The University of Florida College of Education invites applications for an open-rank, tenure-track professor position focused primarily on the use of extended reality (XR) for learning with a secondary focus on AI in education. We welcome applicants whose research emphasis examines practical applications and theoretical perspectives of XR for learning (inclusive of virtual reality, alternative reality, augmented reality, and the notion of the metaverse) and how this can be augmented/extended using artificial intelligence (AI) (inclusive of machine learning, data mining, and learning analytics). This faculty member will join a productive and collegial community of scholars committed to high quality research, teaching, and service as well as to developing a culturally diverse faculty and student body.
The College of Education at the University of Florida is committed to preparing professionals and scholars to meet the needs of a diverse and global society. We are particularly interested in candidates who have a demonstrated commitment to meeting the needs of diverse and underserved populations. The successful applicant will join a collaborative, cohesive, and energetic community of scholars representing a range of races, cultures, and nationalities committed to high quality research, teaching, and service as well as to developing a culturally diverse faculty and student body.
This open-rank, tenure-track faculty position will be affiliated with the Institute for Advanced Learning Technologies (IALT), a center facilitating interdisciplinary collaborative endeavors advancing scholarship and practices in technology-enhanced learning, and hold an appointment within one of the College’s Schools. IALT is a multidisciplinary institute within the College of Education and is closely affiliated with academic programs in Educational Technology, Computer Science Education, and Research & Evaluation Methods. IALT is situated in a new, custom-renovated space, and is developing, assessing, and disseminating innovative learning technologies for use in educational, workforce, and professional development settings.
This XR position is an element of the AI Society: Leading Ethical and Equitable Transformations of Work, Creativity, and Life cluster, which is part of UF’s broader $70 million initiative adding 100 new faculty across various AI/machine learning clusters with the aim of expanding the role of AI in higher education and research (https://ai.ufl.edu). This faculty member will have access to extensive, powerful resources available at UF to enhance and augment their XR research, including the new HiPerGator AI NVIDIA GPU SuperPod, one of the most powerful university-based supercomputers in the nation. The new faculty member will also have the opportunity to collaborate with talented colleagues across UF’s 16 colleges and beyond, including: Computer & Information Science & Engineering, Digital Worlds Institute, Lastinger Center for Learning, McKnight Brain Institute, Neuroscience, Psychology/Cognitive Sciences, Informatics Institute, Online Learning Institute, and UF Online.
Successful applicants are expected to develop and maintain a systematic line of research and innovation; vigorously pursue external research funding; publish in top-tier scholarly journals; present research findings at meetings of professional associations; contribute to advising and teaching undergraduate and/or graduate student; and engage in service to the program, school, college, university, and profession in general. The nine-month, tenure-accruing faculty appointment begins as soon as possible, but no later than August 2023, and includes the possibility of summer employment. Salary is negotiable, highly competitive, and commensurate with qualifications and experience.
- Conduct scholarly activities commensurate with expectations of a tenure-track faculty member at an AAU, research-intensive university.
- Engage with a collaborative and diverse community of scholars among colleagues within and outside of the college, especially within IALT and UF’s AI research community.
- Vigorously pursue external funding opportunities with the support of the College’s Office of Educational Research.
- Publish in top-tier refereed scholarly journals.
- Advise, engage, and mentor graduate students in teaching, research, and outreach activities.
- Design and teach courses (face-to-face, blended, and/or online) for undergraduate and/or graduate students.
- Provide service to the university and the profession.
- The Institute for Advanced Learning Technologies
Salary is negotiable, competitive, and commensurate with qualifications and experience.
- Doctoral degree in relevant discipline
- Relevant experience working with XR for learning
- Relevant experience incorporating AI into XR research and practice
- Potential areas of expertise and scholarship may include:
- Research, development, and/or innovation expertise, primarily with XR and secondarily with AI, for advancing teaching and learning.
- Application, development, and evaluation of AI-enhanced XR applications,
- Use of AI to personalize XR teaching and/or learning experiences.
- Development of XR and AI learning experiences that bridge the research-to-practice gap.
- Application of learning analytics, data science, machine learning, computational psychometrics, etc. for evaluation of XR and other technology-enhanced learning environments.
- Issues of ethics and equity associated with XR and AI in diverse educational settings.
The Institute for Advanced Learning Technologies (IALT) in the College of Education at the University of Florida catalyzes research agendas in areas including machine learning, natural language processing, extended reality, and emerging learning environments.
Through collaboration, the IALT supports faculty and student researchers, state-of-the-art labs and dynamic teaching facilities, and builds capacity with academic, industry and government partners. The research, development and distribution of emerging learning technologies – including software, AI algorithms and applications to preK-12 and adult-centered settings – is transforming education by providing precision, optimized learning experiences enabling successful content mastery for all learners ranging from early childhood through adulthood.
