In the News in 2010
New UI class helps veterans success in college (Press-Citizen, December 7, 2010)
Many veterans, some of whom suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder struggle adjusting to college, and it might help explain why their graduation rates lag behind non-veterans. As more and more veterans enroll in college in the next few years, UI officials are grappling with how to help these students succeed.
Whether reading, writing, or listening to classes, students should choose what's best for them, said James Stachowiak, the coordinator for the University of Iowa's Iowa Center for Assistive Technology Education and Research.
The Oakdale choir experience made me a changed man (Press-Citizen, Dec. 5)
Felon shares how Mary Cohen, assistant professor of music at the University of Iowa, and her community choir changed him.
Through her adult-literacy program in West Liberty, Carolyn Colvin, a University of Iowa associate professor, has taught immigrant adults how to read, write, and speak English for 17 years.
Evaluating special education (Press-Citizen, Nov. 11)
John Hosp, associate education professor at the University of Iowa, comments on the disproportionate number of black students in special education.
REACH started three years ago, and it aims to prepare students for future jobs through internships at various Iowa City businesses and also take a full slate of classes to prepare them for the transition to the real world. And the first graduates are now beginning to find jobs.
The University of Iowa graduation rate for veterans is 15 percent lower than the rate for nonveteran students. Tamara Woods, a doctoral student in the UI College of Education, and Dr. Michael Hall, a neuropsychologist at the Iowa City Veterans Affairs Medical Center and an adjunct assistant professor in the UI Colleges of Medicine and Education, want to change that with a new course titled “Life After War: Post-Deployment Issues.”
More than 300 middle students from across Iowa and eastern Illinois will learn about “The Human Right to Well-Being” during the 14th annual University of Iowa International Day from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 16, at the Marriott Hotel and Conference Center in Coralville. The UI College of Education, in collaboration with UI International Programs and the Stanley Foundation, are the main sponsors for the event.
At no time during the past 50 years has testing been such a visible part of the education landscape with so many important testing and measurement issues facing education. To address some of these issues, the University of Iowa College of Education’s Center for Advanced Studies in Measurement and Assessment (CASMA) and ACT are sponsoring a one-day conference Saturday, Nov. 6, at ACT’s Ferguson Conference Center in Iowa City.
Jame Hayes, Art Education alumnus, is profiled. A passion for art combined with a tender heart for children prompted Hayes to eventually become an art teacher. He teaches art at West Middle School.
Ernest Pascarella, the Mary Louise Petersen Chair in Higher Education and a professor in the higher education and student affairs program in the University of Iowa College of Education, recently learned that his award-winning book co-authored with Patrick T. Terenzini “How College Affects Students: A Third Decade of Research” (Volume 2) has been licensed to be translated into Chinese.
Sandra Damico, dean of the University of Iowa College of Education, has named three faculty members to the honor of Dean’s Scholars -- Saba Ali, associate professor in the UI Department of Psychological and Quantitative Foundations; and John Hosp and Bill Therrien, both associate professors in the UI Department of Teaching and Learning.
William Therrien and John Hosp, associate professors in the University of Iowa College of Education Department of Teaching and Learning, have received a $1.25 million U.S. Department of Education grant to help train graduate students as special education leaders. Megan Foley-Nicpon, a UI assistant professor in counseling psychology, co-authored the grant with Therrien and Hosp.
Psychologist and Professor Elizabeth Altmaier comments on the spiritual effects of the Chilean miners' ordeal.
John Wadsworth, a University of Iowa associate professor in the Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling Program in the College of Education, received a five-year, $730,000 U.S. Department of Education grant. The grant will help increase the number of students who can obtain a master’s degree in the UI Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling Program, consistently ranked as one of the best in the nation.
UI science educator Yager edited new volume in Exemplary Science series (Kansas City Star, Oct 12, 2010)
Exemplary Science for Resolving Societal Challenges, seventh in the Exemplary Science series, enriches classroom learning by connecting contemporary issues facing our society with science instruction. Editor Robert Yager and his team of coauthors offer diverse case study examples of research-based, proven strategies to assist preK–college educators as they strive to help students embrace curiosity, invention, and inquiry while also reinvigorating their classrooms.
