Rowan Zellers

(email / cv)

I am a first-year graduate student in Computer Science in the University of Washington CSE department, where I study computer vision, natural language processing, and artificial intelligence. My advisor is Yejin Choi. I am supported by an NSF Fellowship and an ARCS Fellowship.

In the past, I graduated from Harvey Mudd College in 2016, where I majored in Computer Science and Mathematics. As an undergraduate, I worked on several research projects: with Prof. Louis-Philippe Morency, on deep multimodal machine learning, and with Prof. Jacqueline Dresch, on computational biology.

I also keep a blog and have a (rarely active) Twitter page.


Here is an (outdated) list of publications. For full list, check out my Google Scholar profile.

MARZ: an algorithm to combinatorially analyze gapped n-mer models of transcription factor binding (2015)
Rowan G. Zellers, Robert A. Drewell, Jacqueline M. Dresch
BMC Bioinformatics (includes open-access pdf)

Understanding the behavior of regulatory proteins during embryonic development is key to many medical applications, such as growing stem cells. This requires characterization of the specificity with which transcription factor proteins bind to specific DNA sequences. Existing computational approaches do not adequately measure the statistical independence between nucleotides in a binding sequence. In this work, we develop a new approach involving the generation of many different candidate models, each with different independence assumptions.


At Harvey Mudd, I have served as a teaching assistant (grutor) since Fall 2013 for a few classes, including CS140: Algorithms, CS158: Machine Learning, CS151: Artificial Intelligence, CS70: Data Structures, and CS60: Principles of CS. Here are some things I've prepared for classes:

Deep Learning Workshop

In November 2015, I organized a workshop for students in CS158: Machine Learning and CS151: Artificial Intelligence on Deep Learning. Slides are available here.