News & Events Archive

The UNLV Rebel Academy Highlighted in the News

Recent news articles highlighted the UNLV Rebel Academy and the impact it's having.

The Rebel Academy is an interdisciplinary enrichment program focusing on English, Science, Social Studies, and Math the purpose of which to expand the knowledgebases of current and future teachers with exposure to new experiences, hands-on activities and collaborative projects.

Dr. Sharon Tettegah Elected to American Psychological Association Committee

Congratulations to Dr. Tettegah in being elected to serve on the Executive Committee as the Treasurer-Elect for the American Psychological Association (APA) Division 15: Educational Psychology! This is a great accomplishment as Dr. Tettegah will play a vital role in the organization.

Dr. Christine Clark and Students Publish Article

Congratulations to Dr. Clark and her students on publishing an article under the Brown Center Chalkboard section of the Brookings Institution website.

Dr. Peter Wiens Wins AERA Best Paper Award

Congratulations to Dr. Wiens and his co-authors in being the recipient of AERA SIG #54 International Studies "Best Paper Award." He and his co-authors will be presenting their paper entitled "The Relationship Between Teaching Efficiency and Teaching Quality of EFL Teachers in Niger" (Bong Gee Jang - Syracuse University, Hyonsuk Cho - University of North Dakota, & Peter Wiens - Univeristy of Nevada-Las Vegas) during this year's AERA meeting in San Antonio.

Books for Baton Rouge

In September of 2016 the Zeiter Center kicked off a book drive, Books for Baton Rouge, to help rebuild teachers/ classroom libraries that were devastated during the flooding in Louisiana. For her work on the book drive, Dr. Ladd was featured on the Channel 8 "Acts of Kindness" segment, and was awarded $800. Over 2,000 books were donated and the funds received from "Acts of Kindness" were used to purchase additional books for classroom libraries.

Dr. Jori Beck and Rosemary Q. Flores Publish Article on AACTE Blog

Our Multicultural Educational Services Alliance (MESA) team's project, Abriendo Caminos/Opening Pathways, was selected out of more than 90 applicants as a focus project at the national Teach to Lead Summit held in Washington, D.C. last month. Dr. Jori Beck is featured in this week's American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education's (AACTE) EdPrepMatters highlighting the team's experience at the Summit. Read Dr. Beck's Blog posting on the AACTE website.

Diversifying the Teacher Pipeline

Dr. Jori Beck and colleagues were recently highlighted in the news for their work with MESA Abriendo Caminos / Opening Pathways Program. The MESA Program addresses Nevada's teacher shortage and growing demographic diversity gap between students and teachers. The article was published in the Las Vegas Review Journal.

Dr. Linda Quinn Receives Grant Funding For Teacher Leadership and Teacher Retention Project

The Department would like to congratulate Dr. Linda Quinn and her team on being funded $200,300 from the Great Teaching and Leading funds offered by the Nevada Department of Education. The UNLV Collaborative focuses on teacher professional development: A Collaborative Pyramid Supporting Professional Development, Teacher Leadership and Teacher Retention, brings together five institutions that prepare alternative route to licensure teachers for Nevada schools (UNLV, CCSD, Sierra Nevada College, Western Governors University, and National University) in a project to support these teachers during their first year of teaching.

Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction and Ph.D. in Teacher Education Information Session

Are you interested in doing Educational Research or thinking about Teaching Teachers, Professionals, and future leaders? Come and learn more about the Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction and Ph.D. in Teacher Education programs in UNLV-Department of Teaching and Learning. Our faculty will share their joys of teaching and conducting research. Information regarding the application process and requirements will be shared. Light refreshment will be served.

What: Information Session
When: December 2, 2016
Time: 5:00 pm
Where: BDC 112 (Bennett Development Center)

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Dr. Denise Dávila Publishes Article in Teacher College Record: Voices of Scholarship in Education

Dr. Denise Dávila recently published the article titled: Censorship and Civics Education: It's a Touchy Subject. The article was published in the Teacher College Record: Voices of Scholarship in Education.

