People of UCI Esports Research Lab



Constance Steinkuehler is a Professor of Informatics at the University of California, Irvine and Principal Investigator in the Game Culture and Cognition Lab. She has published two books and more than ninety articles and chapters on thinking and reasoning related to videogames.

Constance serves on the advisory board for the UCI Esports Program and Chairs the UCI Diversity and Inclusion in Esports Task Force. She formerly served as Senior Policy Analyst under the Obama administration in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, advising on games and digital media, and she is the founder and former President of the Higher Education Video Games Alliance, an academic organization of game-related programs in higher education. Her work has been featured in Science, Wired, USA Today, New York Times, LA Times, ABC, CBS, CNN NPR, BBC and The Chronicle of Higher Education.


Kathryn Campbell
Research Scientist

Kathryn Campbell is a Research Scientist for the Esports Lab at the University of California, Irvine. She serves as the lab’s resident statistician and project manager. She completed a M.S in Applied Statistics with research topics that ranged from global geomagnetic fields to video game loot systems.


doctoral Students


A.M. Tsaasan


Tsaasan is a doctoral candidate studying community inclusion and exclusion by examining tools, practices and populations over time. Tsaasan seeks to understand factors related to successful inclusion practices in order to help organizations recruit previously excluded groups. Current projects include field work in Southern California esports communities and Play in the Anthropocene an esports community interactive arts exhibition.


Craig G Anderson


Craig G Anderson is a doctoral candidate studying the cognitive influences of video game playing. A lifelong gamer and learner, his interests include how games engage players and how these principles can be leveraged for prosocial or educational means. Current projects include investigating the role of failure in educational games and persistence in esports.


Jason Reitman


Jason is pursuing his PhD exploring cognition in teams of humans and machines. Through his current work observing elite esports teams, he aims to understand how these systems distribute cognitive work to ensure the team’s success.


Je Seok Lee


Jeseok Lee is a Ph.D. student studying social behavior of esports game players. He investigates players' in-game behavior pattern and seeks for a connection to other aspects of their life. Currently, he is applying machine learning methods to analyze complicated patterns of collaborative behavior when people play cooperative games.


Minnie Wu


Minnie Wu is a doctoral student interested in what happens to players—cognitively, motivationally and socially— during gameplay, and how design elements make games fun and conducive to learning. Current projects investigate student learning of academic and social-emotional content in games and game communities.


Maria J. Anderson Coto


Maria J. Anderson-Coto is a PhD student exploring team dynamics and performance. Through her current work, she aims to understand how elite esports teams’ and professional players’ performances are influenced by internal and external factors. She is also interested in gender and inclusion around video games.