human-machine cognition | multimodal communication
I am a Ph.D. student in Computational Communication and and an M.S. student in Statistics at UCLA, supervised by Prof. Jungseock Joo, Prof. Rick Dale, and Prof. Hongjing Lu. My research interests lie in the realm of deep learning, cognitive science, and multimodal communication. I am proficient in developing deep neural networks that process and integrate various forms of data, such as language (BERT, GPT) and image-text (CLIP) embeddings, behavioral (OpenFace, OpenPose), auditory (mel spectrogram or MFCC), and neuroimaging signals (fNIRS, fMRI).
I previously worked as an Deep Learning/Data Science Intern at Beyond Limits AI, where I automated knowledge graph creation using LLMs, and as an NLP research intern at Testin, where I implemented a Seq2Seq model for OCR misspelling correction. Several of my papers are published in Communications in Computer and Information Science, Culture and Computing, Review of Communication, ICWSM and LREC workshop proceedings. I am also a finalist for the 2023-2024 Meta PhD Fellowship and the recipient of the UCLA Graduate Council Diversity Fellowship, which includes full tuition and stipend coverage.
I currently work as a PhD student researcher at the Computational Media Lab and Communicative Mind (Co-Mind) Lab. We develop a standardized end-to-end pipeline for multimodal analysis. Additionally, we propose statistical approaches for visualizing the learning trajectory of neural networks, contributing to model explainability using cognitive science theories.
As a rigorous computational social scientist and data science researcher from an interdisciplinary program, I enjoy developing and validating deep learning tools, answering impact-driven societal questions using machine learning, and bridging knowledge between fields.
In my free time, I like bouldering (V4-5), hiking, pilates, aerial yoga, Marathon, oil painting, and true crime!
Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning
Explainable AI (XAI)
Computational Cognitive Science & Neuroscience
Computational Social Science
Ph.D. Communication, 2026, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA)
M.S. Statistics, 2025, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA)
M.A. Communication Management, 2019, University of Southern California
B.S. Business Administration & Cinematic Arts, 2018, University of Southern California
University of California Los Angeles
Department of Communication
yanrujiang AT g.ucla.edu