Graduate Studies

Graduate Programs

11/08/2016 11:48 am

graduate studies portal

For more than 50 years, Rockford University has provided opportunities for graduate study. Our graduate programs offer a sound academic tradition which can be tailored to suit individual needs.

Since 1952, the Rockford University Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degree has established a proud tradition as a teacher of teachers. Our MAT graduates have distinguished themselves as educational leaders throughout the nation.

The Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree began in 1980 after extensive study of the needs of the Rockford area business and corporate community. With these needs in mind, our MBA program has become a vital and integral part of both the community and the University.

Small classes and a professional, experienced, and dedicated faculty provide our graduate students with a quality learning experience.

 

Graduate Student Documents


Graduate Student Documents

Session Descriptions

10/27/2016 12:46 pm

SESSION DESCRIPTIONS

The Executive Development Program begins with a broad base of leadership training in communication, coaching, managing, messaging and teaming and moves to more specific disciplines for the remaining seminars. Participants can choose to take several of the seminars or all of them. For those who are pursuing the Leadership Charter, a total of 16 out of 20 must be taken in order to receive the designation.

While each seminar builds on the preceding seminars, there are no prerequisites to these subjects.

Seminar #1 

Leadership, Beyond Management – Participants will be introduced to leadership, both as a concept and as a series of actions and behaviors that one carries out. Discussions will include the differences between management and leadership, how to develop leaders, lessons to be learned from leaders and the relationship between leading and following. Leadership styles and situational leadership will also be addresses in this interactive session that will help the participants understand their strengths and weaknesses as a leader.

Recommended Books/Articles:
The Leadership Challenge by Kouzes and Posner

Seminar #2 

Communication for Leaders – This overview in communication styles handles all types of communications: interpersonal, written, oral and non-verbal as well as how to articulate messages professionally using positive message framing, questioning and listening techniques. This seminar is the foundational course for all communication related seminars to follow in the leadership program and an important primer for anyone in a leadership position. Skills and tactics learned in this seminar can help make a good leader clear and effective in critical communication techniques. How do good leaders ‘frame’ messages so as to be clear and effective? What questions does a leader make sure to answer in order to effectively translate to the audience both direction and the need for action? How do you deliver a difficult message? How do you gain organizational understanding? And finally, how, as a leader, do you move from understanding to action?

Recommended Books/Articles:
Great Communication Secrets of Great Leaders by John Baldoni
Lead With Purpose by John Baldoni

Seminar #3 

Time Management and Decision Making – Participants will be introduced to the concepts of time management including prioritization, allowance for external factors beyond our control and the specific deliberate planning that is part of visioning and making specific goals a reality. Classroom discussions will engage the decision making skills of participants with their colleagues and assess their own time management style and the positive and/or negative effects it can have on leading their teams.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Decision Making – 5 Steps to Better Results by Harvard Business Essentials
8 Minutes – Find Your Focus, Master Distractions and Get the Right Things Done by Bregman

Seminar #4 

Team Building and Team Dynamics – Team environments and team development are often the cause of success or failure of a team. Stages of team development are explored and participants are asked to think of where their teams are in terms of growth and effectiveness. Also inherent in teams are the changing roles and responsibilities of each team member. This seminar deals with how to make smooth and effective transitions when those changes occur so that productivity is not lost. Emphasizing the benefits of teaming as well as avoiding the pitfalls of teaming are discussed to help leaders maximize their performance. Participants will talk about the critical elements of accountability, trust, followership, reward and recognition as they relate to effective teams.

Recommended Books/Articles:
The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni
Creating Teams with an Edge The Complete Skill Set to Build Powerful and Influential Teams by Harvard Business School Publishing

Seminar #5

Motivating, Engaging and Retaining Employees – Using both classic motivational theory and real world examples, this seminar deals with motivating and engaging employees so the organization has the best talent at its fingertips is one of the most challenging and critical jobs of a leader. Establishing a receptive environment, leaders must be in regular communication with their employees. Leaders must also assess performance and work with the employee to affirm solid career expectations. Most importantly, leaders must communicate that employees are valued and appreciated so as to prevent their most talented people from becoming flight risks.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Results-Based Leadership by Dave Ulrich; Jack Zenger; and Norm Smallwood
Encouraging the Heart: A Leader’s Guide to Rewarding and Recognizing by James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner

