John W. Sheppard, PhD, FIEEE

Contact Information

Dr. John W. Sheppard
RightNow Technologies Distinguished Professor
Director, Numerical Intelligent Systems Laboratory
Department of Computer Science
Montana State University
357 EPS Building, PO Box 173880
Bozeman, MT 59717-3880
V: +1 406 994 4835
E: john dot sheppard at cs dot montana dot edu

News Flash

Dr. Sheppard has moved to Montana State University and is now the new RightNow Technologies Distinguished Professor in Computer Science You can find his website there by following this link.

Biographical Sketch

Dr. John Sheppard is an Associate Research Professor in the Department of Computer Science at Johns Hopkins University. Recently, he was elected as an IEEE Fellow "for contributions to system-level diagnosis and prognosis." Prior to joining Hopkins, he was a Fellow at ARINC Incorporated in Annapolis, MD where he worked for almost 20 years. Dr. Sheppard is the founding director of the Numerical Intelligent Systems Laboratory at Hopkins where he performs research in Bayesian classification, factorial hidden Markov models, recurrent neural networks, and reinforcement learning. In addition, Dr. Sheppard is active in IEEE Standards activities. Currently, he serves as a member of the IEEE Computer Society Standards Activities Board and is the Vice Chair of IEEE Standards Coordinating Committee 20 on Test and Diagnosis for Electronic Systems. He has served as co-chair of the Diagnostic and Maintenance Control Subcommittee of SCC20 and as an official US delegate to the International Electrotechnical Commission's Technical Committee 93 on Design Automation.


  • BS, Computer Science (magna cum laude), Southern Methodist University, 1983
  • MS, Computer Science, The Johns Hopkins University, 1990
  • PhD, Computer Science, The Johns Hopkins University, 1997


  • Right Now Technologies Distinguished Professor in Computer Science, Montana State University
  • Associate Research Professor, Department of Computer Science, The Johns Hopkins University
  • Lecturer, Computer Science Program, Engineering and Applied Science Programs for Professionals, The Johns Hopkins University

Professional Activities

  • IEEE Fellow
    • IEEE Computer Society
    • IEEE Instrumentation and Measurement Society
    • IEEE Standards Association
  • IEEE Computer Society Liaison to SCC20
  • Member-At-Large, IEEE Computer Society Standards Activities Board
  • Vice Chair, IEEE SCC20
  • Secretary, IEEE SCC20, Diagnostic and Maintenance Control Subcommittee
  • Technical Program Chair, IEEE AUTOTESTCON 2001 and 2007
  • Technical Program Chair, IEEE International Workshop on System Test and Diagnosis, 1998-2000

Research Interests

  • Machine Learning
  • Data Mining
  • Bayesian Networks
  • Neural Networks
  • Markov Models
  • Reinforcement Learning
  • System-Level Fault Diagnosis
  • System-Level Fault Prognosis
  • Measurement Uncertainty

Courses Taught

  • 600.335/435: Artificial Intelligence (Homewood)
  • 600.475: Machine Learning (Homewood)
  • 600.735: Seminar in Machine Learning (Homewood)
  • 605.421: Foundations of Algorithms (EPP)
  • 605.445: Artificial Intelligence (EPP)
  • 605.746: Machine Learning and Data Mining (EPP)
  • 605.747: Evolutionary Computation (EPP)

Graduate Students

  • David Albert (MS, 1999)
  • Stephyn Butcher (MS, 2006; PhD Advisee)
  • Patrick Donnelly (MSE, 2008; PhD Advisee)
  • James Grantham (MS, 2007)
  • Brian Haberman (PhD Candidate)
  • Brian Howard (MS, 2003)
  • Benjamin Mitchell (MSE, 2008; PhD Advisee)
  • Rashad Moore (MS, 2003)
  • Adam Peterson (MS, 2002)
  • Ramendra Ramendra (MSE, 2008)
  • Scott Raymond (MS, 2002)
  • Chuck Robertson (MSE Advisee)
  • Mike Waters (MS, 1999)
  • Omar Zaidan (PhD Candidate)