Spring 2015   

 EAD 877 Program Planning and Evaluation in Post-Secondary Contexts

Dr. William Arnold

In this course I began to define my teaching philosophy, particularly as it relates to adult learners. Then I considered the ways in which my teaching philosophy affects how I would most effectively negotiate relationships while planning and running a program. This investigation of values and power dynamics within an organization hosting an educational program was both conceptually challenging and highly practical. As I studied each component of planning an educational program, I researched and wrote the corresponding portions of the final product of the course—a program proposal.

TE 843 Secondary Reading Assessment and Instruction

Dr. Bevin Roue

TE 843 was an exemplar of intellectual rigor. The course readings challenged my assumptions about adolescent literacy and the affects of both ethnicity and socioeconomic status. Early on I reviewed policy documents, the Common Core State Standards for English and Language Arts (CCSS-ELA), and various definitions of literacy all with the aim of creating my own definition of what it means to be literate. Through this new lens I conducted a small research project at a local high school. The resulting paper compares the data-driven pedagogy with what adolescents are actually reading and writing.

CEP 800 Psychology of Learning in School and Other Settings

Dr. Danah Henrikson

This introductory course surveyed major figures in educational psychology. Throughout the course, I explored what it means to “actually” learn and where that learning happens. As a representation of my research on learner misconceptions in reading, I created a short video in which I interviewed five people who are in different stages of their reading lives. I not only found very telling experiences with reading but also learned a great deal about video editing.

   Summer 2015   

ED 800 Concepts of Educational Inquiry

Drs. Steven Weiland and Nathan Clason

Throughout this survey course I not only read a number of approaches to teacher inquiry but I also tried on each of them for size. Educational inquiry is, I learned, for the sole purpose of advancing a teacher’s practice. Whether the inquiry is largely internal, like that of Mary Catherine Bateson, or intended to be published, as suggests Vivian Gussin Paley, the end goal is always to improve transfer of learning. Through response papers to the primary sources I struck a balance between my often-formal mode of inquiry and a more intimate style.

TE 842 Elementary Reading Assessment and Instruction

Amy Croel-Perrien, MA, PhD candidate

TE 842 focused on assessment of readers in early grades. Throughout the course I learned to evaluate Oral Reading Inventories for various literacy skills, such as phonemic awareness, decoding skills, sight words, and fluency. Once armed with the knowledge to identify these skills, I learned to prepare a Response to Intervention using the Modified Cognitive Model from McKenna & Stahl (2009). I also evaluated a recent publication in early education word learning.

   Fall 2015   

TE 845 Language Diversity and Literacy Instruction

Dr. Patricia Edwards

Throughout TE 845 I refined and developed my knowledge of second language acquisition, the merits of bilingual education, and methods for improving literacy outcomes for students for whom English is an Additional Language (EALs). I considered the simultaneous impact of the newly implemented CCSS and the exponential growth of the Latino population in North Carolina when choosing my final project. I chose to design a literacy professional development focused on Latino EALs for mainstream elementary teachers. Following recent research, the professional development promotes an inclusive environment by normalizing discussions of identity and language in the classroom.

CEP 815 Technology and Leadership

Dr. Aman Yadav

In this course I researched aspects of both technology and leadership in education. I analyzed cases of organizational conflict and proposed steps a leader could take toward resolution. Among these methods were building alliances, motivating champions, and dispelling misconceptions. Of particular importance to evaluating and implementing new technologies was learning to keep the focus on improvement in student learning and away from instrumental thinking, or focusing chiefly on the technology itself. As a demonstration of eschewing instrumental thinking, I worked with a partner to create a literacy professional development for upper elementary school teachers that only involved technology when it would improve learning.

CEP 820 Teaching Students Online

Dr. Anne Heintz

CEP 820 was highly practical. I directly applied readings and discussions of online teaching technologies. The course centered on a semester-long project: creating from scratch an online class. I researched and tried out Learning Management Systems such as OneNote Class Notebook, Haiku, Upgrade, and Google Classroom. I used Google Classroom to design a hybrid online/F2F professional development for in-service teachers, titled Latino Language Learners 101.

   Spring 2016   

TE 811 Philosophy of Education

Dr. Elizabeth Heilman

I considered the philosophical foundations of public education and epistemology in general. In particular, I researched and discussed the role of education in a democratic society through the lenses of philosophers such as Plato, Dewey, James, and Rawls. I also explored the ways in which physical spaces and symbols can latently express values and norms. The culminating project of this course was a paper titled A Philosophical Defense of Compulsory Bilingual Education.

ED 870 Capstone Seminar

Dr. Matthew Koehler

The fruits of my labor in the capstone are represented on this site. I explored three web platforms, ultimately deciding on WordPress for my site. Through iterative peer review I refined the aesthetics of this site and helped shape the appearance and content of classmates’ portfolios. I curated exemplars of my coursework and wrote reflective essays on my learning throughout the degree program.