if teaching is an art

then online courses are

extra-ordinary works of art

Graduate Course Deliverables from 2019 & 2021

I enjoy delivering content through feature rich, interactive, web development. I am fairly comfortable utilizing this form and I find it works well with instructional design. 

These following examples are from four courses (two in fall 2019, one in spring 2021 and one in fall 2021). These projects had fast turnaround times. The “Genomic Sequencing” project was completed in 2-days with a presentation given by me on day 3. “Anti-Principles for Design Thinking” was written and built over a period of 3-days, with a presentation later that week.

Cool Things to Share

I always have a “Cool Things to Share” forum in my asynchronous courses. These interactive nuggets were added to share some food for design thinking for site viewers and my peers in my graduate program. 

Heutagogy is Everywhere

Left image: How to Keep Your Volkswagen Alive: A Manual of Step by Step Procedures for the Complete Idiot by John Muir (1971). Source: Amazon.com

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What is the Present?

Those who are truly contemporary, who truly belong to their time, are those who neither perfectly coincide with it nor adjust themselves to its demands.

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Thinking With “Shoes”

1. Thinking With Shoes I was recently reminded of Liam Kyle Sullivan’s 2006 electro-clash, viral video, “Shoes.” I was teaching the work of photographer and

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Bruce Mau w/ Sanford Kwinter

“Designing for the Cluster”

Instant Stories: Wim Wenders

Fallen Fruit

The Eames, Powers of Ten

How to Make AR Polaroids

“Shoes” viral video by Liam Sullivan

Eadweard Muybridge reference (photo) in Rick and Morty “Ricksky Business” 

Polaroid SX-70 Instant Camera designed by Charles and Ray Eames

I’m Rob Thomas. My journey to instructional design has taken me from being a street artist while working in warehouses in Seattle to being homeless for two years before finishing my undergraduate degree at Evergreen State College to being recruited immediately upon graduation to work on the Microsoft Encarta ‘98 CD-ROM Encyclopedia. I left the Pacific Northwest that year in August of 1997 to pursue a MA in Humanities at San Francisco State University, studied closely with Giorgio Agamben at UC Berkeley in 1999, and completed my Ph.D. in Philosophy, Literature and the Theory of Criticism at Binghamton University in 2005. I have served as a Lecturer Faculty member at San Francisco State University since 2003. My focus since 2017 has been on the transformative potential of online learning. I am proud to be completing the third MA of my academic career, this time in Instructional Design and Technology (IDT), in December of 2022 at San Francisco State University.