Download PDF

Raul Zaritsky

Senior Instructional Designer


Dec 2005


University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign College of Education

Educational Philosophy & Policy  Specialty in Instructional Technology

 Advisor: Professor Nicholas Burbules           

Dissertation: Video Cases as Educational Visualizations in K-12 science and Math areas:  Focusing on STEM areas and implication for teacher in-service Professional Training.


Jun 1994Jun 1996


Northwestern University

Learning Sciences Program,

Northwestern University, Evanston, Il.

Instructional Technology:  the Application of Cognitive Science research  developing innovations in K-12 pedagogy; creating learner based computation tools for STEM areas:, visualizations, collaboration, mentoring, earth and life science. Research conducted in 50 classrooms within Roy Pea's COVIS project; Cognitive science research towards the improvement of education via technology and pedagogy: for example creating Cyber-enabled Instructional Technologies, tools and Collaborative Technologies based on scientifically authentic cognitive practices

 Advisor: Education College Dean, Roy Pea (now Professor at Stanford.

Funded under Project: CoVis, K-12 STEM areas, using innovative technology;  new tools including the Collaborative Notebook, Weather Visualizer.


Jun 1982


School of the Art Institute

Film and Video, Digital Media

Works: Maxwell Street Blues

Invited Director, London International Film Festival

Jun 2011Sep 2014

Returning Scholar Graham School of Continuing Education

University of Chicago

My sabbatical goal at the Graham School was to improve my knowledge of sister fields, specifically medical education heath research. These courses allowed me to write about comparing research in education to the research in Medical Education & Research.  Also to understand social media use and methods with focusing on social media in Politics.

Media Innovation Laboratory Director and Senior Consultant.

 Recent Courses:

          University of Chicago School of Medicine, Summer Intensive Program in Outcomes Research Training:Fundamentals of Health Services Research: PPHA 47900            

Taught bu Marshall Chin, MD, MPH, & David Meltzer, MD, PhD, Director  and other faculty             

Script writing; Logan School, taught by John Petrakis

Work experience

May 2011Apr 2012

Director of Training

AECOM National Security Division

Director of Training;: Project management, courseware creation and rapid development and deployment of courses, methods and supporting technology to serve professional language and analytic staff within the National Security Agencies.


Senior Educator and Learning System Architect I was charged with the recruiting, testing, training and planning of training needed By each staff member  agreed to within a contract for life long learning. Apply instructional design and adult learning theory to propose solutions that are cost-effective, easy-to-create and maintain, visually and instructionally compelling, and provide a rewarding experience for the learner. Staff included linguists and intelligence analysts— in 18 language groups and 12 international regions


My revised training program developed unique methods to increase the effectiveness of the prior Agency courses using rapid assessment benchmarking based on recent advances in cognitive sciences.  Design and produce the creative and interactive training content including demos, job aids, surveys, quizzes, pre and post-tests, and learning activities. Facilitated course development with the various managers, the security  staff, CIA College administrators, faculty, and subject matter experts to ensure accurate course population and delivery each term of the academic year.

Within three months we created and developed all courseware and materials.

Largely during active courses my role became creator of needed assessment measurements.  As colleagues taught a course module, I created on the fly the assessment of key concepts, using Survey Monkey. We knew multiple key learning moments within each class  and course segment, thus by administering the assessment survey, we  also immediately knew the level of significant misconceptions.

T.o correct these emergent learning difficulties, we used alternative course content and multiple teachers, We continually assessed and measured quality of learned concepts from course discussion and newly created, on-the-fly, assessments,  When needed, we developed  learning methods and solutions  even creating further corrections in the manner of design-based research until my assessments showed nearly 100% correct cognitive maps of essential keystone content.  after the first boot camp training was completed, all of the new learning surveys were prepared, 

Innovation:: Our methods significantly improved time to CIA certification thus improving the corporate ROI.. In collaboration with CIA faculty. Tools: We used the Baysean AI expert toolss from the Computational Linguistic Lab at CMU to produced new computer-based instructional delivery methods to improve spoken English; for all 18 languages of Linguists. We Pre-Calculated for say Russian first language linguists the needed practice in contrast to the pre-calculated AI system for a Arabic or Phasto first language linguist improving their English.

