Dr. Liu's teaching and research interests center on educational uses of new media and other emerging technologies, particularly the impact of such technologies on teaching and learning; and the design of new media enriched interactive learning environments for learners at all age levels. She has published over 71 research articles in leading peer-reviewed educational technology research journals, 16 peer-reviewed book chapters, and presents regularly at national and international technology conferences.
Dr. Liu regularly invites her students to join her research projects as she views this as a mentoring and training opportunity for future faculty and researchers. As shown in her publications and conference presentations, almost all of her co-authors and co-presenters are her current and former graduate students.
She develops and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on new media design, production, and research. The courses she has taught include "Interactive Multimedia: Design and Production," "Designs and Strategies for New Media," "Instructional Systems Design," "Educational Research Design," "Live, Play, Communicate, and Learn with Digital Media Technologies," "Digital Literacy for Teaching and Learning," "Analysis of Research in Instructional Technology," "Multimedia Authoring," and "Interactive Multimedia Research." She also serves on a number of editorial boards for research journals in Learning Technology/Instructional Technology.
Dr. Liu directs the development of several digital media technology projects. One of her projects has been selected as the Winner of 2012 Interactive Learning Award and was the recipient of 2013 Outstanding Practice Award , both sponsored by the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT), a major international IT professional organization. Another project was a Finalist of 2010 national Learning Challenge Competition sponsored by Disney Research. Her project, Alien Rescue, is being used as part of the science curriculum by middle schools in at least 30 states and 4 countries. Her article, "A Multiple-Case Study Examining Behavior Patterns By Students With Different Characteristics In a Serious Game" received the Best Paper Award in 2016 from Applied Research in Immersive Environments for Learning SIG of American Educational Research Association (AERA).