John Martin

laughing through grad school
(academic stuff) (hints of life beyond
school and work)
(Flying Moose videos, photos, stories, etc.) (observations)

Purpose and Format

This site is a "scratchbook" of my research. It's purpose is to help me work out and convey the nature(s) of my research. To those eventual ends, it will be tinkered with. As I get a better idea of the breadth and depth of the topic I am interested in, and as I focus in on certain themes and elements of it, images will be added, changed, and removed; captions and body text will evolve. Furthermore, as I become more adept at it, I will refine this format.


My educational goal is to merge my interests with an area of study that is both interesting to me and relevant to the larger community of educational research. My semester objective within DRP is to arrive at a "loose framework for my doctoral proposal" -- in choosing the word "loose," I purposefully allow for a high level of exploration. I address a classmate's review of this project here.

Research History and Influences

I began my studies in educational technology, expanding its definition beyond "computers" to include any technologies used in education, which I in turn expand beyond "schooling". In my Masters thesis, I examine cultural models that undergird a boys camp, as conveyed through the Discourses of the directors.

I've begun to gather together theorists who I feel have something significant to contribute. They seem to mostly to hold a sociocultural view of education, especially experiential, but may embrace an interpretive stance.

Online Identities

I am narrowing in on a computer/network-centric view of educational technology, where the Internet is an extension and/or variation of an identity-constructing social network, with its own set of discourses, and the computer is a tool used to understand and navigate those discourses -- similar to Chandler and Robert-Young's work, but with more focus on the Discourse of a specific online community.

I'm at the exploratory phase of researching communities that inhabit the gamespace environments for MMORPGs. This idea, not fully fleshed out, does not seem to perfectly fit any established area of educational research, but has a leg in Educational Communications and Technology, and one in New Literacy Studies.