College of Education recognized nationally

Continuing to make high marks on national lists such as U.S. News and World Report’s annual ranking, USU’s College of Education ranked 24th for its graduate education programs for 2013.

    The Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services moved up five spots from last year, and it also houses the only education program in Utah to rank in the top 50.

Within the college, two programs also ranked in the top 25 in their respective categories. The rehabilitation counseling program was ranked ninth in the nation, and the special education graduate program was ranked 15th, among all special education programs in the U.S.

This is the 13th consecutive year the College of Education has been ranked in U.S. News and World Report’s top education schools.

Beth Foley, dean of the College of Education, said she expects the rankings to continue to increase in coming years because of the increasing number of faculty who have been hired.

“I think you build up a critical mass of faculty in certain research areas (and) the synergy of the work increases funding they get in the future,” Foley said.

Overall, the college also ranked third in the nation for research funding, which totaled more than $40 million in 2011. This is an $11 million increase from 2010. The college has more research funding than any other college on campus, Foley said.

According to the college’s mission statement, one of its goals is to have a “supporting and nurturing faculty committed to masterful teaching and cutting-edge research.”

In the next few years, college administrators hope to make it the most-funded research college in the nation, Foley said. In this year’s rankings, the college came in behind University of Texas-Austin and Columbia University.

“Watch out, Columbia. We’re coming,” Foley said.

Martha Dever, associate dean and department head for the school of teacher education and leadership, said the college’s research funding can largely be attributed to external sources. Though other schools have faced funding cuts in the past few years, the College of Education has only increased its amount of research pursuits, she said.

She said budget cuts didn’t hit her college as much as other colleges were hit.

“We just have good programs,” she said. “We came through the budget crisis in really good shape … better than others. We were masterfully led.”

Just over half of the college’s research funding comes from the federal government, a quarter comes from state allocations and the rest is divided among various organizations, said James Dorward, the associate dean of research for the college.

Major research projects under way include involvement in the National Children’s Study, which measures children’s exposure to factors, such as air, diet and sound, in common environments. The study tracks children from before birth to age 21, Dorward said.

Another project in the works is one that measures the effect of an extended school year on elementary school children. Dorward said the project’s budget is around $30 million, which is a “heavy chunk of change.”

Dorward said research money is not simply handed over, but bids are extremely competitive and require adept faculty and staff. Despite this, he said, the college’s research may in large part go unrecognized.

“It’s possible a lot of the research we do (is) taken for granted,” he said. “It may not have the wow factor that sciences do.”

Foley said the college affords many opportunities for students in a number of fields, but these efforts often go unnoticed.

“I think it’s a more diverse college than people recognize,” she said. “We have a range of programs. There are a lot more opportunities here than people are aware of.”

One group that does not regularly overlook the College of Education’s esteemed rankings is that of potential students, Dorward said.

“Parents and their students do pay attention and do shop when it comes to getting a good education,” he said.

The graduate education program is known for excellence, said Brian Mckenna, an education ambassador pursuing a master’s degree in school counseling. McKenna, who entered the graduate program last year, said he earned his undergraduate degree in psychology from USU.

“It starts with the kind of people you have in (the program),” he said. “The faculty are really personal … they reach out and communicate.”

He said the program accreditation is tense, but the faculty always make sure students come first.

“The new faculty all around wanted us students to know that we come first, and that if we were taken care of, the standings and ratings would take care of themselves,” he said.

education

 

STUDENTS OCCUPY THE ATRIUM of the Emma Eccles Jones Education Building. For the 13th consecutive year, the College of Education ranked on U.S. News and World Report’s annual list of top colleges and universities. KELSIE MASON photo

    Continuing to make high marks on national lists such as U.S. News and World Report’s annual ranking, USU’s College of Education ranked 24th for its graduate education programs for 2013.

The Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services moved up five spots from last year, and it also houses the only education program in Utah to rank in the top 50.

Within the college, two programs also ranked in the top 25 in their respective categories. The rehabilitation counseling program was ranked ninth in the nation, and the special education graduate program was ranked 15th, among all special education programs in the U.S.

This is the 13th consecutive year the College of Education has been ranked in U.S. News and World Report’s top education schools.

Beth Foley, dean of the College of Education, said she expects the rankings to continue to increase in coming years because of the increasing number of faculty who have been hired.

“I think you build up a critical mass of faculty in certain research areas (and) the synergy of the work increases funding they get in the future,” Foley said.

Overall, the college also ranked third in the nation for research funding, which totaled more than $40 million in 2011. This is an $11 million increase from 2010. The college has more research funding than any other college on campus, Foley said.

According to the college’s mission statement, one of its goals is to have a “supporting and nurturing faculty committed to masterful teaching and cutting-edge research.”

In the next few years, college administrators hope to make it the most-funded research college in the nation, Foley said. In this year’s rankings, the college came in behind University of Texas-Austin and Columbia University.

“Watch out, Columbia. We’re coming,” Foley said.

Martha Dever, associate dean and department head for the school of teacher education and leadership, said the college’s research funding can largely be attributed to external sources. Though other schools have faced funding cuts in the past few years, the College of Education has only increased its amount of research pursuits, she said.

She said budget cuts didn’t hit her college as much as other colleges were hit.

“We just have good programs,” she said. “We came through the budget crisis in really good shape … better than others. We were masterfully led.”

Just over half of the college’s research funding comes from the federal government, a quarter comes from state allocations and the rest is divided among various organizations, said James Dorward, the associate dean of research for the college.

Major research projects under way include involvement in the National Children’s Study, which measures children’s exposure to factors, such as air, diet and sound, in common environments. The study tracks children from before birth to age 21, Dorward said.

Another project in the works is one that measures the effect of an extended school year on elementary school children. Dorward said the project’s budget is around $30 million, which is a “heavy chunk of change.”

Dorward said research money is not simply handed over, but bids are extremely competitive and require adept faculty and staff. Despite this, he said, the college’s research may in large part go unrecognized.

“It’s possible a lot of the research we do (is) taken for granted,” he said. “It may not have the wow factor that sciences do.”

Foley said the college affords many opportunities for students in a number of fields, but these efforts often go unnoticed.

“I think it’s a more diverse college than people recognize,” she said. “We have a range of programs. There are a lot more opportunities here than people are aware of.”

One group that does not regularly overlook the College of Education’s esteemed rankings is that of potential students, Dorward said.

“Parents and their students do pay attention and do shop when it comes to getting a good education,” he said.

The graduate education program is known for excellence, said Brian Mckenna, an education ambassador pursuing a master’s degree in school counseling. McKenna, who entered the graduate program last year, said he earned his undergraduate degree in psychology from USU.

“It starts with the kind of people you have in (the program),” he said. “The faculty are really personal … they reach out and communicate.”

He said the program accreditation is tense, but the faculty always make sure students come first.

“The new faculty all around wanted us students to know that we come first, and that if we were taken care of, the standings and ratings would take care of themselves,” he said.

Property of The Utah Statesman

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