University of Iowa students with intellectual disabilities who obtain a two-year certificate from the institution will now have even more support to transition to independent living thanks to a five-year, $2.5 million U.S. Department of Education grant. The UI College of Education’s Realizing Education and Career Hopes (REACH) Program recently received the grant, titled “REACH OUT,” short for REACH Outcomes.
Former teacher reconnects with student (Iowa City Press-Citizen, October 7, 2010)
Lois Crowley, a retired teacher from Iowa City, saw many international students walk through her door during 30 years in the classroom. She serves as the Iowa coordinator for the center's We the People program and works with teachers and students to implement civic education in schools.
Despite the changes and challenges ahead in national education, University of Iowa grad student Kathleen Hession is looking forward to becoming an English teacher. Her excitement comes even at a time when President Barack Obama is calling for massive education reforms, such as shifting to a system of performance-based pay for teachers. But the Obama administration says their performance may end being measured by test scores, an idea that needs tweaking, according to Professor Peter Hlebowitsh, chair of the university's Department of Teaching and Learning.
Thanks to a grant of more than $250,000, University of Iowa College of Education assistant professor Cory Forbes is launching a project in the Davenport Community School District this fall that investigates how and why elementary teachers use existing science curriculum materials to teach science. The goal is to help educators teach science in ways that best promote student learning.
Chris Offenburger Walsh, a test developer with the University of Iowa College of Education’s Iowa Testing Program, writes assessments by day. By night and on weekends, she dons her creative writing cap to produce children’s books. Her latest creation, "Hawktivity," was inspired by her brother, former “Iowa Boy” columnist Chuck Offenburger, who has non-Hodgkins lymphoma.
UI students learn through community service (Press-Citizen, September 17, 2010)
[Scores of students] turned out at the UI College of Education Volunteer Fair on Thursday afternoon. UI has a strong relationship with a number of organizations throughout the community that students participate in regularly, said Will Coghill-Behrends, associate director of the Educational Placement Office.
Much of the technology used to help people with disabilities learn is new, and many teachers aren't yet familiar with it. But the Iowa Center for Assistive Technology Education and Research is working toward educating future teachers about the latest tools available by teaching part of the Technology in the Classroom course in the University of Iowa College of Education.
This year at the 51st-annual Bill Riley Talent Search at the Iowa State Fair, Isaac Stauffer (Elementary Education major) wasn't dancing for a title. He was dancing for his great-grandmother.
Some Iowa high school principals use pizza parties, pep rallies, gift certificates and days off from school as motivational strategies to raise students' tests scores on high-stakes tests in reading, math and science. However, research conducted by Liz Hollingworth, assistant professor in educational policy and leadership studies in the University of Iowa College of Education, reveals that administrators rarely have tools in place to measure whether these activities are effective or even have an impact on test scores.
John Westefeld is a professor of counseling psychology in the University of Iowa College of Education who has done extensive research, teaching, publishing, and workshop presentations over 32 years related to the topic of suicide.
National Suicide Prevention Week is Sept. 5–11.
Cindy Lovell (PhD ’99 elementary education), executive director of the Mark Twain Boyhood Home Museum in Hannibal, Mo., started the Mark Twain Young Author’s Workshop featured at al.com.
David Bills, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Graduate Programs, comments on drop-out rates at PolitiFact.com.
The results show going surfing for 30 minutes is associated with an increase in positive, upbeat feelings and a decrease in negative feelings as well as fatigue. "If you ask any surfer, he or she guaranteed will tell you, 'Oh man, I feel a lot better after I get out,'" said study researcher Ryan Pittsinger, a doctoral student at the University of Iowa and a surfer himself.
Susan Assouline is on a mission to help twice-exceptional students reach their full potential. Twice-exceptional students are gifted and talented but also have a physical disability, learning or social impairments including autism spectrum disorders and specific learning disabilities, or other conditions like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
Cultivating a love of music behind bars (Press-Citizen, July 25, 2010)
Mary Cohen teaches songwriting to Oakdale inmates.
