Dr. Huang’s academic background, consisting of material science and engineering, learning design & technology, and executive business administration, has enabled him to conduct interdisciplinary projects for instructional and research purposes across contexts. Dr. Huang investigates technology acceptances in various workplaces and inquired the instructional effects and efficacy of gamification, socialization, and open-distribution of technology-enabled learning experience. His current research interests include (1) design of game-based learning environments for effective learning engagement with non-traditional learners, (2) cognitive load manipulations in multimedia E-Learning settings, (3) development of ethical decision-making capacities among evaluation professionals, (4) career development needs assessment and intervention design via technologies, and (5) the efficacy of MOOCs in research universities. Dr. Huang also coordinates the Human Resource Development Online degree program.

Key Professional Appointments

Associate ProfessorEducation Policy, Organization and Leadership, University of Illinoist at Urbana-Champaign, 2013 - present

Adjunct Assistant ProfessorEducational Psychology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2009 - present

Assistant ProfessorEducation Policy, Organization and Leadership, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2011 - 2013

Assistant ProfessorHuman Resource Education, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2007 - 2011

Visiting Assistant ProfessorEducational Technology, Curriculum and Instruction, Purdue University, 2006 - 2007


MBA., Executive Business Administration, New York Institute of Technology, 2006

Ph.D., Learning Design and Technology, Purdue University, 2006

M.Ed., Educational Technology, Purdue University, 2002

B.S., Material Science and Engineering, Purdue University, 1999

Awards, Honors, Associations

2nd Place. Quantitative Focused Journal Article AwardDivision of Distance LearningAssociation for Educational Communications and Technology, 2014 - 2014

Outstanding Reviewer AwardEducational Technology Research and DevelopmentResearch Section, 2014 - 2014

Teacher Ranked as Excellent By Their Students ListCITL, 2014 - 2014

AHRD Cutting Edge Research Award, 20th Annual AHRD International Research Conference in the AmericasAcademy of Human Resource Development, 2013 - 2013

Dean’s External Funding Incentive Program for Assistant Professors AwardCollege of Education, 2012 - 2012

2008 E-Learn Conference Outstanding Paper AwardAssociation for the Advancement of Computing in Education, 2008 - 2008

Research Symposium Grant sponsored by National Science Foundation (NSF) and Association for Educational and Communication Technology (AECT) Research and Theory Division, October 2007. ($500)Association for Educational Communication and Technology, 2007 - 2007

Research & Service

My current research interests focus on the design, development, and evaluation of learning engagement systems targeting higher education and workplaces. Topics have covered:
+ The design and evaluation of informal learning interventions for career development purposes
+ Technological affordance that supports STEM and non-STEM learning in higher education through mobile learning
+ Design attributes and learning support of digital game-based learning systems
+ Learning technologies' cognitive and motivational impact on training, learning, and knowledge management in the workplace
+ Measurement and manipulation of motivational support and cognitive load in technology-enabled multimedia learning environments
+ Development of ethical thinking in professional engagement


DiFilippo, K., Huang, W., Andrade, J., & Chapman-Novakofski, K. (2015) The use of mobile apps to improve nutrition outcomes: A systematic literature review. Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare  link >

Yoo, S., & Huang, W. (2015) Can E-Learning system enhance learning culture in the workplace? A comparison among companies in South Korea. British Journal of Educational Technology  link >

Huang, W. (2015) Distance learning for degree completion for working adults. Encyclopedia of Educational Technology Sage

Andrade, J., & Huang, W. (2014) A design framework for enhancing virtual team learning Journal of Applied Instructional Design 4, 65-72 link >

Andrade, J., Huang, W., & Bohn, D. (2014) Multimedia’s effect on college students’ quantitative mental effort scores and qualitative extraneous cognitive load responses in a food science and human nutrition course Journal of Food Science Education 13, 40-46

Huang, W., & Andrade, J. (2014) Design and evaluation of mobile learning from the perspective of cognitive load management. Encyclopedia of Education and Technology in a Changing Society IGI Global: Hershey, PA

Hood, D., & Huang, W. (2013) Professional development with graduate teaching assistants (TA) teaching online. Learning by Doing: Professional Development in Online Learning Environments IGI Global: Hershey, PA

Huang, W. (2013) Online learning engagement system (OLES) design framework for postsecondary online learning environments: A synthesis on affordances from game-based learning, social media-enabled learning, and open l. Handbook of Research on Teaching and Learning in K-20 Education IGI Global: Hershey, PA

Huang, W., , ., & Yoo, S. (2013) Employee's acceptance towards knowledge management system and its impact on creating learning organizations Knowledge Management & E-Learning: An International Journal (KM&EL) 5, 434-454

Huang, W., Hood, D., & Yoo, S. (2013) Gender divide and acceptance of collaborative Web 2.0 applications for learning in higher education. The Internet and Higher Education 16, 57 – 64 link >

Huang, W., Johnson, T., Han, S., & , . (2013) Impact of online instructional game features on college students' perceived motivational support and cognitive investment: A structural equation modeling stud The Internet and Higher Education 17, 58-68

Huang, W., Johnson, T., Yoo, S., & , . (2013) Learning organization. Encyclopedia of Terminology for Educational Communications and Technology: New York, U.S.A..

