School of Education

The School of Education at St. Edward’s University embraces teaching excellence and cultivates a superior level of preparedness for today’s culturally diverse learning environments for all levels of education (elementary school, middle school, secondary school and all-level) and kinesiology professions.

Each program prepares students for the teaching certification exam upon graduation. While each discipline has its own faculty, space and resources, all share a common approach that draws upon these advantages:

  1. Small classes that readily flex to a diversity of viewpoints and faculty members who take an active role in preparing graduates for multicultural teaching environments.
  2. Approachable master-teachers whose top priority is ensuring you benefit from a personalized learning experience.
  3. Fundamental tools for future educators, such as curriculum planning, managing a classroom and learning models, are experienced through actual teaching time in St. Edward’s University classroom labs and through partnerships with the Austin Independent School District.
  4. Essential “cross training,” in the form of critical analysis, synthesizing information and articulating precise arguments (orally and in writing), that will carry you through your teaching career — and into educational administration or beyond.

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Dean's Message

Dear Future Education Students:

Today’s educational environment has been called “constant whitewater.” It is always changing. There are continual challenges. But it's also exciting and exhilarating — for both the teacher and the student.

To prepare new educators for this 21st-century learning environment, the School of Education challenges students to be thoughtful, ethical leaders who strive for social justice in communities and schools both local and global. Our students develop skills for successfully coping with change and seamlessly integrating new technologies into their lessons. And as they learn to differentiate for individual learner needs, they hone their ability to serve each child in their classroom.

We couple this knowledge with field-based preparation. This invaluable combination provides practical, hands-on experiences that help students establish their “fit” to the profession. They receive their coursework and are assigned to classrooms in local schools. They are immersed in all aspects of the school day and volunteer for such programs as Citizen Schools, Latinitas and America Reads. As a result, our students become valued, active members of the Austin education community even before they graduate.

Ensuring such success for our students is critical to our mission. Our emphasis on both global perspective and respect for the individual is both real and tangible, as our commitment to preparing bilingual teachers demonstrates. Our support services and co-curricular activities are exceptional. And just as we meet and exceed state and national accountability standards, we strive to create a personalized, supportive learning environment that nurtures students as they gain knowledge and solidify their own values.

Those of us who teach, and want to teach, know that it is demanding, hard work. It also can be fun and joyful. In the School of Education, we prepare new educators who will have a positive and lasting impact on the learning lives of their students.

 Grant  W. Simpson Jr., PhD


Grant W. Simpson Jr., PhD
Dean, School of Education


Grant W. Simpson Jr., PhD Dean, School of Education; Professor of Educational Leadership Phone: 512-448-8655

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J. Frank Smith, PhD Associate Dean, School of Educaton; Professor of Kinesiology Phone: 512-448-8555

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Robert Strong, PhD Associate Dean, University Programs Phone: 512-428-1299
Peter Austin, PhD Assistant Professor Phone: 512-448-8611
Kristy K. Ballard, PhD Assistant Professor of Kinesiology Phone: 512-637-1991

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Alexandra Barron, PhD Assistant Professor Phone: 512-464-8878

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Steven Fletcher, PhD Assistant Professor of Secondary Education Phone: 512-637-5673

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Arcelia L. Hernandez, EdD Assistant Professor of Bilingual Education Phone: 512-448-8746

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Lisa Hernandez, PhD Associate Professor Phone: 512-448-8674
Laura Hernandez-Ehrisman, PhD Assistant Professor Phone: 512-428-1315

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David Hollier, EdD Program Director, Master of Arts in Teaching; Assistant Professor of Education Phone: 512-448-8666

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Jennifer Jefferson, PhD Visiting Assistant Professor
John Knorr, EdD Professor of Kinesiology Phone: 512-448-8450

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Judy A. Leavell, PhD Associate Professor of Reading Phone: 512-637-5674

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Cory (Julia) Lock, PhD Associate Professor and Director of General Education Phone: 512-428-1269
Leslie Loughmiller, EdD Assistant Professor of Special Education Phone: 512-637-1906

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Susan Loughran Professor Phone: 512-448-8490
Amy Nathan Wright, PhD Assistant Professor Phone: 512-637-1947

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Terry Newton, PhD Professor Phone: 512-448-8574
Todd Onderdonk, PhD Assistant Professor Phone: 512-637-5632
Thomas R. Pate, PhD Associate Professor of Kinesiology Phone: 512-464-8863

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Katie Peterson Assistant Professor of Reading
Charles R. Porter, MLA Assistant Professor Phone: 512-627-3793
Kris Sloan, PhD Associate Professor of Education Phone: 512-637-5672

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Fleck Hall recreates the classroom experience for tomorrow’s teachers.

Fleck Hall
Renovated: 2007

A dynamic learning environment like Fleck Hall sparks innovative thinking. This well-built 1960s structure was transformed into a brilliant state-of-the-art learning center in 2007, with classrooms especially tailored to the needs of the School of Education. Fleck also hosts meetings from all over campus in its third-floor conference rooms, which give spectacular views of the Austin skyline.

Key Features
  • Cutting-edge design taps into the energy and spirit of the original architecture while using sustainable practices
  • Nine technology-rich classrooms with multimedia capabilities
  • Experiential learning center replicates the classroom environment
  • Teaching laboratory with resources and technology just like in the field
  • Gallery space for presentations and symposia
  • Eight multipurpose conference rooms with multimedia support for group learning and presentations
  • Lounge area with comfortable seating and computer workstations