Professor Coye Cheshire has been teaching in the School of Information since 2005, originally as an Assistant Professor. Effective July 1, 2019 he was promoted from Associate to Full Professor at the I School. Among his many leadership roles in the school, he serves as Head Graduate Advisor of the Ph.D. program, and he has recently assumed the role of Director of the BioSENSE Lab.
B.A., Sociology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1997; M.A., Sociology, Stanford University, 1998; Ph.D., Sociology, Stanford University, 2005.
Social psychology and information technology, trust and cooperation in technology-mediated environments, human-computer interaction (HCI), computer-supported cooperative work (CSCW), and research methods (quantitative and qualitative).
What do you enjoy about being part of the faculty at Berkeley I School?
Our truly interdisciplinary research community is easily my favorite part of working here at the I School. I started as an assistant professor in our program in 2005, and I have had the pleasure of watching our community of faculty and students grow in size, and in terms of the scope of our combined research expertise over the years. I am especially proud of our numerous research centers at the I School, where faculty colleagues work together with our masters and Ph.D. students on real-world information problems. I am incredibly fortunate to work with such amazing colleagues, students, staff and alumni — many of whom are also very good friends.
Favorite course you’ve ever taken or taught?
My favorite class I ever took was my high school advanced physics course. Our teacher was simply amazing. What made him so great was his ability to shift a lecture or discussion into what seemed like an absurd, often hilarious non-sequitur — only to return with a beautiful analogy that helped explain a really tough theoretical concept. He made it seem so effortless and natural, but I came to realize that he had really worked hard over the years to create engaging lectures that always left you smarter when you left the room.
What is an accomplishment that you are especially proud of?
Well, when I was about 13 years old, I taught myself how to play the theme song to the 1980’s TV show “The Incredible Hulk” on my mother’s old acoustic guitar (I believe the actual song is called ‘The Lonely Man’). Anyway, I played it for a really cute girl in the youth group I was part of, and it worked out pretty well. We have been best friends since then, and we have been married since 2006.
My first job in high school was as a waiter at a senior living/retirement village in North Carolina. I just remember delivering a lot of cranberry juice...very popular beverage there. I also worked on a factory assembly line one summer (if you remember that classic scene in ‘I Love Lucy’ where they are trying to package chocolates and they just keep coming down the belt...that was pretty much what it was like). Another summer I worked for a company building storage lockers and installing them in schools and other facilities. Oh, and I worked a construction job another summer where I helped to build an Easy Spirit shoe store in the mall in Raleigh, NC. I got to wear a hard hat and a tool belt every day, so that was pretty awesome.
I love to hike and mountain bike all over the trails of Mt. Diablo (which is about a mile from our house). We have rabbits and cats....lots of rabbits and cats. They are house rabbits, so they live inside and they are trained to use their ‘litter’ box which is filled with fresh hay. They love to play and hop around the house, and they get along with our cats. They do love to chew cables, so you have to protect those. Still, you have not lived until you crawl onto the couch to watch a show, and one or two fluffy bunnies jump on your lap for attention.