Matthew Goodwin, Principal Investigator


Dr. Matthew S. Goodwin is an assistant professor at Northeastern University with joint appointments in the Bouvé College of Health Sciences and College of Computer & Information Science, where he is a founding and key faculty member of a new doctoral program in Personal Health Informatics and Director of the Computational Behavioral Science Laboratory (CBSL). He is also a visiting assistant professor and the former director of Clinical Research at the MIT Media Lab. Matthew serves on the Executive Board of the International Society for Autism Research, is chair of the Autism Speaks Innovative Technology for Autism Initiative, and has adjunct associate research scientist appointments at Brown University. Matthew has 20 years of research and clinical experience working with children and adults on the autism spectrum and developing and evaluating innovative technologies for behavioral assessment and intervention, including video and audio capture, telemetric physiological monitors, accelerometry sensors, and digital video/facial recognition systems. He is co-PI and associate director of the first large-scale collaborative effort by computer and behavioral scientists addressing early diagnosis and interventions for people with autism spectrum disorders, a research project supported by a National Science Foundation Expeditions in Computing Award. He is also co-PI on a Boston-based Autism Center of Excellence exploring basic mechanisms and innovative interventions in minimally verbal children with autism, recently funded by the National Institutes of Health. Previously he received a National Endowment for the Arts Access to Artistic Excellence Award for his research on autism spectrum disorders and its relationship to advanced technology. Matthew received his B.A. in psychology from Wheaton College and his MA and PhD, both in experimental psychology, from the University of Rhode Island. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship in Affective Computing in the Media Lab in 2010.




James Heathers, Postdoctoral Fellow

James (PhD ’15, Sydney) is a physiological psychologist. He was previously an Endeavour Research Fellow in electrocardiology at PUMS, Poland. He has a number of research interests: physiological signal analysis and methodology, the psychophysiology of emotion, and meta-science.




Alex Ahmed, Graduate Student

Alex is currently a third year in the Personal Health Informatics Ph.D. program at Northeastern. Before that, she did a BS in Cognitive Science at UC San Diego with a specialization in neuroscience. While there, she worked with Gedeon Deak studying cognitive development and joint attention sharing in infants and young toddlers, and with Gentry Patrick studying the regulation of ubiquitin-proteasome system. She then moved to New Haven to work with Brent Vander Wyk at the Yale Child Study Center, where she used fMRI techniques to measure brain activations to social stimuli in children with autism. She then joined the Machine Perception Lab at UC San Diego, and worked with Marian Bartlett on a project that used computer face recognition and machine learning to categorize instances of post-operative pain in children. At CBSLAB, Alex is involved in on-site research at Boston Children’s Hospital and Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego. She enjoys computer and board games, Dungeons & Dragons, live music, programming, and learning new things. More information about Alex can be found on her page.

Catalina Cumpanasoiu, Graduate Student


Catalina is finishing with a triple major: BS in Psychology, Computer Science and Cognitive Science from University of Richmond. During her time there she worked with Dr. David Landy on learning mathematical operations through visual cues and on an algebra teaching software that explores the role of space and physical manipulations of mathematical notations in understanding of and performance on algebra problems. Her honors thesis has been on spatial cognition and emotion recognition as a function of ASD. She has also had two summer internships working with children on the autism spectrum. She is looking forward to use technology to answer autism-related questions!


Murat Akcakaya

Christophe Gerard

Ian Kleckner

Nancy Soja

Jillian Sullivan

Oliver Wilder-Smith

Miriam Zisook