Marissa Zhu PhD (hp4151)

University information

Title: Academic Services Officer III
Unit: Office of Learning & Teaching
Department: School of Medicine

Contact information

Office of Learning and Teaching

Title: Curriculum Specialist
Phone: (313) 577- 9428

CliftonStrengths®: Focus • Learner • Relator • Analytical • Individualization

Dr. Marissa Zhu joins the Office of Learning and Teaching in the capacity of a Curriculum Specialist. Her core responsibilities include working collaboratively with the pre-clerkship and clerkship Segment Directors and faculty in the development of rigorous and engaging courses and evaluating and improving the utilization of instructional materials.

Dr. Zhu holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education from Oakland University and a Master of Arts degree in New Media and New Literacies from the University of Michigan. Her doctoral degree in Educational Psychology and Technology was conferred at Michigan State University. Dr. Zhu’s research publications appear in the Journal of Computers in Mathematics and Science Teaching, Teaching Learning for Effective Instruction, and Intercultural Education, and center on (1) leveraging digital technologies to support curricular innovations in teaching and learning; (2) applying video-based cases to improve professional noticing; and (3) studying undergraduate students’ use of self-regulated learning strategies to support intercultural competence.

Dr. Zhu plans to continue her scholarly agenda in academic medicine where she focuses on examining the impact of Students as Teachers' (mSAT) programming on medical students' professional competencies. Dr. Zhu's research centers on three main strands:

  • Creation of a robust and scalable model for Medical Students as Teachers (mSATs) programming: This endeavor aims to develop a sustainable system that integrates a competency-based approach with micro-credentialing and online learning modules. The model is designed to be adaptable for large institutions like WSUSOM, emphasizing the systematic development of teaching competencies in medical students that align with the curriculum objectives.
  • Investigation into the influence of Students as Teachers programs on medical students' capabilities: This strand of research delves into understanding the impact of mSATs programs on the enhancement of medical students' teaching skills, their ability to regulate their learning, and the development of their professional identity. The research also evaluates the effectiveness of near-peer coaching and its influence on students' skills and attitudes.
  • Exploration of professional noticing and its correlation with effective feedback skills in medical practice: As part of her responsibilities, Dr. Zhu is involved in the identification and integration of all relevant course data sources/platforms. The aim is to gain insights into professional noticing and examine its connections with the ability to provide effective feedback within the context of medical practice. This research dovetails with the efforts to comprehend shifting compliance frameworks, such as OAACQI at AAMC and LCME.

In addition to these strands, Dr. Zhu's future research will encompass the development of a longitudinal mSAT program and the establishment of a Curriculum Innovation and Scholarship Initiative (CISI) within the Office of Learning and Teaching. These projects aim to advance medical education, foster excellence in teaching and learning, and transform curriculum improvement initiatives into impactful scholarly outputs.

  • Implicit Bias and Microaggressions Certification (2021), MSU College of Education
  • MAET Micro-Credential in Online Teaching (2020), MSU College of Education
  • Basic Web and Document Accessibility for Content Contributors (2020), IAAP Continuing Accessibility Education Credits (CAECs)
  • IAAP CPACC Certification (2020), IAAP Continuing Accessibility Education Credits (CAECs)
  • MS PowerPoint Accessibility Techniques (2020), IAAP Continuing Accessibility Education Credits (CAECs)
  • PDF Accessibility Techniques (2020), IAAP Continuing Accessibility Education Credits (CAECs)
  • Ph.D., Educational Psychology and Educational Technology, Michigan State University
  • M.A., New Media and New Literacies, University of Michigan
  • B.A., Elementary Education with Specialization in Language Arts, Oakland University
  • Curriculum development and competency-based education
  • Medical Students as Teachers (mSAT) program development
  • Near-peer coaching
  • Instructional design and online learning modules
  • Research and data analysis in medical education
  • Self-regulated learning in medical students
  • Collaborative scholarship in medical education

Zhu, M. & Alberts, K. (2021, Apr 8 - 12) “They Might be Normal Like White People”: Examining Preservice Teachers’ Self-Regulation and Intercultural Competence [Round Table Session]. AERA Annual Virtual Meeting iPoster Session

Lee, A., Alberts, K., Zhu, M., & Wong, D. (2020). “But… Americans don’t have a culture!”: Leveraging Psychology Instruction to Develop Students’ Intercultural Competence. Symposium presentation submitted for the Society for the Teaching of Psychology’s Annual Conference on Teaching, Pittsburgh, PA. Online Session

Rich, K., Yadav, A. & Zhu, M. (2020, Apr 17 - 21) Bringing Levels of Abstraction to Mathematics Problem Solving [Structured Poster Session]. AERA Annual Meeting San Francisco, CA

Zhu, M. & Zheng, B. (2020, Apr 17 - 21) Medical Students' Self-Directed Technology Use: A Scoping Review [Paper Session]. AERA Annual Meeting San Francisco, CA

Zheng, B. & Zhu, M. (2020, Apr 17 - 21) Medical Students' Self-Regulated Learning Using Digital Technologies [Poster Session]. AERA Annual Meeting San Francisco, CA 

Marissa M. Zhu, Kimberly M. Alberts, William N. Bork & David Wong (2023) Self-regulated learning and intercultural competence: examining the role of self-regulation in supporting preservice teachers’ intercultural learning outcomes, Intercultural Education, DOI: 10.1080/14675986.2023.2213655

Alberts, K. M., Lee, A. A., Zhu, M. M., & Wong, D. (2022). Developing students’ intercultural competence through educational psychology. In J. S. Vogler, & M. M. Buehl (Eds.), Theory to practice: Educational psychology for teachers and teaching (pp. 73–98). Information Age Publishing, Inc.

Rich, K. M., Yadav, A., & Zhu, M. (2019). Levels of abstraction in students’ mathematics strategies: what can applying computer science ideas about abstraction bring to elementary mathematics? Journal of Computers in Mathematics and Science Teaching, 38(3), 267-298.

Research and teaching interests:
  • medical Students as Teachers (mSAT)
  • self-regulated learning
  • professional noticing
  • intercultural competence
  • feedback models
Marissa Zhu PhD

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