PEOPLE  |  PHD STUDENTS

Gerry Derksen

Email:   gderksen@illinois.edu

Program area(s):   

Design, Technology and Society

Graduate advisor:   Dr. Stan Ruecker,

Research:

My PhD research topic centers on using data taken from toys that aids children who have difficulty making decisions or suffer mild forms of autism. Particularly, I am interested in designing toys that are couched in stories that can extend their narratives through interactions during play. Dynamic input from users is captured through sensors, retaining the information to encourage children by prompting memory recall, haptic feedback, and at the same time enrich their experience. The research attempts to answer questions around cognitive development in children and provides an opportunity to create toys that respond to user interaction in the contexts in which they play.