MARTHA C. SAMMONS

Professor Emerita

Department of English Language and Literatures

Wright State University, Dayton, OH 45435

     Table of Contents        

martha.sammons@wright.edu   

 

Skills

Courses

Experience

Part-Time Experience

Books

Articles

Conference Papers

Science Experience

Education

Training

 

PROFESSIONAL SKILLS

  • technical writing & editing

  • document design

  • desktop publishing

  • distance learning

  • instructional design

  • Web page design & writing

  • online help

  • slide presentations

  • technical graphics

  • Web-based training

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  • Adobe InDesign

  • Microsoft Office

  • Adobe Acrobat Professional

  • WebCT (distance learning)

 

 

 

COURSES TAUGHT

TECHNICAL WRITING 

  • introduction to technical writing

  • advanced technical writing

  • visual communication/document design

  • forms of technical documents

  • online documentation

  • writing for the Web

  • desktop publishing

  • writing for the computer industry

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OTHER COURSES

  • fantasy literature 

  • surveys of British literature 

  • survey of literary history 

  • Victorian literature

  • Romantic literature 

  • modern British literature 

  • world literature

  • writing about literature 

  • teaching literature

  • science and literature 

  • freshman composition 

  • business writing 

  • literary criticism

 

 

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

WRIGHT STATE UNIVERSITY, Dayton, OH (1975-2010) 

Professor Emerita 2010-present

Professor 1988-2010:  taught desktop publishing, visual communication, technical writing, writing for the Web, fantasy fiction. Developed EIGHT online courses.

Associate Professor (1980-1988) 

Assistant Professor (1975-1980)

Projects and Activities 

  • COMING: The Costs of Bad Product Documentation in America (Praeger, 2012).
  • Received Wright State University Online Teaching and Learning Certificate (over 14 hours of training in distance learning development)
  • Created certificate program in Technical and Professional Writing
  • Member of Wright State AAUP Bargaining Council (2008) responsible for online learning issues
  • Member E-Learn 2006 Program Committee (PC) for the AACE (Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education)
  • Editorial Board member, Innovate (formerly Technology Source: On the Horizon online journal)
  • Editorial Board member, International Journal on E-Learning.
  • 1998: judge, Southwestern Ohio Society for Technical Communication Publications Competition. 
  • 1996: Panelist for National Endowment for the Humanities Research & Education Teaching & Technology Initiative.
  • 1993-4: Director College of Liberal Arts notebook computer pilot program; responsible for budget of over $100,000 for multimedia hardware/software; trained faculty in use of hardware and software.
  • 1992-3: Faculty liaison, university multimedia project; reported directly to Assoc. VP Academic Affairs. 

Wright State University Grants

  • Alumni Grants: $8500: computerizing technical writing courses, $2300 designing Writing for the Web class Research Council Grant: $7500: CD-recordable technology
  • University Foundation Grants: $3000: converting technical writing courses to distance learning, $5625: Kodak Photo CD and videodisc technology

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PART-TIME EXPERIENCE

ARIA GROUP, Yellow Springs, OH: Instructional Designer, Document Designer

Created training materials (slideshows and workbook materials) for a conflict resolution consulting and training firm. Materials include theory, procedures, checklists, worksheets, exercises, and diagrams (May 2005).

 

FREQUENCY MARKETING, Milford, OH: Contract Technical Writer, MIS

Created online HTML help for CareNet, a Web interface for the Loyalty Solutions Platform (LSP) software; programmer's naming and GUI style conventions guide; business case for starting a training department; archiving manual; and documentation updates (June-August 2002).

 

HORN INTERACTIVE, Cincinnati, OH: Contract Instructional Designer

Created Web-based training for Cisco Systems: Content Delivery Networks (CDN) (including topics on e-learning and content routers) for account managers. Used RIO/RLO (Reusable Information/Learning Objects) method of course development and Flash template for multimedia scenario. Also created design document for BellSouth onsite training for Customer Service & Small Business Systems Representatives on new long distance service (June-August 2001).

