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College of Education > News and Publications > News: July - September 2013 > College Welcomes 15 New Faculty Members

College Welcomes 15 New Faculty Members

The College of Education announces 15 new faculty members will join the college.

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State’s College of Education welcomes 15 new tenure-line faculty members this semester.

Mandy BiggersMandy Biggers, assistant professor of science education, recently completed her doctoral work at the University of Iowa, earning her Ph.D. in science education. Her research interests include curriculum adaptation among elementary science teachers, fidelity of implementation of science curriculum, inquiry continuum (teacher-directed to learner-directed), inquiry in the elementary classroom, and teacher education. Her most recent manuscripts, "Elementary teachers' curriculum design and pedagogical reasoning for supporting students' comparison and evaluation of evidence-based explanations" and "Balancing teacher and student roles in elementary classrooms: Preservice elementary teachers' learning about the inquiry continuum" were published in the Elementary School Journal and International Journal of Science Education, respectively.

Julia BryanJulia Bryan, associate professor of counselor education, was a member of the faculty at the University of Maryland. She holds a Ph.D. from Maryland, a M.Ed. from the University of Southern Mississippi, and a B.S. from the University of the West Indies. Her research interests include school-family-community partnerships, school bonding, student-counselor contact and student outcomes.


SeriaShia ChattersSeriaShia J. Chatters, assistant professor of counselor education, is a licensed mental health counselor, professional school counselor, and professional program evaluator. She aided in the development of and served as the coordinator of the University of South Florida Counselor Education Program's Summer Institute for Counseling the Military and Their Families. She holds a Ph.D. and an M.A. from the University of South Florida and a B.S.B.A. from Midland Lutheran College in Fremont, Nebraska. She is currently on the editorial board of the Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development. Chatters’ research interests include bullying prevention and counseling the military and their families. Two of her recent publications include “A diversity sensitive developmental model of psychotherapy” in the Journal of Contemporary Psychotherapy and “A holistic, multicultural approach to career counseling” in Experiential Activities for Career Counseling Vol. III.

Wendy CodutiWendy Coduti, assistant professor of rehabilitation counseling, arrives from Michigan State University, where she was a faculty member in the Department of Counseling, Educational Psychology and Special Education. Coduti earned her Ph.D. from Michigan State. Her research focuses on disability management, aging workers and postsecondary youth with disabilities.


Liliana GarcesLiliana M. Garces, assistant professor of higher education, was a member of the faculty at George Washington University. She holds an Ed.D. and Ed.M. from Harvard Graduate School of Education. She earned a J.D. from the University of Southern California School of Law. Her areas of specialization include access, equity, and diversity in higher education, and social science research and law. She is an editorial board member for the Review of Higher Education. Her three most recent publications include: “Social science research and the courts: Considering post-Grutter v. Bollinger developments in higher education cases” in Educational Policy, “Understanding the impact of affirmative action bans in different fields of graduate studies” in American Educational Research Journal, and “Racial diversity, legitimacy and the citizenry: The impact of affirmative action bans on graduate school enrollment” in Review of Higher Education.

Jason GinesJason Gines, assistant professor of rehabilitation counseling, is completing his doctoral work at Penn State in the area of counselor education and supervision. He earned his M.Ed. from Penn State, an M.Div. from Vanderbilt University, and a B.A. from the University of Missouri. His research interests include multicultural issues, client assessment in rehabilitation and human services and culture, and disability.


Mari HanedaMari Haneda, associate professor of world languages education, was a member of the faculty at the Ohio State University. She holds an M.Ed. and a Ph.D. from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto. As an educational linguist and qualitative researcher, her research centers on the educational experiences of immigrant students, particularly on the ways in which they become socialized into local language and literacy practices as a result of their participation in classroom events that occur at the intersection of the enacted curriculum and the macro-sociopolitical milieu of which they are a part. Adopting sociocultural, critical, multimodal, and trans-lingual perspectives, she investigates the construct of ‘academic communication’ across the curriculum, the role that writing and technology play in promoting L2 language and literacy development, and the professional development of those who teach English language learners. Some of her recent selected work includes: “Strangers and professionals: Positioning discourse in ESL teachers’ work” in Urban Review, “Learning science through dialogic inquiry: Is it beneficial for English-as-additional-language students?” in The International Journal of Educational Research, and “Learning about the past and preparing for the future: A longitudinal investigation of a grade 7 “sheltered” social studies class” in Language and Education.

