Kathy Neesen

Research Scientist; Instructional Technology Director

  • Ph.D, Instructional Technology, University of Virginia, 2008
  • M.Ed., Instructional Technology, University of Virginia, 2004
  • B.A., English and German, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1998

Coming to educational research from a background in web and interface design in the corporate world, the field of instructional technology has allowed me to blend my passion for clean and user-friendly interface design with my interest in how and why people learn best.

My research interests are educational game design, online learning, and user-interface design. I am particularly interested in learning how games can be designed to promote learning and creativity for children of all ages. I also enjoy working on ways to improve online learning so that it takes advantage of the interactive nature of the Internet. My motto: Learning should be fun, inspiring and effective, no matter what the topic may be.

Sample Publications

Neesen, K. 2009. Exploring the Online Gaming Preferences of Pre-teen Girls. (Dissertation). University of Virginia, 209 pages.

Neesen, K., Kinzie, M., Whitaker, S., Kelley, M., Matera, M., Hall, A., Funk, G., Pianta, B.C., (2005, October). Collaborative Video Production Creating Web-based Video at Scale for Teacher Professional Development.  Paper presented at the annual E-Learn conference, Vancouver.

Kinzie, M.B., Whitaker, S. D., Neesen, K., Kelley, M., Matera, M. & Pianta, R. C.  (2006).  Innovative web-based professional development for teachers of at-risk preschool children.  Educational Technology & Society, Vol. 9, Issue 4, p. 194-204

Wu, Zhen., Cohoon, Joanne., Neesen, Kathy. (2006). Action and Intention: Considering the Relationship Between Educational Software and Gendered Career Interests. Paper presented at the 36th ASEE/IEEE Frontier in Education Conference. October, San Diego, CA.

    Research Interests

    • Games and learning
    • Educational game design
    • User interface design
    • Online learning
    • Web-based professional development