Brett Oppegaard, Faculty, School of Communications, UH Mānoa

Brett Oppegaard

Associate Professor
Office: Crawford 330
1 (808) 956-3340
brett.oppegaard@hawaii.edu

Background

Teaching keeps me focused on how much I have to learn. Every student interaction, every lesson, every course is an opportunity to get better at the craft. From that perspective, I carefully tend to development goals. Was I an effective and inspiring teacher today? Did my students learn? What evidence do I have to support those assessments? What can I do better tomorrow? As a professional writer for many years, I found that continually refining my processes generally led to better end products. By encouraging my students to be reflective about their processes as well as their products, I hope to encourage life-long learning and development, rather than temporary spikes in activity.

Education

  • PhD, Technical Communication and Rhetoric, Texas Tech University, 2011
  • MA, Communication, University of Portland, 1999
  • BA, Communication, Washington State University, 1993

Research

Research ideas generally come to me as complex intellectual puzzles about new media, especially about mobile media and media accessibility. I become curious about something and want to know more. I find the current literature on the subject unsatisfying, so I start to take the idea apart as a way of putting it back together. I then work on isolating the societal problem involved, as a basis of engagement, and begin to seek its solutions. This mindset gets guidance from a theoretical perspective, through which the problem is envisioned and addressed. Organizationally, the approach follows a robust plan and a systematic process, with an underlying sense of pragmatism.