Associate Professor David Gibson holds an Ed.D. in Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Vermont. His doctoral work published in 1999 focused on building complex systems models of essential dimensions of sustained changes found in nine professional development schools over a ten-year period. The research advancement of the study bridged between qualitative and quantitative representations by creating a method for transforming ethnographic observational data into dynamic quantitative models. The study showed how reliable mappings can be built that lead to replicable and generalized results, enhancing both qualitative and quantitative educational research through a complex systems modeling approach.
Gibson’s experience in education research and development began in earnest in two ways, one personal and the other public. At the personal level, as a musician (piano, B.Mus. in Composition in 1973) he began to study the psychoacoustics of sound, following the sound wave to the ear drum, then the brain, and back out via interpretation and aesthetic experience. He scored films and musical theater in Los Angeles in the mid seventies (one of his music scores was nominated for an Academy Award in 1973 for a short film), while reading philosophy, probability and group theory in mathematics, and literature on emerging digital media culture. This personal journey continues to this day, and now connects to readings in artificial intelligence, cognitive science, and learning theory.
The public journey began by working with three Governors of Vermont to create and sustain a transformative new entity for Science, Technology Engineering, and Mathematics; to a research professorship at the University of Vermont, followed by an appointment at Arizona State University and then Curtin University.