Christopher Tran

PhD Candidate
Computer Science
University of Illinois at Chicago

CV (updated February 2021).



Hi, my name is Chris. I received my double B.S. in Computer Science and Mathematics from Delaware State University. Currently, I am a PhD candidate in Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Chicago, working with Professor Elena Zheleva. Currently, my main focus is in the realm of causal inference, particularly using machine learning for estimating heterogeneous treatment effects.

I'm also interested in applying causal inference and machine learning for applications to social science, privacy, social networks.


Helping Users Automatically Find and Manage Sensitive, Expendable Files in Cloud Storage
M. T. Khan, C. Tran, S. Singh, D. Vasilkov, C. Kanich, B. Ur, E. Zheleva
Proceedings of the USENIX Security Symposium (USENIX), 2021

Heterogeneous Threshold Estimation for Linear Threshold Modeling
C. Tran, E. Zheleva
KDD Workshop on Mining and Learning with Graphs (MLG), 2020 (Contributed Talk) [PDF]

Paths to Empathy: Heterogeneous Effects of Reading Personal Stories Online
M. Roshanaei, C. Tran, S. Morelli, C. Caragea, E. Zheleva
IEEE Conference on Data Science and Advanced Analytics (DSAA), 2019 [PDF]

Moving Beyond Set-It-And-Forget-It Privacy Settings on Social Media
M. Mondal, G. Yilmaz, N. Hirsch, M. Khan, M. Tang, C. Tran, C. Kanich, B. Ur, E. Zheleva
ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security (CCS), 2019 [PDF]

Learning Triggers for Heterogeneous Treamtent Effects
C. Tran, E. Zheleva.
Proceedings of the AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), 2019 [PDF] [Code]

Making Retrospective Data Management Usable (Poster)
N. Hirsch, C. Kanich, M. Khan, X. Liu, M. Mondal, M. Tang, C. Tran, B. Ur, W. Wang, G. Yilmaz, E. Zheleva.
14th Symposium On Usable Privacy and Security (SOUPS), August 2018

Privacy Preservation in Shared Images (a survey) [PDF] [Slides]
C. Tran
In fulfillment of the UIC CS PhD qualifying exam, April 2018


Smart Information Flow Technologies (SIFT), Minneapolis, MN
Research Intern, May 2019 - November 2019
- Modeling and identifying factors for gender bias in data
- Learning behavior in swarm data
- Novel recommendations for document data

STATS Perform (formally STATS LLC), Chicago, IL
Artificial Intelligence (AI) Intern, May 2018 - August 2018
- Leverage deep learning models to predict ball ownership and movement from tracking data in basketball


Teaching Assistant
Introdution to Machine Learning (CS412)
Fall 2018, Spring 2021
University of Illinois at Chicago

Teaching Assistant
Mathematical Foundations of Computing (CS 151)
Spring 2017, Fall 2017, Spring 2018
University of Illinois at Chicago

Teaching Assistant
Program Design I (CS 111)
Summer 2017
University of Illinois at Chicago

Teaching Assistant
C/C ++ Programming for Engineers with MatLab (CS 109)
Fall 2016
University of Illinois at Chicago

Hobbies and Interests

In my spare time I like to play video games and watch "eSports". I'm currently playing MapleLegends, an old school MapleStory server and Eternal Return: Black Survival. Sometimes I stream myself at, although pretty rarely.

I used to play League of Legends (LoL) and Teamfight Tactics (TFT). I peaked Diamond 3 in TFT in set 3.5.


Other than video games, I like to spend time with Maomao the cat:.

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