Welcome to the College of Education (COE) at Towson University. Since July 2004, I have served as Dean of the COE and feel truly honored to join its exceptional faculty. As you become familiar with the University and the COE, I believe that you will share my sense of the institution as a unique and exciting place of learning. Each year, Towson’s commitment to the preparation of professional educators including teachers, principals and educational specialists is reflected in the breadth and depth of our programs; in the excellence of our faculty; and in the success of our students in entering teaching positions or moving into increasingly demanding roles in PreK-12 education.
As Maryland's premiere teacher education institution, we are recognized nationally for our innovative approaches to preparing educators and administrative leaders for public education in the 21st century. Our students are among the University’s best and brightest and their demand for excellence pushes us to provide rigorous courses, well planned supervised field experiences and pre-service internships in Maryland’s largest network of Professional Development Schools. Our Professional Development School Network has been recognized for its excellence at the national and state levels, including the Association of Teacher Educators’ Distinguished Program in Teacher Education (1998), the Maryland Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development’s Excellence in Education Award (2005), the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education’s Edward C. Pomeroy Award for Outstanding Contributions to Teacher Education (2008), and the National Association of Professional Development Schools’ Spirit of Partnership Award (2008).
Our graduates are sought after by school systems throughout Maryland, the Mid-Atlantic region and the nation. An increasing number of graduates from our doctoral program in Instructional Technology join the ranks of university professors. Others enter into significant administrative roles in local, state and national professional organizations. Students completing other graduate programs are strongly supported in doing so by their local school systems and move into a range of leadership roles in PreK-12 education.
Faculty members of the COE are committed to students. As an integral part of the developmental teaching/learning experience, and reflecting commitment to the university's intentional academic advising program, students work with advisers in a strategic and progressive planning process across all years at the university. Accordingly, to support their personal and professional success, all COE students are required to confer prior to registration each semester with their assigned advisers. Faculty advisors consider this aspect of their responsibilities of particular importance.
COE students also benefit from the thousands of teacher-mentors throughout the region who contribute to the professional development of our teacher-interns. We are proud to partner with hundreds of schools throughout the region in preparing teachers and school administrators. Their collaboration enables us to provide our students with the diversity of experiences necessary for a solid foundation in teaching. As you consider enrolling in a COE offering, know that everyone involved is committed to your learning and development as a professional educator.
As you move through the COE web site, you will find an array of opportunities to prepare teachers for children and youth ranging from pre-school through high school. Our departments of Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education, Special Education and Secondary and Middle School Education offer undergraduate and graduate degree programs that meet state and national certification and accreditation requirements. Our various Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) programs provide multiple avenues for career changers and college graduates in other disciplines to prepare themselves for their particular niche in the teaching profession. Through our department of Educational Technology and Literacy we offer several paths for graduate degrees through the doctorate in the rapidly growing fields of Reading, School Library Media, Instructional Technology and an array of specialty disciplines. Our department of Instructional Leadership and Professional Development brings together graduate degree and certificate programs designed to prepare principals and assist school systems to understand and improve the quality of their educational offerings. Reflecting the growing awareness of diverse learning styles and needs, the College offers dual certification programs in Early Childhood/Elementary Education (ELEC); Early Childhood/Special Education (ECSE); and Elementary Education/Special Education (EESE). These programs are intentionally designed to prepare educators for today’s inclusive classrooms and the diversity of students and educational challenges found across PreK-8 classrooms.
The COE has maintained extensive involvement in continuing education and professional development for educators at all levels through the Towson Learning Network (TLN). Specifically designed as a means of outreach to the larger community, TLN offers courses and programs at the State's Regional Higher Educational Centers and at other sites. In August 2014, the University has opened a satellite campus on the Harford Community College campus. Already underway to serve students from Northeast Maryland, our EC/SE and EE/SE programs will continue to offer these programs in our state-of-the-art building.
Teacher preparation across the campus has a longstanding commitment to partnerships with community colleges across the State to increase access to four year programs for all students. We do so in order to make it convenient for teachers to enroll, participate and benefit from courses they want and need to remain at the cutting-edge of their profession. We are also entering into a new era of partnerships with several local school systems in which they will participate actively in supporting the quality of our pre-service preparation of teacher candidates and we will participate more actively in their support of newly hired teachers across the three year pre-tenure period. Together we are committed to maximizing teacher retention and assuring the success of all teachers as they enter a new era of reform in educational standards; student assessment and teacher evaluation.
From its humble beginnings in 1866 as the Maryland Normal School, Towson University has grown in capacity from its initial 11 students to its present enrollment of approximately 23,000 undergraduate and graduate students with projected enrollments approaching 25,000 in the coming years. Regardless of our size, however, our goal will not change--to prepare the best educators, the best instructional specialists, the best instructional leaders, and the best educational scholars for Maryland and the region. As we grow, we will not reduce our longstanding commitment to close faculty-student supervision, small classes and individual advising. In essence, the College of Education of Towson University will continue to remain true to its mission to “inspire, educate, and prepare facilitators of active learning for diverse and inclusive communities of learning in environments that are technologically advanced."
I thank you for visiting us and hope that the web site answers your questions and allows us to serve your needs.
Raymond Lorion, Ph.D.