Instant Impact

News from Baylor School of Education

November 20, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Faculty and Student Literacy Research Recognized by International Literacy Association [11/20/2019]

Dr. Kelly Johnston

Dr. Kelly Johnston (center with certificate) was recognized at the ILA Conference.

Baylor School of Education faculty and doctoral students in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction garnered recognition and presented research at the International Literacy Association’s annual conference in October. The International Literacy Association is a global advocacy and membership organization of more than 300,000 literacy educators, researchers, and experts across 86 countries.

Dr. Kelly Johnston, assistant professor of literacy, and Dr. Phil Nichols, assistant professor, both received recognition as finalists for the ILA’s Outstanding Dissertation Award. Baylor was the only university with two representatives recognized among the finalists. Continue Reading →

November 7, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Copple Professor Dr. Jon Eckert — A Catalyst for Christian Education Leaders

Words mean something to Jon Eckert. Sitting in his office, he clasps his hands and gestures, as if to underline a specific word as he discusses his work within the Center for Christian Education to position Baylor University as the destination for leadership development within education.

“A catalyst speeds up a reaction; it’s not the focus of the reaction,” Eckert, Ed.D., says as he leans forward.

Catalyst. It’s a good word. And for this former science teacher, its definition perfectly illustrates his calling at Baylor.

“So a catalytic leader isn’t the charismatic person out front whom everybody’s following,” he continues. “It’s the person that comes alongside and speeds up the good work that’s already happening. I want to be one of those leaders for the kind of leaders that come into our program, and I want them to go out and be those kinds of leaders in their schools and districts and also alongside students. They start to elevate the good work that’s already happening and speed it up.” Continue Reading →

November 6, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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New Book Explores the Intersection of Teaching and Christianity [11/06/2019]

Baylor School of Education faculty members Dr. Perry Glanzer, professor, and Dr. Nathan Alleman, associate professor, have teamed up for a second book, The Outrageous Idea of Christian Teaching, which was published by Oxford University Press. The book focuses on the various challenges that Christian professors face inside the classroom when intersecting their two identities — their Christian primary identity and their teacher vocational responsibility.

In 2012 the two faculty members in the Department of Educational Leadership, along with other scholars, began conducting a large survey of Christian professors across the nation. Their initial interest was how a professor’s Christian faith, as well as their traditions, influenced a variety of factors, such as teaching. While conducting this survey, however, the data collected from one question, regarding how the professors’ Christianity affected different areas of their teaching, sparked a concept that would become the core of the professors’ recent book. Continue Reading →

October 21, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Watch the School of Education Centennial Video [10/21/2019]

As Baylor School of Education marks its 100th year, the School is reflecting on not only the impact we’ve had, but also where we are going. Watch the Centennial video “A Century of Learning & Light” to hear from faculty and students about the sense of purpose and community that permeates the School and the bright future on the horizon.

“I think we are experiencing change — change for the good,” says Dr. Grant Morgan, associate professor and chair of the Department of Educational Psychology. “But I want to appreciate and acknowledge all the things we’ve done to get to this point.”

More information — including a historical timeline, feature stories on alumni and faculty, and this video — can be found at baylor.edu/SOE/100.

Continue Reading →

October 10, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Insights into Hispanic Heritage Month from our Bilingual Education Faculty [10/10/2019]

Dr. Lupita Lang is pictured in her office with a wall hanging of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo! Lang appreciates Kahlo because of her intensity. “Frida poured passion into what she wrote, what she painted, how she lived, and her relationships with others. I think of her as someone who burned the candle at both ends,” Lang said.

As we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15 – Oct. 15), we sought some insights on the occasion from new faculty member Dr. Lupita Lang, who is assistant professor of bilingual education.

Lang does not typically describe herself as Hispanic or Latina, although she is both. She prefers the specificity of “Mexican,” because she was born and raised in Matamoros, Tamaulipas, México, just across the Texas border. She joined the Baylor School of Education in August, after graduating from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she earned her PhD.

Five commonly misunderstood facts about Hispanic Heritage:

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September 17, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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School of Education History Exhibit Open at Mayborn [09/17/2019]

SOE Centennial Exhibit at the Mayborn Museum

A public exhibit outlining the history of the Baylor School Education has been extended through March 2020, continuing as part of the SOE’s year-long Centennial celebration in 2019.

The exhibit is located at Baylor’s Mayborn Museum, 1300 S. University Parks Drive, in Waco, immediately to the right inside the Mayborn’s front door. The display is available for visitors to browse during regular museum hours.

