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School Psychology program receives NASP national recognition status

Georgia Southern University’s College of Education received notification that its Ed.S. in School Psychology program has been awarded full-approval/national recognition status from the National Association of School Psychologist (NASP), a recognition of the program’s demonstrated consistency with NASP standards.

Program Director Dawn Tysinger, Ph.D. said that she and the fellow school psychology faculty are “thrilled to be granted this prestigious seal of high quality training.”

For our future graduate students, this means that they are assured that their education and experiences within the program meet the highest national standards,” explained Tysinger. “For our current graduate students, this means that they are automatically eligible for the Nationally Certified School Psychologist Credential (NCSP) upon passing the Praxis II exam. The licensure/certification processes for our alumni are facilitated across the country, and they are eligible for additional stipends in some states.”

The NASP review process is an important indicator of quality graduate education in school psychology, comprehensive content and extensive and properly supervised field experiences and internships, as judged by trained national reviewers.

The process of NASP approval involves a multi-year evaluation where faculty members collect, analyze and interpret data on every aspect of the program design and student outcomes as they align with the NASP Standards for Training and Field Placement for Programs in School Psychology,” explained Tysinger. “The submission to NASP comprises hundreds of pages of evidence that is reviewed and critiqued by a review team and then the Program Accreditation Board to determine program quality and render an approval decision.”

Currently, Georgia Southern is one of only three universities in the state of Georgia with NASP-approved school psychology programs and has the only specialist degree program in the state that is nationally-recognized and NASP-approved. Georgia Southern’s NASP accreditation will be in effect for seven years, the maximum period granted by NASP.

Associate Dean of Graduate Education and Research Tracy Linderholm, Ph.D., expressed that this acknowledgement echoes the hard work of the program’s faculty.

“The faculty in this program are very forward thinking and are constantly making refinements to the curriculum and program procedures to better meet the needs of their students as they train to become practicing school psychologists,” said Linderholm.

School psychology program faculty include Terry Diamondurous, Ph.D., Dawn Tysinger, Ph.D., and Jeff Tysinger, Ph.D.

For more information about the Ed.S. in School Psychology program, visit

COE programs recognized for excellence in assessment

Recognized COE faculty included: (l-r): Lina Soares, Ph.D.; Dawn Tysinger, Ph.D.; Yasar Bodur, Ph.D.; and Shelley Woodward, M.Ed.

Ten degree programs from the College of Education (COE) were recognized for Excellent Academic Program Assessment Reports during Georgia Southern University’s Fourth Annual Assessment Symposium on Feb. 15.

Each year, the symposium recognizes institutional assessment procedures completed at an exceptional level. The University is committed to creating a culture of performance assessment not only for accrediting purposes but because of its utilization in improving and maximizing student learning.

Programs and faculty recognized included: M.Ed. Early Childhood Education, Julie Garlen, Ed.D; M.Ed. Secondary Education, Michelle Reidel, Ph.D.; M.A.T. Middle Grades Education, Greg Chamblee, Ph.D.; M.A.T. Special Education, Shelley Woodward; M.A.T. Spanish Education, Marcela Ruiz-Funes, Ph.D.; Ed.S. Early Childhood Education, Ed.S. Middle Grades Education, and Ed.S. Secondary Education, Yasar Bodur, Ph.D.; B.S.Ed. Middle Grades Education, Lina Soares, Ph.D.; Ed.S. School Psychology, Dawn Tysinger, Ph.D.

In a prepared written statement, University Provost Jean Bartels, Ph.D. expressed her gratitude to the faculty for their diligence in the assessment process.

“Your efforts with assessment lay the cornerstone for academic excellence and student success,” Bartels wrote. “Thank you so much for your hard work and dedication. We are all winners as a result.”

Representing the COE on the Academic Assessment Steering Committee are l-r): Kymberly Harris, Ph.D., Elizabeth Prosser, Ph.D., and Jeff Tysinger, Ph.D.

Director of Academic Assessment, Delena Bell Gatch, Ph.D., also commended faculty for their outstanding work and the difference it makes for the University.

“We are doing amazing things across this campus, and I know that, not because of the assessment reports, but because of interacting with individuals,” Gatch said. “… As a campus, we have a passion for students.”