Jan 2009Jan 2011

Director of Research

Mejenta Systems

Director of Research & Education for Corporate Sales Division working with start ups who. focused on the development of solution to business systems Many apps Developed for start ups and existing businesses and organizations

Jan 2009Oct 2009

Project Manager Online Courseware Group

National Science Foundation

Project Manager Developing just in time courseware for new Program Officers and NSF staff..

Designed adult learning programs in collaboration with faculty plus other experts for delivery in various modalities from LMS, Mobile, Audio only, non internet computers via thumdrives and DVD's I was added as head of this team to create completed courses as required by the Division Directors. As an NSF funded researcher and grant reviewer, I provided the expertise and management with a primary emphasis on design and development of learning tools based on their appropriateness for our audience of senior scientists.


Lead a program and trained my staff to find innovations increasing the ROI of the final courseware within the LMS using a rapid workflow Design, Digital Scientific Journalism. We were able to create the first hour of courseware in seven weeks at a tenth the cost of prior courses.

DESIGNING FOR SENIOR SCIENTISTS: NSF Senior Scientists serve in the role of senior project managers. Consulting with administration, faculty, and staff on design, development and evaluation of instructional programs, materials, methods, and teaching and assessment techniques. I was able to work in the NSF Academy with Program Officers as a colleague, (often in areas where I understood the underlying scientific challenges.)

Jan 2006Jan 2008

George Mason University

George Mason University

Adjunct Faculty,, in The College of education and Human Development.

In the Masters program for instructional design.

Graduate Level Courses; Students included many K-12 teachers finishing their Masters and Doctorates degrees. 

I taught web-based course creation using  practical technical skills  required to  master Adobe  Connect,  Captivate and the video skills: camera use, sound, lighting. and Editing with HD Video media. We used Avid editing software for rich learning; including SCORM compliance. My courses also  included Research and design of learning systems.

GMU's Instructional Technology Program is extensive and I co-taught in such areas including Instruction Design and Research Methods for STEM and professional learners. A course on Emerging Technologies; a course on Visual Analytics focusing on computer-based Visualizations, Gaming and Cyber-infrastructure Tools for STEM education.  Developed  and provided to graduate students, teachers of STEM topics in K-12. my final course  on filmmaking. This course required the full summer session and was both an extensive review and  a course teaching practical skills using professional software.

Courses Used Blackboard & Adobe Connect for delivery, with   blended Distance Learning technologies and focused on selecting the appropriate development and software tools so that the students would be able to create  media rich Courses in STEM areas, in K-12.

Oct 2005Mar 2006

Program Manager/Consultant,

Graduate School of the USDA

Washington, D.C. Senior Academic and eLearning Program Manager/Consultant, Managing Instructional Designers, IT programmer for IT Courses Center for Innovative Technology. Collaborated with faculty and subject matter experts, evaluating educational software and web-based applications that support university curricula. New course development with staff, faculty, college administrators, and government subject matter experts to ensure effective delivery of each within the  term of the academic year.

Jan 1997Jan 2003

Research Scientist In Education

Education Division of the Nation Center for SuperComputer Applications(NCSA).

Urbana, Il Senior Scientist, Research Scientist in Education: STEM area at the NCSA in the Division of Education, Science Education National Computational Science Alliance(NCSA), at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, IL.


: Transformed advanced complex scientific  tools created by NCSA science teams for use by learners -- From Hight School through college and graduate education.

K-12 and College Courseware Created 

Courseware creation using these advanced learner tools in collaboration with teaching faculty team to produce instructional design documentation including design templates, standards, style guides, technical specifications, straw models, video scripts, train-the-trainer, pilot materials, and errata sheets.

Research Project funded at $2.3M by the Department of Education: Teaching Tomorrows Teachers to used Technology; P/I, Department of Education grant ($2.3M) to Prepare Tomorrow’s Teachers My team at the NCSA was funded to develop extensive resources, portals, curricula tied to standards, use of Video Cases in Professional Development courses . Organized and taught at national meeting.


