News and Tasks
Mid-Monthly Update from the Chair | 2017 January/February
Site Visit by the Higher Learning Commission
In order to consider DSU's request to offer a Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) degree, the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) must make a site visit as part of the overall approval process. The HLC has scheduled that visit for Monday and Tuesday, March 6-7.
Karen Nelson is working with Carmen Wilson to facilitate the visit, and they have shared details about the tentative schedule of events for those two days. Further details will be coming from them as we near the dates of the site visit and the schedule is finalized.
If you have any questions about the M.A.T.--particularly if you suspect or know that you will be involved in a meeting with the HLC site visitors!--then please contact Karen Nelson, Renae Ekstrand, Chris McCoy, or me.
Faculty Search Update
The Department of Teacher Education is conducting a search to fill two vacant faculty lines. As of today, 41 people have applied for those two positions! The review of applications will begin after March 3, and there are likely to be additional applicants by then.
Please read the position description here and share it with anyone you know who would be a good fit.
Program Approval and Accreditation Update
Continued thanks to Lisa Daniels for shepherding us through the process of completing and submitting Education Standards and Practices Board (ESPB) Program Approval Reports, due to ESPB this month.
At the same time, she and the education faculty continue to work on collecting data and preparing documentation for the upcoming Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) self-study report, to be followed by a site visit in the fall of 2018.
The new CAEP accreditation standards took effect in the summer of 2013, the same time that I began as chair of the Department of Teacher Education. Since then, the education faculty have spent a lot (truly, a lot!) of time working to revise our university's Teacher Education Program to utilize best practices and research in teacher preparation and to meet the rigorous expectations of CAEP.
During that same time, the Teacher Education Council has worked to support those efforts and to revise program policies and procedures accordingly. People on the Council have learned more about accreditation standards and program approval requirements and teacher licensure laws in the past four years than perhaps in all the previous years that the Council has existed!
Many thanks to all our colleagues within this department and across all the eight departments that comprise the Teacher Education Council for the work that you have done and continue to do to advance our Teacher Education Program.
In the News
Look for our students and faculty in these features:
"Middle Schoolers Help Surprise Principal with Outstanding Military Support Award"
The January 13 issue of the DSU Newsletter announced that Seth Moerkerke (B.S.Ed. in Composite Social Science Education) and Brady Wilz (B.S.Ed. in Business Education) were among eight DSU football players recently named 2016 Daktronics-NAIA Scholar-Athletes.
It's that time of the semester again! Teacher candidates who will apply this spring to pre-service teach in the fall must pass a portfolio defense in the coming weeks; and many of us have been asked to serve on their portfolio teams.
In preparation, some of you attended one of several portfolio training sessions that Chris McCoy and I offered in early January. Others of you may have questions about the portfolio process: what to look for in artifacts and narratives, what to consider in terms of the InTASC standards, what to listen for in a portfolio defense, how to use the scoring rubric, etc.
If you have questions, please contact Chris or me on the Dickinson campus or Mari Rasmussen on the Bismarck campus.
Transition for the Psychology Program
Starting with the 2017-18 academic year, the psychology program will relocate from the Department of Teacher Education to the Department of Social Science. That department is thought to be a better fit for the discipline of psychology and is, frankly, the department that many people go to first when seeking our psychology faculty.
You will still be able to find our psychology colleagues in their same offices on the second floor of Klinefelter Hall.
Transition for the Chair(s) of the Department of Teacher Education
Starting in the fall, Renae Ekstrand will become Co-Chair of the Department of Teacher Education. I will be her Co-Chair, and I will also start a joint appointment as a faculty member not only in this department but also in the Department of Language and Literature.
During the nine months of the academic year, Renae will carry out the chair duties for the Department of Teacher Education. During breaks (winter break, spring break, and the summer months), I will carry out the chair duties.
I am ending my fourth year as Chair, and it feels like a good time to let someone else "take a turn" at service leadership in the chair role. Co-chairing should allow for a smooth transition--and Renae will be a very capable leader with great ideas for moving the department forward.
Update on Leadership for the Teacher Education Program
The change to Co-Chairs for the Department of Teacher Education will not address another ongoing issue: The Teacher Education Program overall still will not have leadership in the form of a Dean of Education.
Ken Haught, as Dean of Instruction for all ten departments, simply has too much to oversee to be able to lead the Teacher Education Program as a dedicated education dean. He and Carmen Wilson understand the need for such leadership, and they support finding a solution by the fall of 2018, when DSU will have its CAEP site visit and will need to demonstrate a viable governance structure for the program overall.
In the meantime, Renae, Lisa, Sandy Steckler, and I will appreciate your continued support as we keep doing dean duties and Teacher Education Program-related tasks (vs. Department of Teacher Education tasks) in the interim. Doing all those things gratis these past years has been exhausting for me and is a reason for my desire to let someone else take a turn! But we don't want to drive Renae or other future chairs out of the position by letting this situation continue indefinitely.