Dr. Katrina Liu Awarded A Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Grant

The U.S. Department of Education has awarded a $78,000 Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad grant to a team from the UNLV School of Music and the UNLV College of Education for the project "Learning about China through Music." Co-directed by PI Dr. Richard Miller (Music) and Co-PI Dr. Katrina Liu (Teaching & Learning), this collaboration with the Clark County School District and Minzu University of China (Beijing) will provide ten K-12 music teachers and two UNLV music teacher educators the opportunity to learn about China and Chinese music through a five week summer curriculum development program, including four weeks exploration and study in the People's Republic of China.

On their return to Nevada, participants will develop curriculum materials to use in their schools; all materials will be made available to educators across the U.S. free of charge through an online portal. This program will contribute to CCSD by helping prepare world-minded citizens through teacher professional development in global education. It will also help UNLV in its efforts to attain top tier status through building international relationships with peer institutions.

T&L Faculty, Students and Community Members Invited to D.C. Teacher Preparation Summit

Through a competitive process, a team of T&L faculty, students and community members have been invited to join the DC Teacher Preparation Summit on Nov. 3-4. The Summit will build on the mission of Teach to Lead, which is to expand opportunities for teacher leadership by providing resources, facilitating stakeholder consultation and encouraging professional collaborations to develop and amplify the work of teacher leaders. To advance this mission, the Summit will allow the team to:

  • Develop ideas for improving teacher preparation into a complete plan for moving forward.
  • Network with organizations, leaders and practitioners from around the country who are elevating the profession through teacher leadership.
  • Obtain the support of a dedicated "critical friend" from a supporting organization to advance your work.
  • Build relationships with the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE),ASCD, National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS), U.S. Department of Education, and many other supporting organizations.

Congratulations to our T & L colleagues and students:

More Great News!

To "finish up" the Nevada State Mathematics Science Partnership (MSP) grants, Dr. Travis A. Olson and Dr. Jeff Shih will also have leadership roles in the following funded projects:

"Part 2: Intuitive Thinking in K-3 Mathematics" is the second year of a project that focuses on developing leadership in the implementation and understanding of the Nevada Academic Content Standards for Number and Operations at the K-3 level. Dr. Shih is the PI, with Drs. Olson and Bellamo (Math) as co-PIs, working with CCSD, Lincoln County, and RPDP. The total funded amount of the award is over $280,000.

The Nevada Mathematics and Science Partnership (MSP) program has awarded a $400,535 grant to a team from the University of Nevada, Reno, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Northwestern University, the three Nevada Regional Professional Development Programs, and districts throughout Nevada including Clark County School District and Charter Schools in the Las Vegas Valley. The project, Nevada Mathematics Project-Phase III, provides content development support for teachers in Grades K-8 related to integration of STEM concepts (notably Nanotechnology) with statistics and geometry concepts as delineated in the Nevada Academic Content Standards. The project is under the direction of Principal Investigator Dr. Teruni Lamberg at UNR, with Dr. Travis A. Olson serving on the leadership team.

In looking at the funded projects for this MSP cycle, mathematics and science educators from the UNLV Department of Teaching and Learning have prominent leadership roles on four MSP grants, with a total dollar amount of approximately $1.25 million. All of these grants benefit mathematics and science teachers throughout Nevada. Congratulations!

Dr. Jeff Shih to Serve as Editor

Congratulations to Dr. Jeff Shih for being named one of the Executive Editors for the journal Cognition and Instruction! It is good timing as Dr. Shih has just completed his terms on the editorial boards of Elementary School Journal and Mathematics Teacher Educator.

Dr. Shih will also serve as Co-Director for the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators (AMTE) STaR (Service, Teaching and Research in mathematics education) Program, an induction program for early career mathematics educators working at institutions of higher education. As part of the re-organization at AMTE, Dr. Shih will also serve as Associate Vice President of the Professional Learning division.

