Gardner_Campbell_0gardner campbell

Blended Learning – A Taxonomy of Student Engagement


What do we mean by the words “student engagement”? My talk proposes that the answer is far from obvious. I will sketch out several possible meanings, describe what I take to be the character and outcomes of each variety, and suggest why school itself makes it particularly difficult to foster certain kinds of deep and sustained engagement. I will conclude with some thoughts about how hybrids of online and face-to-face learning experiences can best encourage such engagement.


W. Gardner Campbell is Vice Provost for Learning Innovation and Student Success, Dean of University College, and Associate Professor of English at Virginia Commonwealth University. He has been involved in teaching and learning technologies for over two decades. Gardner received his B.A. in English from Wake Forest University, and his M.A. and Ph.D. in English from the University of Virginia. He is a Fellow of the Frye Leadership Institute and has served on program committees for both EDUCAUSE and the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative. Gardner also served on the Board of Directors of the New Media Consortium, the ELI Advisory Board, and the Advisory Board of the National Institute for Technology in Liberal Education. He currently serves on the Editorial Boards of the Journal of Interactive Technology and Pedagogy and the Journal of Information Fluency.

Gardner has presented at numerous national and international conferences on Renaissance literature, film, and teaching and learning technologies. Recent presentations include keynote or plenary presentations at the AMICAL conference in Rome, the annual meeting of the Directors of Educational Technology for the California Higher Education system (DET/CHE), the University of Santa Clara, Carleton College, Open Education 2012, Union College, Northhampton Community College, Boston College, the Campus Technology 2012 Executive Summit, E-Learn 2012, SUNY-Buffalo, and many others in the US as well as Canada and Sweden. Recent publications include scholarly articles on Milton’s poetry and prose (Duquesne University Press, MLA Press), an essay in the curated print and online editions of “Hacking the Academy” (University of Michigan Press), an analysis of Orson Welles’ work in the 1944 film of “Jane Eyre” (Literature/Film Quarterly), separate essays on personal cyberinfrastructures, faculty development, and podcasting (EDUCAUSE Review), and an essay on information technologies in higher education (Change). You can read Gardner’s blog, “Gardner Writes,” at, where you can also download his most recent CV.