 

FREQUENCY MARKETING, Milford, OH: Contract Technical Writer, MIS

Helped develop the style guide; wrote 14 chapters for the User Guide and Administrator’s Guide; wrote entire Train-the-Trainer Guide (29 chapters) and 26 slideshows in 9 weeks. Product was a Loyalty Solutions Platform, an Oracle-based software (Membership Rewards Point of Arrival)  used to manage elements of customer loyalty programs. Client was major credit card company. Worked with both design documents and beta versions of software. Received achievement award (June-August 2000).

INFOGLOBE, Dayton, OH: Consultant

Did writing and research for Web site called MindsEyeWay. Responsible for the material on current research studies on the right-brain and mental imagery and Web page design and organization (June-August 2000).

LITTON-TASC, Dayton, OH: Consultant

Developed training plan, helped develop training materials, supervised course developer for Ohio EPA DRUMS project. This project is an Information Management System for the Ohio EPA Division of Hazardous Waste Management to maintain data concerning hazardous waste facilities (April-May 2000).

Developed training plan, curriculum, and slideshows, online files (Adobe Acrobat files, HTML quizzes and slideshows), exercise workbook, Visio flowcharts, and quick references for STEP (Survey Tool For Employment Planning). The STEP System software developed for the U.S. Air Force (under contract from the Pentagon) includes a client-server application (Windows NT and an Oracle database) that supports the collection and centralized storage of airfield site capabilities information. Completed entire course in 3.5 months (December-March 2000).

TAYLOR UNIVERSITY, College of Adult & Lifelong Learning, Fort Wayne, IN: Consultant Developed assessment criteria and assessed online course for distance education (World Wide Campus) (winter 1999).

STRUCTURAL DYNAMICS RESEARCH CORPORATION, Milford, OH: Consultant

Education & Training Department; redesigned training materials for course on Open Architecture; learned InterLeaf Publisher (summer 1996).

ETHICON ENDO-SURGERY (JOHNSON & JOHNSON), Blue Ash, OH: Consultant

Product Data Management Department; involved in project to organize, consolidate, and standardize documentation in an electronic database. Used information mapping and NovaManage document management and workflow system (May-August 1995).

GENERAL RESEARCH CORPORATION, INC., Dayton, OH: Part-time Analyst

Wrote computer-based training (theory and parts section for army training on unmanned air vehicle) using toolkit for Sybase Gain Momentum (Feb.-March 1995).

WANG LABORATORIES, INC., Dayton, OH: Contractor

Wrote the following for Advanced Inventory Management System software, part of the Air Force Medical Logistics system: installation and user guide, quick references, online documentation using ForeHelp, multimedia guided tour (Jan.-Feb. 1995).

10NET COMMUNICATIONS, Dayton, OH: Contractor

Wrote online hypertext help systems for both Windows and DOS versions of Tiara 10NET network software using Windows software development tools and Aspen authoring software (Aug.-Oct. 1991). 

NCR PERSONAL COMPUTER DIVISION, Dayton, OH: Contractor

Wrote training workbook for sales force on NCR OS/2 Workgroup Platform for LANs and WANs, including NCR sales strategy, introduction to networks, LAN Manager, SQL Server, Comm Server, Token Ring (spring 1990).

SHEFFIELD MEASUREMENT DIVISION, WARNER & SWASEY, Dayton, OH:  Technical Writer Received training on coordinate measuring machines, updated two manuals, wrote pocket reference, did typesetting using TeX, coordinated art production, worked with engineers on parts lists and diagrams; worked with programmers, field service, and customers (Sept.-Dec. 1988).

PROCTER & GAMBLE, Cincinnati, OH: Freelancer

Designed two brochures and logo, quick reference for CD-ROM database; received Initiative Award (1989, 1990).

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BOOKS 

The Costs of Bad Product Documentation in American (Praeger, 2012). This book exposes the crisis of bad instructions and manuals in the U.S., why consumers don't read manuals, and what can be done about it.

 

War of the Fantasy Worlds: C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien on Art and Imagination (Praeger, 2009).

