Na got her Ph.D. in the College of Information Sciences and Technology at Penn State University, under the supervision of Dr. Mary Beth Rosson in the Human Computer Interaction Lab. Her dissertation focus is online community building for distance learners in lieu of enhancing students' identity and ties visibility. In particular, she explored the social needs and practices to connect online students beyond class-encounters using visualizations. More generally, she is interested in social computing research that aims to enhance social connectedness and promote open education opportunities. In practice, Ms. Sun is also a leading practitioner for fostering a community that facilitates interdisciplinary collaborations: in Fall 2016, she served as the president of Innovation and Interdisciplinary Collaboration Community. She is also a member of IEEE, ACM SIGCHI, ISLS, IEEE Women in Engineering (WIE) and Computing Research Association-Women (CRA-W).
Before joining Penn State, Na Sun graduated from East China Normal University with a bachelor degree in computer science. She was employed as research intern at a non-profit organization CanAssist in Canada during her college years, and also worked as a research intern in a crowdsourcing project at the Research and Technology Center of Bosch. In the summer of 2017, she was a visiting scholar at INSA Lyon for an emotion-related research project, under the supervision of Prof. Elise Lavoue and Prof. Aurelien Tabard. In the past summer (2019), she worked at Airbnb as a full-time User Experience Research Intern.
Na has successfully defended her dissertation, and now is actively looking for a full-time position as a User Experience Researcher or a Data Scientist after her graduation with the PhD degree in informatics from Penn State (expected summer 2019).
Aug 2013 - Aug 2019
Human Computer Interaction, Education Technology, Social Computing, Visual Analytics
Jun 21th 2019
I presented a project on online students' use and perception of emoji in the context of peer-based design feedback activities.
May 8th 2019
I presented part of my dissertation project that revealed online students' social needs and practices towards design implications for building online communities of distance learners. This work has earned a Honorable Mention Award for Best Paper (see the news covered here).
May 2018 - Aug 2018
Motivate Airbnb users to consider unreviewed listings
I used mixed research methods to uncover the factors that influence the bookability of unreviewed listings in Airbnb. Our research efforts involve a lot of cross-functional collaboration, and negotiations across different product groups. Our research findings drove immediate business impact, and informed product team's resource allocation in the next product cycle.
April 25th 2018
I presented methods of developing and validating a scale to measure community feelings and capacity for distance learners.
May 2017 - Aug 2017
Design feedback in Emoviz
To investigate the emotional needs and awareness of online learners, we used Emoviz, a PDF annotation tool that allows for comments in both text and emojis in a Human-Centered Design online class.
July 1st 2017
I presented our empirical work on Critical Thinker application in the context of collaborative argumentation.
Jun 24th 2017
I presented part of dissertation project, an interpretive inquiry on instructors' community perception among online degree-seeking students.
May 2016 - Aug 2016
I worked on a crowdsourcing project that leads to design and development of enterprise innovation dashboard.
Sept 2009 - Jun 2013
Computer Science, Computer Science Education