Distinguished Research Fellows
Senior Research Fellows
Director of Research / Associate Professor
Christopher Devers received a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, as well as a MS in educational administration and a BS in engineering and technology education from Purdue University. He is an Associate Professor in the School of Education and the Director of Research for the Center for Learning and Innovation at Indiana Wesleyan University (IWU). Prior to joining IWU, Dr. Devers was a professor at the University of San Diego, where he taught graduate courses on learning, cognition, and technology. Broadly, Professor Devers’ research focuses on how and when technology promotes learning. Past research on the integration of technology has focused on the simple question of whether or not a particular technology increases learning. Instead of asking whether or not it works, Dr. Devers’ research asks “how and when does it work?” Specifically, his research explores the optimal components that impact learning and matching those to the right situations. Overall, the broader questions regarding how and when technology is effective are applied to Professor Devers’ lines of research -- online education, online video learning, and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL). Currently, his research focuses on using self-explanation to improve online video learning. To learn more about his research, courses, and students visit: EdProfessor.com
Jason Runyan earned his master’s degree in neuroscience from the University of Texas and his doctorate from the University of Oxford, where he did work in philosophical psychology. He is currently an Associate Professor in Psychology, and in the John Wesley Honors College, at Indiana Wesleyan University. His research interests range from the neurobiology of long-term memory and working memory to philosophical issues concerning free will. His current work brings a philosophical and experimental approach to addressing questions about human agency and dispositions. To this aim, he has co-developed several smartphone-based ecological momentary assessment (EMA) systems, and is a co-founding partner of LifeData—a tech company that develops software for psychological research.
Jerry Pattengale (PhD, Miami, Ohio) has some twenty books in print and numerous essays in key venues such as Wall Street Journal, Christianity Today, Washington Post, Books & Culture, InsideHigherEd.com, Patheos, Chicago Tribune, and Christian Post. He serves as executive director of education, Museum of the Bible (Washington, D.C.), and was one of its two founding scholars. He is University Professor at Indiana Wesleyan University (IWU), the first in its history, and has held several top administrative positions. Jerry has various international projects and awards and is editor-in-chief of the multifaceted, high-tech Bible curriculum with the Museum (approximately 20 print volumes forthcoming 2017-18, a gamified online version, and two digital App versions), which is currently being used by 100,000 Israeli public school students. He has distinguished appointments at the Sagamore Institute (Indianapolis), Tyndale House—Cambridge, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Excelsia College (Australia), and serves on the boards of the Religion News Service (National Press Club, Washington, D.C.), Johnathan Edwards Center (Yale University), and as associate publisher of Christian Scholar’s Review. He is also executive director of Nationalconversations.com, which he co-founded with David Wright. Some of his honors include a National Endowment of the Humanities award to Greece, two Hoosier State Press Association writing awards (2015 and 2016), various professor-of-the-year awards, and the National Student Advocate Award from the University of South Carolina and Houghton-Mifflin. Jerry has written tens of millions in grants and has brought exponentially more funding through funded programs to worthy causes, and via a host of workshops nationally. He has spoken at many of America’s largest universities, for large groups of editors and publishers, and has appeared on various media productions (e.g., The History Channel), and has professionally filmed over 100 of the world’s top scholars. He co-developed the internationally acclaimed Odyssey in Egypt program, which shared time among the world’s top-ten most visited websites. His most recent books include one on the Dead Sea Scrolls, (original, first-time translations: managing editor with Emanuel Tov, Brill, August 2016), Telling the Truth with a Smile (a lighter book from his 20-year Buck Creek newsprint series, 2016), and Faith Made Real (WPH, Feb, 2017). Books under contract include The World’s Greatest Book (with Lawrence Schiffman, Worthy Publishing), Global Impact Bible (Worthy Publishing), and A New Foxe’s Book of Martyrs (with Johnnie Moore, Tyndale House Publishers). He’s worked directly for three of the nation’s prominent families, with lessons captured in “The Bible and Business,” The Devoe Report, Devoe School of Business (Feb. 2017). His books with McGraw-Hill, Jossey Bass, and USC (2000-2010) helped pioneer Purpose-Guided Education, especially focused on college sophomores (which generated an entirely new research field). Jerry helped Terry Franson (APU) co-develop and direct “The Night of Champions” in Southern CA, a program which utilizes world-class athletes in sharing to around 4,000 teens annually—now in its 32nd fully-funded year. He graduated from Harrison High School (IN) at 16 years of age, and homeless, a story captured in the PBS documentary Leading the Way out of Poverty (WIPB Affiliate, 2006).
