Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. -Nelson Mandela
Kindergarten students, Pattani, Thailand
Doctoral students' research posters
My teaching philosophy is based on the belief that teaching, research, and learning activities are ongoing formative processes that can improve the world. I develop and facilitate courses that challenge and broaden students’ perspectives of prominent and relevant issues. Whether delivered in face-to-face, online, or hybrid formats, I focus on increasing student capacity to critically analyze topics through a variety of methods and conceptual frameworks. I employ a combination of cooperative and experiential learning in my courses, which reflect my belief that adult learners bring a rich and varied set of professional and personal experiences to their studies. As such, the instruction that I provide is active, challenging, immediately relevant, and constructively built upon previous experience and knowledge. My goal is to develop individuals who examine their role as empowered actors in the processes that shape development and policy issues at local, national and international levels. I am also wholly committed to practicing culturally relevant pedagogy, meaning that I believe in: (a) teaching with rather than at students; (b) understanding that cultural differences between teachers and students demand an approach to instruction that is sensitive to needs, traditions, and mores of individual students, as well cultures and sub-cultures within an educational setting, and; (c) being mindful of both processes and outcomes related to education and achievement, not solely one or the other.
Professional Project This unit comprises a self-directed project focusing on issues, challenges, concerns, dilemmas or problems derived from a professional workplace context. Students discuss their professional projects with the unit coordinator to select and pursue a research project appropriate to their workplace context and unit requirements.
Teaching: The Power to Change In this unit students investigate and reflect on what it means to be a teacher in different educational contexts. They consider the kinds of 'power' they have as an individual teacher and the teaching profession as a whole to influence young people's learning and development and to help shape a multicultural, democratic and sustainable future world. .
Education Policy and Practice This unit introduces students to Victorian, national and international educational policy discourses around a range of issues and their impact on teachers' practices in schools. Students examine the Melbourne Declaration on the Educational Goals for Young Australians and other federal and state policies that aim to develop curriculum and practice emphases in line with key priorities for education in Australia.
Local and Global Perspectives in Education Policy This unit critically examines trends in education policy across local, regional, national and global scales. Students engage with concepts of neoliberalism and globalisation in education policy and investigate how policy influences early years education through a range of perspectives.
Theoretical Applications and Designs of Qualitative Research This course builds and expands on the Methods of Educational Research class and examines qualitative research designs and the use of theory in qualitative research. The course introduces ethnography, phenomenology, case study, narrative, historical, and action research designs and introduces the role of theory in guiding and informing research design and methods. The aim of the course is to give students the tools to conceptualize their thesis or dissertation work.
Methods of Educational Research This course provides an introduction to historical background and theoretical foundations of qualitative research. The course addresses issues of design, methods, analysis, political, and ethical issues as they relate to practice.
Special Topics: Cultural Proficiency This course is designed to increase students’ understanding of how individual and collective assumptions about diversity and multiculturalism shape educational policies, practices, and research in K-12 public schools. It provides an opportunity for students to develop and critically reflect on their theoretical understanding of schooling in relationship to issues of social justice and it challenges them as school leaders, both formal and non-formal, to create the conditions necessary to ensure educational equity.
Leading Standards Driven Instruction This course explores curricula in schools, specifically looking at: curriculum design and delivery; coordination, articulation, and alignment; formal, informal, and hidden curricula; curriculum leadership; and state imposed accountability models. Students will be introduced to the concepts of deficit mindsets, cultural capital, and the cultural marginalization of others. This course also focuses on how administrators and teachers can collaborate to create a high-quality curriculum using curriculum mapping, differentiated teaching, learning, and assessment.
Writing for Publication The purpose of this course is to develop the knowledge, skills and potential of researchers to prepare and publish manuscripts in scholarly journals. Students learn technical and theoretical aspects of writing for publication and the process of manuscript preparation and submission.
International Education: Research, Theory, and Practice This class introduces students to the theoretical foundations of international education as well as a range of topics and issues influencing the field. Topics included are: globalization, education reform, culture and religion, centralization and decentralization policies, post-colonialism, neocolonialism, access to education, Education for All (EFA), dependency and development, among others. The goal of this class is to present international education with both breadth and depth in order for students to better understand the interconnectedness of educational issues, problems, and concerns.
Leading School Reform In this course we critically evaluate school reform in the United States. We will also look at how school leaders develop of a school culture that embraces change, resulting in high quality schools dedicated to improved student achievement.
Human Resource Development for Learning The focus of this course is to introduce leadership concepts that focus on the professional development of school staff to promote improved student learning. Topics include the principles of school personnel evaluation; legal issues related to hiring, retention, and dismissal; evaluation models for professional and classified staff; and effective professional development models to support lifelong learning and reflective practice.
Educational Research The focus of the class is to use action research to understand quantitative and qualitative research, as well as being able to review applicable literature, develop research problems and questions, research designs, collect and analyze data, and evaluate results.
Qualitative Research Methods The purpose of this course is to introduce students to qualitative methods in educational research. Strengths, limitations, and appropriateness of various qualitative research designs and data collection techniques are presented.
School Systems as Learning Cultures The focus of this course is to provide both practical and theoretical perspectives on problems faced by school administrators through a critical pedagogical lens. The class deals with issues relating to cultural literacy, forms of authority and control, and other historical problems of schools in working with minorities and culturally different persons.
Applications of Leadership Theory This course identifies contemporary and classic organizational theories and applies these theories to problems of practice in educational leadership.
Multicultural Education This course introduces both the theories and practices of multicultural education in the United States and worldwide.
Advanced Qualitative Methods in Educational Research This class presents the nature and processes of qualitative research. It is designed to elaborate and extend on the topics presented in Qualitative Methods I, focusing on developing students’ analytic and interpretive skills.
Information Management Technology This course prepares school administrators to become proficient users of a wide variety of software applications as well as understand the role of technology in schools.
Internet Reference This class teaches evaluation criteria to aid in the selection of quality web resources, including but not limited to specialized search engines, subject databases and understanding and accessing the deep web. Internet organization tools were explored along with web 2.0 applications.
Social Constructs of Information The focus of the course is to examine how information has become a distinguishing feature of the modern world. It explores the complexities of how information and society reflect and shape the other and to what extent a globalized information society is emerging.
Diversity in Libraries The class focuses on understanding and reflecting on our perceptions of diversity, specifically exploring white privilege, dominant-minority group relations, and diversity in social class, religion, ability, age, and sexual orientation.
International and Comparative Librarianship The class explores how information is accessed, used, and ultimately valued in various contexts. This course provided an overview of the trends and issues of international librarianship and examined topics ranging from the work of international library associations and networks, the partnering of nongovernmental and governmental organizations with libraries, and the varied roles of national libraries. Issues pertaining to globalization, the digital divide, and information policies are also explored.
Intellectual Freedom and its Discontents This course involves delving into the concepts of intellectual freedom and the ways it can be defended in library practice.
Management of Information Agencies This class provides an overview of a range of concepts and management principles and theories. Course discussions and assignments focused on how these concepts, principles, and theories are applied in practice.
International Librarianship in Context: Great Britain This class explores the trends and issues of librarianship in Great Britain with particular focus on globalization, international information policies, issues of access and the digital divide. The class was held in locations throughout Great Britain.
Media for Children This class asks students to become familiar with a wide range of literature and authors in diverse formats. Students evaluated books, videos, and examples of other media for use in preschool through middle school in order to be able to select appropriate and relevant material for classroom use.