Focuses on Lewis’s and Tolkien’s contrasting views of art and imagination, which are are key to understanding and interpreting their fantasy works. These views also provide insight into their goals, themes, and techniques and an appreciation of the value and impact of their mythologies.

 

Document Design for Writers (Parlay Press, 2007).

A short, simple reference guide for writers who want to design effective documents. Includes companion exercises.

 

A Guide Through Narnia: Revised and Expanded Edition (Regent College Publishing, 2004).

An expanded and update guide to C.S. Lewis’s seven Narnia books. Focuses why Lewis wrote the books as fairy tales, the best “form” for his ideas. It is written for both students and scholars who want to expand their understanding of these popular classics. Did page layout in Adobe InDesign CS.

German version: Brendow

Korean version: Rubybox Publishers

The Longman Guide to Style and Writing on the Internet

(Longman, 2007)

The Internet Writer's Handbook 2/e 

(Pearson/Longman, 2004)

 

Contains 350 entries on the latest Web writing terms and concepts such as Web page elements, Web page design, and types of Web writing. I did the research, writing, editing, and page design/layout myself. I also prepared materials for the companion Web site with student and instructor resources, including suggested syllabus and assignments, 375 Internet quiz questions, 30 slideshows, and 60 exercises. Used Pearson's software for importing files into the Pearson Web Publishing System.

"A Far-Off Country": A Guide to C.S. Lewis' Fantasy Fiction (Rowman & Littlefield/University Press of America, 2000).  

Offers a comprehensive introduction to C.S. Lewis' major works of fantasy fiction: The Chronicles of Narnia, The Space Trilogy, and Till We Have Faces. Draws on Lewis' manuscripts as well as unpublished letters; provides a detailed background for the novels, including biographical information on Lewis as it pertains to each work. Investigates the characters, symbols, and themes of the novels, highlighting the Christian doctrines that are embedded in them in addition to the many Biblical parallels. Includes numerous references from Lewis' other books, ultimately relating the ideas presented in his written works to his Christian beliefs. 

Multimedia Presentations on the Go: An Introduction and Buyer's Guide (Libraries Unlimited, 1996) 

A guide to hardware and software required for mobile multimedia presentations using portable notebook computers and related technologies, for educators, public speakers, and business professionals. A general overview of hardware and software options helps users assess their needs. The bulk of the book, an alphabetical listing of 45 product areas including animation, CD-ROM drives, monitors, scanners, and videotape, describes specific products and offers buying tips and vendor contacts. Also lists print and electronic resources and organizations.

"A Better Country": The Worlds of Religious Fantasy and Science Fiction (Greenwood Press, 1988)

A study of religious science fiction and fantasy in the tradition of Lewis and Tolkien. Explores why writers use fantasy to convey theology. In addition, the book provides a theoretical understanding of fantasy as a form of literature by examining the techniques of current writers in light of the goals and theories of the "founders" of the genre.

Der Reiseführer Durch Narnia (Brendow, 1998)

A Guide Through C.S. Lewis' Space Trilogy (Cornerstone Books, 1980)

A Guide Through Narnia (Shaw Publishers, 1979; Hodder & Stoughton,1995) 

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ARTICLES PUBLISHED 

EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY 

  • “E-Learning at a Crossroads: What Price Quality,” coauthored with Stephen Ruth & Lindsey Poulin, Educause Quarterly. Vol. 30, No. 2, 2007. 
  • “The Invisible Professor and the Future of Virtual Faculty,” coauthored with Stephen Ruth. The International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning, Vol. 4, No. 1, January 2007.
  • "Using Acrobat in Writing Classes", Computers and Composition Online, 2001.
  • "Issues in Teaching Writing for the WWW," The Compute-Ed Electronic Journal: An Electronic Journal of Teaching with and about Technology, Vol. 4, Winter 1998. 
  • "Using PowerPoint Presentations in Writing Classes," Technology Colloquium: Featured Products, Microsoft Higher Education Web Site, August 1997. 
  • "Using Computer Slide Presentations in the College Classroom." On the Horizon: Technology Tools for Today's Campuses. Published July 1997 on CD-ROM by Microsoft Corporation for project Helping to Fulfill the Promise of Technology. 
  • "Using File Viewers as a Presentation Tool," Text Technology: The Journal of Computer Text Processing, Vol. 6, No. 1, Spring 1996, 25-34. 
  • "Have CD-ROM Will Travel: Multimedia-capable Notebook Computers," CD-ROM Professional, September 1995. 
  • "Students Assess Computer-Aided Classroom Presentations,"T.H.E. Technological Horizons in Education Journal, May 1995. 
  • "Motivating Faculty to Use Multimedia as a Lecture Tool," T.H.E. Technological Horizons in Education Journal, February 1994. 
  • "Issues in Using Multimedia in the Classroom," HyperNEXUS: The Journal of Hypermedia and Multimedia Studies, summer 1993. 

