Earlier this month, Beth Shepherd joined Learning Innovation as our new Assistant Director of Learning Experience Design (LXD). At a time when learners are seeking more high-quality, trustworthy, digitally-empowered learning experiences than ever, Beth’s appointment will provide much needed expertise and support as our LXD team rises to the challenge. We invite you to get to know Beth a little better as we welcome her to Duke.
This is a new role with the Learning Experience Design team. Can you share a bit about what you will be doing and who you will be working with?
As the Assistant Director for Learning Experience Design (LXD), I’ll have a very collaborative role within the LXD Design team. I’ll coach and collaborate with the LXD project teams and our clients to manage our projects through all stages, from pre-development through reflection. As part of this, I’ll work with the team to create appropriate processes and procedures to support our productivity and success. I’ll also help support LXD team members with their individual professional goals and performance plans. I’ll also work closely with Quentin — the newly-named Director for Digital Product Strategy and Design — to determine our availability and capacity to work on new Duke University projects from our partner schools and academic units.
Our team and higher education as an institution are both going through a lot of (exciting!) change right now; what is something you are looking forward to working on more deeply as we grow and explore new possibilities in teaching and learning?
I’m really excited to see how we can utilize AI in our work. There are so many exciting things going on in the field of AI right now, it’s hard to even keep up. Although AI can be scary in the ways it is shaking up traditional methods of teaching and learning, I think there is a lot of potential for AI to improve the learning experience and for Duke faculty to guide students on how to use AI ethically and responsibly in their learning and work.
You come to us after 15 years at NC State University. What is a project or initiative you worked on while at NCSU that you are especially proud of?
I joined Poole College of Management full-time in 2015, and one of the first projects that I collaborated on was the development of Jenkins MBA online course standards. These standards were initially based on Quality Matters, a globally recognized quality standard for higher education online teaching and learning. As we incorporated these standards into all new course developments and course redesigns, we were able to ensure a positive, engaging and more uniform learning experience for our online students. Over time, the standards rolled out to more programs within the college. We also updated them several times to include aspects of OSCQR (Open-SUNY’s online education quality rubric) and incorporate greater diversity, equity, and inclusion aspects.