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Home arrow People arrow Research Staff
Ron Cole, Ph.D. PDF Print E-mail

Ronald Cole received his undergraduate degree in experimental psychology from the University of Rochester in 1967 and his PhD in psychology in 1971 from the University of California Riverside.  He worked first at the University of Waterloo between 1970 and 1975 and in the psychology department at Carnegie Mellon University between 1975 and-1980.  In 1980, Ron moved to the computer science department at CMU to work with Raj Reddy and the CMU speech group developing speech recognition systems.  In 1988, he moved to the Oregon Graduate Institute where he established the Center for Spoken Language Understanding . While at CSLU, he obtained funding for and managed development of the CSLU Toolkit and over 20 different speech corpora ; these resources have been distributed worldwide to support research and development of human language technologies.  In 1998, Ron moved to the University of Colorado Boulder where he established the Center for Spoken Language Research with Dr. Wayne Ward.  Research at CSLR led to state of the art spoken dialog systems, the SONIC speech recognizer, the CU Animate character animation system, and over a dozen projects that produced virtual tutors and therapist that incorporate these technologies. Summaries of these systems can be found here

Ron has published approximately 60 articles in peer-review journals and 150 papers in archived conference proceedings. He is the recipient of over $40 million in individual investigator awards from the NSF, NIH and IES. For the past 15 years he has led research projects that aim to create a new generation of learning tools that feature conversational interaction with virtual teachers and therapists. His work using a virtual tutor to facilitate vocabulary learning by children with profound hearing loss at an oral deaf school was featured on ABC TV’s Prime Time and the U.S. National Science Foundation’s home page.  In 2007, after 37 years as an academic, Ron left the University of Colorado to work at Boulder Language Technologies and Mentor Interactive Inc., two companies founded by Ron and Wayne Ward, with the goal of developing accessible and affordable tutoring and therapy programs for use by the general public.  Ron is the President of Boulder Language Technologies.



Wayne H. Ward PDF Print E-mail
Principal Research Scientist
Boulder Language Technologies
Boulder, Colorado 

Research Professor 
Computational Language and Education Research 
University of Colorado, Boulder
Mobile: (303) 579-9605




Research Interests:

  • Speech Understanding
  • Spoken Dialogue Systems
  • Information Extraction from Spontaneous Speech
  • Integrating Natural Language Processing with Speech Decoding
  • Pronunciation Modeling
  • Stochastic Modeling
  • Computational Semantics
From 1986-1998 I was research faculty in the Speech group at Carnegie Mellon University. While there, I developed the Phoenix system for robust semantic parsing of spontaneous speech. In 1998 I co-founded the Center for Spoken LanguageResearch at the University of Colorado. In 2007, CSLR reorganized as Computational Language and EducAtion Research, where I am currently a Research Professor. In 2007, Ron Cole and I started Boulder Language Technologies. I am currently a Principal Research Scientist at BLT.
Rodney Nielsen PDF Print E-mail




      Rodney D. Nielsen

       Research Scientist
       Boulder Language Technologies


Rodney Nielsen received a dual Ph.D. in Computer Science and Cognitive Science from the University of Colorado, Boulder in 2008. He is currently a Research Scientist at Boulder Language Technologies and is also working with The Center for Computational Language and Education Research at the University of Colorado. His research is in the areas of Computational Semantics, Machine Learning, Intelligent Tutoring Systems, and Natural Language Processing. He is currently training machine learning models to recognize elementary school students' understanding of science concepts when interacting with Intelligent Tutoring Systems. He has researched computational models for recognizing textual entailment, labeling semantic roles (predicate argument structure) in text, and estimating class probabilities in machine learning, among other things. He also has an extensive background in software engineering, including research in the areas of software re-engineering environments, operations research, automated software testing, and automatic code generation.

Click here to enter Rodney's homepage.



Liam Devine PDF Print E-mail

Liam has been assisting Dr. Ronald Cole in developing interactive storybooks for ESL learning since 2006 at the former Center for Spoken Language Research at the University of Colorado, and continued with him and his partner Dr. Wayne Ward at BLT in October of 2007.

Liam is a graduate of the University of Colorado at Boulder and alumni of the International Film and Television Workshops of Rockport, Maine and The Art Institute of Colorado.  With a keen interest in visual storytelling and graphic design, he has devloped a strong repetoire of 2D and 3D skills that have greatly influenced the development of BLT's MyST Project (My Science Tutor) and our Delta/FOSS Virtual Tutor System.

When he's not  sitting in front of a computer, Liam is often found on the sweaty floor of a local Martial Arts Class or sitting in the sun on a local mountain peak.  But you can usually find him creating or learning some form of digital art.
Jeannine Moineau PDF Print E-mail




Jeannine is a project tutor and core team member for BLT. She has a background in multiple areas of science and education and when she is not studying FOSS materials or talking with elementary school students she can be found at the University of Colorado, Boulder where she is an Instructor.


In her down time, Jeannine likes to run, play games from her granny closet and hang out at Fort Cody.



Cindy Buchenroth-Martin PDF Print E-mail
cindy mt cook.jpg 

Cindy has spent her entire career working as a science educator.  From developing a public hand’s on science center in Panama and teaching middle/high school science, to researching, writing and facilitating the development of a k-5 elementary science curriculum, her passion is to use the amazing qualities of understanding the natural and physical worlds, as a catalyst to get kids to love not only science, but to help them become fully engaged in the process of learning and critical thinking.   I guess you would say she likes to help people become empowered in their own learning.  Currently she works as the My Science Tutor Content Manager.  In her free time she loves to travel, take long walks, sing, do art and make tasty food!  Recently she created carmalized onion and beet pizzas!  

Daniel Bolanos PDF Print E-mail

Daniel Bolanos


Post Doctorate

Boulder Language Technologies

Research Associate

Center for Computational Language and EducAtional Research (CLEAR)

Computer Science Department

University of Colorado at Boulder 


Courses Taught at CU - Boulder

Fall 2009: csci_6302._speech_recognition_and_synthesis