Educational researcher who values connecting students to the environment through engaging technology.

At Google, I research secure authentication, impacting how the millions of Google Account users have safe and secure experiences online, most recently through the release of passkeys.

During my doctoral program at Cal, I worked with:

I also have experience consulting and writing curriculum for garden-based education programs in public schools, and thousands of hours teaching in classrooms and outdoor spaces.



I’m Bec, a science fanatic, lifelong learner, and  Ph.D Graduate of Education from UC Berkeley. You can find my dissertation here, which explores the hybridization of physical and virtual ecosystems for secondary science instruction.

For nearly four years now, I have been a User Experience Researcher at Google, after several incredible internships during my graduate studies. I am utilizing what I’ve uncovered about learning with technology to make account security safer for all kinds of users at scale. I’m still cultivating my path in research and science education, so stay tuned for where this all takes me.

Thanks for stopping by!


GardenSim: A NetLogo project connecting students to their gardens with computational modeling.

Interface of the second prototype of Garden Sim

An ongoing participatory design-based research project inviting adolescents to share in the construction of  a virtual platform to experiment with their ideas about garden ecology.

Try the simulation by clicking here for a version with one type of crop, or here for a version with two types (will open a NetLogo Web browser)

  • Conference presentation poster- International Society for Design and Development in Education (ISDEE, November 2017: Berkeley, CA)
  • Conference presentation poster – North American Association for Environmental Education (October 2016: Madison, WI)
  • Paper presentation- American Educational Research Association (AERA,  April 2018: New York, NY)

The SAT method: A case study of rural STEM education in Honduras, contextualized in agricultural projects.

As part of a longitudinal nation-wide project to detail the innovative education program, Sistema de Aprendizaje Tutorial (SAT), I spent four weeks in 2016 and two weeks in 2018 observing trainings, interviewing teachers, administrators and students, and visiting classroom sites in Honduras where STEM subjects are taught through authentically community-based units.  Ongoing analysis posits the economic development, familial involvement, and rich content of the projects as supportive elements to SAT’s accounted for increased math and language scores, when compared to the Honduran standard secondary education program (CEB).

  • Panel Presentation: Comparative and International Educatino Society (CIES, 2019: San Francisco, CA)
  • Invited Blog Post– Stanford Social Innovation Review, series on “Preparing Today’s Youth for Tomorrow’s World” (March 2017)
  • Symposium Presentation: National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST, March 2018: Atlanta, GA)

Airomatic: A UX experience inviting citizens to contribute to air quality data.

A semester-long course project exhibiting the trademarks of User Interface design, addressing a challenge by the Environmental Protection Agency to increase community involvement through a mobile platform to contribute and analyze data.

  • Product Slide Deck– presented Fall 2016 to panel of Google professionals
  • Course Instructor Rob Youmans (UX Research Director, Youtube)


Long overdue update

It’s taken me a while to circle back to this website, but I finally updated with some key publications that have come out in the past couple years (including my own dissertation 😅) ! At Google, a few of my teammates and I authored a blog about passkeys, culminating years of work toward improving the …

Blog published!

Honduras has a way of staying with me long after I’ve left.  After a few months of review, we’ve published one write-up of our data that focuses on the unique teacher training that happens for SAT tutors in rural communities.  You can check it out, along with many other exciting articles, in the Stanford Social …


Most of my work at Google is under NDA, but this blog post that I’ve co-authored shares some of my efforts on passkeys, the safest and quickest way to log in to your online accounts.

Here is a quick link to my Resume  (last updated March  2019)


Shareff, R. (2020). Agricultural Contexts as a Platform for Science and Technology: A Cross-Cultural Examination of Classroom, Community, and Modeling Dynamics. UC Berkeley. ProQuest ID: Shareff_berkeley_0028E_19857. Retrieved from https://escholarship.org/uc/item/2581h27d



Wilkerson, M. H., Shareff, R. L., & Laina, V. (2022). Learning from “interpretations of innovation” in the co-design of digital tools. In M-C. Shanahan, B. Kim, M. A. Takeuchi, K. Koh, A. P. Preciado-Babb, & P. Sengupta (Eds.), The Learning Sciences in Conversation: Theories, Methodologies, and Boundary Spaces. Routledge. [PDF][Routledge]

Wilkerson, M. H., Lanouette, K., & Shareff, R. L. (2021). Exploring variability during data preparation: A way to connect data, chance, and context when working with complex public datasets. Mathematical Thinking and Learning. doi: 10.1080/10986065.2021.1922838 [PDF][Taylor & Francis]

Shareff, R. (2018). ‘Harvesting’ ecosystem dynamics through a computational model of a garden. In A. Bakker, Design research in education: A practical guide for early career researchers (pp. 172-175). Abingdon, UK: Routledge.

