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College of Education

College of Education


Our Departments Mission

Through its three departments, Curriculum and Instruction (CI), Counseling, Leadership, Adult Education, and School Psychology (CLAS), and Health, and Human Performance (HHP), the College of Education prepares teachers, principals, superintendents, school counselors, school psychologists, diagnosticians, as well as professionals in health, exercise science, sports management, recreation and leisure services. The College of Education also prepares students for careers in the mental health fields of professional counseling and marriage and family therapy.

As a premier professional school, Texas State University's College of Education is dedicated to enhancing human potential for all through excellent teaching, relevant scholarship, and community engagement.


What's New in the College of Education

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NASA awards Texas State $15 million grant for STEM teacher training

Texas State University has received from NASA a five-year, $15 million grant award – the largest ever received by the University – to implement the NASA STEM Education Constellation, a unique program that will provide professional development based on NASA-related science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) content to over 400,000 educators across the nation. As she announced the award at the University Convocation on August 22, 2014, Texas State University President Denise M. Trauth said, “Clearly, a $15 million grant is a big deal and it demonstrates the innovation and energy our people have in the pursuit of excellence.”
NASA’s solicitation for this grant challenged Minority-Serving Institutions to propose innovative ways to enhance the content and delivery of STEM-related educator professional development (EDP). In response to this challenge, Dr. Araceli Ortiz, Director of the LBJ Institute for STEM Education and Research, assembled and led a team of faculty from the College of Education and the College of Science and Engineering, adding strategic partners from across the country. The result of their work is the winning proposal among 20 submissions; a proposal that, according to NASA reviewers, “clearly outlined a novel and completely new idea” for delivering high quality EDP on behalf of NASA and reflected “sensitivity and commitment” to cultural and geographic diversity as well as to “underrepresented and underserved communities.”
Dr. Stan Carpenter, Dean of the College of Education, said, “This award is a game-changer for the University and for our College, which is fitting because the legacy of Texas State University resides in the College of Education. It began 111 years ago when Southwest Texas State Normal School opened its doors for the specific purpose of preparing new teachers. Now, over a century later, this grant positions us as a major player in moving teacher education and professional development into the 21st Century.”

News release: http://www.txstate.edu/news/news_releases/news_archive/2014/August-2014/NASA082214.html

USDE Awards School Psychology Program $1.05 Million Grant for Bilingual Credentialing

 Project SUPERB will prepare a total of 24 fully-credentialed, high-quality bilingual school psychologists to improve teaching and learning by ensuring that language differences and assessment of the need for special education services are competently assessed for the purpose of appropriate educational interventions.
CLAS faculty involved in Project SUPERB include:

  • Principal Investigator -- Dr. Cynthia Plotts, Professor of School Psychology
  • Co-Principal Investigator – Dr. Jon Lasser, Professor of School Psychology
  •  Co-Principal Investigator – Dr. Desireé Vega, Assistant Professor of School Psychology
  • Scholar Coordination & Supervision – Dr. Laurie Klose, Associate Clinical Professor of School Psychology
  • Practicum Coordinator – Dr. Paul Jantz, Assistant Professor of School Psychology
  • Field Supervision – Dr. Mike Garcia and Dr. Rachel Robillard, Adjunct Professors of School Psychology
  • Consultant – Dr. Robert Reardon, Associate Professor of Adult Education


Del Valle ISD Superintendent Receives National Excellence in Educational Leadership Award; Nominated by TSU Education & Community Leadership Faculty

Photo: Dr. Michael P. O’Malley, Dr. Kelly K. Crook, Ms. Ann Heuberger (Vice-President, DVISD School Board)Nominated by the Texas State University Education & Community Leadership Faculty, Dr. Kelly K. Crook was awarded the national Excellence in Educational Leadership Award by the University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA). Dr. Crook is the Superintendent of the Del Valle Independent School District in Central Texas. The University Council for Educational Administration is a consortium of 98 research oriented higher education institutions committed to advancing the preparation and practice of educational leaders for the benefit of schools and children. The Excellence in Educational Leadership Award recognizes practicing school administrators who have made significant contributions to the improvement of administrator preparation.  
In her capacity as Superintendent of Del Valle ISD, Dr. Crook has worked with the community to develop a strategic plan for the district and has led district staff in using innovative practices, such as an on-site master’s program for aspiring school administrators from among the Del Valle ISD faculty, a quality student teaching initiative with Texas State University, a commitment to parent and community outreach initiatives, and a leadership vision that integrates theory, research, and practice. Dr. Crook has played a key role in establishing a district–university partnership which identifies promising school leaders and develops them into highly qualified principals and teacher leaders who are prepared to address some of the most persistent educational equity issues in Texas. Dr. Crook received her PhD in Educational Administration from the Cooperative Superintendency Program at the University of Texas at Austin and is a proud graduate of public schools. This national award was presented to Dr. Crook at a Del Valle ISD School Board meeting on 12 August 2014 by Dr. Michael O’Malley, Chair of the Department of Counseling, Leadership, Adult Education & School Psychology, and Dr. Barry Aidman, Advisor to the Superintendent Preparation Program.
Photo: Dr. Michael P. O’Malley, Dr. Kelly K. Crook, Ms. Ann Heuberger (Vice-President, DVISD School Board)

Exploring Democracy's Promise: The History of Integration in Williamson County, October 6, 2014

As part of the university Common Experience the Round Rock campus of Texas State University, will celebrate the fortitude and courage of individuals who experienced segregated schools.  A panel discussion with individuals who “lived” the history of school integration in Round Rock and its surrounding areas will be a part of event.  Four individuals who graduated and/or attended racially segregated schools and who were some of the first individuals to attend integrated schools will discuss their experiences and the impact such education had on their futures.  In addition, the Hopewell Middle School choir will perform and children’s art will be displayed around our university’s Common Experience theme of “Democracy’s Promise.”

