Clarence Maybee Becomes Eighth Student to Complete San José Gateway PhD Program


Completing the San José Gateway PhD program is both a bittersweet end and a promising new beginning for Clarence Maybee, the eighth person to graduate from the international doctoral degree program.

With the successful external examination of his dissertation, Informed Learning in the Undergraduate Classroom: The Role of Information Experiences in Shaping Outcomes, Clarence Maybee became the eighth person to graduate from the San José Gateway PhD program, an international doctoral degree program offered in partnership between the San José State University (SJSU) School of Information (iSchool) and Queensland University of Technology (QUT).

In 2005, Maybee received his Master of Library and Information Science degree from the SJSU iSchool, and on his website he credits his interest in how information literacy shapes our world to what he learned from SJSU iSchool faculty during the program. Maybee’s doctoral research focuses on how undergraduates experience using information to learn.

Maybee worked with QUT faculty members Dr. Christine Bruce and Dr. Mandy Lupton, along with SJSU iSchool associate professor Dr. Kristen Rebmann during the doctoral program. The interaction with faculty and peers was a particularly fulfilling part of the PhD process for Maybee. “I have been honored to work with the faculty and students in the San José Gateway PhD program,” he said. “They have inspired me on a regular basis.”

As Maybee’s doctoral advisor at the SJSU iSchool, Rebmann believes his research is likely to be important in information literacy pedagogy. “Clarence’s work places informed learning and variation theory at the forefront of information literacy design for undergraduate classrooms,” stated Rebmann. “Theoretically-guided frameworks, such as the ones he’s proposed, are bound to make a great impact on our field.”

Completing the San José Gateway PhD program is both a bittersweet end and a promising new beginning for Maybee. “Graduating from the program concludes a tremendous learning journey for me, and I will miss my compatriots,” he explained. “I am also extremely proud of my thesis. I realize that a new door has been opened for me to engage in many new and exciting research adventures.”

Currently an assistant professor at Purdue University Libraries, Maybee was recently awarded the 2015 John H. Moriarty Award for Excellence in Library Service. He was also recently given the first Purdue University Libraries Award for Research for a paper he co-authored with Bruce, Lupton, and Rebmann.

At the 2015 annual meeting for the Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T) earlier this month, Maybee presented a poster that proposed “a new framework for data literacy in higher education settings that addresses the context in which data is used to learn and communicate.”

Maybee is fascinated with how people learn, and confessed, “I started off life as a poet, and my views of artistic discovery often influence my understanding of learning.” His goals for his research include “[informing] pedagogic practices that better enable students to engage with information as they learn.” With the successful completion of his doctorate, he is well on his way to doing exactly that. Congratulations, Dr. Maybee!