Award-winning researcher and educator joins faculty

Barry Fishman

Barry Fishman

Barry Fishman, who has held a joint appointment as associate professor in the School of Education and the School of Information since 2006, will be joining the School of Information full time beginning September 1, 2014, Dean Jeffrey MacKie-Mason has announced.

Fishman’s teaching and research focus on learning environments, with an emphasis on transformative teaching and learning enabled by technology, including video games as model learning environments. One of his current projects is GradeCraft, a game-inspired learning management system recently cited by the New Media Consortium Horizon Report as an exemplar of learning analytics in higher education.

“The acceleration of information technology is creating many different potentially disruptive opportunities for learning and teaching, such as MOOCs, online learning, learning analytics and big data, mobile, personal, and social computing platforms, and the rise of maker culture,” Fishman says. “There are people all across U-M working in these areas, but the greatest concentration of talent and energy is at UMSI. I look forward to joining UMSI to help build and study next-generation learning environments.”

In 2010, Fishman received the Provost’s Teaching Innovation Prize for using collaboration and communication technologies to transform large lectures into small seminars utilizing tools such as laptops and cellphones. In 2001, he received the Jan Hawkins Award for Early Career Contributions to Humanistic Research and Scholarship in Learning Technologies.

At the School of Information, Fishman teaches SI 549: “Transformative Learning and Teaching with Technology.” Many UMSI students have also taken his classes in the School of Education, including EDUC 602: “Videogames, Learning and School Design.”

“I’ve always been impressed by the talent and energy of MSI students at UMSI,” Fishman said. “Learning and design-based thinking about learning are core areas for both human-computer interaction and information science more generally. I look forward to contributing to these programs and learning from these great students.”

Fishman earned his PhD in education and social policy at Northwestern University, where he taught from 1996-1997. He came to the University of Michigan School of Education as assistant professor in 1997 and was promoted to associate professor in 2004. From 2007-2008, he was a visiting associate professor at Harvard’s Graduate School of Education. He served as an Associate Editor of The Journal of the Learning Sciences, and was a co-author of the Obama Administration’s 2010 National Education Technology Plan. He has been Principal Investigator on grants from the National Science Foundation, the Institute of Education Sciences, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, among others.

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