Loyola University Chicago

Office of Online Learning

Our Team

Office of Online Learning Staff

The Office of Online Learning is staffed by full-time professionals with backgrounds in educational technology and learning theory and are available for consult at any time. Once you've learned more about us, reach out to us at online@luc.edu or contact a staff member below.

John Gurnak, MA - Director // jgurnak@luc.edu // ext. 8-7476

John Gurnak is the Director of the Office of Online Learning and works with academic leaders and technical staff to support the strategic planning, coordination, and oversight of online academic programming across the University. John has over two decades of higher education experience in online course and program development, instructional design, technology implementation, strategic planning, faculty professional development, and program evaluation. John holds a Master of Arts degree in Instructional Technology from the University of Akron and a Bachelor of Science degree in Secondary Education from Kent State University. In addition, John is a certified Quality Matters (QM) Peer Reviewer, a certified Applying the Quality Matters Rubric (APPQMR) Face-to-Face Workshop Facilitator, and also serves as Loyola's QM Institutional Coordinator.

Kristlyn Thomas, MS - Associate Director // kdalton1@luc.edu // ext. 8-8698

Kristlyn Thomas is the Associate Director of the Office of Online Learning and has spent her career supporting faculty in the design and development of online courses. In addition to course design and development, Kristlyn plans and facilitates professional development opportunities for online instructors. Prior to joining the Office of Online Learning, she was a member of the Instructional Technology and Research Support team at Loyola as an Educational Technologist. Kristlyn came to Loyola from Eastern Illinois University where she supported faculty in the Center for Academic Technology and earned a Master of Science degree in Technology, Master of Science degree in Elementary Education, and a certificate in Training and Development 

Christopher Dickman, PhD - Senior Instructional Designer // cdickman@luc.edu // ext. 8-8946

Christopher Dickman is a Senior Instructional Designer with 18 years of online and face-to-face teaching experience as well as a research background in learning and cognition. Throughout his career, Chris has worked with faculty to help design learning environments that meet instructor needs while also increasing student engagement and retention. Before coming to Loyola, Chris was a faculty member at the University of North Texas at Dallas, where he founded and directed the Writing Program. He received his doctorate in English Composition and Rhetoric from Saint Louis University.

Tricia Donovan, MA - Instructional Designer // tdonovan2@luc.edu

Tricia Donovan is an Instructional Designer with over a decade of experience working to help non-profits and higher education institutions plan, develop, and deliver quality online and professional education opportunities. Tricia’s focus is on student learning modalities and collaborating with faculty to design and deliver courses that work for both students and instructors. Before coming to Loyola, Tricia was an Instructional Designer at the University of Maryland and then Columbia College (Missouri), where she also designed and taught the first-year writing seminar for online undergraduates. Tricia received a Masters of Distance Education from the University of Maryland Global Campus and a Master of Arts in Professional Writing from DePaul University.