Dr. Steenbergh is a clinical psychologist who has served as a faculty member in the Psychology Department since 2003. He teaches courses in Statistics, Research Methods, and Abnormal Psychology. In 2016, he was named Research Fellow with the Lumen Research Institute and Excelsia College. Dr. Steenbergh has published research in the areas of addictive behaviors, medical education, and the use of mobile technology for the purpose of psychological assessment and intervention. Presently, he is working on research projects related to virtues, contentment and student success. Much of this work is in conjunction with the EMA Lab (www.emaresearch.org), which uses mobile technology to study and promote human flourishing.
Erin Devers received a PhD in social psychology from Indiana University. She is an associate professor of psychology at Indiana Wesleyan University. Her research explores the limits of embodied cognition as well as how embodied cognition relates to teaching.
Dr. Abraham Zhang
Faculty of Business, Economics and Law
Abraham Zhang is a Senior Lecturer in Supply Chain Management at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT) Business School. Prior to that, He was a Lecturer/Senior Lecturer at the University of Waikato Management School where he won the Dean’s Award for Outstanding Emerging Scholar in 2015. He obtained his PhD in Logistics and Supply Chain Management from the University of Hong Kong in 2011. Before he moved into the academia, he was a production supervisor in Singapore and a Lean management consultant serving the Asia-Pacific region. He has been actively publishing his research and consulting works in reputable international journals.
Dr. Mark Stephens
Dr Mark Stephens is the Coordinator of Integrative Studies at Excelsia College, where he teaches performing artists how to practice creativity under the reign of Christ. His PhD in Ancient History is from Macquarie University, focussing on the topic of new creation in the book of Revelation. His more recent work focusses on the intersection of New Testament theology and contemporary pop culture. In addition to working in academia, Mark has previously worked in ministry to youth and young adults at St Paul’s Anglican Church, Castle Hill.
Dr. Peter Stiles
Dr. Peter Stiles is Acting Head of Education at Excelsia College, and a Research Fellow of the Lumen Research Institute, Excelsia College and Indiana Wesleyan University. He is the inaugural Honorary Research Associate at Morling College, and an Adjunct Professor of English and Religious Studies at Trinity Western University, Canada. He completed his Ph.D. in Literature and Theology at the University of Glasgow in 1995. He has published both academic and creative works and his scholarly articles on Elizabeth Gaskell have appeared in journals, conference proceedings, and edited collections. His collection of verse, Trumped by Grace, published in Melbourne, was shortlisted for Australian Christian Book of the Year in 2016. He has experience teaching in secondary and tertiary settings and has served in the administration of several educational institutions. He is the Australian representative for Christianity and Literature, a Fellow of the RSA, a Member of the Australian College of Educators, and a Justice of the Peace (NSW).
Dr Marie-Thérèse Proctor
Head of Excelsia College's Graduate School of Counselling and Director of the Excelsia College Counselling Centre
Dr Marie-Thérèse Proctor is full-time Head of Excelsia College's Graduate School of Counselling and Director of the Excelsia College Counselling Centre. She is a psychologist and psychotherapist in part-time private practice, an academic and educator since the mid 90's, holding three degrees in psychology and one in psychotherapy. She has held adjunct research appointments with Griffith University, Central Queensland University and Australian College of Ministries, has been a member scholar with the International Institute of Qualitative Methodology (IIQM) and Research Fellow in the School of Psychology, University of Western Sydney, where she was also a member of the Psychology and Spirituality Society. In 2017 she was appointed as Senior Research Fellow of the Lumen Research Institute, Excelsia College and Indiana Wesleyan University. She has served on external and internal academic boards and in 2016 was invited to be a Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia (PACFA) course accreditation panel member and chairperson and in 2017 a member of the PACFA Education Program Accreditation Committee (EPAC) Board. She is research active, having authored and co-authored book chapters and peer-reviewed articles in her areas of interest, including spirituality, health and trauma; spiritual attachment and psycho-social adjustments to illness, also providing research supervision to counselling and psychology Masters and PhD students. Her clinical interests include the development of self, resolution of chronic complex trauma, grief and loss; psycho-spiritual health, wellbeing and maturation; providing long-term psychotherapy for adults experiencing difficulties in these areas. She also has a longstanding interest in adjustment in the face of serious life challenges, for example, having also worked as a psychologist-researcher for the Children's Hospital at Westmead, where she engaged with families caring for ill and dying children and adolescents. She has over 25 years experience raising children with multiple pervasive developmental disabilities, medical and other health related conditions. She is a practicing Christian, raised in the Catholic tradition.