Seminar #6

Conflict Management and Resolution – In any work situation, there will be conflict. This seminar discusses how to manage and resolve conflict in a way that continues to encourage future discussion and exchange of ideas while leaving co-workers able to communicate productively. Concepts of active listening, clear explanations, asking and answering questions, working across generational and cultural differences, having difficult discussions while maintaining a professional demeanor are all key skills taught through discussion, role playing and exercises. This seminar is an especially good for teams for whom conflict has become a barrier to productivity and achievement of goals.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Leading Through Conflict – How Successful Leaders Transform Differences into Opportunities by Gerzon

Seminar #7

Coaching Individuals and Teams – A critical part of getting the best performance from an individual or a team is to understand how to coach. Many leaders have strong management skills, but maximum performance comes through engaging the individual or team to look for and develop their own specific talents that move them forward. Class discussions center around the key differences between managing and coaching as well as applying practical examples of coaching from personal lives; the lessons from which can be directly applied in the professional arena. This is an excellent seminar for those who are both first time leaders and managers and those who have challenges getting their team to perform at a high level.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Coaching for Performance by Whitmore

Seminar #8

Assessment and Feedback – How does a leader assess the actions, behaviors and results of his team and how can feedback be given so it is constructive and results in changes and improved outcomes? This seminar deals with holding individuals and teams accountable to each other and to the organization in a way that keeps people motivated and interested in continuous improvement.

Recommended Books/Articles:
The Execution Premium by Kaplan and Norton

Seminar #9

Change Management Change is constant and strong leaders need to be able to prepare their teams to continue to perform despite changes in leadership, corporate policy, market pressures, team members, economics and positions. This seminar uses communication tools learned in the Communication for Leaders and Organizational Communications seminars to promote healthy transitions to new ways of doing business. Class discussions will focus on the resistance to change, why it is natural and how it can be overcome.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson
Leading Change by John Kotter

Seminar #10

Leadership, Strategy and Strategic Planning – Strategic leadership is challenging. In order to be truly strategic, you have to think outside the tasks that present themselves as urgent everyday and focus on the long-term planning that will position an organization to properly succeed. In addition to taking a longer term view, much strategic planning is centered around biases, pre-conceived notions, group-think and ‘we’ve always done it that way’ types of thinking. It is very difficult to get an entrenched group of upper-level managers to roll back their thought processes and focus on what really is important to the future of the business. This seminar will challenge leaders to really look at their organizations and ask the right questions in order that they can lead to a place of growth, success and stability.

Recommended Books/Articles:
The Four Disciplines of Execution by McChesney and Covey
Essentials of Strategic Management by Hunger and Wheelen

Seminar #11

Marketing and Managing Messages Reaching your audiences and earning trust is an important part of keeping and growing your customer base. This seminar deals with the kinds of questions you must ask yourself to understand the framing of your external message. Audience analysis, message framing, message distribution; all of these are elements of effective communications with your publics. This seminar deals with framing your message and using the optimal mix of communication channels to bring that message to your audience. Topics include: public relations, social media, advertising, printed material, direct mail, websites and word of mouth as well as how to optimize the useage of all the media together for maximum effect.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Light Their Fire by Drake et al

Seminar #12

Total Customer Service – Is it just a department that is responsible for customer service or is it the responsibility of everyone in the organization to ensure excellent customer service? The seminar deals with how good leadership has a strong role to play in a solid customer service mentality that runs throughout the organization. Other topics include the definition of a customer (anyone that needs something – whether internal or external to the organization – that you can provide) and a discussion on the limits of a customer’s power. What is a customer-centered organization and how can a leader instill that kind of customer-first attitude that gives some organizations a huge competitive advantage in the marketplace?

Recommended Books/Articles:
How Great Leaders Get Great Results by John Baldoni

Seminar #13

Cultural Adaptation – We tend to think of cultural adaptation in a narrower context of communication across national boundaries. But the kind of cultural adaptation that leaders need in today’s more complex world goes beyond physical borders. Issues such as cultural adaptation across language, generations, professional disciplines, knowledge bases, regions, plant locations and even departments can threaten the health of a team and increase leadership challenges. This seminar deals with identifying all the ways that culture changes and how to adapt, learn and lead with a complex variety of variables.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Intercultural Business Communication by Chaney and Martin

Seminar #14

Gender Relations in Organizations – Gender relations in the workplace are as old as the human race. We tend to take them at face value without understanding different perspectives and why they may exist. This seminar examines socio-cultural norms and compares those to how we guide our behavior both around the same and different genders. In order for leaders to be effective, they must understand how to work with these differences to communicate in a positive and meaningful way. Also incumbent on a leader is the responsibility of ensuring the team feels communicated and included. Differences between men and women are discussed in the following areas: communication, power structure, negotiation and leadership styles.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Different But Equal by Kay E. Payne
Leadership and the Sexes by Gurian and Annis

