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In recent years, his research has focused on instructional strategies, cognitive load theory, distance education, and the integration of technology into the classroom. Gary is author of over 20 book chapters, 50 journal articles, and 100 presentations on instructional technology. He is also the associate editor of the research section of ETR&D, and serves on the editorial boards of the Quarterly Review of Distance Education and Computers in Human Behavior. He is also the past president of the Design and Development and Research & Theory Divisions of AECT.
Gary received a doctorate in Instructional Systems Technology from Indiana University in 1977. After graduation, he worked as instructional designer for the University of Mid-America where he designed college level distance education courses. One of the courses he designed was accepted for broadcast on PBS. After two years at the University of Mid-America, Gary worked as an instructional designer for Solar Turbines International, General Electric's Corporate Consulting Group, and Tenneco Oil Company where he designed courses in a variety of formats for customers and engineers. In 1984, he accepted a faculty position at the University of Memphis where he guided the development of the instructional design and technology program for the next 14 years. In 1998, Gary accepted a faculty position at Wayne State University. In 2004, Gary accepted a position at Old Dominion University as a professor in the Instructional Design and Technology program.