The faculty’s combined professional and academic expertise provides OPWL students with rich learning experiences in their classrooms and help them improve their professional competencies. The faculty members’ main R&D projects are described below:
Dr. Anthony Marker, the department chair, spent several years as a freelance consultant in the greater Boston area before moving into academia. He has served in several roles including principal technical writer, instructional designer and developer, project manager, and principal consultant. The projects he has worked on have included work in the telecommunication, financial, pharmaceutical, and government arenas. His research interests include identifying those current critical research gaps facing the field of Human Performance Technology, examining organizational change issues that involve systemic cultural change, and the capacity to develop wisdom and to act with greater wisdom in the workplace.
Dr. Seung Youn (Yonnie) Chyung has expertise in conducting research and evaluation studies in learning and performance improvement context and developing e-learning programs for improving workplace performance. Her recent research projects include an investigation of ethical challenges in evaluation practice, development of fundamental concepts and procedures for conducting program evaluations, and development of statistically-tested valid and reliable instruments to assess factors that influence learning and performance outcomes. She has authored a book titled, Foundations of Instructional and Performance Technology.
Dr. Steve Villachica has consulted and worked in business, government, and non-profit settings for more than 25 years. As Chief Learning Officer of DLS Group, Inc., of Denver, Colorado, he collaborated with colleagues to create large-scale performance support systems, e-learning, instructor-led training, job aids, and a host of award-winning performance improvement solutions for pharmaceutical companies, law enforcement agencies, securities companies and regulators, the Intelligence Community, and others. His research interests focus on identifying and leveraging expertise across organizations. He is also part of the Engineering Education Research to Practice (E2R2P) team funded by the National Science Foundation.
Dr. Don Winiecki began as a technical and commercial illustrator and switched to designing computer-based and conventional training and technical documentation for corporate and military clients in the 1980s. His research and development work is now oriented to the use of ethnographic methods and the use of qualitative data in instructional and performance technology and social science, with a focus on critical needs assessments, analytic modeling and the representation of organizational and social systems. The goals of these R&D activities are to allow clients to know and understand their social environments in unique ways so they may develop strategies and interventions that both address existing problems and avoid future systemic problems.
Dr. Winiecki has been named ‘Professor of Ethics & Morality in Professional Practice’ in the College of Engineering. In this new role he will conduct research and work with faculty and students throughout the College of Engineering in projects related to issues of diversity, inclusiveness and social justice as they relate to engineering education and engineering practice. Dr. Winiecki will maintain connections with OPWL students by regularly teaching the 1-credit OPWL 586 ‘Professional Ethics’ course and participation in other department activities.