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OPWL testimonial: Class of 2012 testimonials

Prior to 2013, Boise State University’s online Master of Science in Organizational Performance and Workplace Learning (OPWL) was known as the Master of Science in Instructional and Performance Technology (IPT). This blog post contains testimonials from the class of 2012.


laura flanaganLaura Flanagan, Class of 2012

Scientific Instructional Designer
Promega Corporation

When I first learned about the IPT program through Boise State University I had an entirely different vision of distance learning. I had no idea how connected I would become to the students and professors alike, despite the miles apart! The faculty is comprised of experts in the field and they are very accessible.

The curriculum in the program is excellent and immediately applicable on the job. I had the fortunate experience of working on three projects for my company through the program. Having this real life experience has been gratifying and has helped me to understand the full scope of the Instructional and Performance Technology field.


Flanagan, L.*, Henson, J.*, & Zank, L.* (2012, February). Dispensing Advice on the Line PerformanceXpress Newsletter, February, ’12 issue.

Flanagan, L.*, Benjegerdes, L.*, & Tyler, C.* (2011). Evaluating a process equipment training program for a Biotech company. PerformanceXpress Newsletter, December ’11 issue.

Flanagan, L.*, Spice, B.*, & Wessel, J.* (2011). Optimizing the SOP – Subtleties of Kinesthetic Performance. PerformanceXpress Newsletter, February, ’11 issue.


annette wisniewskiAnnette Wisniewski, Class of 2012

I had initially returned to graduate school because I had wanted to rejoin the workforce after a long absence as a stay-at-home mom. Although my prior corporate position had been as an instructional design manager with an international consulting company, my skills had been “home-grown” within that company. I knew that, to be marketable, I needed to learn instructional design theories, skills, and best practices more systematically. I first tried a distance program at a well-respected private university. While the program was good, it was very expensive. During my first semester there, I realized that I either had to find another program or take a very long time to graduate. Fortunately, my professor had brought up Boise State’s IPT program as historically significant to our field, so I investigated and found that the program had a long-term stellar reputation, was more technically current, encouraged practical experience through team projects, AND was a great value. I transferred to Boise State as a distance student and never looked back.

The IPT curriculum at Boise State not only enabled me to become a better instructional designer but also allowed me to develop more systemically-focused skills in human performance technology. I started a consulting business after my first year. I was able to use what I was learning through the IPT program immediately and continue to do so. The outstanding faculty and staff generously shared their skills, time, and encouragement throughout the program. My classmates enriched the program as they shared their experiences, wisdom, and encouragement during every course. The team projects that were part of several of the core curriculum led to powerfully-applied learning, happy clients, and wonderful friendships. They also resulted in opportunities for being published in ISPI’s PerformanceXpress.

The program wasn’t easy and required a lot of commitment to complete. However, all of the time and energy was well worth it. I have not only gained invaluable skills and knowledge in my chosen field, but also developed friendships with others in that field across the U.S. and abroad.


Outstanding Graduate 2012


Chyung, S. Y., Wisniewski, A., Inderbitzen, B., & Campbell, D. (2013). An improvement- and accountability-oriented program evaluation: An evaluation of the Adventure Scouts Program. Performance Improvement Quarterly, 26(3), 87-115.

Wisniewski, A., Campbell, D., & Inderbitzen, B. (2012, May). A Summative Evaluation of the Adventure Scouts Program PerformanceXpress Newsletter, May, ’12 issue.

Lemanski, E., Wisniewski, A., & Benson, S. (2011). Reaching the Quality Benchmark-Case Study. PerformanceXpress Newsletter, August ’11 issue.

Wisniewski, A., & Groupp, A. (2010, July). Play Facilitation – A Training Program for Parents. PerformanceXpress Newsletter, July, ’10 issue.


brandon carperBrandon Carper, Class of 2012

Training Specialist, Pearson VUE

Training and development decisions are often based on hunches, hearsay, and assumptions. However, thanks to Boise State’s IPT program, I can now base those decisions on research in the field and evidence in my workplace. The classes were so practical that I’ve taken nearly all my textbooks to the office and referred to them for on-the-job projects, including needs assessment, instructional design, and program evaluation. I recommend the IPT program to any training and development professional who wants to produce and demonstrate results.


christin lundbergChristin Lundberg, Class of 2012

I chose Boise State’s Instructional & Performance Technology (IPT) Master’s program because of the strong emphasis it places on performance improvement as a whole, instead of just narrowing in and focusing on workplace instruction. That emphasis has allowed me to bring performance improvement ideas and solutions to my organization, as opposed to just training solutions. I apply what I learned in the IPT program each and every day as a Senior Instructional Designer for Buffalo Wild Wings.

My coursework at Boise State allowed me to develop strong, lasting relationships with fellow students and instructors through distance group projects. The program enabled me to apply what I was learning about performance improvement and instruction to the real world, as I was able to lead four group projects in which our teams completed semester-long projects for my employers. These real world projects led to one published article in Performance Improvement Journal and three published articles in the online PerformanceXpress publication.


Lundberg, C., Elderman, J., Ferrell, P., & Harper, L. (2010). Data Gathering and Analysis for Needs Assessment: A Case Study. Performance Improvement Journal, 49(8), 27-34.

Lundberg, C., Elderman, J., & Harper, L. (2010, September). Evaluating a Retail Management Operations Training Program. PerformanceXpress Newsletter, September, ’10 issue.

Lundberg, C., Elderman, J., Ferrell, P., & Harper, L. (2010, April). Needs Assessment on Service Center Technicians’ Billable Hours. PerformanceXpress Newsletter, April, ’10 issue.

Lundberg, C., Bowes, S., Struchen, T., & Weir, D. (2012, March). Rounding the Bases: A Story of Full-Cycle Instructional Design for the Sports Bar PerformanceXpress Newsletter, September, ’12 issue.


Spring 2012 Excellence in IPT Practice Award nominee

Fall 2010 Excellence in IPT Practice Award nominee


connie nituConnie Nitu, Class of 2012

I had worked as a Workforce Development Specialist at Micron Technology for 15 years before I started the IPT program. In my daily work, I felt something was missing but could not articulate what. Only after I started the IPT program, I was able to call out specific gaps in my knowledge and skills. The IPT program helped me close those gaps. The IPT professors have been helpful in providing additional help with the more challenging topics. The program offered a selection of on-campus and online courses. Because I live close to the university, I took advantage of both. In the classroom environment, I had the opportunity to interact directly with professors and students. In the online environment, I had the privilege to “attend class” at any time of day or night. This flexibility proved to work extremely well with my family and my full time job.

With the gained knowledge and skills in closing human performance gaps, I began actively participating and leading complex projects at a global level. As my company transitions from a training organization to a human performance enhancement organization, I am prepared to contribute and add value to the organization. I give credit to the IPT organization who guided me in making this career transition possible.


Excellence in Practice Award Spring 2012


Bowden, D.*, Nitu, C.*, Peterson, J.*, & Sears, T.** (2011). Needs Assessment for a Fast Growing Global Training and Consulting Organization. PerformanceXpress Newsletter, October ’11 issue.