Seminar #15

Ethics – This model offers an exploration of ethics on a variety of different levels. It defines business ethics and discusses how that differs from personal and societal ethics. How do you ensure that you think ethically and how do you encourage ethical behavior from the people within your organization? In defining ethics, discussions focus on the five ways to think ethically 1) the greatest good, 2) rights and duties, 3) fairness, 4) virtue and 5) the common good. How do organizations manage ethics to ensure that everyone is following the corporate standard? And finally, what is a leader responsible for in the guiding of the organization? How far can a leader go to impose a value system and where are the boundaries?

Recommended Books/Articles:
Just Business by Sternberg

Seminar #16

Financial Management Anyone who is not an accountant, financial planner or bookkeeper is intimidated by business finances declaring that they ‘don’t DO balance sheets’. This seminar works with participants to deconstruct the tools of the financial world so that leaders can make sense of the reports and numbers coming out of accounting. Reading a balance sheet, income statement and statement of cash flows are all part of this refresher course in understanding the importance and the messages behind your business’s numbers. This seminar is an excellent way to help foster confidence and clarity for non-financial students.

Recommended Books/Articles:
How to Read a Financial Report by John Tracy

Seminar #17

Project Management Ensuring a project is completed on time, on budget and managed to a quality standard is a critical skill needed in leadership. Marshalling all of the talent necessary to achieve a single goal requires a variety of different skills and abilities. This seminar helps leaders to understand the risks and rewards of project management. It will also address how to manage scope creep, how to keep projects on time and how to balance the resources involved in the completion of the project.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Extreme Project Management by Doug deCarlo

Seminar #18

Human Resource Management Leaders need to understand the value of effective recruiting, developing and retaining crucial talent. This seminar will challenge leaders to consider strategies to develop and maintain enough people with crucial skills, now and in the future. The seminar will help talent-focused leaders understand basic HR principles and practices and provide insights into how to get more from HR.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Retooling HR by John Boudreau

Seminar #19

Negotiating – Many situations leaders face call for effective negotiations. This model will help the leader learn strategies for negotiating effectively. The leader will also be give specific tactics to use to outline an agreement or counter an attack. How to prepare for negotiations, how to negotiate to claim and create value and how to reduce biases and make proposals more appealing will be addressed.

Recommended Books/Articles:
Getting to Yes by Fisher and Ury
Negotiation Genius by Deepak Malhotra and Max H. Bazerman

Seminar #20

Forecasting – The seminar will help leaders understand the value and limitations of forecasting. It will look at why highly significant yet unpredictable events need to be understood and how leaders can see misleading patterns in data. Various forecasting techniques will be introduced along with important forecasting concepts such as correlation and causation.

Recommended Books/Articles:
The Future of Everything – The Science of Prediction by David Orrell
The Black Swan by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

DEPARTMENT INFORMATION

Office of Graduate Studies
PURI School of Business--Lower Level
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-4040
fax: 815-394-3706
Michele Mehren, Assistant Director
MMehren@rockford.edu

Hours:
Mon-Fri - 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Chat with an Admission Counselor

Graduate Certificate Program

10/27/2016 12:43 pm

GRADUATE CERTIFICATE PROGRAM

We’re looking for people who want to change things for the better and want to change them now! If you’d like to become a better business person without a long-term business school commitment, our Graduate Certificate in Business Administration could be just right for you.
It’s practical. The Graduate Certificate program is a value-added feature of the PURI School of Business, providing an advanced-level business series for professionals who want stronger business skills, but aren’t necessarily thinking MBA. It’s comprised of five of our core MBA courses, each designed to build and improve upon your basic business skills. Classes are kept small to allow you to share with other students and learn from their management experiences.

The Graduate Certificate courses are: Legal Environment of Business, Management and Leadership Theory and Practice, Marketing, Organizational Communication and one MBA elective of your choice.

It’s convenient. Courses are scheduled with the needs of working professionals in mind. All are offered at least twice a year and run for 15-16 weeks in the fall and spring and for eight weeks in the summer. You could complete your Graduate Certificate in Business Administration in as little as one year.

It’s surprisingly affordable. The Graduate Certificate in Business Administration offers you a series of graduate-level business courses for less than you would expect to pay for a couple of week-long seminars.

The benefits. If you own your own business, you’ll run it more effectively. If you work for someone else, you’ll be a more valuable employee. And if you happen to fall in love with the program, all your certificate credits will apply toward earning your MBA at Rockford University.