This is the eighth year for the UI Belin-Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development to host South Korean educators.
After 42 years at UI, secretaries retiring (Press-Citizen June 26, 2010)
After 42 years of sharing workdays, RETA LITTON and GINNY TRAVIS will mark one more milestone together Wednesday -- their last day before retirement. But it is far from the finale of the friendship that has developed between the two secretaries in the Department of Counseling, Rehabilitation and Student Development office at the University of Iowa College of Education. "They're the heart and soul of the department," said Department Chairman Dennis Maki. "Now that they're leaving, I don't know what I'm going to do. I really don't." "They really have made our department like a family," he said.
Eighteen University of Iowa faculty members have received Collegiate Teaching Awards for the 2009-10 academic year. The awards represent the highest honor a college bestows on its faculty for excellence in undergraduate and graduate teaching. Two College of Education faculty members were among recipients: David Duys and Pamela Ries.
Just because you have a learning disability doesn't mean you can't compete in college. Respected institutions across the country offer all kinds of excellent programs aimed at supporting the learning disabled. The UI College of Education's Realizing Educational and Career Hopes (REACH) program ranked 9th in the nation.
David Lohman, a professor of education and testing expert at the University of Iowa, explains how standardized tests might affect the ratio of girls to boys in New York City’s gifted and talented programs.
The University of Iowa is offering a new graduate certificate in Multicultural Education and Culturally Competent Practice. The certificate, offered for the first time this fall, is available to all students enrolled in the UI Graduate College or post baccalaureate students who wish to improve their cultural competency to enhance their practice.
REACH graduates first class of 16 (Des Moines Register, May 10)
The first 16 graduates of the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA’s REACH program -- Realizing Educational and Career Hopes -- completed the program with a ceremony on Friday. REACH is for students with learning and cognitive disabilities, and was the second of its kind at a large public university when it launched two years ago.
REACH students finish program (Press-Citizen, May 8)
First class graduates from UI’s program for students with learning disabilities.
Sixteen UNIVERSITY OF IOWA students with learning and cognitive disabilities are the first to earn two-year certificates through the UI College of Education's Realizing Educational and Career Hopes (REACH) program. The program, one of the first of its kind in the Big Ten, began two years ago and currently enrolls a total of 34 students from seven different states.
DITV story package – third story on the May 7th newscast: http://www.dailyiowan.com/pages/ditvpop.html
Susan Pinker, a provocative, controversial and respected psychologist and author, will discuss “The Sexual Paradox: Extreme Boys, Gifted Girls, and the Real Gender Gap” at 7:30 p.m. Monday, May 17, in the Second Floor Ballroom of the University of Iowa Memorial Union. Pinker’s talk, which is free and open to the public, is part of the 10th Biennial Henry B. & Jocelyn Wallace National Research Symposium on Talent Development being held May 16-18 at the UI.
People can have strong emotions for a popular administrator or teacher and react strongly if they are fired or laid off, said Marcus Haack, associate professor of education and program coordinator for the Educational Leadership Program in the University of Iowa College of Education. “It is like you are affecting a family member and not someone who is anonymous,” Haack said. The comment is part of a story on the firing of Durant High School Principal Monica Rouse, which many people believe was mishandled and created a sad situation that has divided the town.
The Iowa City-Johnson County Senior Center’s Voices of Experience chorus will join forces with three youth percussion ensembles under the mentorship of Mary Cohen, assistant music education professor, to provide this jam, which is free and open to the public. University of Iowa student Rose Schmidt helped create the program. Cohen has a joint appointment in the UI Colleges of Education and Liberal Arts and Sciences.
The celebration will recognize the achievements of the first cohort of students to receive certificates through the innovative two-year program, which helps students with multiple learning and cognitive disabilities achieve independence and life skills. The event is by invitation only for REACH students, family and friends.
