The distinctive character of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville is defined by the faculty's demonstrated capability to fulfill the values of the Teacher Scholar Philosophy; a philosophy guided by a serious and continuing commitment to teaching, scholarship and service in the belief that scholarship complements and enriches excellence in teaching and service.
Adapted from the Teacher Scholar Philosophy of SIUE, Teacher Scholar Philosophy Working Group, 6/2/08
Dr. Mary K. Weishaar
Associate Dean, School of Education and Professor, Department of Special Education and Communication Disorders
Special education administration and legal issues, assessment, international issues in special education, use of case studies in the university classroom
| Recent Honors / Awards / Recognition: |
• Received a Fulbright Scholar Award – to lecture in Kiev, Ukraine (fall 2002)
• Member of peer review committee to select Fulbright Senior Specialist Awardees (current)
• Invited to contribute a book chapter on special education law, edited by a colleague from Yale University (Elena L. Grigorenko). The book, titled, Educating Individuals with Disabilities: IDEIA 2004 and Beyond, was published by Springer Publishers, in February, 2008.
• Manuscript coauthored with Dr. Victoria Scott, Talking Drawings as a University Classroom Assessment Technique. The manuscript is currently under review.
• Chairperson of SIUE Committee on Assessment (current)
Primary Courses Taught:
Graduate Legal Aspects of Special Education
Graduate Organization and Administration of Special Education
Undergraduate and graduate Assessment of Students with Disabilities
Primary Activities as Associate Dean: Accreditation and Assessment activities
M.S. Education – Eastern Illinois University
Ph.D. Education – St. Louis University
How does SIUE support your professional growth or activity as a Teacher-Scholar?
• I am student-centered and focused on helping students develop the essential skills, knowledge, and wisdom necessary to effectively work with children who have disabilities. SIUE is also student-centered.
• I am committed to emphasizing learning in the context of the “real world” of schools by developing and using many case studies in my classes. SIUE recognizes and values “real life” learning for students.
• I consistently receive high ratings from my undergraduate and graduate students and improve my teaching through professional development and peer feedback. SIUE values excellence in teaching and provides many opportunities to improve.
• I am a teacher scholar and I integrate and align research with teaching. For example, I co-authored or authored five texts that focus on real-life case studies and my motivation to development of these texts was the lack of these essential materials in existing professional publications. SIUE values integration of scholarship and teaching.
• I am a teacher leader. As special education program director and now, as associate dean of the School of Education, I am viewed as a person who can listen, bring people together, facilitate discussion, provide leadership or direction, and come to consensus on difficult issues. Most recently, I provided leadership for our School of Education Accreditation visit. SIUE values teachers as leaders."
What is a unique aspect of your professional life that enhances your service to the academic or greater community?
"Many mentors and outstanding colleagues contributed to my career choice and success. However, two mentors, Dr. Tom Shea (special education professor-emeritus) and Dr. Robert Wagner (special education professor emeritus), come to mind. After working as a public school special education teacher and administrator for 18 years, I worked with Dr. Shea, who was then chairperson of the Department of Special Education, as a consultant to my school district. I told Dr. Shea that I might be interested in teaching at SIUE and a month later, Dr. Shea called me to offer a one-year contract as an instructor. After that year, I was unanimously approved by the faculty to move to a tenure track position as assistant professor. I credit Dr. Shea with providing me with the opportunity to teach at SIUE. Dr. Wagner became a trusted and valued colleague after I came to SIUE. He encouraged me and helped me focus my research agenda so that I was able to publish scholarly work. I credit Dr. Wagner as a valued mentor who encouraged me in scholarship and believed in my work."