As a business leader, you have the power to promote astonishing changes–in your business, in your community, and in your world. If that sounds exciting to you, please contact us.

More information about the Graduate Certificate Program

DEPARTMENT INFORMATION

Office of Graduate Studies
PURI School of Business--Lower Level
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-4040
fax: 815-394-3706
Michele Mehren, Assistant Director
MMehren@rockford.edu

Hours:
Mon-Fri - 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Chat with an Admission Counselor

Requirements and Policies

10/25/2016 1:21 pm

REQUIREMENTS AND POLICIES

  • Students must maintain a 3.00 GPA in all required graduate course work attempted in the MAT program.
  • A “B” average is required in all 600 level foundations courses, with no courses accepted in which graded below a “C” have been earned. A 600 level foundations course can be repeated only once.
  • Students with baccalaureate degrees from accredited colleges or universities may register for graduate level course work for which they have met the prerequisites as non-degree seeking students-at-large.
  • If a student chooses to apply to the MAT program to seek a degree, only a maximum of 12 hours will be accepted at the time of matriculation upon the approval of the MAT committee.
  • Students are expected to enroll in at least one course every school year (fall semester through summer session). Students who are not enrolled for two years (six concurrent semesters), which includes summer semesters, will be deactivated. To be readmitted, students must reapply and follow the rules, regulations, and requirements in effect at the time of reapplication.
  • For Rockford University’s policy on adding and dropping courses, please refer to the Rockford University Academic Regulations.
  • Matriculated students must have signed Plans of Study on file before they will be allowed to register for certain courses or graduate. Plans must be developed in consultation with their advisors before the pre-registration period.
  • Students must complete all requirements for the degree within five years.
  • Upon approval, a maximum of six semester hours of appropriate graduate credit completed elsewhere within the past five years, with a grade of at least B, may be counted toward the degree requirements. The courses must not be part of another master’s degree program.Determination of the acceptance of transfer credit will be made at the time of matriculation.  Application for transfer credit subsequent to matriculation must be approved before students register for courses at other institutions.
  • Students seeking state licensure as part of the MAT program must take and pass one of the following: Basic Skills Test, Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP), ACT w/Writing, SAT test, prior to taking specific classes.
  • Some graduate courses are dual-listed with undergraduate courses. Course requirements will differ for graduate students enrolled in these courses.
  • All Instructional Strategies MAT students are required to submit a professional portfolio which shows concrete, observable evidence of mastery of teaching skills. Complete details on this portfolio will be provided upon admittance.
  • Typically, the MAT degree is a 36 credit hour program. However, a 32 credit hour plus thesis/project option is available. Full details on this option will be made available upon request.
  • Students must complete and submit to the Graduate Office two graduation forms, along with the graduation fee in order to have their degree posted on their transcript.  Forms can be found on this website.

It is your responsibility to be familiar with all of the policies and procedures of your program.  A complete list of policies and procedures listed in the Academic Catalog.

Office of Graduate Studies
PURI School of Business--Lower Level
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-4040
fax: 815-394-3706
Michele Mehren, Assistant Director
MMehren@rockford.edu

Hours:
Mon-Fri - 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Chat with an Admission Counselor

Registration Form and Classes

10/25/2016 1:16 pm

REGISTRATION FORM AND CLASSES

Online Course Schedule

Rockford University offers a real-time search-able schedule and catalog descriptions. You may also do a more specific search using a “Keyword” or by specifying the exact “Course” number. Begin a search >>

Downloadable Course Schedule ‌

In addition, a class schedule is also available for download. The schedules are updated periodically, but may not reflect the most current information.

Schedules Available:

Please note that the schedule is subject to change so be sure to check for updates as they become available.

Registration Form

Please complete and submit the form for MAT course registration and click the submit button to send.  There is a non-refundable $50.00 registration fee each semester. (This does not apply to PLS registrations).

  • I agree to pay tuition, room and board (if applicable), and all other applicable fees when due as stated in the current Rockford University Catalog (Academic Catalog).  I acknowledge that I have read the most current Rockford University Academic Catalog and understand the University’s policies concerning the amount and due dates for the foregoing charges.  If any of the foregoing charges are not paid for a period of thirty (30) days after due, then, in addition to any other remedies the University may have, a finance charge of 1.5% per month will be added to the amount which is past due.  The annual percentage rate will be 18%.  Further, should the University place my account in the hands of an attorney for collection, I will pay all costs and attorneys’ fees incurred in attempting to collect the account.
  • If I drop from some or all of my courses and become eligible for a refund as a result, I understand that it is my responsibility to notify the Office of Student Administrative Services in writing to request a refund in accordance with the policy listed in the catalog.  I further understand that my failure to send written notice may result in a forfeiture of some or all of my refund.ie

You must notify the Graduate Office by the drop date to drop a course without financial penalty.