Thanks to a University of Iowa's Realizing Educational and Career Hopes (REACH) certificate program for young adults with multiple learning and cognitive disabilities, Adam Schnack is experiencing college life—and picking up many of the life skills and the independence that come with it.
“Udderly Protected,” a cover for cow’s udders that protects them from freezing in the winter, is just one of several hundred inventions that will be shared during the Invent Iowa 2010 State Convention Saturday, April 24, at the University of Iowa Carver Hawkeye Arena. More than 300 students in grades three through 12 representing 133 towns and 145 schools throughout Iowa will participate in the event.
Invent Iowa is sponsored by the UI College of Education's Connie Belin & Jacqueline N. Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development as well as the UI College of Engineering and ISU College of Engineering.
UI program helps students adapt to working world (Press-Citizen, April 19, 2010)
First- and second-year students in the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA's REALIZING EDUCATIONAL AND CAREER HOPES (REACH) program -- a career seminar class -- toured UI's greenhouse on the top floor of Biology Building East to gauge interest for a possible post-graduation job. Students in the UI College of Education's REACH program have learning and cognitive disabilities, but hope to gain greater independence through the two-year, campus-based certificate program.
George Washington High School in Cedar Rapids achieved the No. 1 ranking on the "Iowa Advanced Placement Index for the Top 50 Schools" for the second year in a row. The index, developed six years ago by the University of Iowa College of Education's Connie Belin & Jacqueline N. Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development, assesses AP participation among accredited public and non-public schools in Iowa.
U.S.News & World Report ranks 22 University of Iowa graduate programs and colleges among the 10 best in the country when compared to other public universities, with five UI programs continuing to rank in first place.
How the College of Education ranked among public universities:
College of Education – 21
Rehabilitation Counseling – 4
Higher Education Administration – 8
Student Counseling and Personnel Services - 10
Secondary Education – 11
In the April 2010 "Iowa Insights" podcast, Susan Assouline of the College of Education's Belin-Blank Center explains how the UI is establishing the first national center for twice-exceptional students.
The University of Iowa will soon begin a new program that will prepare its students to be school superintendents. The program was approved by the State Board of Education a few weeks ago. Anne Sullivan with the UI College of Education says there is a growing need for these programs in the state of Iowa, as many superintendents prepare to retire.
A survey of Iowa school superintendents finds more than a third of those questioned plan to retire within the next few years. In response, the University of Iowa is launching a superintendent licensure program. Anne Sullivan, a professor of educational administration policy at the UI, says the two-year program will start this summer.
The University of Iowa College of Education will offer a new superintendent licensure program this summer after securing approval from the Iowa State Board of Education at the board's meeting in Des Moines Thursday. UI officials hope to enroll 12 to 15 students in the first year of the UI Superintendent/Specialist Degree Program and begin replenishing a field expected to see a decline over the next five years because of retirements.
Academic Acceleration (The Exchange, February 26, 2010)
Nick Colangelo and other researchers at the University of Iowa College of Education’s Belin-Blank Center are at the forefront, nationally, in trying to conduct research to demonstrate the importance of having a national policy for academic acceleration so that gifted kids aren’t left behind and how a recent $1 million grant from the John Templeton Foundation will allow gifted education researchers at the University of Iowa help students nationwide advance in school at a rate that matches their potential.
For the second year in a row, 12 UI students will engage in a service learning experience with Chicago elementary children, though this is the first year that the College of Education will work with two Chicago public schools -- Chalmers Elementary School and McAuliffe Elementary School. Read about this and other spring break opportunities.
The way UI gifted researchers see it, no child should be left behind — or held back from her or his possible future. The Belin-Blank Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development, which works to accelerate gifted students in school, recently received a $1 million grant from the John Templeton Foundation.
Restorative Justice and Rehabilitation (The Exchange, February 18, 2010)(Cue: 24:30 )
A conversation focusing on rehabilitation – how volunteers are creating writer’s workshops and choirs in prison. Included is some of the music Mary Cohen wrote (lyrics by prisoner singers).
