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UNB welcomes its first Fulbright Canada Research Chair

Author: Marcia Seitz-Ehler

Posted on Oct 10, 2023

Category: UNB Saint John , UNB Fredericton

UNB’s faculty of computer science and McKenna Institute recently welcomed Dr. Xun Ge as UNB’s first Fulbright Canada Research Chair in Digital Transformation.

Ge is an accomplished scholar in learning design and technologies and a professor and incoming chair in the department of learning technologies at the University of North Texas.

During her semester at UNB, Ge is expanding her expertise in instructional design development to extended reality and artificial intelligence to generate theories and research aimed at improving learning and instruction for various educational settings.

Ge is working with Dr. Scott Bateman in computer science and Dr. Renée Gordon and Dr. Donald Leidl in nursing to integrate virtual reality (VR) into the Learn Where You Live program in nursing. Their work will determine how best to create a VR learning environment with real-world scenarios, the instructor’s guidance and structured activities to improve students’ critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

“Both the United States and Canada are facing a nursing shortage and can benefit from innovative ways to enhance the learning experience of student nurses,” said Ge.

With Dr. Daniel Rea in computer science, she is collaborating on the use of advanced technologies to make a social impact by promoting diversity, equity and inclusiveness. Currently in the planning stage, Ge and Rea are designing research methodology to determine if the use of avatars for virtual meetings, interviews and other virtual interactions can help mitigate racial and gender bias.

UNB’s focus on digital transformation attracted Ge to the university, and she has been impressed with the strong support for interdisciplinary teaching and research that she has found during her time here.

Ge wants to learn from and with as many members of the UNB community as possible during her semester in Fredericton. Later this month, she is working with Dr. Erik Scheme to give a talk at the Institute of Biomedical Engineering. Ge is using her time with Fulbright and UNB to maximize the impact of extended reality on education.

Fulbright Canada is a bi-national, treaty-based, non-governmental, not-for-profit organization with a mandate to identify the best and brightest minds from the United States and Canada and engage them in residential academic exchange. Fulbright Canada is supported by Global Affairs Canada, the United States Department of State and a diverse group of corporate sponsors, charitable trusts and university partners.