PhD, American Cultural and Film Studies, University of California, Davis, 2001
MA, Cinema Studies, San Francisco State University, 1992
BA, English, University of California, Berkeley, 1978
As a Communication professor with a background and interest in media, I find that one of the most successful teaching strategies is one that integrates theory and practice. From teaching theories regarding mass communication to film to critical theory, I find that most students are able to comprehend these concepts much more successfully once I employ active learning techniques. Although many communication classes are separated between production and theory or criticism classes, I find that this separation need not be perpetuated. The addition of active learning in the classroom gives students the opportunity to practice individually and in groups many of the larger theories and concepts covered in the readings and lecture. Specifically, I incorporate into all of my lectures small group work, question and answer periods, in- class writing, peer review, and topic oriented exercises.
The focus of my research is currently on the use of changing representations of nationalism, patriotism and citizenship in the exhibits and documentary films in public history sites. My research incorporates an interdisciplinary methodology that includes rhetoric, documentary film theory, memory studies, and critical/cultural studies. These varied theoretical approaches help to illuminate the intersection of location, memory and documentary film.