Master of Arts in Education

Profiles

Gaye Jenkins, Ph.D.

~Faculty~

Dr. Gaye Jenkins Headshot
Dr. Gaye Jenkins Headshot

Gaye Jenkins, Ph.D.

Gaye Jenkins served Western as Associate V.P. for Academic Affairs and Dean of Graduate Studies from March 1, 2014 to June 30, 2018.

Chair, Associate Professor of Education

Associate V.P. for Academic Affairs, Dean of Graduate Studies

B.Ed., University of Sussex, England; M.Ed., Lesley University; Ed.D. California Coast University

Under the direction of Education Department Chair Gaye, Western is leading the field of Educator Preparation in quality and innovation. "In Educator Preparation (Ed Prep), it is crucial to remain responsive to the sways and shifts required of K-12 educators in the field," says Jenkins. "Our very emphasis on the word ‘preparation’ indicates an obligation to actually perform ahead of the curves of transformation before they become evident in classrooms. Graduates need to be ready to not only merge with existing practices, but also to demonstrate skills of leadership into new strategies and ways of thinking that are required as current educators replace former emphases."

To ensure the relevance of Western's program and remain responsive to the needs of the field. Jenkins has led the faculty effort to continuously realign courses with the state's Teacher and Principal Quality Standards (T/PQS). This year, under Jenkins's leadership, Western also implemented an comprehensive observational tool to measure educator performance against quality standards. These efforts are serving as a model for educator preparation programs across the state and have gained the attention of the Colorado Department of Higher Education.

Dr. Jenkins earned her Doctorate in Education from California Coast University.  Before coming to Western, she founded and ran a private educational consulting firm. She is passionate about culturally and linguistically diverse education. 

Faculty & Staff

Faculty

Alissa Axtell, J.D. headshot
Director of Licensure
B.A., University of Puget Sound, International Political Economy, M.A., Columbia University, Teachers College, Educational Leadership, J.D., University of Denver, Sturm College of Law
Phone: 970.943.3092
Office Location: Crawford Hall 122
Gillian Benedetti, M.S. headshot
Lecturer, Department of Education
B.S., Florida State University, M.S., Florida State University
Phone:
Office Location:
Brian Coppess, Ed.D headshot
Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership, Department of Education
Phone: 970.943.2135
Office Location: Crawford Hall 108
Brooke Hanks, M.A. headshot
Senior Lecturer, Department of Education
B.A., Western Colorado University, M.A., University of Colorado Colorado Springs
Phone: 970.943.2504
Office Location: Crawford Hall 105
Jeff Hulbert, M.S. headshot
Lecturer, Department of Education
B.A., Western Washington University, B.S., Central Washington University, M.S., University at Albany, State University of New York
Phone: 970.943.2141
Office Location: Crawford Hall 107
Gaye Jenkins, Ed.D. headshot
Lecturer
B.Ed., University of Sussex, England; M.Ed., Lesley University; Ed.D. California Coast University
Phone:
Office Location:
George Kamberelis, Ph.D. headshot
Education Dept. Chair
Ph.D., University of Michigan, Education and Psychology, M.S., University of Michigan, Psychology, M.A., University of Chicago, Religious Studies (Literature and Religion Focus), Interdisciplinary Program in Language and Cognition, Northwestern University, B.A., Bates College, Philosophy and Religion
Phone: 970.943.2033
Office Location: Crawford Hall 103
Jackie Luft, Ed.D. headshot
Lecturer
Phone: 970.943.7041
Office Location: Crawford Hall 110
Jennifer McCammon, Ed.D. headshot
Lecturer, Department of Education
B.A., University of Nothern Colorado, M.A., University of Nothern Colorado, Ed.D., University of Nothern Colorado
Phone:
Office Location:
Caroline Powders-Forrest, M.Ed. headshot
Lecturer and Mentor Program Coordinator, Department of Education
LL.B., University of East Anglia, UK, M.Ed., University of Illinois, Urbana
Phone: 970.943.7035
Office Location: Crawford Hall 109
Ian  Parker Renga, Ph.D. headshot
Assistant Professor, Department of Education
B.A., Indiana University, B.S., Indiana University, M.Ed., Harvard University, Ph.D., University of Colorado
Phone: 970.943.2244
Office Location: Crawford Hall 106
Kim Silbaugh, Ph.D. headshot
Lecturer, Department of Education
B.S., Drake University, M.A., Lesley University, Ph.D., Breyer State University
Phone:
Office Location:
Jennifer Whitacre, M.S. headshot
Clinical Coach & Lecturer, Department of Education
Phone: 970.943.2120
Office Location: Crawford Hall 104
Cori L. Woytek, M.S. headshot
Lecturer, Department of Education
B.A., Mesa State College, M.S., Gwynedd-Mercy College
Phone: 970.943.3019
Office Location: Crawford Hall 122

Courses

FOR REQUIRED COURSES AND DEGREE PLANS, VISIT THE OFFICIAL UNIVERSITY CATALOG. This is a sample of courses offered by Western Colorado University. To ensure the courses you need are offered during the current semester, please visit the university course search.

