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Lillian Cassel, PhD - Villanova University. Villanova, PA, US

Lillian Cassel, PhD Lillian Cassel, PhD

Professor of Computing Sciences | College of Liberal Arts and Sciences | Villanova University


Lillian N. Cassel, PhD, is an expert on information storage, classification, retrieval and networking.





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Areas of Expertise (4)

Women in Computer Science

Data Science Education

Web-based Information Retrieval

Digital Libraries


Digital libraries with their vast array of volumes, journals, and rare books put a wealth of information at the fingertips of anyone, anywhere, anytime who has access to the Internet. Dr. Cassel, an expert on information storage, classification, retrieval and networking can speak about how the advent of digital libraries has changed scholarship. As an internationally-recognized expert on computing education she has helped Villanova attain the status of one of 13 Pacesetter schools promoting women in computing.

Education (3)

University of Delaware: Ph.D.

University of Delaware: M.S.

University of Delaware: B.A.

Select Accomplishments (1)

Association for Computing Machinery Distinguished Educator (professional)

November 2013 Association for Computing Machinery, Leadership, International.

Affiliations (5)

  • ACM Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education
  • ACM Special Interest Group on the WEB, ACM SIGWEB, International
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science, AAAS, National
  • Sigma Xi, International
  • Association for Computing Machinery, ACM, International

Select Media Appearances (3)

‘Pay Or Die’: Hitman Email Scam Shocking The Most Seasoned Police Investigators

CBS 3 Philadelphia  tv


An email that’s surfaced on Philadelphia’s Main Line would cause you to believe you have a hitman on your tail. “If only a few people actually respond and do something, they make a lot of money,” Dr. Lillian Cassel, chair of Villanova University’s Computer Sciences Department said. She says this is merely the next installment in cyber scams.

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Diversity in tech: Lots of attention, little progress

The Associated Press  online


WHY IT MATTERS Diversity isn’t just about fairness. It’s about having designers who reflect the diversity of the people they are designing for. For tech companies hoping to reach millions or billions of users, a lack of diversity could mean their products “will not appeal to a large population,” says Lillian Cassel, chairwoman of computer sciences at Villanova University.

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Op-Ed: Further Computing Pioneer Grace Hopper's Efforts

US News & World Report  online


Jan. 1, 2017, marks the 25th anniversary of the death of Grace Murray Hopper, computing sciences pioneer, academician and admiral in the United States Navy. Recently awarded a 2016 Presidential Medal of Honor for her work on the forefront of computers and programming development, Hopper was a thought leader in developing computer programs that translated high-level source code into English-like language. Feisty, imaginative and creative, Hopper serves as a role model for women in technology to this day.

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Research Grants (2)

Exploring the Status of Education for Data Science

National Science Foundation 


Collaborative Research: Data Computing for All


Developing an Introductory Data Science Course in Flipped Format

Select Academic Articles (5)

Advancing Data Science for Students of All Majors

Proceedings of the 2017 ACM SIGCSE Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education

2017 The use and analysis of large quantities of data have become ubiquitous in nearly every discipline. We began a discussion of the role of data science across disciplines, and the role of computing in data science programs, at SIGCSE 16. The session was well attended and the discussion was valuable. Since then, more work has been done and more people are engaged. This BOF will continue the discussion, including welcoming new voices. We will distribute copies of the report of the NSF sponsored workshop on Data Science education and discuss a new initiative to develop curriculum guidelines for data science programs. This initiative will be in its earliest stages by the time SIGCSE meets, so it will be an excellent opportunity to gather impressions about what are critical considerations for any such curriculum effort. We developed a mailing list from the SIGCSE 16 attendees and will use that list to promote the BOF. The BOF will engage SIGCSE participants who have views on the content and role of courses and programs in data science. In addition to the workshop report, we will describe results from an NSF IUSE grant to develop modules for use in many types of courses. These expect to make access to fundamentals elements of data science available as widely as possible. With these as a starting point, participants in the Birds of a Feather session will explore the emerging field of data science and its relationship to computer science education.

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Data Science for All: An Introductory Course for Non-Majors; in Flipped Format

SIGCSE '16 Proceedings of the 47th ACM Technical Symposium on Computing Science Education

2016 In this poster the authors report the approaches for presenting Data Science topics in Flipped Classroom mode, incorporating topics in Data Science into existing courses as well as in stand-alone courses. It provides an insight on listing of learning goals, central data science topics, content modules, and a framework for implementing a flipped classroom approach to introduce data science to students with limited technical backgrounds. The presenters are NSF-funded investigators on a collaborative team of computer scientists and statistician to create flipped material for an introductory data science class.

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Preparing All Students for the Data-driven World

Proceedings of the Symposium on Computing at Minority Institutions

2016 As Data Science gains in importance in industry, government and society, the creation of appropriate courses and teaching activities is necessary for building up a competent workforce. In this paper, we describe our experience of the development of a low-level undergraduate introductory Data Science course. The course is without prerequisites and multidisciplinary in terms of targeted skills, involving expertise in computer science and statistics and incorporating different domain areas, such as astronomy and social networks. We describe the general design decisions, the adopted learner-centered approach and the stepwise development of the course. The first version of the course is taught at WinstonSalem State University (WSSU) in Spring 2016 and the second iteration will occur at Villanova in Fall 2016.

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Preparing All Students for the Data-driven World


Dichev, C., Dicheva, D., Cassel, L., Goelman, D., Posner, M. A.

March 2016 "Symposium on Computing at Minority Institutions"

Toward Curricular Guidelines for Cybersecurity

SIGCSE '14 Proceedings of the 45th ACM technical symposium on Computer science education

2014 This session reports on a workshop convened by the ACM Education Board with funding by the US National Science Foundation and invites discussion from the community on the workshop findings. The topic, curricular directions for cybersecurity, is one that resonates in many departments considering how best to prepare graduates to face the challenges of security issues in employment and future research. The session will include presentation of the workshop context and conclusions, but will be open to participant discussion. This will be the first public presentation of the results of the workshop and the first opportunity for significant response.

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