Curriculum Development;

Working  with faculty teams in:

  • Bio-Informatics;
  • Modeling and Visualization in
  • Chemistry;
  • Hydrology;
  • Nano-technology and
  • Engineering as well as
  • extensive work with the Habanero team
  • in partnership with Illinois Schools to research using this powerful collaboration tool. by our HPC teams and
  • Data Mining Software used in K-12 Policy and Practice

                        Across STEM Disciplines funded by CISE and other NSF Divisions, We created K-12 versions of the tools and created standards based curriculum through our national partnership of both SDSC and NCSA. With funding from NCREL, a laboratory of the US DOE, we created training programs and STEM curriculum for dissemination throughout the North Central Region.


RiverWeb™, Senior Author, Director of Cognitive Development. Developed by a consortium of the three science museums located on the Mississippi, we created a joint project with components located at each museum. In collaboration with Visualization Team and the Hydrology Team, he wrote the successful NSF grant to the Informal Education group which funded in the three Mississippi Science Museums and integrated program called RiverWeb™. At the Science Museum of Minnesota (, we built large Virtual Reality Displays into a wheelhouse from the shell of an actual boat. NCSA created the model and controls that allowed visitors to tour the Mississippi guiding the virtual ship. The Army Corps of Engineers provided the under-lying models. Smaller exhibits incorporated both the history and the science of the twisting course of the river and the causes of recent major floods. At the St. Louis Science Center (, history was combined with hydrology and information science along with a K-12 curriculum. At the Illinois State Museum (, the history of the earlier cultures up to the present day was the focus along with the development of companion K-12 curriculum. The project continues under Professor Burton with a focus on history (


Graduate Courses Taught: College of Education & NCSA:


Using online and  blended methods based on using newly created GRID online educational infrstructure systems combined with NCSA teleconferencing through the University of Illinois’ MCU infrastructure Students located in thirty classroom around the country. Subjects taught: Scientific Visualization, history, methods and programming of computer graphic element  for future use in education. Collaborative systems for education using GRID technologies.

Jan 2004Jan 2008

Senior Fellow Role Grant


Senior Fellow, NSF ROLE Program on research methodologies in Education: An NSF project, Senior Fellow: NSF Working Group on Mathematics and Neuroscience.

Fellow, Virtual Organizations and Systems Project: Part of NSF research into Virtual Organizations as Socio-Technical Systems in Education.

Jan 2000Jan 2004

K-12 Tool for Infrastrucure Assessment

Co-Developer with Al Zeisler

 Co-created with engineering and electrical engineering faculty and with Al Zeisler from AT&T.


Produced an online course and model that could accurately guide school districts through the process of building IT technology into their schools and accurately predict their costs of moving into the 21st century technological world.

Within two years the tools was ownloaded by over eight thousand school districts around the world.

It remains popular, with additional DOE funding it is maintained and updated, thus it remains available online twenty plus years of continuous support for American School Districts and international schools. It is currently funded and can be found here:

Jan 1980Jan 1986

Research Associate

University of Illinois Chicago Media Production Center

Research Associate, Faculty Consultant, developing courses, Senior Instructional Designer, Film and Video Producer, Computer Science Producer.

Within the Media Production Center and the Electronic Visualization Laboratory of the University of Illinois, Chicago.

Senior Educator/Producer/Director of our educational and documentary films and videos.



Media Producer/Director

Z. I. Ltd
President and CEO,. Serving Fortune 500 Companies; Full Service News and Media Company providing Digital, Video, Computer Graphics and Film projects for the TV Broadcast industry and for Fortune 500 companies as Xerox, PBS shows such as the NewsHour™ and major not-for-profit professional association such as ACM/SIGGRAPH and the American Bar Association. Our special focus was on science reporting and the Development of interactive programs for national and international science museums. Our work won numerous Awards from the London Film Festival, LA Film Festival. Served as Senior Producer Writer Cinematographer, Videographer, Avid Editor, CMX Editor on many Broadcast works with PBS and other international news networks. Chicago, Il Research Associate, Media Production Center and the Electronic Visualization Laboratory of the University of Illinois, Chicago. Faculty Consultant, Senior Instructional Designer, Film and Video Producer, Computer Science Producer, Educator/Producer/Director of many award winning educational and documentary films and videos.