The College of Education at the University of Florida, founded in 1906, has been ranked No. 1 or No. 2 in the nation in Online Graduate Education for the last seven years, 3rd nationally for undergraduate education, and 12th nationally among public graduate colleges of education (U.S. News & World Report). Two of the College’s academic programs occupy top-20 spots in the U.S. News rankings: Counselor Education (5th) and Special Education (5th). Our Teachers, Schools & Society (TSS) program was named the 2020 Program of the Year by the Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate (CPED). The College has added 45 faculty in the past three years.
Cutting-edge interdisciplinary research and public scholarship—often conducted in partnership with other UF colleges, school districts and communities across the state and nation—are yielding powerful learning systems and models that are helping to transform education in today’s changing world, starting with our youngest learners. The College is engaged in four of UF’s priority research areas—early childhood studies, precision learning, analysis of learning analytics, and artificial intelligence in education.
The College has 117 full-time faculty members with distinguished records in teaching, research and service. Faculty researchers last year garnered more than $107 million in awards supporting studies and projects addressing education’s most critical issues. Teaching is one of several areas of study from which UF education students can choose.
More than 3,000 education students are enrolled on campus and online in 29 bachelor’s and advanced degree programs and concentration areas, within nine academic specialties: Curriculum and Instruction • Counseling & Counselor Education • Early Childhood Education • Educational Leadership • Higher Education Administration • Research & Evaluation Methods • School Psychology • Special Education • Student Personnel in Higher Education. To sustain the college’s innovative edge deep into the 21st century, heightened emphasis on emerging technologies, advanced graduate studies and interdisciplinary research will effectively prepare tomorrow’s leaders in all education disciplines. The College’s educator preparation programs have been continuously accredited by CAEP and NCATE since 1954. More than 30,000 UF “EduGator” alumni are located throughout the world.
THE University of Florida, founded in 1853, is a public land-grant, sea-grant and space-grant research university and one of the most academically diverse universities in the nation. U.S. News & World Report ranks UF 5th among public universities. National rankings such as 2nd by Kiplinger and 20th in Forbes in their respective lists of “Best Values in Public Colleges” are a result of UF’s commitment to provide the highest quality education at the best value. UF is home to 16 colleges and more than 200 research, service and education centers, bureaus and institutes, and boasts more than 4,000 faculty members, 50,000 students and 415,000 living alumni. Faculty scholars last year generated more than $1 billion in research awards. UF recently launched a $70 million AI partnership with NVIDIA, taking the first step toward ensuring equitable access to bringing AI to students and faculty from across campus and the state. The Florida Legislature designated UF as a “preeminent” state university in 2013. UF recently hired almost 500 new faculty.
About the Area
UF is situated in Gainesville in North Central Florida, a progressive college town that blends big-city cultural and athletic offerings with small-town friendliness and charm, along with excellent schools. Gainesville, located about halfway between the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico, is often recognized as one of America’s best college towns and is easily accessible to three major metropolitan areas (Jacksonville, Orlando and Tampa). The National Arbor Day Foundation has recognized Gainesville as a “Tree City USA” every year since 1982. Add the allure of Florida’s famous sunshine, tropical breezes, and abundant wilderness, springs, rivers and seashores nearby, and it is little wonder that top-caliber faculty and students find our College and University to be the perfect balance of premier academics and a fulfilling lifestyle.
Special Instructions to Applicants
Applicants should upload all materials to the University of Florida’s employment website https://jobs.ufl.edu. If technical assistance is needed, please contact Human resources at (352) 392-2477. Candidates should submit application materials electronically at https://jobs.ufl.edu. Please provide: (1) a letter of application providing evidence of your interest and qualifications for the position, (2) a current curriculum vita, (3) examples of published scholarship, and (4) contact information for at least three professional references. Official transcripts of graduate work with evidence of terminal degree will be requested at point of hire. Applicants should reference requisition 524626, position number 00037437. Inquiries about the position can be addressed to Drs. Thomas Dana Search Committee Chair (firstname.lastname@example.org) and/or Matthew Schmidt Search Committee Co-Chair (email@example.com). To ensure full consideration application materials should be submitted by January 9, 2023. Review of candidates will continue until the position is filled. Applications received after this date may be considered at the discretion of the committee and hiring authority.
The selection process will be conducted in accordance with the provisions of Florida’s “Government in the Sunshine” and Public Records laws. Search Committee meetings and interviews are open to the public and all applications, resumes, and other documents related to the search will be available for public inspection. Final candidates will be required to provide an official transcript to the hiring department upon hire. A transcript will not be considered “official” if a designation of “Issued to Student” is visible. Degrees earned outside of the United States are required to be evaluated by a professional credentialing service provider approved by the National Association of Credentialing Evaluation Services (NACES), which can be found at http://www.naces.org.
Application must be submitted by 11:55 p.m. (ET) of the posting end date.