Drs. Travis Olson and Micah Stohlmann Awarded Nevada Collaborative Teaching Improvement Program (NeCoTIP) Grant

The Nevada Collaborative Teaching Improvement Program (NeCoTIP), a federally funded program through the U.S. Department of Education, has awarded a team from the UNLV College of Education, College of Sciences, and Clark County School District a grant for $281,000. The project, Transitions in Mathematics for Middle School (Project TIMMS), provides support to develop teachers’ conceptual understandings of fraction concepts and computation as delineated in the Nevada Academic Content Standards across Grades 4-6. The project is under the direction of Principal Investigator Dr. Travis A. Olson, with Co-Principal Investigator Dr. Micah Stohlmann.

Dr. Jeff Shih Awarded Nevada Department of Education Math Science Partnership Grant

Led by Dr. Jeff Shih, and a leadership team that includes Dr. Travis A. Olson, and partners Washoe County School District (WCSD), Northwestern Nevada Regional Professional Development Program (NWRPDP), and Southern Nevada Regional Professional Development Program (SNRPD), this project titled "Developing Mathematical Modeling: Numbers and Operations" will focus on increasing 80 early career K-3 teachers' knowledge of the Nevada Academic Content Standards in mathematics with a focus on problem solving and number sense. This project is funded for $280,000.

Dr. Travis Olson Awarded NSF Grant

The National Science Foundation has awarded a grant in the amount of $1,090,283 for a collaborative research project to a team from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Brigham Young University, University of Arkansas, and Grand Valley State University to investigate and develop a taxonomy for middle grades mathematics teachers' curricular reasoning. The project, entitled "Collaborative Research: Investigating Middle Grades Mathematics Teachers' Curricular Reasoning," is under the direction of Dr. Travis A. Olson at UNLV in collaboration with Principal Investigators's at each institution: Dr. Dawn Teuscher (BYU), Dr. Shannon Dingman (Arkansas), and Dr. Lisa A. Kasmer (GVSU).

Dr. Denise Dávila Wins Award

The Alan C. Purves Award is presented annually to the author(s) of the Research in the Teaching of English article from the previous year's volume judged as likely to have the greatest impact on educational practice.

The article #WhoNeedsDiverseBooks?: Preservice Teachers and Religious Neutrality with Children's Literature was selected by the RTE editorial team based on the following:
The committee lauded the timely topic of the article, its application to multiple grade levels, its careful methodology, and the strong argument about the relationship between teaching about religion in literature and "preparing young people to be pluralistic thinkers in a global society." The piece addressed a central concern and ongoing discussion that many have seen (and been a part of) in ELA circles right now, that of diversity and representation in books, but it addressed an aspect of this concern that has not gotten as much recognition - that of religion and religious identity in relationship to diversity and culture more broadly. The committee appreciated the careful discussion of the limitations and possible damage that taking a "no religion" approach could cause in ELA classrooms. The committee also felt that this article would lend itself to rethinking specific practices around not only the selection of classroom texts, but also which conversations are invited into the classroom. The committee was also impressed with the quality of the methodology; in particular, the detailed description of her coding and data analyses processes both demonstrated a careful, systematic approach to qualitative research and also a detailed, insightful analysis of multiple themes in the data. Although you caution against generalizing from your study to all preservice teachers, the committee viewed it as a strength that her study included more participants than most similar studies in ELA. Finally, in terms of writing style, the committee thought that this piece would be most likely of all to be taken up by teachers.

Dr. David Vallett Awarded $315,000 Grant

Led by UNLV, and partnered with UNR, CCSD, and the RPDPs statewide, Moving All Nevada Teachers through Awareness of the NVACSS (MANTA) is a multi-institutional project in science education with the primary goal of raising awareness and familiarity with the NVACSS statewide through the development of a cadre of teacher leaders, who will then develop and present workshops to teachers in their districts and regions. The 96 person teacher leader cadre will complete a 50-hour institute on the NVACSS and peer leadership delivered by higher education faculty and teacher educators from across the state. Through a partnership with PCG and Dr. Richard Vineyard, all science teachers statewide will participate in Pepper, an online module outlining the NVACSS. Additionally, NV science teachers will have the opportunity to take part in up to 20 hours of teacher leader delivered workshops along either an awareness or implementation track, depending on their level of experience with the NVACSS.