Editor, ACM/SIGGRAPH Video Review

ACM/Siggraph Video Review
EDITOR, Writer, Producer /Director Of Forty Hours Of Original Programming For The Siggraph Video Review


ILLINOIS Department of Mental Health
Greater Chicago Area Psychologist III, Clinical Director of two programs in the Illinois Department of Mental Health. At Tinley Park I was the clinical director of their behavior modification program for all developmentally delayed clients. At Tinley Park MHC, I was selected by Professors Nate Azrin and Professor Fox to head a large scale in-hospital trial of their new“ Toilet Training in Two Days” method. I first taught our staff, of over a hundred the methods— ward by ward, then developed ward team to assure that the affordances(such as the bathrooms were unlocked). Daily I collected the data which showed that within a month we had brought toiling accidents down to zero and further that my trained staff could accomplish this behavior change taking on two-three days needed for the treatment. The results were published in journals. At Madden MHC I was the Clinical Director of an intervention ward serving clients whose behavior, such as head banging and hitting, was more than parents could cope with. Again I developed Behavior Modification clinical treatment that worked both as in-patient and home follow up. We were very successful and most in-patent stays were less than two months. Here again using Behavior Modification clinical treatments that I design and teach to the other psychologist and mental health staff we could intervene to eliminate the behavior and return the children to their homes quickly. We were very successful and most in-patent stays were less than two months.


Professional video creation
I have produced many films and video media, in my production company, serving broadcasts TV, added script writing to my skill set of digital cinematography, consulting video producer for national organizations. Currently working on two new draft scripts. While not as fast an editor is in my prior life, I have maintained my personal production system including both avid and Apple Final Cut pro editing systems. my research and writing includes video use in the learning sciences. A link to my portfolio will be added here.
University of Chicago
Recent Course Participation: University of Chicago School of Medicine, Summer Intensive Program in Outcomes Re search Training:Fundamentals of Health Services Research—PPHA 47900 web Marshall Chin, MD, MPH, David Meltzer, MD, PhD, Director University of Chicago, Logan School, Scriptwriting, taught by John Petrakis
International broadcast television
Produced, directed and edited many shows for PBS and other broadcast, corporate and Fortune 500 companies and for Federal Agencies. Hired to create news, documentary projects and corporate branding of the highest quality including recently HD.
Expert with course creation software for all platforms using video to screen capture. Creative design artist and producer. Includes the Adobe, Apple, web creation and LMS systems; have 20 plus years of experience using largely all current essential software. Producing for delivery of multiple LMS systems including mLearning and Blended Learning professional training organizations.
Research Methods in the Learning Science
Learning Sciences takes it historical methods from cognitive psychology,AI, and societal challenges.Design Based iterative research attempts not final answers but continual improvement in projects as required.
Dramatic and educational screenplay writing
I hope to finish screenplays this winter and begin the search for production funding. I discovered that I have an easy time writing screenplays. My first group of work was produced for a University of Chicago course on screenplay writing.

Childrens’ MathWorlds Project 2003-2007

DVD Media. Producer, Researcher, Senior Designer, DP, Editor, with National Science Foundation and commercial funding. A seven-hour DVD workshop-in-a-box, designed to be an exemplar of Educational Research Visualization. Filmed over three years in Chicago and Evanston schools; production support provided by the producers of Hoop Dreams. Edited and research under NSF grant to my Media Laboratory in Champaign, Illinois: Educational Research with Video Technologies Laboratory – training and managing a staff using the latest Avid and DVD programming software.

Digital Video in Education.

2. Zaritsky, R. A., & Sonin, J. (2000). Digital Video in Education.

Text section