Dr. Kaili Chen Zhang
Dr Kaili C. Zhang is involved in research and teaching in the areas of early childhood education, educational psychology, and special education in New Zealand (and formerly in U.S.A, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Australia). Her expertise is in early childhood education, including research involving Steiner, Montessori and Reggio Emilia based preschools as well as holistic and alternative approaches to pedagogy and learning in mainstream settings. Her special research area explores children and young adults’ emotional/social and spiritual development and is internationally recognised. This research involves sensitive areas of research about children and young people’s values and beliefs. Kaili's research contributes to wider understandings about the significance of early childhood education and inclusive education in terms of wellbeing and social justice. She is currently exploring the connections of children emotional and behavioral development and the environment.
Dr. Kaili has been a researcher and consultant in the education sector since 1998. She has worked with diverse populations across multiple countries. Kaili has presented at many international conferences and served as an associate editor and external reviewer for many refereed journals and books. In 2012, she was selected as the United Nations’ designated research fellow of Asia-Pacific Regional Network for Early Childhood (UNESCO).
Dr. Kaili has published many papers in many international refereed journals, including Australasian Journal of Early Childhood, International Journal of Children’s Spirituality, Childhood Education, Asia Pacific Journal of Education, Asia-Pacific Psychiatry, Journal of Religion and Health,Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties, Asia Pacific Education Review, Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, International Journal of Inclusive Education. Kaili has worked as a principal investigator of a variety of research projects, ranging from studies that examine education policies in early childhood settings to projects that evaluate curricula and educational services for at-risk youths and juvenile delinquents. She also serves as an educational consultant internationally and has been actively involved in many professional activities and community services in Singapore, China, the United States, and Hong Kong. She and her husband Abraham are international advisors of the International Students Inc.
Kaili has also been regarded as an excellent and caring teacher, having won a teaching commendation from the University of Hong Kong in 2011.
Kaili was born in China, educated in Asia and the United States, has lived and worked in various countries, and is a Singapore citizen.
Maureen H. Miner Bridges
Dr Maureen Miner (Bridges) is Excelsia College’s Director of Research and a Director of Lumen Research Institute. She also holds Honorary/ Adjunct research positions at Western Sydney University and Australian Catholic University. Previously Maureen held the position of Senior Lecturer in the School of Psychology, Western Sydney University. Her research and scholarship in the fields of psychology, religion and spirituality have been recognized internationally: by a Crawford Miller Fellowship (St Cross College, Oxford) and a fellowship for the John Templeton Oxford program of seminars and research into Christianity and science. Maureen has served on Academic and Advisory Boards of major Sydney theological institutions (including Australian College of Theology and Sydney College of Divinity). She has authored several books and over 50 peer refereed publications and reports in key areas of psychology including abnormal psychology, organizational psychology, and psychology of religion. Maureen is an invited reviewer for major journals in her field, including Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, Journal of Psychology & Theology, Review of Religious Research, and Theology & Science.
Dr Felix B Tan is Professor, Head of Business, and Director of the Lumen Research Institute at Excelsia College in Sydney, Australia. He was the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Global Information Management from 1998 to 2012. Prior to his current appointment, Dr Tan was for 25 years in Auckland New Zealand, initially at The University of Auckland and more recently, at Auckland University of Technology in various roles including Head of School/Dept; Associate Dean Research; and Head of University Research Office; and where he was recipient of Faculty of Business and Law 2012 Excellence in Postgraduate Supervision Award and 2013 Research Excellence Award. He has held several visiting appointments across the globe, the most notable was at Indiana Wesleyan University, where he was the first International Visiting Scholar in 2011/12. Dr Tan is internationally known for his work in the business information systems field and has published widely in journals, refereed conference proceedings and book chapters. He regularly uses the repertory grid technique and narrative inquiry in his research.
Todd C. Ream (Ph.D., The Pennsylvania State University) is professor of higher education at Taylor University, distinguished fellow with Excelsia College (New South Wales), and director of the Explorations of Small College Athletics (NCAA DIII) research initiative. In addition to authoring and editing a number of books on higher education, he served on college and university campuses in residence life, student support services, and as a chief student development officer.