Dr. Marilyn McKinney Awarded Grant

Dr. Marilyn McKinney awarded $15,000 of federal funds for her work with the Southern Nevada Writing Project for the 2016-2017 SEED Invitational Leadership Institute Grant proposal. "The purpose of this grant is to support an Invitational Leadership Institute that invests in 12 or more K - university teacher-leaders who are new to the Writing Project community from diverse educational settings, including high-need schools. The goal of this funding is to equip teachers to lead work at the site, in their schools and districts, and as active participants in an educational landscape of new standards and technological innovation".

Dr. Howard Gordon Elected to Serve on American Educational Research Association Special Interest Group

Dr. Howard Gordon was elected to serve as Secretary/Treasurer (1-year term begins in 2016) of the American Educational Research Association Career and Technical Education Special Interest Group. The purpose of the SIG is to: "To discuss topics in vocational/career and technical education, career development, human resource development, career issues in the schools (Grades K-12), postsecondary education, adult and lifelong learning, and workforce education".

Dr. Cliff McClain Named Postsecondary Teacher of the Year

Congratulations to Dr. Cliff McClain. Dr. McClain was recently named the Association for Career and Technical Education Postsecondary Teacher of the Year. More information, including the press release, can be found at:

Congratulations on Dr. Shaoan Zhang's Published Work with Doctoral Students

Dr. Shaoan Zhang, Associate Professor of Teacher Education, has successfully collaborated with doctoral students in the Department of Teaching and Learning, as well as faculty in the College of Education, to publish their research in peer-reviewed journals. The three publications include:

  • Clark, C., Zhang, S., & Strudler, N. (2015). Teacher candidate technology integration: For student learning or instruction. Journal of Digital Learning in Teacher Education, 31(3), 93-106.
  • Santoyo, C. & Zhang, S. (in press). Secondary teacher candidates' learning lesson planning. Teacher Education Quarterly.
  • Maderick, J., Zhang, S., Hartley, K., & Marchand, G. (accepted). Preservice teachers and self-assessing digital competence. Journal of Educational Computing Research.

Collaboration Between Fremont Middle School and the Department Highlighted in a Recent Article

The collaboration between Fremont Middle School and the Department of Teaching & Learning was recently highlighted in the Las Vegas Sun:

Congratulations to Drs. Beck, Vallett, McCreery and Brown!

The Department would like to congratulate Drs. Beck, Vallett, McCreery and Brown in their awarded state grant entitled: Proposal for the Creation of the Nevada Educator Performance Framework Online Training System! The purpose of the project is to create a system to facilitate implementation of the NEPF. This will include initial training of teachers, administrators, and other education professionals on the instrument as well as ongoing interrater reliability training on the instrument.

Congratulations to Dr. Shih and Doctoral Candidates

Congratulations to Dr. Shih and doctoral candidates, Charles Allen, Lina DeVaul, Amy Adkins and Taro Ito, on their recent publication Math Shelf: A Randomized Trial of a Prekindergarten Tablet Number Sense Curriculum published in Early Education and Development.

Dr. Hasan Deniz Awarded National Science Foundation Grant

Congratulations to Dr. Hasan Deniz on being awarded an National Science Foundation (NSF) grant in the amount of $299,986 for his project entitled, "Developing Integrated Elementary Science, Engineering, and Language Arts Curricula Aligned with Next Generation Science Standards".

