Hello! I’m Ashwag.

An empathetic researcher with extensive experience in the complete spectrum of quantitative and qualitative research methods. I have immense interest in understanding people and how technology can help them.

I am a PhD Candidate in the Information Systems program at University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). I am a member of Interactive Systems Research Center. My research contributes to the areas of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), Information Retrieval (IR) and Health Consumer Informatics. I have worked on different research projects that aim to explore the online search behaviors with the goal of informing inclusive and usable systems design and policy. I often run mixed-method research that combines quantitative and qualitative data.

My PhD dissertation aims to address user needs in the context of health informational retrieval . I am more interested in exploring and understanding users behavior and interactions with systems and how to inform designing systems/tools that adapt to users’ health information needs and level of health literacy. 

I am also passionate about mentoring and promoting the participation of women in STEM and computing fields. This is evident from my previous and current affiliations with a variety of organizations dedicated to support women in technology including WICS, CWIT, and ArabWIC.  It is a significant accomplishment that I have played a leadership role as one of the founders of ArabWIC Chapter in Saudi Arabia, and the community has now grown incredibly.

Let’s Get Connected!

LinkedIn | Twitter | Medium | GoogleScholar

What I am up to nowadays!

  • Jan 2020: Happy New Year!🎊 kicking off the 2020 with receiving the news that I’m awarded the SIGIR Student Travel Grant
  • Dec 2019: very excited to get my dissertation research accepted to be presenting in the Doctoral Consortium at CHIIR2020.
  • Nov 2019: November is being great to me! my research got accepted to International Journal of Medical Informatics.  
  • Nov 2019: Participated at AMIA Annual Symposium in DC as volunteer and presenter.
  • Nov 2019: I’ve participated at Hopperx1 New York City.
  • Oct 2019: Invited to speak at the 2019 INFORMS Annual Meeting 
  • Sep 2019: I am NOW officially a PhD Candidate!! I defended my PROPOSAL. 
  • July 2019: Presented my research at HCI International in Orlando.
  • Mar 2019: Invited to attend the International Women Day Summit organized by Google Women Techmaker in NYC
  • Feb 2019: Participated at two-day workshop on academic leadership organized by minister of higher ministry in Saudi Arabia
  • May 2018: Invited with great friends from ArabWIC community to attend Google IO.
  • April 2018: I am very pleased and honored to be selected as a Google Women Techmaker Scholar. I blogged about my experience in the application (here), I hope some find it valuable.
  • May 2017: I’ve attended my first CHI in Denver, Co. I’ve learned many and different things and I feel like I’ve grown both personally and professionally.😀My @ArabWIC_KSA team is planning to organize an online meeting to share our #CHI2017 experiences. Stay tuned!
  • Jan 2017: I will be taking the doctoral comprehensive exam in the next couple of days, Wish me Good Luck for my exam.
  • Jan 2017: My first journal article is accepted for apublication at International Journal of Human Computer Interaction,  Yesss!  Here is the link.
  • Oct 2016: Attended Grace Hooper Celebration in Houston, what is such a wonderful experience!  Stay Tuned for my blog about my #GHC16 experience.
  • Sept 2016: Recieved AMIA 2016 Annual Symposium Student Volunteer, yess will be in Chicago!
  • June 2016: Submitted to International Journal of Human-Computer Interaction- Special Issue on Mobile HCI. First journal submission, Wish me the best!
  • June 2016: Received a scholarship by Anita Borg Institute to attend GHC 2016 in Houston. So Excited!!! 
  • December 2015: Our research work entitled  “Language selection and query formulation in Arabic users’ English-language searching” is acceptedfor presenting in (iConference 2016) with Dr. Anita Komoldi.
  • June 2015: Our research work entitled “Improving Mobile Web Search by Clustering and Visualizing Search Engine Results” is accepted for publication in 17th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services (MobileHCI 2015) with my adviser Dr. Lina Zhou and Dr. Dongsong Zhang
  • May 2015: I am honored to participate as a panelist at NYUAD Women in Computing in the Arab World Conference 2015 (ArabWIC 2015)  – annual gathering for women interested in computing and technology in Arab world.