Department of Humanities

Student Research

Lewis College of Science and Letters students engage in thoughtful research projects across the humanities disciplines. These opportunities allow students to explore humanities as a scientist, gaining a deeper understanding of their area of study by applying research methods and technology to solve complex issues facing society.

Many faculty offer research opportunities for students in their courses and offer guided research mentorship. Students studying humanities will engage in empirical research and analysis, while those in digital humanities will learn digital research methods. Students studying communication will develop the strong research skills that are critical to communications-related careers in fields such as journalism, marketing, and technical communication.

Undergraduate students also have a unique opportunity to showcase their work, and potentially win an award, at Lewis College's Undergraduate Research Day. Hosted annually by the college, this event highlights research projects, internship experiences, creative projects, and senior capstones from students in the humanities, psychology, and social sciences departments.

Graduate students in the Department of Humanities become experts in using digital research methods to support individualized research projects involving humans and their relationships to technology. They also learn research-intensive approaches to digital design and production, including user experience research, and hone their web design/development and game design skills. Many graduate students in the Department of Humanities also have the opportunity to travel to academic conferences and present their own research.

A limited number of funded graduate research assistantships are available. In these scenarios, graduate students have the opportunity to provide research support to projects led by full-time faculty members. A limited number of graduate research assistant positions are also available within the Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions.

Alex Damarjian

Video Game Improves Children’s Vision

Alex Damarjian, a technology and humanities Ph.D. candidate at Illinois Tech, has developed a program using Nintendo 3DS that helps diagnose pediatric ophthalmological disorders.

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Xi Rao

I Learned It at Illinois Tech

Before being hired as a UX research intern at Facebook in 2017, and subsequently being hired full-time as a UX researcher at the company in 2018, alumna Xi Rao (TCIA ’15) honed her UX research skills as a graduate student in the Master of Science program in Technical Communication and Information Architecture.

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Featured Faculty

In addition to actively pursuing their own research, many faculty members in the Department of Humanities work closely with students engaged in research projects at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Carly_Kocurek_320x355
Associate Professor of Digital Humanities and Media Studies Director of Graduate Studies
Mohamed El Marzouki
Assistant Professor of Communication
Mar Hicks
Associate Professor of History
Elisabeth Hildt
Professor of Philosophy Director of the Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions
Xiaoqian Li
Assistant Professor of Communication and Media Studies
Karl Stolley
Associate Professor of Digital Writing & Rhetoric Director, Gewgaws Lab Associate Professor, Information Technology and Management

“I study the intersection of human ethics, animal ethics, and robot ethics. This research is exciting because it has revealed a world of human/non-human animal relationships, human/robot relationships, robot/non-human animal relationships, and even some triad human/non-human animal/robot relationships. It is exciting to wonder how the blending of these entities will influence future ethics.”

—Monika Sziron (Technology and Humanities Ph.D. Student)

Monika Sziron