Academic Program Assessment Reports are collected annually from all Georgia Southern academic programs. Reports are reviewed and scored by the University’s Assessment Steering Committee using a rubric evaluating the quality of the report. The review of reports is coordinated by the Office of Institutional Effectiveness.

The College of Education is represented on the Academic Assessment Steering Committee by faculty members Kymberly Harris, Ph.D., Elizabeth Prosser, Ph.D., and Jeff Tysinger, Ph.D. who also serves as an Academic Assessment Leader for the committee.

SPSA hosting toiletry drive for Fostering Bulloch

The College of Education’s School Psychology Student Association (SPSA) asks for your support as they collect toiletry items for children in the foster care system. Items can be dropped off at the College’s Graduate Academic Services Center located in office suite 3166. Donations will be collected until Monday, February 27 at 5 p.m.

Donations will help to stock Fostering Bulloch‘s Hope Closet which provides toiletries and clothes to foster children. The following items have been requested by Fostering Bulloch: toothpaste, toothbrush, toothbrush case, dental floss, mouth wash, chap stick, travel tissues, shower gel, soap, soap travel case, deodorant, unscented lotion, q-tips, small toiletry case, travel shampoo, travel conditioner, brush or comb, hair elastics, nail clippers, nail file, and small mirror.


COE alumni baseball ticket giveaway


Georgia Southern University’s College of Education is giving away baseball tickets in appreciation of their alumni!

COE alumni are eligible to win four free tickets to the Saturday, February 25 (3 p.m.) match-up between Georgia Southern and the University of Georgia. To be entered for your chance to win, COE alums must “like” us on Facebook and/or “follow” us on Twitter!

A winner will be selected at random from our Facebook and Twitter followers and announced on Monday, February 20, 2017.

Share with your fellow alum! If they aren’t following #GeogiaSouthernCOE on social media, they will miss out!

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COE alumna named a GA Science Teacher of Promise

College of Education alumna Tamra Lamb teaches science and mathematics at Mattie Lively Elementary School.

The Georgia Science Teachers Association (GSTA) selected Tamra Lamb as its 2017 Georgia Science Teacher of Promise at the elementary school level.  Lamb, a fifth-grade science and math teacher at Mattie Lively Elementary School was honored by GSTA at a special awards banquet on Feb. 3, at the Atlanta Evergreen Conference Resort as part of the annual GSTA Science Conference.

“Tamra Lamb is a magnificent educator whom I feel blessed to work with,” said Dr. Carolyn Vasilatos, principal of MLES. “Her passion for science is unparalleled. She’s only been teaching three years, and joined our faculty in July.” Lamb previously served the district for two years at Langston Chapel Elementary School.

A Double Eagle alumna, Lamb received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in early childhood education from Georgia Southern, where she made an equally strong impression on the faculty. She was actually nominated for the Georgia Teacher of Promise Award by one of her former professors, Katie Brkich, Ph.D., in the College of Education’s Department of Teaching and Learning.

“I have worked with many pre-service and in-service teachers in my six years at Georgia Southern University, but none whom I am as proud to have worked with as Tamra,” Brkich said in her letter of recommendation to GSTA. Brkich further wrote, “Tamra moved to a fifth-grade math and science position this year at Mattie Lively Elementary. She has thrived! She has not only transformed the way her students see and feel about science, but also how the other fifth-grade teachers on her team teach science.”

Lamb and other nominees had to complete an application process which included essay responses about how they would improve science education in their schools and school system, details about recent science lessons, and description of unique or creative lessons they have developed based on Georgia’s science standards. Nominees also had to submit three letters of recommendation. Applications were evaluated by a panel of judges using a rubric.

“Ms. Lamb works tirelessly to have an engaging classroom environment with multiple stations and activities prepared for her students,” said Vasilatos.  “She also works very closely with the science educators at Georgia Southern.”

The GSTA’s Teacher of Promise awards recognize science teachers with one to three years of experience who demonstrate exceptional promise.  The elementary, middle and high school recipients each received a $750 prize. Kia Mills of AR Johnson Health Science and Engineering Magnet School in Richmond County was GSTA’s middle school-level winner, and Elizabeth Downey of Allatoona High School in Cobb County was the high school-level winner.