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Dr. William Diehl

Dr. William Diehl
Phone: (814) 867-0228
Office Address:
303 Keller Building
University Park, PA 16802
Campus: University Park


Assistant Professor of Education
Coordinator of Online Graduate Programs


Learning and Performance Systems


Teaching and Learning Online
Adult Education
Distance Education
Curriculum and Instruction: Elementary and Kindergarten Education

Other Penn State Affiliations

American Center for the Study of Distance Education


Dr. Diehl also serves as associate editor for The American Journal of Distance Education and is an expert reviewer for other academic journals. He is the director of The American Center for the Study of Distance Education and the founder of the International Museum of Distance Education and Technology.

Dr. Diehl is author and co-author of numerous articles in academic journals and proceedings at academic conferences.  A consultant in the corporate, higher education, and government sectors, his professional experience also includes work as K-12 teacher, technologist, web designer and developer, instructional designer, and multimedia consultant.

He is co-editor of the 4th Edition of the Handbook of Distance Education (January 2019). His book chapters include the Handbook of Distance Education (2nd, 3rd, 4th editions) and The Handbook of mLearning.

Dr. Diehl earned his Ph.D. in Adult Education with a focus in Distance Education from The Pennsylvania State University. His undergraduate degree focused on Elementary Education.

Areas of Expertise

Age Levels


Education Levels

Adult Education

Education Types

Distance Ed

Educational Studies

Educational Theory
History of Ed
International Ed


Media Literacy/Education

Methodological Research

Historical research
Qualitative Research
Quantitative Research


Computer Technology
Instructional Design

Office Hours

Please email and send a few days and timeframes that will work for you and I will do my best to schedule around your hours.

Representative Publications


Moore, M.G. & Diehl, W. C. (Ed.) (January, 2019). Handbook of Distance Education, Fourth Edition. New York: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Book Chapters

Diehl, W.C. (2020). Online Learning. In Amey, M. & David, M. (Ed.) The SAGE Encyclopedia of Higher Education. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.

Diehl, W.C. & Cano, L. (2019). Charles A. Wedemeyer and the first theorists. In Moore, M. G. & Diehl, W.C. (Ed.) Handbook of Distance Education, 4th Edition. (Chapter 3). New York: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Diehl, W. C. & Shattuck, K. (2016). Michael Grahame Moore: Pioneer in distance education. In Palmercooper, J. (Editor). Routledge Encyclopaedia of Educational Thinkers. Oxford: Routledge.

Diehl, W. C. (2013). mLearning as a sub-field of open and distance education. In Berge, Z. & Muilenburg, L. (Editors). Handbook of mLearning. New York: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. (Awarded the “2014 Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT) Division of Distance Learning (DDL) Distance Education Book Award")

Diehl, W. C. (2012). Charles A. Wedemeyer and the early theorists. In Moore, M. G. (Ed.) Handbook of Distance Education, Third Edition. (Chapter 2). New York: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Daniel, J., Mackintosh, W. & Diehl, W. C. (2007). The mega-university response to the moral challenge of our age. In Moore, M. G. (Ed.) Handbook of Distance Education, Second Edition. (pp. 609-620). New York: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

 Book Sections                             

Diehl, W. C. (2011). The International Museum of Distance Education and Technology: a virtual project. In Moore, M. G. and Kearsley, G. (Ed.) Distance Education: A Systems View, Third Edition. New York: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.


 Journal Publications and Research Reports


Wang, N., Gregg, A., Yeh, M., Heiser, R., Diehl, W.C. (2019). Pet avatars, performance visualization, and social presence. International Journal of Technology in Teaching and Learning.

Diehl, W. C. (2016). Online instructor and teaching competencies: Literature review for Quality Matters. Annapolis: Quality Matters, MarylandOnline.

Shattuck, K. & Diehl, W. C. (2011). Scholarly research that supported the development of the 2011-2013 Quality Matters Higher Education Rubric ™. Quality Matters, MarylandOnline.

Diehl, W. C. (2011). Speaking Personally—With Börje Holmberg. American Journal of Distance Education, 25(1).

Diehl, W. C., Head-Dylla, C., Nehme, M., Sun, J., & Zegers, J. (2009). Michael Apted's Up! series as a teaching prompt for understanding, collaboration, and new learning in a Sociology Course Setting. Teaching Sociology, 37(4).

Diehl, W. C., & Prins, E. (2008). Unintended outcomes in Second Life: Intercultural literacy and cultural identity in a virtual world. Language and Intercultural Communication, 8(2), 101-118.

Activities and Honors

Serves as the adviser to the U.S. Army Sergeants Major Academy & The NCO Leadership Center of Excellence, Fellows Program, El Paso, TX.