Scholar of the Week

David Knight

The Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation recognizes David Knight, an assistant professor in the department of engineering education, for using data to turbocharge engineering education.

David KnightKnight is an affiliate faculty member with the Higher Education Program, the Center for Human-Computer Interaction, and the Human-Centered Design Program. He and his colleagues focus on learning outcomes for undergraduate engineers.

Their focus goes far beyond the classroom, considering not just on curricular experiences, but also and co-curricular experiences and organizational contexts in addressing issues in engineering education at the macro-scale.

He leverages existing — yet disconnected — university data sets, or collects new data in innovative ways to create intelligent feedback loops to inform educational processes and educational outcomes.

Knight manages the VT DEEP Lab — short for Data Enlightened Educational Practice— which comprises a collaborative team of engineering education doctoral students who work in interdisciplinary ways across the university.

From an educational research perspective, Knight says the Department of Engineering Education is uniquely positioned to make positive changes because it is housed within the College of Engineering. Being embedded within the college with discipline-specific colleagues helps facilitate conversations about research.

Knight also co-directs the Rising Sophomore Abroad Program, which is a collaborative effort between Virginia Tech and North Carolina A&T that incorporates a semester-long, on-campus learning experience with an international component in Europe to help students develop an awareness of the global nature of engineering.

He earned a Ph.D. in Higher Education from Penn State University and master's degrees in environmental sciences and in urban and environmental planning from the University of Virginia.

He also worked as a research assistant in the University of Michigan's Center for the Study of Higher and Postsecondary Education and as a postdoctoral fellow in Engineering Education in the University of Queensland's School of Civil Engineering in Brisbane, Australia.

David Knight's faculty page


Nominate a Scholar of the Week

The goals of the Scholar of the Week are to recognize individuals while also telling people about research and scholarly activities at the university.

Recognition is based on research and/or scholarship.

Please nominate individuals — not teams, groups, or more than one person.

Please provide a sentence describing the research, scholarship, or creative work in non-technical, generally accessible language. A second sentence with an example or application is helpful.

  • Send nominations to: Beth Tranter, Chief of Staff, Office of the Vice President for Research.