I am an Assistant Professor and Assessment and Early Childhood Education Program Coordinator in the Department of Education at the University of South Carolina Beaufort (USCB). My research addresses teacher quality and pedagogy, family language development, and differentiation of instruction using student formative and summative data.
More specifically, my research involves vocabulary development, how primary teachers perceive their role in the language development of their students and the language model they provide for their students. Also, I focus on improved teacher practice, which involves monitoring current research that indicates students in high-poverty schools make the greatest gains in learning when their teachers use identifiable skills and strategies in their instruction. Additionally, I continue to explore family language and literacy development. And, finally, my work involves formative assessment to facilitate learning and self-regulation. This includes the use of information from formative assessments that enable teachers to tailor their instruction to the needs of students while keeping each student informed of personal strengths and learning needs.
I received a BS in Elementary Education, specializing in Early Childhood Education and Specific Learning Disabilities (K-12), at Florida Southern College, Lakeland, in 1986. I earned an MA in Teaching and Learning: Reading at Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., in 2009, and then received a certificate for completing the Program for Instructional Excellence at Florida State University, Tallahassee, in 2011. I earned a PhD in Educational Psychology: Learning and Cognition at Florida State in 2014.
I devoted 28 years to teaching pre-K or elementary school children in Florida's Lee and Volusia County school districts. In 2011, I joined the faculty of Florida State University as an Instructor of Classroom Assessment. I was appointed Assistant Professor and Assessment Coordinator in the Education Department at USCB in 2015.
I have contributed to two scholarly publications and nine conference presentations throughout the United States. I have three presentations and three scholarly articles under review. I am also a reviewer for two refereed journals and two professional conferences. I am a coauthor of No More Sharpening Pencils During Work Time and Other Time Wasters, part of the Not This, But That series.
I received a RISE grant during the summer of 2016. The Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement Program (RISE) is a developmental initiative intended to increase the capacity of students who are traditionally under-represented in the biomedical sciences to complete doctoral degrees in these fields. RISE grants support educational institutions with well-integrated developmental activities that serve to strengthen students' academic preparation, research training, and professional skills.
I teach Educational Psychology, Child Growth, and Development, Education of the Young Child, Literacy Strategies for Elementary Educators, Curriculum Planning and Development in Early Childhood Education, and Science and Social Studies for Early Childhood Education. I also monitor practicum students during their field experiences.
- Research & Professional Interests
2014 Doctor of Philosophy. Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL. Major: Learning and Cognition (an Educational Psychology degree). Major professor: Dr. Alysia D. Roehrig. Dissertation title: Teacher Talk in First Grade Classrooms
2011 Program for Instructional Excellence (PIE) Certificate. Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL. 2009 Master of Arts. Nova Southeastern University, Ft. Lauderdale, FL. Major: Teaching and Learning: Reading.
1986 Bachelor of Science. Florida Southern College, Lakeland, Florida, Major: Specific Learning Disabilities (K-12) (with certification requirements completed for Elementary Education and Early Childhood Education: birth through eight years)
1992-present Florida Teaching Certificate. Primary Education, Specific Learning Disabilities, ESOL Endorsement.
2021-present South Carolina Teaching Certificate. Applied for a reciprocal certificate with FL. 2020- Beaufort Online Learning and Teaching Certificate.
- EDCI B399 - Independent Study in Education
- EDEC B340 - Education of the Young Child
- EDEC B342 - Curriculum Plan and Dev in ECE
- EDEC B436 - Science and Soc Studies ECE
- EDPY B333 - Intro Child Growth and Develop
- EDPY B335 - Intro Educational Psychology
- EDPY B635 - Advanced Educational Psych
- EDRD B433 - Instructional Strategies ELEM
- EDRD B624 - Assessment & Instructional
- EDRM B620 - Educ Research, Design & Analysis
- Teacher quality and pedagogy
- Family language and literacy development
- Differentiation of instruction
- Vocabulary development
- Teachers' language models
- Role of formative assessment