Research

My research has focused on the design of multimedia for either declarative or procedure-based learning. I take a somewhat different perspective, to consider the "learnability" of e-learning environments. Usability research often considers user satisfaction given a software interface, but I have been concerned that user satisfaction explains little when it comes to learning. Therefore my main research goal has been to evaluate learner performance, as students interact with e-learning environments. To do so, I apply cognitive load and multimedia learning theories to ensure efficient and effective learner performance.

Over the past few years I have conducted a series of empirical studies with several researchers, to consider both procedural and declarative learning. Certainly my dissertation was an important study in my research plan, but I have also worked on several other research projects. Here are some of the projects (listed chronologically) that I have either lead or served as a group member:

Questioning Quality Matters (2014-2016) - My most recent work has been to consider learner and faculty perceptions of online courses. Vicky Brown (FAU), Mario Toussaint (FAU) Megan Murtaugh (Nova Southeastern Univ) and I have been developing a survey based on the Quality Matters Framework to poll students and faculty on their perceptiosn of online learning.

ADHD and Multimedia learning (2011-2016) - In this study I and my fellow researchers considered ADHD learners as they interact with multimedia. It has been argued that learners with ADHD process multimedia differently than other learners. Vicky Brown (FAU), Megan Murtaugh (Nova Southeastern Univ) and I are considering this hypothesis as it relates to Mayer's multimedia learning. We presented this idea in a paper at AECT. We are in the final stages of writing it up for publication and have two papers in for expedited review.
(pdf) Read more about this topic in this article

Knowledge Check Questions (2010) – In this project I and my fellow researchers considered declarative learning during narrated presentations. This was a nice project because it helped me consider the issues assocaited with verbal working memory and its limitations during learning. More specifically we considered the effectiveness of "knowledge check questions" as an instructional strategy. During spring 2010 we studied online learners to compare the test performance of those who had presentations with, and without knowledge check questions. We found those with knowledge check questions performed better on average than those who did not. We were happy to have our materials (a poster and two papers) accepted at two international conferences (ED-MEDIA & E-Learn). I presented this study in Toronto, Ontario and in Orlando, FL.
(pdf) Read more about it in this article

Blended Learning project (2009)I was very lucky to have published a paper with a group of researchers from the College of Public Health at USF. Certainly I worked here as an Instructional Designer, but we also published together. As a part of this ongoing course development project, we developed e-learning materials, presented at two conferences, and published an article describing our findings.
(pdf)Read more about it in this article

Blackboard metrics project (2009) – In this project, I published a paper with two professors from the College of Public Health at USF. We studied the usage patterns of students in an undergraduate online course. Specifically, we were interested in how often (and when) students would “hit,” or visit the course introductory video. So we studied student interaction with this video, relative to the rest of the course. We used multivariate statistics and Blackboard course metrics to monitor student behavior over two semesters.
(pdf)Read more about it in this article

Dissertation project (2008) – For my dissertation I studied performance-based e-learning materials. The goal of this dissertation was to consider the worked example effect, given animated demonstrations. As a part of this project, I developed an innovative research methodology to study learners during problem solving. I observed learners by recorded their onscreen behavior as they interacted with computer-based, problem-solving scenarios. This study found evidence that learners do actually exhibit the worked example effect, now given animated demonstrations. During this project, I synthesized the usability and instructional design literature to develop a metric called “performance efficiency.” This metric is an objective way to determine the relative efficiency of learner performance. Finally I have recently submitted an article for publication based on my dissertation. So if you don't have time to read the full dissertation you may want to read this pre-print article (the short version). To learn more about my dissertation study, please review one or more of the following:
flash movie Overview movie;
defense Dissertation Defense;
(pdf) Dissertation;
(pdf) Read more about it in this article (alternate link)

Demobank project (2004-2005) - Starting in summer 2004 I began working on something called a demobank project with several members of the staff at FIU. During this project we developed a number of number of animated demonstrations for to teach faculty how to use the recently developed PantherSoft System. I developed the notion of a "demobank" - a menu driven series of narrated animations of a user using a software program. I eventually presented this idea during a national conference presentation - AECT 2005. Below is the conference proceedings paper and some examples of our work.

(pdf) AECT 2005 confernce proceedings paper
flash movie PeopleSoft Financials demobank
defense Panthersoft Student Administration

I hope to continue this research by working with others in the field. So let me know, if you want to work with me. Since I graduated with my PhD, I have begun publishing my work. I also have a couple of other projects "in the works," but can't quite discuss them yet. Once I have a publication to share, I will describe that here. I have much to do ...and as it seems, never enough time... but this is a start.

To learn more about my research, please visit my publications page.