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Activision Manager, Tech Education Specialist Join The Guildhall

The Guildhall at SMU has recently added two notable instructors to its teaching staff: a former senior manager of central technology at Activision Publishing and a specialist in educational instructional technology.
Ed Clune, former senior manager of central technology at Activision Publishing, and Dr. Paul Topac, a specialist in educational instructional technology, have recently joined the faculty at The Guildhall, a graduate school for video game development at Southern Methodist University. Both will be full-time teaching faculty at the school.. Finding qualified teachers is one of the toughest challenges facing game development education programs. While most educational programs seek out instructors who have real hands-on experience in the game industry, few are ready to leave the industry and take on teaching full-time. Even fewer are qualified to teach. Fewer still are able to teach while keeping one hand in the game industry to keep up with advances in technology and technique. "Ed and Paul are tremendous additions to our faculty," said Dr. Peter Raad, executive director for the program. "Ed's 12 years with Activision will be so valuable to our students. And Paul's work in instructional technology will allow us to explore the serious game sector more aggressively and attract some significant research projects." Prior to being senior manager of central technology at Activision, Clune served as an associate producer and programmer with the publishing company. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electric and computer engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. Topac received his PhD from the University of Texas at Austin this spring (his dissertation: "The Effects of a Problem-Based Learning Digital Game on Continuing Motivation to Learn Science"). He also holds an MBA and a bachelor's of science in chemical engineering from UT Austin.

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