Having worked part-time at GCU and the University of Glasgow since 2009, teaching at undergraduate and postgraduate levels, Dr McWhirter became Programme Leader of BA/BA (Hons) Media and Communication in 2014. He has worked for a short period in advertising as a copywriter, as well as a freelance journalist covering international film festivals and writing for Glasgow-based DC Publishing, The Glasgow Film Theatre and London-based Tribune Magazine among other outlets. He completed his PhD, looking at contemporary film criticism and the digital media landscape, at the University of Glasgow where he also achieved his MLitt in Film Journalism. He published his first book Film Criticism and Digital Cultures in 2016 and is currently working on his second book looking at the relationship between education and social media. His other research interests include audiovisual pedagogies and green media.