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Visiting Assistant Prof(Temp)

University of Central Oklahoma (405) 974-3040 Information Systems & Op Mgmt B200C , Box 115


Gerald “Jerry” Ward, Ph.D., is a scholar-practitioner with 13 years teaching experience in the UCO College of Business, and he has over 35 years’ experience in information technology as CIO, IT Director, Director of Projects, Branch Manager, Project Manager, Systems Analyst, Programmer/Analyst, and Computer Operator. Ward earned a B.S. degree in Mathematics with Computer Science application from Central State University in Edmond, Oklahoma, in 1979, and an MBA from the University of Central Oklahoma in 2002. In 2016, he completed a Ph.D. from Walden University in Applied Management and Decision Science specialized in Information Systems Management.

Classes Taught

  • Data Resource Management
  • Management Information Systems
  • Project Management
  • MBA Project and Program Management

Education and Certifications


Ph.D. Applied Management and Decision Sciences--Information Systems Mgmt., 2016

Walden University, Minneapolis, Minnesota, GPA 4.00/4.00

Dissertation Title:  Electronic Warrant Systems; The Effect of Advanced Technologies on Arrest Performance

Dissertation Supervisory Committee: Anthony Lolas (chair), Robert Kilmer, Robert Roper

Master of Business Administration, 2002

University of Central Oklahoma, Edmond, Oklahoma

Bachelor of Science Mathematics--Application in Computer Science, 1979

Central State University, Edmond, Oklahoma


  • Project Mgmt. Professional (PMP), Project Management Institute, since 2002
  • Certified Scrum Master (CSM), Scrum Alliance, Inc., 2018
  • Reserve Peace Officer, Oklahoma Council on Law Enforcement Training, 2003 - 2018
  • Six Sigma Green Belt, 2003
  • Fast Session Leader (JAD facilitation), M.G. Rush Systems, Inc., 1994
  • Certificate in Data Processing (CDP), Institute for Certification of Computer Professionals, 1986
  • Certified Flight Instructor, Ground Instructor, Commercial Pilot; FAA, 1986-Present


Ward works part-time as information technology (IT) management consultant to courts, law enforcement, public safety, and criminal justice clients. Ward's IT career has spanned diverse industries including Defense, Public Safety, Criminal Justice, Energy, Higher Education, and State and Local Government. He has served as IT project manager for more than 25 years.

Professional and Community Involvement

  • Association of Computing Machinery (ACM)
  • Association of Information Technology Professionals, Oklahoma City Chapter
  • Computer Information Systems Advisory Board, St. Gregory’s University, Shawnee, Okla. 1998
  • Fraternal Order of Police, Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office Lodge #155, 2003-2018
  • Golden Key International Honour Society, since 2013
  • Integrated Justice Information Systems Institute (IJIS) Court Advisory Committee,
  • Emerging Technologies Committee, Law Enforcement Information Technology Committee
  • National Sheriff’s Association
  • Oklahoma County Reserve Deputy Sheriff, commissioned 2003, retired 2018
  • Oklahoma Criminal Justice Information Systems (CJIS) Task Force (2004-2014)
  • Oklahoma Sheriff’s Association
  • Project Management Institute, 2002-present

Teaching Philosophy

I teach for two reasons: (1) because it is personally gratifying to contribute to the growth and knowledge of others, to enable students to make positive impacts on society, and to give them tools to succeed in their lives and careers; and (2) because, as a lifetime learner, it enables me to learn from the experiences of others and improve my knowledge, skills, and abilities.

My approach to teaching is to apply my scholar-practitioner experiences in the learning process by:

  1. Providing contemporary high-quality learning resources and tools from industry and government;
  2. Invoking case studies from current events and technology trends;
  3. Applying heuristic continuous improvement principals by providing a positive learning environment that encourages identifying and correcting problems;
  4. Leveraging e-learning system technology to encourage student-to-student and student-to-instructor collaboration, and to build the student’s experience using online systems and methods relevant in the digital economy; and,
  5. Emphasizing the importance of student writing to prepare the student for a professional career.

As a practitioner in information technology and several private- and public-sector industries for more than 35 years, I have many experiences to draw upon to give substance and meaning to the courses that I lead. For example, when discussing the value of effective data conversion with a new system, I can share my experiences as a project leader for a jail management system implementation, a court case management system implementation, and a police records management system in our local area. Data quality problems covered in a textbook take on real meaning with familiar examples. In the same way, I can relate other experiences in information technology, organizational leadership, project management, operations management, financial management, and public administration across several vertical markets. My research interests align with my professional industry experiences above to complement my teaching.

Lastly, I seek continuous teaching improvement by measuring student learning against written learning objectives, receiving feedback, making adjustments where indicated and adding content from an ever-changing world.

The views expressed by UCO faculty and staff on their personal websites and social media pages do not necessarily reflect the positions of the University of Central Oklahoma. UCO faculty and staff are advised to follow the university’s social media guidelines and are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with policies outlined in UCO’s Employee Handbook and/or Faculty Handbook.