Christopher L. Simpkins, Ph.D.

Lecturer in Computer Science
Official Georgia Tech email: simpkins at cc dot gatech dot edu - use for FERPA-protected stuff

Georgia Tech Email for Life: chris dot simpkins at gatech dot edu

I'm a Lecturer in the College of Computing at Georgia Tech. I earned my Ph.D. in Computer Science specializing in Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning under Charles Isbell. A 1990 graduate of the United States Air Force Academy, my background includes research, software engineering, flying, and teaching -- as a classroom instructor and as an instructor pilot. In 15 years as a professional software engineer in private industry, the military, and applied research, I've built and delivered dozens of successful enterprise-scale and single-user systems, mostly as chief architect or lead software engineer. As a researcher, I have applied machine learning to text analysis, radio emitter identification, automated antenna design, and adaptive agent technology. I am currently focused on basic research to enable the engineering of intelligent agent software. To this end I am creating an experimental programming language, AFABL (A Friendly Adaptive Behavior Language), which integrates reinforcement learning into a Scala-based domain-specific language.

Attention Registering Students!

Professors don't grant overrides for major restrictions, prerequisites, etc., so please don't email me asking for registration overrides. For CS courses see

Attention TA Applicants!

For 1000 and 2000 level course, and many upper division courses, we employ undergraduate students as teaching assistants. For interested undergraduate students, the TA applications for future semesters begin during the final month of the current semester. From a computer connected to the CoC network or the VPN, visit the TA application web site.

It is extremely rare for graduate students to be TAs for 1000 and 2000 level courses. To be a TA for a 1000 or 2000 level course you must take the course and apply using the same process as undergraduate students. DO NOT SEND ME YOUR RESUME! Also keep in mind that undergraduate TAs are hourly employees. A graduate student in the undergraduate TA program does not get tuition remission, so in most cases it does not make sense for graduate students to be TAs for lower-division undergraduate courses.

Spring 2018 Teaching

Research Interests

Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Programming Languages, Software Engineering, Computer Science Education. Read more.


I am a scuba diving instructor in Georgia Tech's Scuba program. We run several classes every semester at the CRC and take trips -- mainly to south Florida -- for certification dives. This program offers some of the best dive training you will find anywhere and is very inexpensive for GT students. Note that these courses provide training, but certification requires open water checkout dives. I also run scuba diving trips to accomplish these certification dives.


Ph.D., Computer Science, Georgia Institute of Technology, 2017
M.S., Computer Science, Southern Polytechnic State University, 2004
B.S., U.S. Air Force Academy, 1990


In addition to teaching computer science and scuba diving I enjoy mountain biking, wrestling, chess and ballet (watching, not doing). I speak pretty good German (natively fluent as a child) and intermediate French.