High Five!

Charles Harris Award of Distinction

Dr. Charles Harris, a longtime Professor of Psychology at JMU, was awarded the first Charles Harris Award of Distinction for his extraordinary contributions to the evolution of instructional technology. The award was created by JMU's Center for Instructional Technology to honor Dr. Harris and, in the future, other individuals who exhibit and model the values, qualities, skills and practices that underlie the work we do day after day, year after year.

In the early 1990's, long before the CIT was in existence, Dr. Harris was an active user of Moody Hall's Blackwell Auditorium, dubbed as the Classroom of the 21st Century. A key element of the room design was a student response system, now commonly known as "clickers." Dr. Harris was an avid user and strong proponent of this new, exciting instructional technology that enabled students to understand concepts more quickly through data visualization.

A decade later, in 2003, Dr. Harris participated in the first CIT Institute for Summer Online Course Development and has been an ardent supporter of CIT's mission and work ever since. He has been an active participant in CIT faculty development events as a learner, facilitator and mentor. In addition to the first "Summer Institute," he has completed numerous faculty development workshops and immersive learning events, has attended the annual CIT conference, and participated in other CIT-sponsored activities. These activities are designed to develop the theoretical and practical knowledge around the use of instructional technologies in today's learning ecosystem and build the skills necessary to apply that knowledge in course design, teaching, and assessment.

As an instructor, Dr. Harris has integrated what he has learned into his own instruction and continues to experiment with various course models, especially the hybrid course format. As a mentor, he has guided many faculty from across the University in redesigning their own courses to make best use of instructional technology tools and principles available to them. And, as an avid CIT-supporter, Dr. Harris has helped promote our mission by modeling exemplary use of technologies and sharing our story with administrators and others around the campus

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Charles M. Harris!

For more on the 1993 Washington Post article on Dr. Harris and the Blackwell Auditorium, use the ProQuest link below through your JMU on-campus account.