News and Tasks
Mid-Monthly Update from the Chair | 2015 October
Textbook Adoptions for Spring Semester
Please submit your spring course textbook orders today, October 19. Deliver them to Ms. Steckler on the Dickinson campus or to Ms. Schafer on the Bismarck campus.
By now many of you have met Ms. Krista Schafer, the administrative assistant for DSU Bismarck/Williston. Her duties include supporting the Teacher Education Program on the Bismarck campus. In that role, she collaborates with Ms. Sandy Steckler, the administrative assistant for the Department of Teacher Education on the Dickinson campus. We are grateful to have such competent and congenial colleagues (pardon the alliteration) serving students, faculty, staff, and other stakeholders at both sites.
Dr. Daniels has shared the bittersweet news (sad for us but good for her) that she will depart DSU as of December 31 to take on a new challenge in her career: a position with the Oklahoma State Department of Education. We are so thankful not only for all that she has done to advance the Teacher Education Program and prepare it for the new, more rigorous expectations of CAEP, but also for her service as an outstanding colleague and friend. Her work with students, faculty, and staff across both campuses and at other NDUS institutions--and with PreK-12 school administrators and teachers throughout the region--means that there is a large network of people in ND who will miss working with her.
Her departure one month before Dr. Olson and Dr. Pemberton means that our team will be missing some key players next semester. Please join me in thanking them all for their work as faculty members in our department and in wishing them the best in their future endeavors.
Technology Integration in Our Courses
The expectations for accreditation and for professional "best practices" include that we integrate the use of educational technology throughout the curriculum (not only in the course EDUC 210: Educational Technology) and that we teach our candidates how to do the same when they become PreK-12 teachers themselves. Dr. Moench has shared this example of how one of her students used a free technology tool to communicate her own learning about cross-curricular literacy. Enjoy!
Faculty Professional Development Funds
In the minutes (here) from the September 28 meeting of the Vice President for Academic Affairs Council, you read that the funds available for faculty professional development requests have been expended or encumbered. About $20,000 as set aside for requests for the spring semester, which will be considered starting in December.
Presentation by Dr. Russ
On October 14, around 100 people came to Beck Auditorium to attend "The Electric Brain," a presentation by Dr. Russ on her research on neuroplasticity, including highlights from her developmental leave last semester. One attendee called her an "enthusiastic and exciting speaker" and shared these details about the presentation:
"She discussed the fundamentals of neuroplasticity and discussed landmark studies supporting these changes in the adult brain. She discussed her training during her sabbatical in the psychophysiology lab [and her interest in] teaching self-compassion and/or meditation in order to retrain or rewire the brain."
DSU Teacher Education Program Accreditation
Dr. Daniels and I attended the fall conference of the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), held September 17-19 in Washington, D.C. To access my notes from the conference, please click here.
It was helpful to have some face-to-face time with a consultant from CAEP but also nerve-racking because there are still so many uncertainties for us as we face an accreditation review by a new accrediting body that has not itself worked out exactly what it will be expecting from us. As a reminder, here is the accreditation timeline for DSU's Teacher Education Program:
After the CAEP conference, Dr. Olson and I met with Dr. Janet Welk, Executive Director for ESPB (which grants our program approval to train teachers in this state), who recommended that we ask CAEP for an extension, moving all deadlines one year later. The Teacher Education Council concurred at its October 7 meeting, and Dr. Olson submitted such a letter to CAEP. Now we await a response.