 EDUC 535 - ENGAGNG THE K-12 ONLNE LEARNER (3 credits)

A study of methods and strategies to engage the online K-12 learner. Educators study how to transition from traditional face-to-face classrooms to online settings. Focus is primarily on the key principles of effective online instruction and the power of the learner-centered approach to ensure success for the online teacher and learner. Prerequisite: Teaching license.

 EDUC 536 - ASSESSING K-12 ONLINE LEARNER (3 credits)

A study of methods and strategies to engage the online K-12 learner. Educators study the principles of effective online assessment and specific online tools and strategies. Focus is on using assessment results to differentiate instruction and support the K-12 online learner. Prerequisite: Teaching license and EDUC 535.

 EDUC 537 - FLD BASED APPL ONLINE INSTRUCT (3 credits)

Application of effective online teaching to an appropriate K-12 student population. Prerequisite: Teaching license and EDUC 535 and EDUC 536.

 EDUC 600 - FND OF LITERACY DEVELOPMENT (3 credits)

Provide in-depth understanding of the reading acquisition process and current issues in reading research related to preliterate and emergent readers through observation and analysis of reading and written language development.

 EDUC 601 - MTHD STRAT OF EFF RDNG INSTR (3 credits)

Provide in-depth understanding and application of scientifically-based methods of teaching reading comprehension vocabulary, and fluency.

 EDUC 602 - LITRCY ASSMNT INFORMED INSTR (3 credits)

Screen, diagnose, and monitor student progress in reading and writing to inform instruction and build home-school partnerships that promote reading and writing.

 EDUC 603 - CONTENT AREA LEARNING (3 credits)

Apply concepts, methods, and practices related to curriculum, assessment of learning, and teaching in content areas.

 EDUC 604 - LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS (3 credits)

Recognize needs for a successful classroom environment and apply strategies to support learning.

 EDUC 605 - CURRICULUM DEVELOP ASSESSMT (3 credits)

Study and apply standards-based curriculum and assessment practices.

 EDUC 606 - READING IN THE CONTENT AREA (3 credits)

Analyze, evaluate, and apply methods for developing effective reading and writing strategies that improve student academic achievement in the content area.

 EDUC 607 - RETH LEARN-21ST CENTURY SKILLS (3 credits)

Investigate the research and theory of 21st Century Skills as they affect the education program. Develop effective teaching strategies through theory and simulation.

 EDUC 608 - MTHD STRAT OF EFF WRTNG INST (3 credits)

Provide in-depth understanding and application of research based methods of teaching writing as they apply to cognitive processes and socio-cultural context for diverse students.

 EDUC 609 - SECONDARY STUDENT TEACHING (3 credits)

Work in a secondary school setting over the course of the year, in collaboration with mentor teachers. This course can be repeated twice for credit.

 EDUC 611 - STR TECH TCHNG STU W SUP NDS (3 credits)

Address critical issues, content, and pedagogy needed by special education professionals. Apply these theories to the daily activities of the teacher.

 EDUC 612 - BEHVRL ANALYSIS INTERVNTN (3 credits)

Use critical thinking and problem solving skills to study and apply current behavioral research and school law regarding the education of students with emotional/behavioral disabilities.

 EDUC 613 - MTHDS STRAT EFF MATH INSTR (3 credits)

Examine and apply research-based teaching strategies that promote mathematics learning.

 EDUC 614 - COLLAB FOR STU W SUPPRT NEEDS (3 credits)

Use data and collaboration process to develop Individual Educational Plans, and provide support needs and technologies for students with disabilities.

 EDUC 615 - SPECIAL ED STUDENT TEACHING (3 credits)

Work in a K-12 school setting with students with disabilities over the course of the year, in collaboration with mentor teachers. This course can be repeated twice for credit.

 EDUC 616 - LANG ACQUSTN LING DIVERSE STU (3 credits)

Develop and apply understanding of language acquisition and awareness of the historical, legal, social and educational background surrounding linguistically diverse education.

 EDUC 617 - COG ACAD LANG PROF IN CONT ARE (3 credits)

Differentiate social and cognitive academic language and use research to develop cognitive academic language for English Language Learners.

 EDUC 618 - LING DIVERSE STUDENT TEACHING (3 credits)

Work in a K-12 school setting with linguistically diverse students over the course of the year, in collaboration with mentor teachers. This course can be repeated twice for credit.

