Meet Dr. Johnson

Hello, I am pleased to eMeet you!


This page provides a brief introduction to who I am as a professional and how I arrived at this professional space.


Growing up in multiple states across the USAmerican South, I was acutely aware that despite being “the South” there were often variations in dialect, diet, values, and community configurations that created interesting insider/outsider affiliations among individuals and groups. These experiences led me to appreciate details, nuances, contexts, and history in ways that would serve me well personally and professionally.


My last year of high school I enrolled in the local community college in an alternative high school program. There, I completed courses in the social sciences and solidified my understanding of how all those intra-regional variations I had noticed as a youth could be explained by the study of human (sub)culture. I continued college-level studies after high school and earned an Associate of Arts degree in Anthropology from Santa Fe College (AA, 1992) and then transferred to university to pursue major study in cultural anthropology.


After graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology from the Florida State University (BA, 1995), I continued to be fascinated by impact on culture from the widespread adoption of Internet services and use of the World Wide Web for community, commerce, and communication. I wanted to understand virtual community development, its extension, and maintenance and, especially, I was fascinated by how online information shaped individual and group perceptions of wellness and facilitated or deterred health-seeking behaviors. And so, I began graduate studies in anthropology.


While completing post-baccalaureate coursework in applied medical and urban anthropology and practicing in the field through coursework projects and a local mutual assistance association, I sharpened my curriculum, learning technology, and web design skills on a grant opportunity to develop a blended distance learning course in biological anthropology. Inspired by this experience, I shifted degree focus and completed a Master in Education degree from the Georgia State University (EdM, 1999) with an interest in scaling social science expertise through web-based learning design and development.


I spent most of the next decade teaching, designing, and developing online programs in higher education in the United States primarily in the social sciences. Then, in 2005, I “walked the talk” by enrolling in Capella University (PhD, 2010), which was one of very few options for limited residency and online doctoral study in Instructional Design with a specialization in Online Learning. My dissertation addressed the question of whether technologies believed to facilitate specific learning outcomes actually do and my original research demonstrated that collaborative authoring and distributed editing features do not inherently afford collaborative or even cooperative outcomes.


Currently, my research interests focus on examining learning design using lenses focused on the accessibility, portability, and transfer of learning, personalizing and optimizing learning outcomes, applications of pedagogic, andragogic and geragogic methods and theories of learning in online and blended contexts, organizational and individual change management, and the influences of individual and group cognitive factors on learning design and experience.


I also continue to examine learning from the lens of online classroom community development, identity authenticity and authentication, community, presence, distance, cooperation and collaboration in virtual and blended contexts, online learning experience design and development, contextualized data analysis, implementation and evaluation of learning quality and effectiveness, and a wide range of cultural factors influencing applications of academic and workplace learning, including medical, environmental, political, and economical.


Over the years I have been recognized for my role as a faculty and scholar. I continue scholarly activities in formal and informal publishing and by presenting at regional, national, and international conferences and by examining scholarship in her role as Peer Reviewer for the Journal of Computing in Higher Education (JCHE) and the Journal of Applied Instructional Design (JOAID) and as Assistant Editor and Editorial Review Board Member for the Online Learning Journal (OLJ).


Since 2012, I have served the students of Ashford University in the College of Education as an Assistant Professor of instructional design and technology. I have served on-site for the university in both Denver, Colorado and San Diego, California and off-site from the Emerald Coast of Florida. In my role with the university, I am frequently assigned to advise administrative and staff teams and has contributed widely on organizational, college, and program-level work-groups and task-forces. I also have service experience as a Faculty Senator, Institutional Effectiveness Council Chair, Program Chair for a Master’s program focused on Teaching and Learning with Technology and in an honorary services tole assisting as an Instructional Design Specialist in the College of Education and for the parent company, Bridgepoint Education.


Previously, I have served as an Assistant Director of Faculty Training and Professional Development with the Colorado Community College System (2008 – 2011), an Academic Trainer and Consultant with Pearson Education (2011 – 2012), and Instructional Technologist with Nevada State College (2006 – 2008). She has also served as Adjunct Online Instructor with CCCOnline (2002 – 2012), Colorado State University – Global Campus (2009 – 2011), Colorado Mountain College (2008 – 2012), and Nevada State College (2006 – 2010). I also shared my expertise by consulting with a variety of organizations and institutions in the higher education industry sector.