Dr. Clifford R. McClain Wins Postsecondary Teacher of the Year Award

Dr. Clifford R. McClain

The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) announced that Dr. Clifford R. McClain was the recipient of the 2015 Region V Postsecondary Teacher of the Year. Dr. McClain was chosen from among the postsecondary (college and university CTE instructors and teacher educators) state award winners in the 16 western states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming, as well as American Samoa, Guam, and the Philippines. The ACTE Excellence Awards promote merit in career and technical education (CTE) by recognizing individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to CTE, programs that exemplify the highest standards and organizations that have conducted activities to promote and expand CTE programs. Award winners serve as inspirational leaders to ACTE: they embody the core values of serving students and being committed to career and technical education.

Dr. Clifford R. McClain and Doctoral Students Present at Conference

Ms. Cynthia (Cindy) Bezard, (Graduate Assistant and doctoral student in Career & Technical and Postsecondary Education) and Dr. Clifford R. McClain presented two papers at the Annual Association for Career and Technical Education Region V Conference in Overland Park, Kansas, April 15-18. The first paper, entitled Uniting the Classroom through Youth Participatory Action Research presented recently completed action research that supports social contracts as a way to elevate student participation and democratic inquiry in the CTE high school classroom. The second paper, Critical Cultural Competence: Understanding as a Path to Student Achievement, discussed the need to dive deeper into classroom diversity than traditional multicultural introductory classes generally do. The presentation provided methods for CTE teachers to better understanding of themselves, their students, and heir student's families and communities.

Dr. McClain, and Ms. Sherry McKnight (Graduate Assistant and doctoral student in Career & Technical and Postsecondary Education), also presented a paper entitled, "I am What I Think": Confronting the Perils of Student Self-Stereotyping. The presentation discussed the fact that repeated experiences of negative stereotyping can lead to diminished confidence, poor performance, and loss of interest by students. Identifying and countering self-stereotyping in the classroom was also discussed.

The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) is the nation's largest not-for-profit association committed to the advancement of education that prepares youth and adults for successful careers. ACTE represents the community of CTE professionals, including educators, administrators, researchers, guidance counselors and others at all levels of education.

Dr. Travis Olson Publishes New Book

Book: Putting Essential Understanding into Practice: Ratios and Proportions Numbers 6-8

Dr. Travis Olson recently published a book titled: Putting Essential Understanding into Practice: Ratios and Proportions Numbers 6-8. Dr. Olson's recently published book is a research-based book for strategies and content exploration for practicing teachers. Information was included on the authors' own research on student strategies for the problems and synthesized a wealth of research that exists on the subject to make deeper content connections.

Publication of the book was a collaborative effort between Dr. Travis Olson and researchers with the University of Hawaii Curriculum Research and Development Group. Congratulations Dr. Travis Olson.

Dr. Howard R. D. Gordon to Serve on IRB Board

Dr. Howard R. D. Gordon was recently appointed as a community member of Roseman University of Health Sciences Institutional Review Board (IRB).

Dr. Howard R. D. Gordon to serve as President of the Association for Career and Technical Education Research

Dr. Howard R. D. Gordon, Professor of Career and Technical Education, was named President of the Association for Career and Technical Education Research at the recent 2014 conference in Nashville, TN. He will serve a two year term of office.

Dr. Clifford R. McClain Named: NACTE Postsecondary Teacher of the Year

The Nevada Association of Career and Technical Education (NACTE) recently honored Dr. Clifford R. McClain as the Postsecondary Teacher of the Year, at their Annual Conference in Lake Tahoe, Nevada. This award was presented in recognition of his outstanding service, devotion, and leadership in Career and Technical Education.

While at the Annual Conference, Dr. McClain also made two presentations. He presented with Ms. Celine Endy, a UNLV Sophomore and the Administrative Vice President of the UNLV Collegiate DECA organization. Their presentation was entitled, Why Not a Collegiate CTSO? This presentation discussed the need for more student leadership organizations on Nevada's several collegiate campuses, while highlighting the success of the new UNLV DECA Chapter. Dr. McClain also presented a paper entitled, I'm Not What Others Think: Countering Stereotype Threat. This presentation discussed how repeated experiences of negative stereotyping can lead to diminished confidence, poor performance, and loss of interest by many of our students, especially on cognitive high threat tests.