The Center for Human-Computer Interaction is an interdisciplinary research center jointly sponsored by the Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology; and the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science at Virginia Tech.


Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) is a multi-disciplinary enterprise, drawing from the human sciences, computational sciences and engineering, and information technologies. The Center for HCI (CHCI) at Virginia Tech is a university-wide research center that addresses both the facilitation and the foundational understanding of human interaction with and through technology. The CHCI excels in cross-disciplinary research on interactive computing that extends into the everyday life of individuals, groups, and societies. The CHCI fosters research excellence through funding programs, shared resources, and forums for idea exchange.

The Center for Human-Computer Interaction at Virginia Tech celebrated its 20th anniversary on 15-16 October 2015. The event was a huge success with attendance from a variety of industry and academia-affiliated alumni, current students, as well as former and current faculty members. You can watch the Plenary Panel discussion, which opened the event, on our youtube channel. You can also get more information about the event on the dedicated web page.

Research Thrusts

Human Computer Interaction (HCI), the overarching research area of the CHCI, is is a broad and diverse domain. Although the work of the affiliated faculty is equally broad and diverse, we have identified two key research thrusts that represent specific sub-areas of HCI for which the Center can obtain or maintain a world-class standing. The research thrust areas are:

Research Highlight

Kurt Luther received NSF CAREER award for expert-led crowdsourcing research


Assistant professor of computer science and CHCI member Kurt Luther has been recognized by the National Science Foundation with a Faculty Early Career Development Award to study and improve the capabilities of crowdsourced investigations. Luther will use an innovative expert-led crowdsourcing approach to collect data using a platform called CrowdSleuth. The software will assist collaboration between crowds and experts, such as journalists, historians, and law enforcement, as they attempt to discover new information and verify details of investigations. More information can be found on this VT News article.

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Recent News

Congratulations to Panagiotis Apostolellis on successful PhD defense


Congratulations to Panagiotis Apostolellis on the successful defense of his Ph.D. dissertation entitled "Evaluating Group Interaction and Engagement using Virtual Environments and Serious Games for Student Audiences in I ...

CHCI welcomes new member Brook Kennedy


Brook Kennedy is an Associate Professor in the Industrial Design program with a career spanning 15 years in Industrial, Interaction and Communication design consulting. He received a BA in Art from Reed College in Portla ...

CHCI faculty Kurt Luther receives NIH grant


Kurt Luther and T.M. Murali, both researchers in the College of Engineering’s Department of Computer Science, recently received funding to begin tracking the effects of everyday chemical pollutants on human cells by de ...

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Recent CHCI Seminar

Identity Abuse in Mobile Social Networks and Email Systems

2017-03-17 at 08:30:00 in ICAT Learning Studio, 253 Moss Arts Center

Presenter: Dr Gang Wang

Abstract: User identity is the root of trust in many online communities and communication systems. In practice, user identity is also the most attractive target for attacks. For systems like online social networks and email services, identity abuse can cause serious system disruptions, privacy leakage, financial loss, and even threats to national security. In this talk, I will describe our recent efforts to understand the risk of identity abuse in practice and our defense approaches. First, I will start by describing the fundamental challenge of authenticating real users and real phones in online and mobile systems. We reveal an emerging threat of “Sybil devices” where an attacker can control a large army of simulated devices pretending to be real users to lunch practical attacks such as location tracking and data pollution. Second, I will introduce our on-going work to investigate identity abuse in email systems for phishing and social engineering. I will share our recent findings on how existing email services fail to notify users on spoofing (fake) emails, particularly on mobile devices. I will discuss potential solutions moving forward by modeling user decision-making process for effective security alerts and interventions.

Bio: Gang Wang is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science at Virginia Tech. His research interests cover a range of topics in Security and Privacy, Data Mining and HCI. His goals work towards gaining a deep understanding of user behavior and its roles in attacks and defenses to better secure Internet systems. Gang’s current projects focus on three areas: security and privacy in online communities, data-driven models of user behavior, and mobile application security. Gang obtained his PhD in Computer Science from UC Santa Barbara (2016). He earned a BE degree from Tsinghua University (2010). He spent two summers at Microsoft Research Redmond in 2011 and 2014. He was the recipient of Outstanding Dissertation Award (2016) and PhD Dissertation Fellowship (2015) from UCSB, and Best Practical Paper Award from ACM SIGMETRICS (2013). He held a U.S. patent for large-scale detection of malware distribution networks.

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Fluid 960 Grid System, created by Stephen Bau, based on the 960 Grid System by Nathan Smith. Released under the GPL / MIT Licenses.