Yu Xu

Hi, I'm Yu Xu. I received my PhD in Information Systems from the Department of Informatics at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, advised by Michael J. Lee. I am a proud member of Gidget Lab. My human-computer interaction (HCI) research focuses on the emergence, maintenance and improvement of social relationships in the context of online shopping and social media, as well as the human-centered design of software to facilitate meaningful interpersonal interactions in the course of collaborative online shopping activities.

Before my current PhD program, I earned my LL.B degree from China Foreign Affairs University, and M.S. degree in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University. I have also worked as a market research analyst at MediaRadar, Inc. for one year and a half. This broad experience motivates me to design and frame research questions with an awareness of the rich interactions that connect people with technology and unfold the real world.

Identifying Personas in Online Shopping Communities [pdf]

Xu, Yu, and Michael J. Lee

Multimodal Technologies Interaction 4, no. 2:19 (2020)

A Qualitative Study of User Participation and Challenges in a Social Shopping Context [pdf]

Xu, Yu, Bruce Ferwerda, Michael J. Lee

In Proceedings of the 25th International on Intelligent User Interfaces: Companion (2020)

Understanding User Participation and Interaction in Online Shopping Communities from the Social and Relational Perspectives [pdf]

Xu, Yu, and Michael J. Lee

In Proceedings of the 53rd Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS) (2020)

Personalizing User Interactions in a Social Shopping Context and Open Challenges [pdf]

Xu, Yu, and Michael J. Lee

In Proceedings of the 24rd International on Intelligent User Interfaces: Companion (2019)

Shopping as a Social Activity: Understanding People’s Categorical Item Sharing Preferences on Social Networks [pdf]

Xu, Yu, and Michael J. Lee

In Proceedings of the 23rd International on Intelligent User Interfaces: Companion (2018)

I (don’t) Think I’ll be OK... : Understanding Perceived Impacts of Internet Outage [pdf]

Sukeshini A. Grandhi, Linda Plotnick, Starr Roxanne Hiltz, Yu Xu

The Americas Conference on Information Systems (2017)

Understanding Incentives and Deterrents of Mobile Shopping [pdf]

Xu, Yu, and Donghee Yvette Wohn

IConference 2016 Proceedings (2016)


I have four semesters of experience teaching courses pertaining to Human-Computer Interaction with an emphasis on User Experience Design (UXD). I have experience teaching at the undergraduate (IS247) and graduate levels (IS661), including courses taught exclusively face-to-face (6 semesters) and exclusively online (1 semester). My courses focus on user-centered software development and cover the following topics: lean software engineering (Lean UX), user experience design, interaction design, UX research methods, usability testing, and project management. Deliverables at the end of each semester include an interactive prototype and a written report documenting the students’ user-centered software design and development process. This report has served as a portfolio of work that yielded former students full-time and internship positions in the tech industry. I received 2018 Ying Wu College of Computing Excellence in Teaching Award for a teaching rating of 3.9/4.0.

Specific skills taught and practiced by students in my courses include:

1. Semi-structured interviews

2. Competitive research/claims analysis

3. Identification of a target market and construction user personas

4. Context scenarios - a "day in the life" prior to the students' technology intervention

5. Card sorting to brainstorm solution ideas

6. Context/Activity scenarios - a "day in the life" with the students' intervention/solution

7. Key path scenarios - interactive prototypes demonstrate the solution's unique value proposition

8. Usability tests - moderated, qualitative usability tests utilizing a think aloud protocol