanam is Ph.D. candidate in Learning Technologies. She has a master's in psychology. Her interest in working with teachers and students motivated her to take a leap toward a career in education.

Her research interests are digital divide, technology integration, teacher beliefs, teacher online education, and professional development in developing countries. She loves playing with data and she is trying to find her feet in learning analytics and social network analysis.

John Bartucz
John Bartucz is a Teaching Specialist and Ph.D. student in Learning Technologies. He has a master's in computer science and one in secondary education. He currently teaches several classes in the LT department. His passion in education is giving students the tools (specifically data science) to empower themselves and their communities.

Catherine (Kate) Clements is a PhD Candidate in the LT program, with a minor in Second Language Education. Kate has an MA in English as a Second Language and Hispanic Linguistics and Literature from the University of Minnesota, and is an English Language Specialist for the US Department of State and a Senior Teaching Specialist at the University of Minnesota.

Kate’s research interests include computer-assisted language learning, virtual exchanges, learning to teach online, best practices in online language teaching and learning, and technology implementation in low-resource environments. 


Shreepriya Dogra is a Ph.D. student in Learning Technologies. She has a master's degree in Information Technology and a bachelor's degree in Computer Science & Engineering. After more than 5 years in the software industry in different roles, she decided to take a leap of faith and move to academia.

Shreepriya has been associated with a lot of programs in different departments ranging from Computer Science, Information Systems, and Computational Biology to help students and instructors use technology for learning and teaching. During the pandemic, she helped a lot of students and instructors move to an online mode of teaching and evaluation. Shreepriya hopes to make difference in education by using learning analytics to help learners understand their style of learning and be able to personalize their education themselves.


Jennifer Englund [she/her] is a Ph.D. candidate in the Learning Technologies program. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in the Learning Technologies program and has introduced over 150 students to the Creative Commons licenses. She also serves as an instructional designer at the University of Minnesota.

For her doctoral dissertation, Jennifer plans to conduct a mixed-methods study to explore the range of awareness, knowledge, and use of open educational practices by instructional designers.


Emily Hietpas (she/her) is a M.Ed Professional Studies student in Learning Technologies. Emily has worked for arts and educational institutions for over fifteen years. She’s interested in course design, creativity, community, and lifelong learning. Emily currently works as a course developer at the University of Minnesota and supervises a team of undergraduate students in media production. She earned her BA in Art History and is a proud member of the Radio K Alumni Association.

Basel Hussein

Basel Hussein is a Ph.D. student in Learning Technologies. He hold a bachelor's degree in cognitive/social psychology. His research interests are around personalized learning and human-AI partnership.

His current work focuses on using computational methods to investigate and support goal-driven learning, problem-solving, and information-seeking behavior. His personal interests are music, tech, biking, and cooking.

More about Basel's work in his website  


Tina Jeon is a Ph.D. student in the Learning Technologies program. She is interested in what education means in different contexts and how to support teachers and students from diverse backgrounds based on the bachelor's degree in education and anthropology/sociology and graduate certificate on Leadership in Technology Integration.

Tina has worked in K-12 school as an education technology integration fellow, which further motivated her passion for learning science and technology field. She is looking forward to exploring equity issues and inclusive representation of learner identities and needs in learning tools.


Robert Kreml is a Ph.D. candidate within the Learning Technologies program. He holds a master's degree in adult, continuing, and higher education administration and a bachelor's degree in physics.

His research interests include studying augmented and virtual reality as a technology enhanced learning environment in STEM education. Other research interests include: Online and distance learning, knowledge building, collaborative learning with technology, and increased learner motivation from technology.


Steve Parker is a Master’s student in Learning Technologies. Steve holds a Bachelor of Science in business and marketing from the University of Minnesota. He owned a family restaurant for twenty years followed by twenty years as a restaurant operations consultant for US Foods. 

His interests lie in learning technologies as they can be applied to training and development in the food service industry. 



Hong Shui is a Ph.D. candidate in Learning Technology program of Instruction and Curriculum Department, University of Minnesota Twin Cities. She holds a master degree in English Language and Literature and worked in Sichuan Normal University for years. 

Her research interest lies in the effective integration of technology into education, online collaborative learning, and the connection between learning design and learning analytics.