Mark Zachry receives prestigious teaching award

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Mark Zachry with the Jay R. Gould Award for Excellence in Teaching Technical Communication.Human Centered Design & Engineering (HCDE) Professor Mark Zachry has been awarded the 2011 Jay R. Gould Award for Excellence in Teaching Technical Communication. The award, which honors excellence in teaching to post-secondary educators, was given to Zachry at the Technical Communication Summit in Sacramento last week.

Zachry received his MA from Arizona State University and his PhD from Iowa State University. Prior to joining HCDE's faculty in 2006 as Associate Professor, Zachry taught at Utah State University. Zachry's courses include Usability Testing; User-Centered Design; Theoretical Foundations of Human Centered Design & Engineering; Theory, Technology, and Technical Communication; and Networks & Ecologies.

Zachry also runs a directed research group, Communicative Practices in Virtual Workspaces, which focuses on investigating emergent uses of digital technologies to coordinate work activities. Current team members are HCDE graduate students Doug Divine, Toni Ferro, Stephanie Gokhman, and Jonathan Morgan.

In addition to his teaching and research, Zachry has donated his time generously to the department as HCDE's Associate Chair of Academics, Chair of the HCDE Curriculum Committee, Graduate Coordinator, and PhD Advisor.

Recipients of the Society for Technical Communication's Jay R. Gould Award have a record of successful students and a background of acting as a mentor to others, and demonstrate innovation and creativity in teaching. Department Chair Jan Spyridakis commented: "Professor Zachry's innovative approach to teaching is continually evidenced by his integration of his own research interests with his instruction. Mark always goes the extra mile to give his students an in-depth learning, hands-on experience. On many fronts, he exemplifies what it means for a University professor to be dedicated and committed to exploring what constitutes effective curriculum and pedagogical practices."

PhD student Jonathan Morgan commented on Zachry's mentorship and teaching: "Professor Zachry is broadly admired within our department for his ability to engage students both inside and outside of class. In his longstanding research group, Communicative Practices in Virtual Workspaces, Zachry gives his students a great deal of creative control over the projects they choose to pursue and not only gives his students the opportunity to develop their own research interests, but also fosters mentorship relationships between his graduate and undergraduate students."