Megan HopkinsMegan Hopkins, assistant professor of English language learning education, arrives from Northwestern University, where she served as a postdoctoral research fellow. She earned a M.Ed. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and a Ph.D. in education from the University of California, Los Angeles. Her research examines the intersections of educational policy, teacher education, and school and classroom practice with a particular emphasis on English language learners. She is the author of "Fully accounting for English learner performance: A key issue in ESEA reauthorization," in Educational Researcher, and co-editor of the book Forbidden Language: English Learners and Restrictive Language Policies.

Neal HutchensNeal Hutchens, associate professor of higher education, was a member of the faculty at the University of Kentucky. He received a Ph.D. in education policy from the University of Maryland at College Park, a J.D. from the University of Alabama School of Law, a master’s in secondary education from Auburn University at Montgomery and a B.A. in history from Samford University. His scholarship centers on law and policy matters in higher education, with much of his research focused on institutional autonomy concerns and issues dealing with speech and expression, including in relation to academic freedom.

Ravinder Koul

Ravinder Koul, associate professor of curriculum and instruction, is a member of the faculty at Penn State Great Valley and curriculum and instruction program coordinator. He will come to University Park in 2014. Koul is a former physics teacher who holds a Ph.D. from Penn State. He has published more than thirty research articles in peer-reviewed educational journals. His recent research interests have focused on investigations that apply motivational goal theory perspectives on STEM education, English medium instruction, and plagiarism. He conducted Fulbright senior specialist assignments in Thailand during 2006 and 2010 and was selected for another senior specialist award for South Korea in 2013. He teaches courses in science education, educational research and curriculum development.

Austin MulloyAustin Mulloy, assistant professor of special education, arrives from Virginia Commonwealth University, where he was a faculty member in the Department of Special Education and Disability Policy, and the interdisciplinary program titled Virginia Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (Va-LEND). Mulloy earned his B.A. in religious studies, M.Ed. in educational psychology and Ph.D. in special education all from the University of Texas at Austin. His research interests include gastrointestinal dysfunction, diet, and behavior in children with autism spectrum disorders, and methods for statistical analysis and meta-analysis of single-subject research.

Adnan QayyumAdnan Qayyum, assistant professor of adult education, was director of Distance and Online Education at the University of Manitoba. He was previously a senior fellow and learning specialist at the Centre on Governance at the University of Ottawa, and a consultant. He holds a Ph.D. from Concordia University in Montreal, a M.A. from the University of British Columbia and a B.A. from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. Qayyum's research interests include distance learning planning and management, instructional design, program evaluation, and the effect of ICTs on adult learning in organizations.

Mary Catherine ScheelerMary Catherine Scheeler, associate professor of special education, moves to University Park from Penn State Great Valley, where she was a faculty member and program coordinator for special education. She earned a Ph.D., M.Ed. and B.S. all from Penn State. Her research interests focus on the nature and impact of feedback in teacher preparation, using Bug-in-Ear technology to provide immediate feedback to teachers, and generalization of effective teaching techniques from university to classroom settings.

Jonte TaylorJonte “JT” Taylor, assistant professor of special education, has been serving as a fixed-term assistant professor at Penn State. He holds a Ph.D. and M.Ed. from Auburn University in special education specializing in autism/behavior disorders and a B.A. from Tuskegee University in special education. His research interests are in the areas of science instruction for students with disabilities, bullying, social/life skills, autism, emotional/behavioral disorders, and innovative teaching strategies.

Mark ThreetonMark Threeton, assistant professor of workforce education, has been serving as a fixed-term professor at Penn State. He holds a Ph.D. from Penn State, an M.S. from Kansas State University and a B.S. from Pittsburg State University. His research interests lie in teaching and learning modalities, as well as occupational safety, and health for workplace professionals. Threeton has published two books: Managing Technical Programs and Facilities and Providing a Safe Teaching and Learning Environment.

-- by Andy Elder (August 2013)