Matthew Berland


(608) 263-7379

144E Teacher Education Building

225 North Mills Street

Madison, WI 53706

Berland, Matthew

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Matthew Berland is a Professor of Design, Informal, and Creative Education in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at UW–Madison and Affiliate Faculty in Information Studies, Educational Psychology, and Science/Technology Studies. He uses design-based research to create and analyze tools and learning environments that support students’ creative agency and computational literacies. His projects are designed to better understand how students learn complex skills and understandings through mixed methods including learning analytics, data mining, and constructionist design research. Berland holds a Ph.D. from Northwestern University, and he is the founder and director of both the Complex Play Lab and the UW Game Design Program.


  • PhD Learning Sciences (Focus: Computer Science), Northwestern University, 2008
  • AB Computer Science; Modern Culture & Media, Brown University, 1999

Select Publications

  • Holbert, N., Berland, M., & Kafai, Y. (In Press). Designing Constructionist Futures. MIT Press.
  • Pellicone, A., Lyons, L., Kumar, V., Zhang, E., & Berland, M. (2019). Rainbow Agents: A Collaborative Game for Computational Literacy. CHI:PLAY 2019 Barcelona, Spain: ACM Online Publication/Abstract.
  • Berland, M. (2017). Constructivist Analytics: Using Data to Enable Deeper Museum Experiences for More Visitors—Lessons from the Learning Sciences. Visitor Studies, 20(1), 3-9. Online Publication/Abstract.
  • Tissenbaum, M., Berland, M., & Lyons, L. (2017). DCLM framework: understanding collaboration in open-ended tabletop learning environments. International Journal of Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning, 12(1), 35-64. Online Publication/Abstract.
  • Berland, M., & Duncan, S. (2016). Computational thinking in the wild: Uncovering complex collaborative thinking through gameplay. Educational Technology, 56(3), 29-35.
  • Berland, M., Davis, D., & Smith, C. P. (2015). AMOEBA: Designing for collaboration in computer science classrooms through live learning analytics. International Journal of Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning, 10(4), 425-447. Online Publication/Abstract.
  • Berland, M., & Wilensky, U. (2015). Comparing Virtual and Physical Robotics Environments for Supporting Complex Systems and Computational Thinking. Journal of Science Education and Technology, 24(5), 628-647. Online Publication/Abstract.
  • Berland, M., Baker, R., & Blikstein, P. (2014). Educational Data Mining and Learning Analytics: Applications to Constructionist Research. Technology, Knowledge and Learning, 19(1), 205-220. Online Publication/Abstract.
  • Bowers, A., & Berland, M. (2013). Does recreational computer use affect high school achievement?. Educational Technology Research and Development, 61(1) Online Publication/Abstract.
  • Berland, M., Martin, T., Benton, T., & Petrick Smith, C. (2013). Using Learning Analytics to Understand the Learning Pathways of Novice Programmers. Journal of the Learning Sciences, 22(4), 564-599. Online Publication/Abstract.