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Sofia Lemons
Assistant Professor of Computer Science

Sofia Lemons was born and raised in Indiana, spent many years studying, working, and living in New England, and has a passion for algorithms and education. Their research revolves around heuristic search and planning, which applies to things like navigation, robotic movement, or selecting actions for video game AI characters. Sofia is also interested in the human aspects of computing, such as computer science teaching pedagogies and ways that systemic bias is embedded in algorithm design.

Contact Info

Campus Mail



CST 212


  • Computer Science


  • B.S. in Computer Science (Ball State University), M.S. in Computer Science (Ball State University), M.A. in Secondary Teaching (University of New Hampshire)

My research has primarily been on heuristic search and planning, especially making faster algorithms for solving shortest path problems. I'm especially interested in applying these to navigation, logistical planning, and robotics. One area I am also excited to work with students in is algorithmic bias: detecting the reflections of systemic bias in algorithms, examining the effects it has on people, and devising algorithm design practices to combat bias.

S. Lemons, J. Benton, W. Ruml, M. Do, and S. Yoon, “Continual On-line Planning as
Decision-Theoretic Incremental Heuristic Search” Proceedings of the AAAI 2010 Spring
Symposium on Embedded Reasoning
E. Burns, S. Lemons, W. Ruml and R. Zhou, “Best-First Heuristic Search for Multicore
Machines” Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research, , 39, pp. 689–743, 2010
E. Burns, S. Lemons, R. Zhou and W. Ruml, “Suboptimal and Anytime Heuristic
Search on Multi-Core Machines” Proceedings of the Seventeeth International Conference on
Automated Planning and Scheduling (ICAPS-09)
E. Burns, S. Lemons, R. Zhou, and W. Ruml, “Best-First Heuristic Search for
Multi-Core Machines” Proceedings of the Twenty-first International Joint Conference on
Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI-09)

I believe that a liberal arts approach to computer science is a vital part of ensuring that computers work for the good of all of us. I'm excited to engage with Earlham students in computing work that actively integrates our values and reflects an understanding of the impact that computers and humans have on each other.

Earlham College, an independent, residential college, aspires to provide the highest-quality undergraduate education in the liberal arts and sciences, shaped by the distinctive perspectives of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

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Richmond, Indiana
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Earlham admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin, age, gender and sexual orientation to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, age, gender and sexual orientation in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.