T&D: Remembering Dr. Susan Meyer Markle (1928-2008)

I Remember Hearing About Dr. Markle in the early 1980s

Although I don’t think I ever met her personally at any NSPI or ISPI Conferences that I started attending in 1980.

She was renown for having written “Good Frames and Bad” (1969) which was impactful to those doing Programmed Instruction in the 1970s – and thought years later to be applicable to early elearning. At least, that’s what I recall.


From Wikipedia

Considered a luminary of B.F. Skinner’s teaching machine innovation, Dr. Markle worked as a researcher at his Harvard laboratory from 1956 to 1960.

Characterized as one of the “godmothers” of programmed instruction and machine-based training, Dr. Markle was highly trained in her field, and had a long and distinguished career. Some of her accomplishments are:

  • Researcher at B.F. Skinner’s laboratory from 1956 to 1960
  • Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
  • Professor of Psychology and Director of Instructional Resources – University of Illinois at Chicago, 1965-1993
  • Director of Programing for the Center for Programed Instruction, Inc.
  • Member of the National Society of Performance and Instruction
  • Member of the International Society for Performance Improvement


Some of Her Writings

Teaching Machines and Programed Instruction – The Harvard Teaching Machine Project:
The First Hundred Days – Teaching Machines and Programed Instruction – The Harvard Teaching Machine Project – The First Hundred Days – Susan M Markle

This is one of the support papers for “To Improve Learning: a 1970 Report to the President and the Congress of the United States by the Commission on Instructional Technology” – PROGRAMING AND PROGRAMED INSTRUCTION – Susan Meyer Markle 1970

More From Wikipedia

An avid lover of jazz music, Dr. Markle served as board member and president of the Jazz Institute of Chicago. Not only did she love the music, but she was in fact a jazz scholar and video editor of Jazz Times magazine

From Her Obituary in the Chicago Tribune

Susan Meyer Markle, a past president of the Jazz Institute of Chicago, began frequenting jazz clubs in Boston in the 1950s and became friends with some of the genre’s legends.

Dr. Markle was a research fellow at Harvard University, working with well-known behavioral psychologist B.F. Skinner, when she started hanging out at Boston’s Storyville club.

There and at other jazz outposts, she struck up a friendship with Duke Ellington, members of the Modern Jazz Quartet and others, her son said.

She was in the crowd for Ellington’s legendary performance at the Newport Jazz Festival on July 7, 1956, her son said.

Dr. Markle received a doctorate in psychology and taught at UCLA before coming to UIC in 1965. Her specialty was instructional research and design, about which she wrote several books. She took emeritus status in 1993.

A scholar of jazz with a vast collection of jazz records and laser discs of notable performances, Dr. Markle was video editor of Jazz Times magazine and a board member and then president of the Jazz Institute of Chicago in the 1990s.

IN MEMORIAM – From Her Friends at NSPI/ISPI


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One comment on “T&D: Remembering Dr. Susan Meyer Markle (1928-2008)

  1. Pingback: HPT Video 2019: Thiagi | EPPIC - Pursuing Performance

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