Shan's research focuses on software reliability, particularly detecting, diagnosing, and fixing concurrency bugs and performance bugs in large software systems.

Shan received her Ph.D. at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, in 2008. She was the Clare Boothe Luce Assistant Professor of Computer Sciences at University of Wisconsin, Madison, from 2009 to 2014.

Shan has won Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow in 2014, Distinguished Alumni Educator Award from Department of Computer Science at University of Illinois in 2013, and NSF Career Award in 2010. Her co-authored papers won ACM-SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper Award at FSE 2014, the Best Paper Award at USENIX FAST in 2013, ACM-SIGPLAN CACM Research Highlight Nomination in 2011, and IEEE Micro Top Picks in 2006. She currently serves as the Information Director of ACM-SIGOPS.