OTHER ARTICLES 

  • “Frank Peretti,” Encyclopedia of Christian Literature, ed. George Thomas Kurian and James D. Smith III, Hendrickson Publishers, Scarecrow Press, 2009.
  • "The Chronicles of Narnia: MOOREFOC for Adults." Narnia on Tour Web site.
  • "The Chronicles of Narnia: For Adults Only?" Revisiting Narnia: Fantasy, Myth and Religion in C.S. Lewis' Chronicles. Ed. Shanna Caughey. (BenBella Books, fall 2005)
  • "Using Modules to Teach Advanced Technical Writing," Technical Communication 38, No. 2 (April 1991): 240-244. Published in Strategies for Technical Communication: A Collection of Teaching Tips, by Meg P. Morgan et. al. Society for Technical Communication, 1994. 
  • ‘"Further in the Onion Skin': Lewis' Multi-leveled Models." The Lamp-post of The Southern California C.S. Lewis Society 11 (March 1987): 3-15. 
  • Tolkien on Fantasy in Smith of Wootton Major." Mythlore 43 (Autumn 1985):3+. Reprinted in Short Story Criticism, Gale, 2011.
  • Lewis' Influence on the New Inklings: The Chronicles of Narnia and John White's The Tower of Geburah." Bulletin of the New York C.S. Lewis Society 193 (Nov. l985): 1-7. 
  • "'Fictive Analogues': The Fantasy Forms of the New Inklings." Proceedings of the Sixteenth Annual Mythopoeic Society. 26-9 (July 1985). Wheaton, Illinois: Wheaton College. 
  • "Christian Doctrines 'Transposed' in C.S. Lewis' Till We Have Faces." Mythlore23 (March l980): 31-5. 
  • "'The Man Born Blind': Light in C.S. Lewis." Bulletin of the N.Y. C.S. Lewis Society 98 (Dec. l977): 1-7. 
  • "Lewis' View of Science." Bulletin of the N.Y. C.S. Lewis Society 82 (August 1976): 1-6. 
  • "'The God Within': Reason and Its Riddle in C.S. Lewis' Till We Have Faces. Christian Scholar's Review 6 (l976): l27-39. 

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CONFERENCE PAPERS, TALKS, WORKSHOPS