 EDUC 619 - ELEMENTARY STUDENT TEACHING (3 credits)

Work in an elementary school setting over the course of the year, in collaboration with mentor teachers. This course can be repeated twice for credit.

 EDUC 620 - ENGAGING DIVERSE LEANERS (3 credits)

A study and application of research-based instruction to engage diverse learners. Focus is on creating learning experiences to maximize student engagement and achievement, while evaluating and reflecting on teaching practice.

 EDUC 621 - CREAT EFFECT ONLINE ENVIRONMNT (3 credits)

An inquiry into how K-12 educators can best develop relevant and engaging blended and online instructional contexts to meet the needs of all K-12 learners. Focus is on exploration of tools, resources and emerging technologies to determine how to build and manage learning environments which maximize student achievement.

 EDUC 622 - DATA PLAN ONLINE LEARNING INTV (3 credits)

A study of best practices in creating, implementing, and using assessments in the online environment. Focus is on analyzing real-time data and findings from assessments to make instructional decisions and to plan targeted interventions to ensure student success.

 EDUC 623 - DESGN DELVER EFFECT ONLNE INST (3 credits)

Online field-based experience in design, delivery, and evaluation of standards-based instruction in an appropriate K-12 setting. A collaborative approach will be fostered among students, teachers, and school-level administrators to support existing or emerging online or blended instructional needs.

 EDUC 624 - MANAGING TO DIFFERENTIATE (3 credits)

This course provides a study of cognitive development as it impacts different learners’ ability to access academic content. Participants will build a foundation of understanding from which they will develop skills, strategies and resources that they can then apply in their teaching to address the complex challenges of meeting the diverse learning needs of all students.

 EDUC 625 - RLVNT DATA ANALISYS INFRM INST (3 credits)

Identify and utilize all levels of data to inform instructional decisions. Daily measures of student performance are analyzed along with summative assessments to develop relevant plans for instruction that may include interventions and differentiation. Explore resources to assist in tracking of student progress and develop evidence of effectiveness relative to Teacher Quality Standards.

 EDUC 626 - DEFING DFDNG EVD OF PROF MSRTY (3 credits)

Using the educator effectiveness growth goals developed in EDUC 625, students will design strategies and plans to ensure the mastery of each goal. One action plan to address a problem of practice will be fully developed and implemented. Approaches to examine and reflect on data gathered during the implementation process will be developed. Finally, an ongoing, living web-based document will be created. This document will serve as a means to demonstrate learner mastery of effectiveness in teaching. Prerequisite: EDUC 625.

 EDUC 670 - INTRO TO SCHOOL LEADERSHIP (4 credits)

Provide an overview of educational leadership principles, including theories of leadership, foundational concepts of leading a school, qualities of effective leaders, and the process of building a positive, collaborative school culture.

 EDUC 672 - PERS SELECTION AND DEVLPMNT (3 credits)

Understand and evaluate the process of working with school-related personnel, including recruiting and hiring practices, developing meaningful induction and mentoring programs, managing teacher and staff evaluations, and providing needs-based professional development for all staff.

 EDUC 673 - SCHOOL SAFTY AND MANAGEMENT (3 credits)

Identify and explore the components of school plant and safety management, including school-wide student discipline policies and practices, crisis and emergency planning and responses, and managing various funding sources associated with operating a school.

 EDUC 674 - FAMILY COMMUNITY INVOLVEMNT (3 credits)

Investigate various strategies for building relationships with all members of the school community, including identifying and understanding diversity in the surrounding community, establishing partnerships with area businesses and organizations, and working effectively with local media outlets.

 EDUC 675 - STUDNT LEARNING ACCOUNTABILITY (3 credits)

Examine the responsibilities of managing curriculum, instruction, and assessment in schools, including evaluation of curriculum and instruction practices to maximize learning for all students, analysis of data from local and statewide assessments to drive instructional decisions for school improvement, and development of strategies to support a range of diverse student learning needs.

 EDUC 678 - PRINCIPAL INTERNSHIP I (3 credits)

Complete a supervised internship or work full/part time as a school-based administrator. Demonstrate competency on Colorado principal licensure standards through structured, reflective tasks and leadership-based internship experiences.

 EDUC 679 - PRINCIPAL INTERNSHIP II (3 credits)

Complete a supervised internship or work full/part time as a school-based administrator. Demonstrate competency on Colorado principal licensure standards through structured, reflective tasks and leadership-based internship experiences. Prerequisite: Successful completion of EDUC 678 Administrator Internship I.

 EDUC 680 - RESRCH CRITICAL INQ FOR LDR (4 credits)

Examine, analyze, and synthesize research literature in relation to emerging trends in education. Explore concepts pertaining to quantitative and qualitative research methods and the synergistic relationship between research, theory, and practice. Develop problem posing/solving, information literacy, and critical thinking. Must be taken in the final year of the program.

