Faculty Profiles

Dr. Michael J. Berson

Professor, Social Science Education
Program Coordinator, Social Science Education Doctoral Concentration

Berson headshot

Email: berson@usf.edu 
Phone: (813) 974-7917
 USF Tampa campus, EDU 308-D


  • Ph.D., The University of Toledo, Toledo, Ohio.
  • M.Ed., The University of Toledo, Toledo, Ohio.
  • B.A., University at Buffalo The State University of New York, Buffalo, New York.

Research Areas:

  • Social Studies
  • Elementary Social Studies Education
  • Civic Education
  • Holocaust Pedagogy
  • Technological Innovation
  • Teaching with Primary Sources
  • Digital Citizenship/Cybersecurity in Schools
  • Global Child Advocacy
  • Teacher Education
  • Visual Research Methods
  • Participatory Methodologies

Program Affiliations:

  • Social Science Education — B.S., M.Ed., MAT., Ph.D.
  • Elementary Education 
    • Urban Teacher Residency Partnership
    • Cohort
    • Masters of Arts in Teaching (MAT)
    • Ph.D.
  • Teacher Education — Ph.D.
  • Instructional Technology Learning Design and Technology — M.S.

Courses Taught:

  • EDG 3801: Cybersecurity and the Everyday Citizen
  • EDG 6436: Cybersecurity in the Schools
  • EDG 7368: Visual Research Methods in Education
  • EDG 7931: Advanced Research on Pedagogy and the Holocaust      
  • SSE 4313: Teaching Elementary School Social Studies
  • SSE 6617: Trends in K-6 Social Science Education
  • SSE 6932: Technology in the Social Studies
  • SSE 6932: Teaching the Holocaust
  • SSE 7720: Social Science Education Technological Innovations
  • SSE 7945: Applied Research in Social Science Education


Dr. Michael J. Berson is a Professor in the Department of Curriculum, Instruction, and Learning at the University of South Florida and a Senior Fellow in The Florida Joint Center for Citizenship. He coordinates the USF College of Education Ph.D. Program in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Social Science Education and serves as the course lead for Elementary Social Studies Education. He also holds affiliate faculty status in USF's Learning Design and Technology Program.

Dr. Berson has received the USF Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award, was twice chosen as the USF nominee for the United States Professor of the Year Program sponsored by CASE and The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, was honored with the USF Institute on Black Life Advisory Committee Outstanding Faculty Service Award, was recognized for his service learning work by the University of South Florida Office of Community Engagement and Partnerships, and has received international recognition for integrating emerging technologies into instruction and modeling innovative pedagogy. He was honored with the National Council for the Social Studies President's Award for outstanding contribution to the field and was selected for the Florida Council for the Social Studies International Relations Award for his research in global child advocacy. He also received the Irving Morrissett Award for Outstanding Contribution to Social Science Education from the Social Science Education Consortium. 

Dr. Berson has served as an advisor on cybersecurity and the integration of technology into education to schools, companies and organizations throughout the world. Among his leadership positions, he was elected Chair of the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies, Vice President of the Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education, President of the Social Science Education Consortium, and a member of the Advisory Board for the International Society for the Social Studies.

Dr. Berson has extensively published books, chapters, and journal articles and presented his research worldwide. He was named the Association of Educational Publishers Distinguished Achievement Award Winner in the Learned Article category. He has been the principal investigator or co-principal investigator, on grants from the National Science Foundation, the United States Department of Education, Florida Department of Education, the Spencer Foundation, and the Library of Congress.

Research Projects: