1. University of Virginia
  2. Arts & Sciences

Matthew Trevett-Smith

Assistant Director & Assistant Professor, Teaching Resource Center

PhD, Unviersity at Buffalo, 2010
MA, University at Buffalo, 2005
BA, SUNY Postsam, 2003

P.O. Box 400136


Matthew joined UVa's Teaching Resource Center in the fall of 2013, bringing with him a passion for both professional development and anthropology.

“My job is not to tell the instructor my ten ideas for how to improve her or his teaching. Rather, my job is to be a listener, to offer suggestions when asked for, but primarily, to help the instructor think, reflect, and decide for her- or himself how to improve their teaching.”

Drawing from his anthropological fieldwork, Matthew believes that “whether we like it or not, the first generation of tech-savvy millennials (the term “digital native” having fallen into disfavor) are coming of age and entering our university. And our world will be reshaped in their image. Our education systems, our economy, our politics, our culture, and even the structure of our families will be forever transformed. It is my job to help the faculty, graduate students, post-docs, staff, and administration to better understand these changes, and to develop an individualized teaching pedagogy consistent with the UVa mission.”

What Matthew describes is a learning theory for the digital age, one which demonstrates the special importance that is given to the effect technology has on how people live, how they communicate, and how they learn. The gap between the digital and the physical, and its effect on our ideas of education, community, culture, person-hood and relationships, is ripe for pedagogical insight.

Under this type of model, learning becomes a process not of knowledge consumption, but instead, a process of knowledge creation. “Faculty are the perfect people to teach students how to build their learning network and take advantage of the learning opportunities presented by our digital technologies.” In this framework, faculty become more than bearers of knowledge, they become learning architects, modelers, learning concierges, change agents, synthesizers, connected learning incubators, and a network gurus. Students are then able to take the skills they’ve gained in building their learning network and foster them throughout and beyond their time in college.


digital ethnography, computer-mediated communication, anthropology of education, faculty development

Affiliated Anthropologists & Faculty

Roberto Armengol
Ford Postdoctoral Fellow
Nomi Dave
Assistant Professor, Critical & Comparative Studies, McIntire Deparment of Music
Tessa Farmer
GSMS Track Director, Assistant Professor, Department of Middle Eastern and South Asian Language and Cultures, and Global Studies
David Flood
Post-Doctoral Research, College of Arts and Sciences
Caren Freeman
International Student & Scholar Advisor; Director of Studies at Hereford Residential College
Adriana Greci Green
Curator of Indigenous Art of the Americas, Fralin Art Museum
Jerome Handler
Senior Scholar, Virginia Foundation for the Humanities
Diane M. Hoffman
Associate Professor, Curry School of Education
Peter E. Hook
Professor Emeritus, College of Arts and Sciences
Michelle Kisliuk
Associate Professor, McIntire Department of Music
Catarina Krizancic
Coordinator for Independent Projects and Associate Director for Program Design, International Studies Office
Noel Lobley
Assistant Professor, Critical & Comparative Studies, McIntire Deparment of Music
Ekaterina V. Makarova
Lecturer, Department of Sociology
R. Lawrence Merkel
Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatric Medicine
Rachel Most
Associate Dean for Undergraduate Academic Programs and Professor
Vanessa L. Ochs
Director of Jewish Studies, Department of Religions Studies
M. Norman Oliver
Lisa Toccafondi Shutt
Director of Undergraduate Programs, Carter G. Woodson Institute for African American and African Studies
Henry Skerritt
Curator of the Indigenous Arts of Australia, Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginial Art Museum
Margo Smith
Director and Curator, Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Museum
Phillip Trella
Director, Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Affairs
Matthew Trevett-Smith
Assistant Director & Assistant Professor, Teaching Resource Center