This event will investigate the history of social justice in our Round Rock community and, we hope, cause participants to raise important questions about power and equity today in racially and culturally diverse settings.

Date:  October 6, 2014

Time:  6:00 – 8:00 PM

Place:  Texas State University, Round Rock Campus,  Avery Building, Room #252

Cost: Free

For more information contact:

  • Dr. Edna Rehbein, edna @txstate.edu
  • Dr. Sharon O’Neal, so10@txstate.edu
  • Dr. Virginia Resta, vr03@txstate.edu

Literacy Education Conference, October 18, 2014

Come learn about "The Power of Diverse Literature For Diverse Children and Young Adults".  Featured keynote speakers are award-winning authors, Don Tate and Guadalupe Garcia-McCall.  Participate in breakout sessions with Pre-k - 12 master teachers of writing and reading.  

The 1st 100 people to register receive a free book!

To preregister:  Go to the university calendar, click on October 18, scroll to Literacy Education Conference. Download the registration form and mail it to the address listed on the form. Preregistration ends October 10.  An informational flyer accompanies the preregistration download.

When:  Saturday, October 18, 2014 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Where:  Centennial Hall Keynotes:Centennial Hall Teaching Theatre; Breakouts: Education Bldg.
Cost:  Pre-registration: $10 students; $20 non-students. Registration doubles if not pre-registered.
Sponsor:  Central Texas Writing Project and Department of Curriculum & Instruction
Contact:  Sharon O'Neal, sfoneal@txstate.edu
Audience:  Faculty, Students, General Interest

COE News Spring 2014 - NOW AVAILABLE

Spring 2014 NewsletterClick here to view the revamped COE Newsletter, featuring faculty spotlights, scholarship recipients, research highlights and more! (Load time varies for this high-res PDF newsletter).

Dr. Assaf Leads the First Annual South African Study Abroad Course in Chintsa, South Africa

Dr. Lori Assaf lead the first annual South African Study Abroad Course in Chintsa, South Africa, with five students and two classroom teachers.  During their time in Chintsa, Dr. Assaf and her students worked with over 120 students (grades 4-8) in two township schools teaching them how to write a "Where I'm From" poem then turning their poems into digital stories.  At the same time, they studied a variety of issues related to literacy instruction, the apartheid, Bantu education, teaching English to language learners, and a socio-cultural, ecological view of literacy and learning (lifetime learning).  Graduate students in the course completed an ethnography on one school and its' issues and the undergraduate students completed interviews and case studies on one teacher in the community and read a variety of articles on South African education and literacy learning.  In addition to their academic work, they had the opportunity to visit the Transkei and Nelson Mandela's home village.  They also hiked, camped, and swam among the migrating whales!

While in Africa, Dr. Assaf co-directed the KwaZulu-Natal University Winter Writing Institute with Dr. Liz Ralfe, a colleague from the university and fellow National Writing Project Director.  The work was sponsored by the National Writing Project and the U.S. Embassy.  Based on this work, Dr. Assaf is conducting an impact study with nine classroom teachers who attended the writing institute as well as with two other directors (one in Cape Town and one in Limpopo) who are also collecting data on teachers' learning and transfer of knowledge into the classroom.  She will be returning to South Africa in October to collect classroom observations and serve as a keynote speaker for the Reading Association of South Africa (RASA) in Durban, discussing her research findings and the importance of being a writing mentor for students.

Click here to read the Volunteer Africa Blog, where you can see photos and video of our amazing students volunteering in Chintsa schools.

College of Education and Departmental Scholarships

Students may apply for all College of Education administered scholarships with just one online application. Applications are matched with all available scholarships for which individual students are eligible based upon the criteria specified by the donor. In addition, applications are kept on file for the award year, so if new scholarships become available later in the year, applicants are considered for those as well.  To expedite the awarding process, we only accept applications online through this website.

* READ all FAQ information before beginning the application process! *

Not all scholarships have the same timeline. Check the FAQ page for information about when to apply and to get tips on how to manage your scholarship application.

Please visit "Frequently Asked Questions" for more information.

TO APPLY, click the scholarship application link at the bottom of the FAQ page.

Featured Programs

Select an item below for more information.

