Jacqueline M. Kory-Westlund smiling at you

I am an independent scholar, writer, speaker, and artist.

I have a multidisciplinary background with expertise in cognitive science, computer science, education, psychology, ethics, and robotics. Watch my TEDx talk: Kids can't be taught, but they love to learn!

I have a PhD from MIT and a BA from Vassar College. I've worked for NASA, done voice acting for robots, designed graphics for software startups, and created playful language learning interventions for preschoolers.

My specialty is being able to talk and work across disciplines—I build bridges.

Get in touch.

I can provide a variety of services, including:

Technical Consulting

a young girl hugging a fluffy dragon robot behind a little play table

I'm most excited about interactive projects, technology for children, and people's relationships with their technology. My expertise includes:

  • Human-robot interaction
  • Interaction design
  • Relational and humanistic AI
  • Story, character, and dialogue
  • Wireframing and mockups
  • Project management
  • Feedback and evaluation methods
  • Questionnaire and survey design

In prior work, I've built relational AI systems for social robots, developed playful language learning games, designed months-long technology-based interventions for kids, created new assessments for understanding how children relate to robots, and more.

Voice Acting

a woman in a red dress holding a red and blue striped robot and smiling

I am available for voice acting work for, including audio book narration, character voices, and more.

I voice the Tega and DragonBot robots for the Personal Robots Group at the MIT Media Lab. I have recorded thousands of utterances totaling tens of hours of audio, including narration of more than a hundred children's picture books. For these robots, I shifted the pitch of my voice higher during post-processing to make it sound more child-like, in accordance with the character of the robots.

Listen to a sample! [coming soon]

Here are videos showcasing the robots and their voices:

Design & Illustrations

line drawing of birch trees on paper

I create work with a variety of media, including acrylics, watercolor, vector graphics, textiles, and digital photography.

I drew graphics for multiple storytelling and language learning tablet games, created for use with a social robot.

I designed themes and graphics for the project management software company Awning Tracker—including their website, trade show booth, and printed materials.

Contact me about:

  • Graphics for apps and games
  • Science illustrations
  • Picture book illustrations
  • Custom graphics and logos
  • Graphic design

Writing & Editing

a pen laying on a lined notepad, ready for use

I specialize in helping clients hone their messages and share their stories in clear, concise language.

Contact me about:

  • Technical writing
  • Science communication
  • Professional writing support and editing for academic professionals
  • College, graduate school, fellowship, and scholarship application essays