Dean's Update - University of Houston
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Dean's Update

Oct. 8, 2019

Message from the Dean 

As President Khator discussed in her recent fall address, the UH story – and our College story – is one of momentum.

Our research activity continues to increase, as good news about several large grants has come in recently. Congrats to the latest recipients!

We’ve also strengthened our community engagement work, particularly in the Third Ward area. As examples, about 30 students are working as AmeriCorps reading tutors at five elementary schools; 40 teaching students are serving as literacy mentors to middle school students; more than 100 HDFS students are mentoring at-risk eighth-graders; and health students are launching a school community garden.

Already two months into the semester, I ask you to keep up the momentum!



  • State Employee Charitable Campaign – Thursday, Oct. 31 donation deadline. Forms available from Paula Canada in Farish 438.
  • UH Homecoming Week – Monday, Nov. 11  - Saturday, Nov. 16.
  • UH Homecoming football game – Saturday, Nov. 16 vs. Memphis. TDECU Stadium. Time: TBD
  • Thanksgiving holiday – Thursday, Nov. 28 and Friday, Nov. 29.
  • Staff Council holiday lunch – Thursday, Dec. 12. KIVA.
  • Graduation – Saturday, Dec. 14, 6 p.m. Fertitta Center.



  • The communications team is thrilled to welcome Natalie Thayer as communications coordinator and Jennifer Hay, continuing her role as director of recruitment.
  • Please let Jennifer Hay know about any recruiting events you are hosting or attending so we can publicize and determine the best way to help.
  • You can find templates for letterhead, flyers and PowerPoint presentations on the intranet under “Communications.” Please note that flyers made with templates still must be emailed to Jaime Questell to seek branding approval.


Editor’s note: External grant awards typically are listed under Office of Research. For publications, additional authors are not included. Please email Ericka Mellon with any questions.

Curriculum & Instruction


  • Lanette Jimerson received a $25,000 award from the AERA Fellowship Program on the Study of Deeper Learning.


  • Jie Zhang, Yu Liu (PHLS), "Contribution of Home Language and Literacy Environment to English Reading Comprehension for Emergent Bilinguals: Sequential Mediation Model Analyses.” Reading Research Quarterly.
  • Jen Chauvot, “Online mathematics teacher education: Examples from professional learning programs for inservice teachers.” Handbook for Research on Pedagogical Models for Mathematics Teacher Education.

Conference Presentations/Invited Talks

  • Carrie Cutler and Jen Chauvot presented at the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators Texas conference. They shared Cutler’s research on the effects of explicit teaching of mindset on preservice teachers’ beliefs about math teaching and learning.
  • Jen Chauvot presented at the Conference for the Advancement of Mathematics Teaching on supporting math pre-service teachers in eliciting and interpreting student thinking. She also gave an invited talk about online instruction for the winter meeting of the Canadian Mathematical Society.
  • Jahnette Wilson, Sam Brower, Amber Thompson and Shea Culpepper had six presentations accepted for the Consortium of State Organizations for Texas Teacher Education conference in October.
  • Jerry Freiberg attended the invitation-only CASEL Foundation SEL program meeting in Chicago. The organization focuses on social-emotional learning nationally and has supported his work as a provider.

Other Kudos

  • Heather Domjan has teamed with Olga Bannova of Cullen College of Engineering to hold a panel discussion with astronauts and cosmonauts on Oct. 16 at 1 p.m. at Student Center South.

Educational Leadership & Policy Studies


  • Representatives from the University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA) will be in town Oct. 16-18 for a site visit. UCEA is a consortium of higher education institutions committed to the preparation of school leaders, and UH is a finalist to host the organization.


  • Vincent Carales, “Finding Place: Cognitive and psychosocial factors impacting Latina/o students’ sense of belonging.” Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice. “Examining educational attainment outcomes: A focus on Latina/o community college students.” Community College Review.
  • Lyle McKinney, Vincent Carales, “Does Federal Work Study Work for Students of Color and Low-Income Students?Teacher’s College Record.
  • Elsa Gonzalez, “Why Universities Voluntarily Pursue US Accreditation: The Case of Mexico.” Higher Education.

Book Chapters

  • Ruth López, “A Critical Examination of Television News Coverage of the DREAM Act of 2010 and The Implications for Families, Schools, and Communities.” Critical Perspectives on Education Policy and Schools, Families and Communities.

Psychological, Health, & Learning Sciences


  • Jorge Gonzalez, Milena Keller-Margulis, “A qualitative analysis of school psychology trainers: Perspectives on evidence-based practices.” International Journal of School Psychology.
  • Yu Liu, Jie Zhang (CUIN), “Contribution of home language and literacy environment to English reading comprehension for emergent bilinguals: Sequential mediation model analyses.” Reading Research Quarterly.
  • Lorraine Reitzel, “Advancing academic careers through professional mentorship.” Health Behavior Research.

Books/Book Chapters

  • Margit Wiesner, “Criminal Trajectories: A Developmental Perspective.” New York University Press.


  • From the start of fall term to end of September, PEEPS Pantry took in a little more than 1,000 pounds of food and gave out almost 800 pounds of food to students. Donations accepted in Farish 160 or online.
  • Please share the following information with students about the Provost’s Undergraduate Research Scholarship (PURS) program:
    • Application deadline for spring 2020: Nov. 4, 2019
    • All full-time juniors and seniors with at least a 3.0 GPA who have not previously participated in the PURS program are eligible to apply.
    • Recipients receive a $1,000 scholarship to conduct a one semester research project with a faculty mentor.
    • Visit the PURS website or email Brittni MacLeod in the Office of Undergraduate Research at for more information.