School Psychologists Using Psychology and Education to Reach Bilinguals (Project SUPERB)

School Psychologists Using Psychology and Education to Reach Bilinguals (Project SUPERB)
To address a shortage of bilingual school psychologists, graduate students in the School Psychology program will be prepared with specialized course work, supervised bilingual field experiences at our partner sites, and opportunities to build professional Spanish vocabulary in the areas of education and psychology. Upon completion of the program, participants receive a program-issued certificate in bilingual school psychology. Program faculty have applied for Federal funding to support students through the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). For more information, visit:

Teaching Residency Program for Critical Shortage Areas

Participants receive a stipend of $35,000, paid out over the course of 12 months in exchange for a three-year commitment (not including the residency year) to teach in an approved critical shortage area within the program’s partner local school district(s). In addition, participants receive a personal laptop to facilitate coursework and residency expectations.

Learn more.

TEACH Grant Program

The TEACH Grant program was created to assist students that are seeking degrees in high-need fields and anticipate teaching in those fields at the secondary or elementary level.

Students that choose to participate in this program must agree to serve as a full-time teacher in a high-need field in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves low-income students.

Learn more.

South Africa Study Abroad Program



South African Study Abroad Course



  • CI 4378 Problems in Education (i) Elementary; (j) Secondary; (l) Bilingual
  • RDG 4380 Independent Study in Reading Instruction


  • CI 5375 Problems in Elementary Education
  • RDG 5380 Independent Study in Reading Research

Outside College of Education

  • SOWK 3339 Selected topics in Social Work
  • SOWK 4360 International Studies
  • FCD 4357 Comparative Studies in Child Development
  • FCD 3394 Problems in Adolescence

What You Will Learn

This South African study abroad course will provide students with the opportunity to develop cross cultural and intercultural competence and learn the most effective instructional strategies for teaching English to multilingual children and adults in a rural community in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. The course is designed to help students take a critical, sociocultural approach to understanding human growth and development across life-span and life-spaces, compare cultural variations between literacy learning and schooling experiences in individuals raised in the United States and those in South Africa, and address a variety of issues and trends related to the schooling of children from diverse language and/or cultural backgrounds.


$3,840 (subject to change) Includes tuition and fees for six hours of university credit, lodging, meals, in country transportation, scheduled school visits, 3 days in Cape Town, $200 non-refundable fee, international health insurance.

For More Information

Contact Dr. Lori Assaf at lassaf@txstate.edu.

College of Education Stars


The College of Education has a wide variety of experienced and accomplished faculty and staff. We are proud of their achievements and the excellent education they provide to our students. Recent faculty and staff accomplishments are listed below. Click here for a full list of College of Education Stars.

Dr. Eric PaulsonDr. Eric Paulson, Department of Curriculum & Instruction, was recently selected as Fellow in the Council of Learning Assistance and Developmental Education Associations (CLADEA).  Selection into the Fellowship represents the highest honor conferred upon professionals in postsecondary learning assistance and developmental education and is verification of his significant and influential contributions to our profession.  Dr. Paulson now joins a small group of 46 other individuals within our field previously honored for lifetime contributions and national/international influence. His official induction ceremony will occur at the spring meeting of the National Association for Developmental Education  (www.nade.net), on Thursday, February 26, 2015, in Greenville, South Caroline. 

AceeDr. Taylor Acee, assistant professor in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction, will deliver this year’s Presidential Seminar entitled “College Student Motivation: Emerging Research and Ideas for Practice."  Acee will review a series of experimental and correlational studies he conducted on student motivation in undergraduate courses on Wednesday, April 23, 2014 at 6:30 pm in the Alkek Teaching Theatre, with a short reception prior to lecture at 6:00 pm. The Presidential Seminar is free and open to the public. Seating is limited. Read more.

FallDr. Kevin Fall received the Professional Advancement Award by the Association for Specialists in Group Work (ASGW) on Feb. 7 at the awards luncheon at the ASGW conference in Orlando.  This award is made to recognize the outstanding activities of an individual who has helped advance the field of group work through any one of the following: research, development of a new technique or theory, public relations, legislative activities, or group work practice.

Outstanding Students & Alumni


We have truly outstanding students and alumni of the College of Education at Texas State. They are impacting the world for the better, and we are so proud of their many achievements. Read about our highlighted students and alumni below. Click here for a full list of Outstanding Students and Alumni.

YeeElizabeth Yee is a graduate student in school psychology.

"I've always wanted to work in a school, but I couldn't see myself as a teacher or administrator. I had considered becoming a guidance counselor, but decided that I wanted to do more and have a greater impact than counseling would allow. I took an introductory course on school psychology my senior year of undergrad and discovered that this was the perfect fit for me."



Justin Collard is an undergraduate studying elementary education at Texas State.

"I chose Texas State because we have one of the top education/teacher preparation programs in the nation. I also fell in love with the campus after attending a Bobcat Day during high school. No other school can beat the atmosphere and sense of community at Texas State!"


BackorDr. Karen Backor, an August graduate of Texas State’s Ph.D. program in school improvement, recently was honored by the Council of Professors of Instructional Supervision (COPIS) as a Blumberg Scholar, an award given to doctoral students or recent graduates for outstanding research. Dr. Backor's award was based on her Ph.D. dissertation research on how university principal preparation programs can prepare aspiring principals to be instructional leaders.

Read more.