Matthew Duvall, PhD, MA, MFA, MS
Matt Duvall lives in central Pennsylvania with his wife, Natalie, and their three children. In 2017, he earned his PhD in Educational Leadership and Learning Technologies with a focus on STEM education from Drexel University in Philadelphia. His work involves collaborating with individuals in and out of academia, identifying connections between different disciplines, and using design-based principles to improve teaching and learning.
Duvall’s background includes experiences as a computer programmer, a high school teacher, an instructional designer and a writer—all of which inform his perspective on teaching, learning and technology. His research interests include designing technology-enhanced learning experiences, game-based learning, computational thinking, teacher professional development and corporate training. His work centers on improving learning experiences for those who are typically overlooked or underserved in traditional educational systems.
In 2022, Duvall established the Designing Digital Environments for Teaching and Learning research group with seven master’s students from the University of Pennsylvania. They collaborated on the Teacher Lens for Digital Relevance, or TLDR, model to evaluate educational video games based on player experience, design for learning and culturally relevant instruction. Their paper about this project was nominated for the Best Paper Award in the Teaching as an Agent of Change for Teaching and Learning special interest group at the 2023 American Educational Research Association’s annual conference.
As an instructional designer for an organization serving individuals with autism, Duvall examined how design frameworks from the learning sciences could be used to create more authentic learning experiences in corporate training programs.
Before that, he worked on the Skyscraper Games project at Drexel University’s ExCITe Center, where he directed a pilot program for middle school educators in the Philadelphia area. Middle school students in grades five through eight designed and programmed video games, which they played on the outside wall of the 29-story Cira Centre in downtown Philadelphia, therefore taking part in the world’s largest video game display.
Duvall’s dissertation research focused on using Goodreads, a social media application built around readers and books, to engage high school students in English language arts.
Effectively using educational technology requires you to think like a designer—after all, you are designing a learning experience for your students.