Wilkerson, M.H., Shareff, R., Laina, V., Gravel, B. (2018). Epistemic gameplay and discovery in computational model-based inquiry activities. Instructional Science, 46(1), 35-60. DOI: 10.1007/s11251-017-9430-4 [Springer]

Shareff, R., Murphy-Graham, E. (2017).  Redefining teacher development to great effect in Honduras. Stanford Social Innovations Research Series: Preparing Today’s Youth for Tomorrow’s World. [hyperlink]



Wilkerson, M., Shareff, R., & Lanouette, K. (2019, July). Learning to transform data: A longitudinal interview study. Paper presented at the Eleventh International Research Forum on Statistical Reasoning, Thinking, and Literacy (SRTL-11).

Shareff, R.  A network of development: A comparative study of agro-science units in a rural  Honduran secondary curriculum. Presented as part of E. Murphy-Graham (Chair) & P. Blikstein (Discussant), Effective teaching in rural schools: examining local knowledge, sustainable development, and scientific agency within a multi-national curricular program. Paper session at the 2019 meeting of the Comparative & International Education Society (CIES), San Francisco, CA, USA. April 14-18. [PDF]

Durán-López, E. & Shareff, R. Training and teaching for inclusive development: Combining community knowledge and science content in rural Honduras. Presented as part of E. Murphy-Graham (Chair) & P. Blikstein (Discussant), Effective teaching in rural schools: examining local knowledge, sustainable development, and scientific agency within a multi-national curricular program. Paper session at the 2019 meeting of the Comparative & International Education Society (CIES), San Francisco, CA, USA. April 14-18.

Wilkerson, M., Laina, V., Lopez, L., Shareff, R. L., Dogruer, D., & McEachen, W. (2019, April). Collaborative modeling with complex public datasets in the middle school classroom. Presented as part of A. Pierson & D. Clark (Orgs.), Supporting modeling epistemologies in the science classroom. Structured poster session at the 2019 Annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association (AERA), Toronto, Canada. April 5-9.

Wilkerson, M., Lanouette, K., Shareff, R. L., Erickson, T., Bulalacao, N., Heller, J., St. Clair, N., Finzer, W., & Reichsman, F. (2018, June). Data moves: Restructuring data for inquiry in a simulation and data analysis environment. Poster  in Proceedings of the International Conference for the Learning Sciences (ICLS 2018). London, England: ISLS. [PDF]

Shareff, R., Wilkerson, M.H. (2018, April). Grounding computational modeling in fertile soil: A design project with middle school science teachers and students. In A. Wagh (Org.) & J. Kolodner (Discussant), Bridging computational modeling tools & practices into the existing structures of K-16 environments in science education. Symposium presented at the 2018 Annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association (AERA), New York, NY, USA. April 13-17.

Shareff, R. (2018, March). Culturally relevant science instruction in Latin America: Two cases of curricular reform. In A. Lewis (Org.) Cultural connections: Hispanic and Latin American teachers and students. Symposium presented at the 12th annual meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (NARST 2018). Atlanta, GA, USA.

Shareff, R., Wilkerson, M.H. (2017, November). Designing across contexts: Interdisciplinary interpretations of an ecological modeling environment. Poster presented at the 13th annual conference of the International Society for Design and Development in Education (ISDDE 2017). Berkeley, CA, USA. [PDF]

Wilkerson, M., Shareff, B., Gravel, B., Shaban, Y., & Laina, V. (2017, June). Exploring computational modeling environments as tools to structure classroom knowledge building. Full paper in Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Computer Supported Collaborative Learning (CSCL 2017). Philadelphia, PA, USA. [PDF]

Shareff, R. (2017, June). Using school gardens as a physical and virtual modeling environment. Doctoral Consortium presentation at the 16th ACM SIGCHI Interaction Design and Children Conference (IDC ’17). Stanford, CA, USA. [PDF]

Weltman, A., Fink, H., Shareff, R., Stone, E., & Abrahamson, D. (2017, April). Building bridges, deepening knowledge: Engaging novices, practicing teachers, and researchers in inquiry together. Poster presented at the UC Berkeley Education Research Day, Berkeley, CA, USA. [PDF]

Murphy-Graham, E., & Shareff, R. (2017, January). Examining effective teaching in rural Honduran schools. Presentation at ESRC DFIF Raising Learning Outcomes Grant- Holders Event, London, UK.

Shareff, R. (2016, October). Secondary STEM projects cultivate rural agricultural communities in Latin America. Roundtable presented at the 1st Annual Learning Sciences Graduate Student Conference, Chicago IL. [PDF]

Shareff, R. (2016, October). Bringing outside in: Transplanting experiential garden knowledge in computational models. Poster presented at the 13th Annual Research Symposium of the North American Association for Environmental Education, Madison, WI. [PDF]

Murata, A., Fabrega, J., Gillingham, D., Kim, H., Madkins, T. C., McGee, A., & Shareff, R. (2016, April). Preservice elementary mathematics lesson study: Visions and learning to teach. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, San Francisco, CA. [PDF]

Shareff, R. (2016, February). ‘Harvesting’ ecosystem dynamics through a computational model of a garden. Poster presented at the UC Berkeley Education Research Day, Berkeley, CA. [PDF]