  • “'Living Pictures': Lewis and the Imagination," 2008 Ewbank Colloquium on Lewis & Friends, Taylor University, May 30, 2008.
  • "The Quantity vs. Quality Debate in Online Education,” seminar co-leader for Innovate-Live Seminar Series Webcast, sponsored by Innovate: Journal of Online Education, June 8, 2007.
  • “Virtual Sign Posts: Communicating With Icons in Online Courses,” ED-MEDIA: World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia & Telecommunications, AACE (Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education), June 2006.
  • "Bucket or Funnel-Based? Creating Task-Oriented Online Courses." ED-MEDIA: World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia & Telecommunications, AACE (Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education), July 2005.
  • "Creating and Using Adobe Acrobat Documents in the Paperless Classroom", Syllabus: New Dimensions in Education Technology, April 2001.
  • "Flip Over Adobe Acrobat" (3-hour workshop); National Educational Computing Conference (NECC ’99),  June 1999.
  • "Strategies for Teaching Online Documentation" (workshop); 46th Annual Conference and Exposition, Society for Technical Communication, May 1999. 
  • "Issues in Teaching Writing for the Web," Hypermedia 96, IUPUI, October, 1996. 
  • "Issues in Preparing Students to Write for New Technologies," Council For Programs in Scientific and Technical Communication, Miami University, September, 1996. 
  • "Using a Computer to Present Resource Materials: Software Solutions." Thirteenth International Conference on Technology in Education, March 17-20, 1996, New Orleans. 
  • "Storage and Retrieval Solutions for Classroom Multimedia Presentations," AECT (Association for Educational Communications and Technology) 1995 National Convention, Anaheim, CA February 8- 12, 1995. 
  • "Alternative Software for Classroom Presentations", Hypertext 94, Ball State University, October, 1994. 
  • "In-house CD-ROM Publishing and the Future of the Multimedia Classroom," Hypermedia 93, Indianapolis, Indiana, October 7, 1993. 
  • "Motivating Faculty to Use Multimedia in Classroom Presentations," World Conference on Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia, Orlando, Florida, June 23-26, 1993. Published in Proceedings of the Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education 
  • "Program Development: How do You Keep Up With the Technology?" 18th Annual Meeting of the Council for Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication, Cincinnati, Oct. 10-12, 1991. 
  • "Teaching Desktop Publishing," 37th International Technical Communication Conference, Santa Clara, May 1990. Paper published in conference proceedings. 
  • "What's Expected of the Professional: Implications for Educators," Southwestern Ohio Regional Chapter of the Society for Technical Communication, Cincinnati, April 21, 1990. 
  • "The Techniques of the New Inklings," Conference on Christianity and Literature, Mideast Regional Meeting, Ashland College, October 25-26, l985. 
  • "'Further in the Onion Skin:’ Lewis’ Cosmographical Metaphors," MLA Convention, August 13, 1978. 

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SCIENCE EXPERIENCE

Teaching Assistant, Department of Chemistry, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1973-4) 

Research Assistant, Department of Chemistry, Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois (1968-9)

Physical Science Aid, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture Research and Dev. Lab, Philadelphia, PA (summers, 1967-8)

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EDUCATION

Ph.D. English 1974, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Major: 19th British Literature; Minor: Literary Criticism

Dissertation: The Role of Scientific Methodology in Modern Literary Criticism

B.A. Chemistry and English 1971, Wheaton College, Illinois

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TRAINING

·         Took the following Sloan Consortium online workshops:

o    “Using Moodle to Create Online Courses” (Spring 2010)

o    “Podcasting in Higher Education” (Spring 2010).

o    "Video & Audio Tools for Teaching & Learning" (Winter 2010).

o    "Using the Quality Matters Rubric to Improve Your Online Courses" (Fall 2009).

  • Received Wright State University Online Teaching and Learning Certificate: nine workshops on distance learning (2006).
  • Took two Wright State Center for Teaching and Learning courses on using iPODs to create Podcasts for online courses (2007).
  • "Designing for Significant Learning." Wright State Center for Teaching and Learning. Topics included integrated course design, significant learning goals, educative assessment, learning-centered teaching strategies. (6-week online course using Elluminate Live real-time virtual classroom environment) (Fall 2006).
  • "Transforming Learning Through Teaching." Wright State Center for Teaching and Learning and the College of Education and Human Services Professional Development Department. Online course supplemented with audio and video using Apple iPOD. Topics included learner-centered teaching, cognitive processing, learning styles. (Graduate-level 10-week course) (Winter 2006)
  • TopClass (Wright State Center for Teaching and Learning) (June 1999)
  • IBM multimedia (Podium, AudioVisual Connection) (March 1991) 
  • "Online Documentation, Help Systems, and Tutorials," Human Performance Associates (Sept. 1990) 
  • Interactive Videodisc, HyperCard, and Mac multimedia, Southwestern Ohio Instructional Television Association (July 1990) 
  • Advanced Institute in Technical Writing, University of Minnesota (July 1988) 

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  martha.sammons@wright.edu

2011

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