Huang, W., Li, J., & Lin, M. (2013) Game-based virtual-world environments to better engage lifelong learners for open courseware and open learning. Handbook of Research on Technologies for Improving the 21st Century Workforce: Tool for Lifelong Learning IGI Global: Hershey, PA

Yoo, S., Huang, W., & , . (2013) Engaging online adult learners in higher education: Motivational factors impacted by gender, ages, and prior experiences The Journal of Continuing Higher Education 61, 151-164

Huang, W., & Yang, D. (2012) Empowering digital learners: a self-managing learning process framework for digital game-based learning system (DGBLS). Interactivity in E-Learning: Case Study and Frameworks IGI Global: Hershey, PA

Huang, W., Lin, M., & Shen, W. (2012) Understanding Chinese-speaking open courseware users: A case study on user engagement in an open courseware portal in Taiwan (Opensource Opencourse Prototype System). Open Learning: The Journal of Open, Distance and e-Learning, 27 (2), 169 – 182

Yoo, S., Han, S., & Huang, W. (2012) The roles of intrinsic motivators and extrinsic motivators in promoting e-Learning in the workplace: A case from South Korea Computers in Human Behaviors 28, 942-950

Yoo, S., Huang, W., Lee, D., & Huang, W. (2012) The impact of employee’s perception of organizational climate on their technology acceptance toward e-learning in South Korea, Knowledge Management & E-Learning: An International Journal (KM&EL) 4, .359-378

Huang, W. (2011) Learners’ motivational processing and mental effort investment in an online game-based learning environment: a preliminary analysis Computers in Human Behavior 27, 694-704 link >

Huang, W., Huang, W., & Chui, C. (2011) The impact of specified professional development program information as a marketing tool for effective recruitment Human Resource Development International 14, 57-73

Huang, W., & Nakazawa, K. (2010) An empirical analysis on how learners interact in Wiki in an online graduate level learning technology course. Interactive Learning Environment 18 (3), 233-44

Huang, W., & Tettegah, S. (2010) A conceptual framework to understand the relationship between cognitive load and empathy development in serious games. Interdisciplinary models and tools for serious games: Emerging concepts and future directions IGI Global

Huang, W., Han, S., Park, U., & Seo, J. (2010) Managing employees’ motivation, cognition, and performance: the design of a game-based adaptive performance platform (GAPP) Advances in Human Resource Development 12, 715-727 link >

Huang, W., Huang, W., & Tschopp, J. (2010) Sustaining iterative game playing processes in DGBL: The relationship between motivational processing and outcome processing. Computers & Education 55 (2), 789-797

Huang, W., & Johnson, T. (2009) Let’s get serious about e-games: A design research approach towards emergence perspective. Ubiquitous learning University of Illinois Press: Champaign IL

Huang, W., & Johnson, T. (2008) Design of effective game-based learning environments: A cognitive load approach. Handbook of research on effective electronic gaming in education Information Science Reference: Hershey, PA

Johnson, T., & Huang, W. (2007) Complex skills development for today's workforce. Understanding models for learning and instruction: Essays in honor of Norbert M. Seel Springer: New York


Co-Principal InvestigatorECR: Strategic Integration of MOOCs into Graduate and Professional STEM Programs in 21st Century Research Universities, National Science Foundation, 2013 - 2015

Principal InvestigatorNetwork and Online Community Evaluation and Sustainability Plan, Lumpkin Family Foundation, 2011 - 2011


Past PresidentDivision of Training and Performance, Association for Educational Communications and Technology, 2013 - 2014

President, Training and PerformanceDivision of Training and Performance, Association for Educational Communications and Technology, 2012 - 2013

Virtual HRD SIG Member at Large for Academic ResearchAcademy of Human Resource Development, 2012 - 2013

President-ElectDivision of Training and Performance, Association for Educational Communications and Technology, 2011 - 2012

VP of CommunicationDivision of Training and Performance, Association for Educational Communication and Technology, 2010 - 2011

VP of CommunicationsTraining and Performance Division, Association for Educational Communications and Technology, 2009 - 2010

Learning Track Submission ReviewerCognitive Science, 2008 - 2009

Conference Proposal ReviewerAcademy of Human Resource Development, Academy of Human Resource Development, 2008 - 2008

Consulting revieiwer for Human Resource Development InternationalAcademy of Human Resource Development, 2007 - present

Consulting reviewer for ETR&DEducational Technology Research and Development, Association for Educational Communication and Technology, 2007 - present

Reviewing manuscripts related to Cognitive Load Theory and game designBritish Journal of Educational Technology, 2006 - present


I have taught courses on:
- Instructional system design
- Design of learning systems
- Program evaluation
- Learning technologies
- Innovation in E-Learning
- Adult and professional education
- Social media for learning in colleges

I teach what I research and I research what I teach.


Adult & Professional Education This course takes a broad look at the philosophy, theory, research, and practice of adult education, along with additional consider4ations for the development of professionals. The broad perspective includes the social, cultural, and political factors that affect the research, planning, development, and implementation of adult education. You may explore the major adult learning theories, the practice of adult education, and the aims and challenges of professional education that match you scholarly and practical interests. Class Schedule Information: This course is for Doctoral and advanced Master's level students.

Innovation in E-Learning Designed to provide an in-depth look at ongoing innovations in Web-based electronic technologies that can be used to deliver e-Learning content and to enhance learning experiences in e-Learning environments. Students will acquire and synthesize advanced content knowledge and critically review research on ongoing innovations that are integrated with targeted content in today's eCommunication and e-Learning environments. Course Information: Prerequisite: Open to all graduate students.

Program Evaluation Theory and techniques of evaluation in cognitive, affective, and psychomotor domains at different educational levels and settings; development and analysis of activities and instruments for students and program evaluation, follow-up studies, and interpretation of results for self-evaluation and for administrative decision making.

Wenhao David Huang

Associate Professor, Education Policy, Organization and Leadership



344 Education Building
1310 S. Sixth St.
Champaign, IL 61820

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