Vision & History
Teaching, Learning and Culture (TLAC) was established in 1969.
Over the years, TLAC has established a solid foundation of teacher preparation in undergraduate elementary and secondary education. In response to growing recognition to the need for more practical experience, the department continues to develop new programs and new approaches for the preparation of teachers. Many efforts have been supplemented by funded and non-funded research studies, grants and dissertations. In response to Texas legislature and national forums in the 1990s, the interdisciplinary studies degree program, which incorporates more field-based courses and experiences, was established. Today, preservice teachers usually complete 750 hours in various field-based settings.
Individuals who have served at the level of department head:
- Dr. Glenn Ross Johnson: 1969 –1974
- Dr. Robert E. Shutes: 1974 – 1980
- Dr. William H. Peters: 1981 – 1990
- Dr. James B. Kracht: 1990-1993
- Dr. Donna Wiseman: 1993 – 1995 (interim)
- Dr. William H. Rupley: 1995 – 1997
- Dr. Francis E. Clark: 1997 – 1999 (interim)
- Dr. John P. Helfeldt: 1999 – 2003
- Dr. Dennie Smith: 2003-2011
- Dr. Yeping Li: 2011-2015
- Dr. Lynn Burlbaw & Dr. Victor Willson 2015-2016 (co-interim)
- Dr. Michael de Miranda 2015-2022
- Dr. Claire Katz 2022-Present
Transform individuals, schools and society with a global view through our engaged scholarship, reflective teaching and collaborative service.
The central mission of TLAC is to create experiences that advance teaching, research and service through the application of knowledge in the preparation and development of quality educators; placing high value on collaboration, critical thinking, creativity, democratic governance and global leadership.
- Strive to exceed students’ expectations.
- Treat all people with respect and dignity.
- Aware and accommodating of cultural differences.
- Engage in public moral exchanges concerning the education and well-being of a community.
(Improve society and address important cultural and socio-economic problems.)
- Establish a friendly, trustworthy and accepting organization for our students.
- Value the interrelationships and interdependency of our department with public schools and the community.
- Establish relationships through trust, respect and integrity.
- Commit to seeking justice and compassion in our society.
- Encourage intellectual autonomy, honesty and integrity.
- Support collaborative forms of decision-making.
- Communicate and resolve differences in an open and professional manner.
- Accept responsibilities for our actions.
- Recognize and own problems that occur.
- Spend time looking for solutions rather than looking to blame.
- Committed to continuous learning for students and ourselves.
- View all people’s opinions as important and critical.
- Support each other in our work.
- Accept responsibilities in our groups in an equitable fashion.
- Use data to support and make prudent decisions.
- We do what we say we are going to do.
TLAC’s most recent comprehensive academic program review (APR) was completed in 2018. The self-study document provides information about the department, faculty and students as well as assesses the strength and challenges of the department. The APR process culminates with a review conducted by an external peer review team.