Jessica Ann Roberts



I completed my PhD in Learning Sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago, with a specialization in data visualization and geographic information systems (GIS). My dissertation research examined how interaction design of a data map display affected museum visitors' learning talk around complex spatially-referenced data. For more information on this work, please visit my research page or the project website.

I hold a Bachelor's of Science from Northwestern University's School of Communication. My interdepartmental studies major comprised courses primarily in theatre design, including advanced lighting design, hand and computer-aided drafting, and freehand drawing for stage design. Additional coursework included film production and advanced lighting and cinematography in the film department. Select theatre credits include the Theatre and Interpretation Center's All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten (lighting designer, 2003), Arts Alliance Production's Graffiti Dancers (lighting director, 2003; lighting designer, 2001-2002; assistant stage manager, 2000), The Dolphin Show's Damn Yankees (lighting designer, 2002) and The Secret Garden (associate lighting designer, 2001), and Arts Alliance's Garden Party Hello, Again (lighting designer, 2003). Also while at Northwestern I played flute, piccolo, and tenor saxophone in the marching band, served as philanthropy coordinator for Sigma Alpha Iota's Beta Chapter (2002), and was a member of Chi Omega fraternity.

Hobbies & Interests

I live in Pittsburgh with my husband and two children, where together we play and watch a lot of sports and music. Whenever the temperature is over 15 degrees I try to get outside for a run, which balances out my recent infatuation with cake decorating (and subsequent eating) quite nicely.