In a spotlight feature and photo slideshow on University of Iowa student Rebecca McCray, she credits Rachel Williams, a UI associate professor of art education, with helping her find a calling in prison by helping teach art and writing classes at the Iowa Correctional Institute for Women.
Wordplay (Spectator@Iowa, February 2010)
Creative writing track creates connections for undergraduate writers instide the classroom and out. Talking with a writer in a classroom setting is different than attending a public reading, says aspiring poet Danny Mills, a junior in Elementary Education.
UI and state officials are trying to help a unique group of students who, they say, are often overlooked. On Monday, Rep. Dave Loebsack, D-Iowa, and several university officials gathered at the Blank Honors Center to discuss the creation of the UI National Institute for Twice-Exceptionality. Such students are defined as having both a learning disability — such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Autism Spectrum Disorder — as well as being academically gifted. In many cases, either the disorder or the giftedness “masks” the other so that it is not easily identified, said Susan Assouline, the associate director of the UI Belin-Blank International Center for Gifted Education.
UI program will focus on gifted kids with disabilities (Press-Citizen, February 16, 2010)
There are several children in Iowa and other parts of the country who are gifted but also have to deal with social or learning disabilities, said Nicholas Colangelo, the director of the University of Iowa's Belin and Blank Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development. Hence the development of a new program, the National Institute of Twice-Exceptionality, or NITE, at the Belin-Blank Center.
A $1 million grant from the John Templeton Foundation will allow gifted education researchers at the University of Iowa help students nationwide advance in school at a rate that matches their potential. The grant begins this year and extends the policy and outreach efforts of the Institute for Research and Policy on Acceleration (IRPA), part of the UI College of Education's Connie Belin & Jacqueline N. Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development.
Remarkable Features: Remarkable stories about College of Education faculty, staff, students, and alumni
- Helen Jameson: Staff member uses her experiences from dealing with her dyslexia to help others find their creative paths to success.
- Jo Hendrickson: Deferring dream to help others reach goal
- Jerrod Koon: Realizing that condemning violence wasn’t enough, a graduate student turned to action and enlisted fellow men.
- Cate Hartmann: A returning student draws on her own experience to lend fellow veterans a hand.
- Phillip Lewis: A shooting robbed the UI alumnus of his college football dreams, but steered him in an unexpected direction. Today he shows others how life-changing challenges can offer new beginnings.
- Nick Colangelo: The educator and advocate is dedicated to creating opportunities for academically promising students.
- Olivia Myers: The UI student, reigning Miss Iowa, and Miss America second runner-up shares her passion for learning.
- Daniel Peters: A UI student overcomes learning challenges to pursue education in innovative program.
- Casey Koschmeder: An education student gets his first classroom experience in Kenya—and brings home plenty of lessons himself.
- Wangui Gathua: A graduate student comes to Iowa to further her own education—in hopes of helping others do the same.
- Steve McGuire: River rescues, flood recovery, and award-winning teaching illustrate a faculty member’s knack for helping out when it’s needed most.
- Kate Karacay: The graduate student raises awareness about human trafficking, successfully lobbying for a new Iowa law.
- Casey Koschmeder: an education student gets his first classroom experience in Kenya—and brings home plenty of lessons himself.
- Michael Everson: examines how we learn language—especially Chinese—and why it matters.
- John Mikelson: the former Army medic became an undergrad at 45, and now helps veterans of all ages make the college transition.
- Deb Vierling: Using education as a tool for empowerment, the UI College of Education alumna has been dubbed everything from an advocate to an angel.
- Saba Ali A: Faculty member’s ties to Islam, Appalachia, and now Iowa inform research on education, culture, and career.
- Don Coffman: Sad to see adults leave music behind, the music educator and bandleader decided to coax some back.
- Christine Grant: The former women’s athletic director has earned a national reputation advocating opportunity for all athletes.
- Rachel Marie-Crane Williams: thinks art can blend with activism to make a difference in the world. Her artistic vision takes her into prisons and juvenile homes, where she hopes art will touch lives and act as a catalyst for social change and a catharsis for those who need healing or inspiration.