Chris Blakesley, Ph.D.


Hi, I'm Chris Blakesley, I have a PhD in Curriculum and Instruction and I improve learning experiences and products across industries and education organizations.

I am a LEARNING MANAGER. I conduct needs assessments and liaison between organizational leaders, technology teams, instructional designers, and subject-matter experts to achieve results for learning programs.

I am a LEARNING EXPERIENCE DESIGNER. I apply knowledge of learning theory, science, instructional technologies, design, and analytics to enhance learning experiences at scale.

I am an EDUCATOR. I teach and design online/blended learning experiences for learners of all ages, from youth to adult.

I am a LEARNING SCIENTIST. I combine learning science expertise and strong business acumen to uncover insights that benefit learners and organizations.

I ACHIEVE RESULTS. I help programs achieve accreditation and high NPS scores. I win awards for accomplishments and strong work ethic. I have received awards by the Jack Welch Management Institute and Engage Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison for high performance.

Chris Blakesley Headshot


Project: Music History Collaborative Timeline. Pictured is a prototype provided to a Carnegie Mellon University professor. The project goal was to create a collaborative group assignment in which students develop critical thinking skills while producing a project-based artifact (timeline).

Roles: Learning engineer

Tools: Timeline JS by Knight Lab

Project: The Cool It: Engineering Simulation was developed by a team of engineers, instructors, and instructional designers. The simulation has been used in higher education courses to teaches developing engineers thermodynamics through scenarios ranging from shuttle fueling to minesweeping.

As this publication explains, we compared novice and expert player data to better understand how novices solve problems in the thermodynamics discipline.

Roles: Instructional designer, narrative architect, usability testing manager, sound editor, research scientist

Publication: "Designing and using an on-line game to teach engineering"

Images: a) Game user interface, b) Cut scene, c) Cut scene, d) A competency indicator tool. As the vertical line sweeps across the game-play record, patterns confirming competency (positive, or green) or incompetency (negative, or red) are tallied in the central grid

Project: ARIS is an open education platform that lets non-programmers create location-based stories, games, and tours.

Roles: Co-founding designer, storyboards, narrative design consultant, usability testing facilitator, director: "2012 Global Game Jam"


Publication: Lift Off: A DIY Addition to a Smithsonian Space

Project: The WISE Medical Interactive Scenario is an interactive narrative that teaches medical practitioners how to diagnose a complex abdominal condition. This tool was used to teach medical graduate students at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Roles: Instructional designer, narrative architect

Project: Narrative Design Framework. As a result of my dissertation research on Filament Games' "Citizen Science" (pictured), I developed a framework for narrative design that supports the design of engaging learning experiences. Building on the premise of narrative cognition, a story-based approach to learning design has high potential for enhancing 21st century teaching and learning.

Roles: Researcher, author, instructional designer