MA - Oral Communications
Baylor University - 1966
BFA - Radio-TV, Speech
Ohio University - 1962
Even though my official title at UT Dallas is "Lecturer 1", I would prefer to be known by my students as a "conversationalist" in the classroom and through social media such as emails and texting. Since I teach human communication skills and techniques, I provide my students with weekly opportunities to communicate their successes and challenges to me through a variety of channels. While the textbook is required in our classes, I like to bring into class additional examples of applied communication techniques in the news and in everyday life so students can easily see how their textbook and classroom discussions apply to their careers and lifelong citizenship. One of the students' favorite examples of universal human communication is a discussion of their favorite songs and musical artists in virtually every class. Music is certainly an important form of human communication, and students have the opportunity to explain what their favorite songs/artists have meant to them in their lives.
One of my most recent research quests has been to explore how students "learn to learn", and the motivation behind those students who persevere and embrace the "grit" to succeed in lifelong learning. I provide my students with video modeling during classroom activities that show them the importance of an "open mindset" versus a "closed mindset".
I like working with students on developing their presentation skills and showing them the importance of being able to put their thoughts into words, and presenting those words in an organized and interesting manner to a variety of audiences. My small classes give me the opportunity for one-on-one coaching—especially for English language challenged students—to improve their ability to communicate clearly in almost any situation. I find that it also helps students to understand the importance of how CULTURE impacts the success of human communication activities.
Before joining the University of Texas at Dallas, I spent 50 years teaching speech communication and public speaking in community colleges in the North Texas area on a part-time basis. During that time, I worked full-time as a marketing and sales executive for a variety of companies. In 2015, and again in 2016, I was nominated for the "Excellence In Teaching" award at Richland College, a part of the Dallas County Community College District. I am also the founder of the internationally acclaimed men's choral group from Dallas known as The Vocal Majority.