“I really enjoyed diving into the rich history of the School of Education,” said Museum Studies and Curriculum & Instruction graduate student Meg Tucker, who curated the exhibit. “I am impressed by the School’s resilience and continued dedication to excellence. It was an exciting challenge to use my background in education and museum studies to help curate this exhibit. It was powerful to read about and see pictures of education students and professors working at Baylor more than one hundred years ago.”

Among other things, the exhibit features artifacts specific to SOE history along with items from partner Professional Development Schools in Waco and Midway ISDs. A World War I uniform from Fred M. Hale is also on display. Hale and his wife, Edith, were the first donors to make a gift of $1 million to the SOE.

The exhibit also features vintage photographs, including some by famed Waco photographer Fred Gildersleeve, which outline the evolution of the SOE from its creation in 1919 to where it is today. More current exhibited items include research from SOE faculty members and displays that speak to the SOE’s commitment to research, community service, study abroad, and faith. Continue Reading →

August 21, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Impact LLC Welcomes New Program Director [08/21/2019]

Ryan W. Erck, new Program Director for Impact Living-Learning Center (LLC), wants to make sure that students in the LLC have the kind of community experience that he missed out on when he was a college freshman. Impact LLC, which is a partner of the School of Education, is located in South Russell Hall and is home to 240 Baylor students, both male and female.

Erck said, “Impact LLC creates cohesive spaces for students to have very meaningful interactions with faculty, staff and peers. Residential learning communities embody an experience that provides many campus amenities in one place. Impact LLC reflects the larger campus culture, but on a micro-scale — encompassing things like study areas, fitness spaces, technology areas and classrooms.”

As a college freshman, Erck chose to hold down a job while attending school and didn’t take advantage of a residential community, he said. He earned his BS in Leadership and Development and his MS in Educational Human Resource Development, both from Texas A&M University. Erck is now a doctoral candidate pursuing a PhD in Higher Education Studies and Leadership in the School of Education’s Department of Educational Leadership. Despite these obvious accomplishments, Erck said that his chances for success would have been better if he had lived in an intentional community during his early college experience, and he suggests that students look for this kind of experience when exploring housing options during the college application process. Continue Reading →

August 2, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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iEngage Civics Camp Builds Students’ Civic Knowledge [08/02/2019]

Students work on their civics project, guided by an iEngage counselor.

With civics education largely disappearing from school curricula, in 2009, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor decided to address the issue by founding iCivics, a free online website that teaches civics concepts using educational games. The retired Justice’s vision for civics education has expanded over the years at Baylor University through the iEngage Summer Civics Institute.

From Aug. 5-9, 100 fifth- through ninth-grade students will learn about civics at the annual summer camp hosted by the Baylor School of Education through a grant from the Hatton W. Sumners Foundation.

iEngage is directed by education faculty members and camp co-founders Brooke Blevins, Ph.D., associate professor and chair of the department of curriculum and instruction, and Karon LeCompte, Ph.D., associate professor of curriculum and instruction.

READ MORE . . .

July 23, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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Baylor Beginning Teacher Institute Provides Professional Development, Creates Community [07/22/2019]

Dr. Barbara Purdum-Cassidy, clinical assistant professor and director of the Beginning Teacher Institute, greets the graduates.

Second-grade teacher Katelyn Hamilton described her first year of teaching as a “complete whirlwind.”

“When you work with kids there are no dull moments, and being a new teacher is like dodging 100 baseballs at once while being blindfolded,” Hamilton said. “Whether it’s avoiding someone’s puke or bathroom accident, comforting a crying student during your class yearbook photo or chasing a rogue child around the school in your favorite pair of shoes, each day is an adventure. But for every challenging moment I encountered, it was all worth it for the spontaneous hugs, the strange knock-knock jokes, the handmade cards and the ‘aha’ moments that all teachers love. For every hard moment, there was a moment of clarity.”

Baylor School of Education’s inaugural Beginning Teacher Institute brought early-career teachers like Hamilton together for two days in June to provide development and training while connecting them with other educators and friends who are in the beginning stages of their careers.

READ MORE . . .

July 8, 2019
by Baylor Instant Impact
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An American Intern in Paris [07/08/2019]

Rachel Renbarger, an educational psychology doctoral student at Baylor, is in the midst of a six-month data-analysis internship in Paris with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

The OECD offers many internships — 40 in education alone. However, Renbarger was the only intern selected as a data analyst for the study on social and emotional skills. “Day to day, I’ll be doing a lot of teamwork and a lot of collaboration,” Renbarger said.

During her time working on the study, the main focus is on field data – working to make sure that everything is set to run smoothly later in the study. “I think it’s going to be really great to collaborate with people who are from outside the U.S., because I haven’t done that before,” Renbarger said. Continue Reading →