  • The online Training Library for Dissertation/Thesis Resources has been updated with important information about formatting. Please share with students. Supplemental videos are in the works.
  • Reminder: For any MyAdvisor changes, updates or questions, contact Bernice Roberts at
  • Curriculog is open for the 2020-21 cycle. Refer to the Sept. 3 email for more details. Submission schedule:
    • Nov. 1 – Faculty CBM submission deadline to Curriculog
    • Nov. 8 – Department Committee CBM review deadline
    • Nov. 22 – College Graduate Studies Committee CBM deadline
    • Dec. 6 – Office of Graduate Studies CBM review deadline


Grant Support

  • News from NIH: We encourage everybody from graduate students to senior scientists to register for an ORCID account AND  link it to your eRA Commons personal profile.
    • Starting Oct. 1, 2019, ORCID identifiers will be required for individuals supported by institutional research training, career development and other research education awards. xTrain appointments will not be accepted for agency review if potential appointees do not have an ORCID iD linked to their eRA personal profile. ORCID iDs will also be required for PD/PIs on individual fellowship and career development applications submitted for due dates on or after Jan. 25, 2020.
    • For more details, see the full Guide Notice or the recent Open Mike blog.

Office Transitions

  • We wish Lori Armstrong every success in her new position as associate director, post-award, for the Office of Contracts and Grants at MD Anderson.
  • We anticipate adding a new research administrator. In the meantime, we have shifted team responsibilities to provide seamless support during this transitional period. For now, please contact Amy Jones ( for pre-award support.


  • We’re pleased to announce that Milena Keller-Margulis has been added to our COE OOR Honor Roll to reflect research activity through Aug. 31, 2019. Please join us in congratulating her! We installed the honor roll in the welcome area of suite 466 last fall to help fulfill one of COE’s strategic plan objectives: “to publicly recognize/reward examples of high quality and impactful research projects.” More updates coming!

Grant Awards

  • Assessment, Intervention, and Instruction for the Prevention and Treatment of Dyslexia (AIIPAT: Dyslexia). U.S. Department of Education/Office of Special Education Programs. $1,471,308 (incl. 8% IDC). Kristi Santi (ELPS), PI; Jacqueline Hawkins (ELPS), co-investigator; Shawn Kent (ELPS), co-investigator.
  • Leadership for Special Populations and Educational Disparity (LEAD: SP+ED). U.S. Department of Education. $1,250,000 (incl. 8% IDC). Kristi Santi (ELPS), co-PI; Jacqueline Hawkins (ELPS), co-PI; Shawn Kent (ELPS), co-investigator.
  • 2019-20 CougarCorps AmeriCorps Program. Corporation for National and Community Service/OneStar Foundation. $252,363. Anne McClellan (Dean’s Office).

Grant Submissions

  • Novice Teachers’ Learning in Formative Assessment and Classroom Discussion in Middle School Mathematics. James S. McDonnell Foundation/Rice University. $123,013. Weihua Fan (PHLS).
  • A Peer-based Approach to Enhance Physical Activity in Inactive Women. American Cancer Society/ University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. $92,024 (incl. 53% IDC). Lorraine Reitzel (PHLS).
  • Regional Early Childhood Education Support Specialists (RECESS). Texas Education Agency/Region IV Educational Service Center. $107,145 (incl. 53% IDC). Cathy Horn (ELPS).
  • Enhancing Reading Comprehension and Pragmatic Social communication Skills in Upper Elementary and Secondary School Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Institute of Education Sciences. $1,399,995 (incl. 26% IDC). Sarah Mire (PHLS), co-investigator; Shawn Kent (ELPS), co-investigator.
  • Collaborative Proposal: Developing and Testing Innovations: Reading to Code. National Science Foundation. $975,227. Anne McClellan (Dean’s Office), co-PI; Zenaida Aguirre-Munoz (PHLS), co-PI.
  • Deeper Learning and Technology Integration: Implications for Writing Assignments and Quality Student Work. American Educational Research Association. $25,000. Lanette Jimerson (CUIN).
  • Latina Women Studying and Researching in STEM: An Asset-based Approach to Increasing Resilience and Retention. National Endowment for the Humanities. $6,000. Elsa Gonzalez (ELPS).
  • Helping Everyone Achieve a Lifetime of Health – Future Addiction Scientist Training. National Institutes of Health. $1,304,903 (incl. 53% IDC). Ezemenari Obasi (PHLS), co-PI; Lorraine Reitzel (PHLS), co-PI.
  • REU Site: Undergraduate Research Experience in Frontiers in Data-Driven Computing. National Science Foundation. $401,011 (incl. 53% IDC). Cathy Horn (ELPS), co-investigator.
  • University of Houston – Advancing Cultural and Computational Engagement in STEM Scholars (UH-ACCESS). National Science Foundation. $1,199,872 (incl. 53% IDC). Conra Gist (CUIN), co-investigator.


Staff Council invites all College of Education faculty and staff to our Holiday Celebration Luncheon Thursday, Dec. 12 at noon in the KIVA.

Dean’s Update typically publishes on the second Tuesday of each month.

Prior newsletters are archived on the College website.

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