 EDUC 681 - INSTRUCTNL PROG DEVEL EVALUATN (3 credits)

Investigate theories and trends in curriculum and instruction while understanding their relationship to student data and performance at the school and district levels. Evaluate teaching and assessment as they affect student growth. Assess best practices for developing teachers and schools to increase student learning outcomes.

 EDUC 682 - SHAPING SCHOOL SYSTEMS (3 credits)

Understand the characteristics of effective organizational culture from various perspectives. Explore systemic structures and issues within a school and district. Examine and apply critical analysis and creativity related to educational group dynamics that advocate for all students, staff, and stakeholders within an educational community.

 EDUC 683 - LEGAL ETHICAL ISSUES IN SCHO (3 credits)

Explore legal and ethical issues related to equity, diversity, and accessibility in schools, including examining cases and case law affecting school-based practices, identifying the legal and ethical responsibilities of school employees, and understanding the rights and responsibilities of the members in the school community.

 EDUC 684 - MATERIALS MOTIVATN FOR RDNG (2 credits)

Select and evaluate materials, develop independent readers, involve the community, and establish and manage the literacy environment.

 EDUC 685 - ASSESSNG EVAL INST AT-RISK RDR (3 credits)

Develop in-depth understanding of scientifically based reading research and instruction for at risk and struggling readers. Provide the tools necessary to diagnose, evaluate and teach struggling readers. Assignments will include the development of intervention programs and the implementation of progress-monitoring reading assessments.

 EDUC 686 - LITERACY COACHING MENTORING (2 credits)

Examine roles and functions of literacy coaching and mentoring to provide professional development for literacy in the school setting.

 EDUC 687 - SCHL-WIDE COMP LITRCY PROG DEV (2 credits)

Prepare educators for school-wide comprehensive literacy program development and delivery.

 EDUC 688 - READING TEACHER INTERNSHIP (3 credits)

Complete supervised practicum(s) or internship(s) as a reading teacher at the appropriate grade level(s) for Colorado Department of Education Reading Teacher graduate endorsement. This course can be repeated twice for credit.

 EDUC 689 - READING SPECIALIST INTERNSHIP (3 credits)

Complete supervised practicum(s) or internship(s) as a reading specialist at the appropriate grade level(s) for Colorado Department of Education Reading Specialist graduate endorsement. This course can be repeated twice for credit.

 EDUC 692 - ISSUES TRNDS IN LDRSHP SEM (1 credits)

The role of professional literature and experience in the development of leadership capacity that advocates for improvements of education.

 EDUC 693 - CAPSTONE (3 credits)

Interpreting, planning, conducting, and reporting research results in the field of education. Students must be enrolled in EDUC 693 when utilizing Western Colorado University Graduate Faculty support in conducting research. This course can be repeated for credit and is required the final semester of the M.A. degree in Education Program. Prerequisite: EDUC 680 Research and Critical Inquiry for leaders.

 EDUC 694 - SCHOOL LAW FOR TEACHERS (3 credits)

Examine laws and state/national policies affecting schools. Demonstrate an understanding of the rights and responsibilities of teachers and students. Explore the differences between legal and ethical issues in education.

 EDUC 695 - RESOURCE MGMT IN EDUCATION (3 credits)

Explore and apply the characteristics of effective school and district leadership and resource management for education-specific programs and initiatives. Identify potential funding agencies and local/state/national partnerships that could help to build resources based to meet school and district needs. Utilize the characteristics of effective grant writing for education-specific programs and initiatives.

 EDUC 696 - ENGAGING EXTERNAL STAKEHOLDERS (3 credits)

Identify stakeholders that support the education system and develop processes for meaningful involvement in activities and decision making. Explore and apply methods for communicating to a variety of audiences. Understand the political and financial nature of community partnerships with schools and districts.

 EDUC 697 - ST: ACTION PLN IMPRVMT IN PRAC (3 credits)

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 EDUC 697 - ST: ACTION PLN INPRVMT IN PRAC (3 credits)

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Western delivers cutting-edge ideas in Education, offering small classes, innovative online instruction, experienced faculty and a network of support for students in the field.

The M.A. in Education recently received two outstanding national rankings: 

Become a teacher or principal

At Western students take classes online while experiencing life as a teacher or principal in a K-12 school. This residency model provides students with practical learning opportunities that support professional development. Plus, all coursework applies toward a M.A. in Education.  Learn more.

Earn your M.A. in Education

Expand your career and improve your skills without leaving your classroom. 

  • M.A. in Education with Initial Teacher or Principal Licensure (43 credits). Learn more.
  • M.A. in Education for existing teachers (30 credits). Learn more.

Contact Kercia Hughes at 970.943.2045 for more information.  ed_admissions@western.edu

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