Dr. Laserna’s primary research field is the study of culture, media and learning. She holds a BS degree in biology from the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia. After completing an advanced degree in developmental psychology in Paris, she went on to the University of Cambridge to study social anthropology. Her doctoral dissertation examines formal and non-formal learning in an Andean peasant village.
For the last 15 years she has been researching the ways in which digital media can interrupt and transform educational traditions, both in K-12 environments and in higher education.
Dr. Laserna has worked as a Development Associate at the Harvard Institute for International Development (HIID), where she advised the Ministry of Education of El Salvador on strategies for information technology infusion to advance national education reform. She also led a research project on integrating information technology into K-12 schools in Onigaming, a First Nation of Canada. At Harvard she has been a lecturer at both the Graduate School of Education and the Department of Anthropology, as well as at Harvard Summer School’s Study Abroad programs in Costa Rica and Uruguay, where she examined the One Laptop per Child initiative.
Dr. Laserna has worked as a scientist for Bolt, Beranek and Newman, Inc. of Cambridge, where she conducted basic research on a number of NSF-sponsored projects that involved integrating computer and other technologies into learning and teaching activities for various organizations and enterprises. She has consulted also for the World Bank on technology infusion projects in Latin America.
For the past eight years she worked as a senior research analyst for Harvard’s Division of Continuing Education where she established and directed the Office for Online Teaching and Learning. She joins the Berkman Center to write a book on Cybercy: how the affordances of digital media transform learning and enable deep understanding in preexisting oral and literate traditions.