Alawini Lab

where AI-based, data-drive next-generation educational technology are invented!

Join our lab to work with a brilliant team of undergraduate and graduate students who are passionate about innovating in the field of databases, computers and education, and beyond.

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About ME


I am passionate about teaching and building data-driven, AI-based systems for improving teaching and learning. The aim of my research is 1) to understand how students learn database programming, 2) to develop technologies that help instructors teach and interact with students in large classrooms, and 3) to build tools to help students receive a personalized, student-centered learning experience.

Research Interests

-Data(base) Management Systems
-AI in Education
-Educational Data Mining

Current Project


Abdussalam Alawini is a Teaching Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His educational journey started with a bachelor's degree in Computer Science from the University of Tripoli in 2002. He then worked in the industry for over six years as a database administrator, lead software developer, and IT Manager. In 2011, he returned to academia and received a master's in Computer Science and another master's degree in Engineering and Technology Management from Portland State University. He then received a doctoral degree in Computer Science from Portland State in 2016. In his Ph.D., he built systems to help scientists manage their file-based datasets by predicting relationships among spreadsheet documents. Passionate about a career in academia, Dr. Alawini joined the University of Pennsylvania in 2016 as a postdoctoral researcher. As a postdoc, he developed data citation and data provenance systems for scientists. Dr. Alawini's research interests are broadly in databases, applied machine learning, and education. He is particularly interested in applying machine learning methods to improve classroom experience and education in general. He is also interested in building next-generation data management systems, including data provenance, citation, and scientific management systems.

Current Students:

Graduate Students:
  • Sophia Yang, Ph.D.
  • Mukesh Naresh Chugani, MCS
  • Ridha Alkhabaz, MCS
Undergraduate Students:
  • Nikhil Khandekar
  • Rishabh Jain
  • Tom Reichel

Past Graduate Students:

Graduate Students:
Undergraduate Students:
  • Mei Chen
  • Ridha Alkhabaz
  • Rohit Narayanan
Undergraduate Students joined the lab
Graduate Students worked in the lab
Research Projects