Trendsetting Teachers

Matt Dunleavy

Matt Dunleavy

For his groundbreaking work in augmented reality and mobile learning, Assistant Professor Matt Dunleavy was honored as Innovative Educator of the Year for 2011 by the Virginia Society for Technology in Education.

Dunleavy, director of the GAMeS (Games, Animation, Modeling and Simulation) Lab, was cited for innovations that led to an intellectual property disclosure, a patent submission and a private commercial spin-off. He also created a YouTube channel offering tutorial videos created by RU graduate students. The videos have been viewed more than 468,000 times in nine countries.

Professors Donna Boyd and Fred Singer co-wrote the chapter “The Meaning and Evolution of Teaching Excellence: A ‘Radical’ Case Study from Radford University, Virginia,” describing their “radical” teaching experiences for the recently published international book “Inspiring Academics: Learning with the World’s Great University Teachers.”

Boyd is a professor and head of anthropological sciences in the School of Environmental and Physical Science and co-director of the RU Forensic Science Institute. Singer is a biology professor. Their radical experiment was a two-semester, 12-hour interdisciplinary course in biology, English and anthropology that they taught with retired Biology Professor Chuck Kugler and English Professor Rich Murphy.

Gary Schirr, assistant professor of marketing in the College of Business and Economics, has developed a course for spring 2012 on the dynamics of social media in marketing. The hybrid course, titled Marketing 471: Social Media Marketing and Issues in Marketing, will explore social media’s applications in the business environment. Students will work in the “big four” of Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and blogging with a project in an additional medium like Flickr, Foursquare or YouTube.

Schirr said he doesn’t think social media will supplant traditional media, but he notes that consumers are increasingly relying on discussions with and guidance from their networks on social media platforms to influence buying behavior.