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Michael Horn

Michael Horn

  • Professor and Program Coordinator, Learning Sciences
  • Professor, Computer Science

Annenberg Hall, Room 336, 2120 Campus Drive Evanston, IL 60208
Curriculum Vitae

Academic Area

Learning Sciences


Michael S. Horn is professor of learning sciences and computer science at Northwestern University. His research considers the intersection of human-computer interaction and learning with a focus on thoughtful uses of emerging technologies in diverse learning settings. Some of Horn’s recent projects have included an investigation of multi-touch tabletops in natural history museums and the use of tangible programming languages in kindergarten classrooms and science museums.

Horn earned his PhD in computer science at Tufts University working in the departments of Computer Science and Child Development. He received his undergraduate degree in Computer Science from Brown University. He has also worked as a software engineer for Classroom Connect and iRobot Corporation.


  • ScB, Computer Science, Brown University, 1997
  • MS, Computer Science, Tufts University, 2006
  • PhD, Computer Science, Tufts University, 2009

Selected Publications 

Horn, M.S. (2018). Tangible Interaction and Cultural Forms: Supporting computer-based learning in informal environments. Journal of the Learning Sciences: 27(4), 1-34.

Leong, Z.A., Horn, M., Thaniel, L., & Meier, E. (2018). Inspiring AWE: Transforming Clinic Waiting Rooms into Informal Learning Environments with Active Waiting Education . SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems: 668-1679.

Horn, M., Phillips, B., Evans, E.M., Block, F., Diamond, J., Shen, C. (2016). Visualizing biological data in museums: Visitor learning at an interactive tree of life exhibit. Journal of Research in Science Teaching: 53(6), 895-918.

Weintrop, D., Beheshti, E., Horn, M., Orton, K., Jona, K., Trouille, L., & Wilensky, U. (2016). Defining Computational Thinking for Math and Science Classrooms. Journal of Science Education and Technology: 1-21.

Horn, M., Banerjee, A., Davis, P., & Stevens, R. (2016). nvasion of the Energy Monsters: A spooky game about saving energy. Learning, and Society (GLS’16).

Horn, M., Stevens, R., Leong, Z.A., & Greenberg, M. (2015). Kids and thermostats: Understanding children’s involvement with household energy systems. Journal of Child-Computer Interaction : 3-4, 14-22.

Davis, P., Horn, M.S., Block, F., Phillips, B., Evans, E.M., Diamond, J., & Shen, C (2015). Whoa! We’re going deep in the trees!�: Patterns of collaboration around an interactive information visualization exhibit. International Journal of Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning: 10, 53-76.

Block, F., Hammerman, J., Horn, M.S., Phillips, B.C., Evans, E.M., Diamond, J., Shen, C. (2015). Fluid grouping: Quantifying group engagement around interactive tabletop exhibits in the wild. ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems: 867-876.

Leong, Zeina; Horn. Michael (2014). Waiting for learning: Designing interactive educational materials for patient waiting areas. ACM International Conference Proceeding Series: 145-153.

Horn, Michael; Routman, Emily; Weintrop, David (2014). Programming in the pond: A tabletop computer programming exhibit. Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems – Proceedings: 1417-1422.