For over 10 years, I have worked in the fields of international relief, development, and conflict resolution, building capacity in Eastern Europe, the Balkans, South Africa, Rwanda, Sudan, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, as well as educating students in the U.S. and other Western countries who aspire to work in these fields.
I've worked as an academic and filmmaker, creating educational documentaries on liberation movements around the world, which I've then used with university students in my classrooms. I've had several programs distributed by the Discovery Channel, which has been rewarding, but what has been especially remarkable to me is the response of my students. I've come to appreciate the power of narrative and immediacy of film to transform students' perceptions of the world and their place in it.
I also focus on interactivity. On top of narrative and immediacy, I've built programs that draw students into the learning experience through exploration and interaction - with curriculum dynamically shifting based on student choice and response.
I've taken this work to scale. In my work for the U.S. Government and international humanitarian organizations, I've created courses that have been completed by more than 30,000 students and practitioners, not only at the State Department, USAID, and relief agencies in the U.S., but also at comparable institutions in other countries, and even in internet cafes and refugee camps around the world. I've earned about a dozen awards for these various efforts.
I'm continuing this work at Stanford. My focus now is using new media and technology to bring university students in the U.S. and other high-income Western Countries into extended contact with students in fragile states and zones of conflict, measuring advances in learning and shifts in attitude through qualitative and quantitative methods.
This is an extraordinary time for those who use media and technology in teaching and learning. Blended in smart combinations, especially with traditional in-person learning, the new tools we have are powerful:
- Visual narrative, through its expression in digital cinema
- Expanding and interconnecting networks of lifelong learners
- Complex interaction, including multiplayer computer simulation
- Targeted feedback, dynamically reshaping curriculum to meet individual learner needs
- Statistical data analysis, upon which to base informed iterative design
- Worldwide electronic distribution, especially to inexpensive mobile devices
If we do this right, the world will be much better for it.
Honors & Awards
Best Practices Award, U.S. Distance Learning Association
Award of Excellence, Technology & Learning Magazine
Telly Award, 26th Annual Telly Awards
Gold Award, National Educational Media Network
Communicator Award, International Academy of Visual Arts
Best of the Best Award, Compaq Computers
Omni Award, Omni Intermedia
Aurora Award: Education, The Aurora Awards
Aurora Award: Training, The Aurora Awards
Bronze Award, National Educational Media Network
Selection, Columbus International Film Festival
Golden Eagle Award, CINE
Shelley Goldman, Postdoctoral Faculty Sponsor
Virtual Student Exchange in Education, Stanford University (February 15, 2016 - Present)
Building on the Stanford Online learning platform, I've developed the Virtual Student Exchange program to link university courses in countries around the world to share the profound benefits of educational exchange more widely. This exchange links Child & Adolescent Development (ChAD 195) at San Jose State University to Child Development & Education (ECE 304) at the Modern University for Business & Science in Beirut, Lebanon. The Virtual Student Exchange program is designed to help students overcome negative stereotypes, build relationships on firm foundations, and engage in productive collaboration. The program structures advanced yet affordable digital technologies around a thoughtful and challenging problem-based learning curriculum.
Virtual Student Exchange in Journalism, Stanford University (May 1, 2017 - Present)
Also part of the Virtual Student Exchange program that I've developed, this exchange links Global News Studies (COMM1224) at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Melbourne, Australia, to International Journalism (JMC 423) at the University of Peshawar in Peshawar, Pakistan. Journalists serve important roles in every society, as professionals who chronicle events, investigators who ferret out truth, watchdogs who check facts, and thought leaders who write editorials. Improving understanding and cooperation among young journalists in different societies not only improves reporting, but also contributes to beneficial generational change.
Virtual Student Exchange in Global Health (9/24/2018 - Present)
Using high-bandwidth videoconferencing and virtual reality technology, this program connects future global health workers in two university classes: Humanitarian Relief and Health (PCH 402) at the Modern University for Business & Science in Beirut, Lebanon; and Discussions in Global Health (MED 232) at Stanford University in Stanford, California, USA. Virtual ExchangeThe virtual exchange is designed to help learners confront complex and severe humanitarian problems, build productive relationships with international partners, and engage in deliberate and collaborative problem-solving. The program structures advanced yet affordable digital technologies around a challenging real-world curriculum
- Theory of Change in Learning Experience Design Learner and User Experience Research EdTech Books. 2020
- Virtual Student Exchange in Journalism: Collaborative Reporting Through New Media and Technology Australian Journalism Review 2019
- The Use of Virtual Reality for Public Health Education with Reference to Syrian Refugee Camps 2019
- Global Assignments: Virtual Exchange in Preparing Australian and Pakistani Students for Cross-Cultural, Collaborative Journalism 5th World Journalism Education Congress 2019