Marina Umaschi Bers, PhD

Marina Umaschi Bers, PhD, is an associate professor at the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Development and the Computer Science Department at Tufts University. Marina heads the interdisciplinary Developmental Technologies research group. Her research involves the design and study of innovative learning technologies to promote positive youth development. Dr. Bers received prestigious awards such as the 2005 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), a five-year National Science Foundation Young Investigator’s Career Award and the American Educational Research Association’s Jan Hawkins Award. Over the past decade and a half, Dr. Bers has conceived, designed and evaluated diverse educational technology projects ranging from robotics to virtual worlds in schools, after-school programs, museums, hospitals, both in the U.S. and abroad. Dr. Bers has received several NSF grants and is active in publishing her research in academic journals. Her book Blocks to Robots: Learning with Technology in the Early Childhood Classroom was published in 2008 by Teacher’s College Press. Most recently, Dr. Bers published Designing Digital Experiences for Positive Youth Development: From Playpen to Playgrounds. More on Dr. Bers at