Dhruv "DJ" Jain, MS, PhD

Assistant Professor, Computer Science and Engineering
Affiliate Assistant Professor, School of Information


Dr. Jain is an Assistant Professor in Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan, with an affiliate (courtesy) appointment in the School of Information. His research intersects human-computer interaction (HCI) and applied machine learning (ML), and focuses on sound accessibility. Specifically, he is interested in inventing novel sound sensing and visualization systems to support accessibility and healthcare applications for people who are deaf and hard of hearing. He completed his PhD from University of Washington, masters from MIT Media Lab, and has worked at Microsoft Research, Google, and Apple.

Research Interests

At the University of Michigan, he directs the Accessibility Lab, where they are aiming to make sounds and sound information accessible to everyone, everywhere, be it in noisy restaurants when one has trouble understanding a conversation, or at one’s home when they are wearing their headphones and miss someone knocking. They are accomplishing this vision through designing user-centric systems with an aim to deliver sound information in alternative ways—using visual or haptic feedback or through enhanced audio. A key aspect of this research is the focus on the user—they conduct a thorough design process to understand users' concerns, building technology systems to address those concerns, and deploying and studying built systems with the users in their natural environments.

The lab publishes work in the most selective computer science venues such as CHI, UIST, and ASSETS; seven of the labs’ papers have been honored with best paper and honorable mention awards. As well, their work has been publicly launched (e.g., one deployed system has benefited over 100,000 disabled users), has directly impacted accessibility products at Microsoft, Google, and Apple, and is frequently covered by popular press venues such as CNN, New Scientist, and Forbes.