Registration Form >>

Office of Graduate Studies
PURI School of Business--Lower Level
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-4040
fax: 815-394-3706
Michele Mehren, Assistant Director
MMehren@rockford.edu

Hours:
Mon-Fri - 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Chat with an Admission Counselor

Apply to the Program

10/25/2016 1:13 pm

APPLY TO THE PROGRAM

‌Admission to both the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) and Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs is coordinated through the Office of Graduate Studies. To apply for Rockford University’s MAT or MBA programs, fill out the online application or contact the Office of Graduate Studies.


Admission Requirements

For admission to the MAT program, students must submit the following to be evaluated:

Submission of the above does not guarantee admission
**You MUST be admitted prior to taking your 12th credit hour**

DEPARTMENT INFORMATION

Office of Graduate Studies
PURI School of Business--Lower Level
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-4040
fax: 815-394-3706
Michele Mehren, Assistant Director
MMehren@rockford.edu

Hours:
Mon-Fri - 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Chat with an Admission Counselor

Fees and Financial Aid

10/25/2016 1:07 pm

FEES AND FINANCIAL AID

Graduate Studies (MAT and MBA) Fee Schedule

Graduate application fee $50
Transcript evaluation (MAT) $75
Tuition 2016-2017 $710 per credit hour
Tuition 2015-2016 $710 per credit hour
Non-refundable registration fee per semester $50
Graduation fee $115
Transfer credit fee $20 per course
Transcript (official) $5
GRE Test (MAT) $185
GMAT Test (MBA) $250
MBA Prerequisite Test $50

Financial Aid

There is a limited amount of financial aid that Rockford University offers to its admitted graduate students. Learn more >>

Grants

The Part-Time Student Voucher Grant provides a $150 per credit hour discount, up to $900 per semester, to part-time degree-seeking or certification-seeking students in good academic standing, subject to these restrictions:

  • Application forms are required each semester and due within 10 days after the semester begins.
  • Students who receive tuition reimbursement from outside sources are not eligible.
  • Students may not use this grant in conjunction with other scholarships or aid plans (grants and loans).
  • Students must be enrolled in 6 hours or less to qualify and in good academic standing.

Application forms are available at Student Administrative Services (SAS) or the Graduate Studies Office.

Additional fees not listed here may also apply and are subject to change without notice.

Employee Reimbursement /Tuition Deferment Program

Rockford University will defer your tuition payment until after you have completed the semester to allow time for your employer to reimburse you. The program is limited to reimbursable tuition costs only; registration fees and textbook costs are not eligible for deferment, even though you may receive reimbursement for these costs. Please ask for a Tuition Deferment Form at the Office of Graduate Studies.

Learn more about our Employer Reimbursement/Tuition Deferment Program >>

 

MAT—GRE Fee Reimbursement

You may be eligible for GRE fee reimbursement. In order to receive this aid, you must fill out the FAFSA form. Your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) must be equal or less than $1900.

MBA—Additional Information

The Rockford University MBA program offers a $250 per credit hour scholarship to employees of public and not-for-profit organizations desiring to take courses leading to an MBA. The discount is available only to those currently receiving less than 50 percent of the cost of tuition and applies to a maximum of two courses per semester.

Office of Graduate Studies
PURI School of Business--Lower Level
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-4040
fax: 815-394-3706
Michele Mehren, Assistant Director
MMehren@rockford.edu

Hours:
Mon-Fri - 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Chat with an Admission Counselor

Faculty and Staff

10/25/2016 1:02 pm

FACULTY AND STAFF

 

 


 

Associate Professor; Chair and Unit Head, Department of Education
Ed.D, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV
M.A., Marshall University, Huntington, WV
B.S., Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ
Phone: 815-394-5071
E-mail: CMccullough@rockford.edu
Assistant Professor of Education, Interim Director of Early Childhood Education Programs
M.Ed. - Integrated Studies Brock University St. Catherine's, Ontario, Canada
B.Ed., Elementary Education K-8, University of Ottawa (Ottawa, Ontario)
H.B.O.R., Honors Bachelor of Outdoor Recreation, Certificate in Tourism and Recreation, Lakehead University (Thunder Bay, Ontario)
B.A., Geography/English, Lakehead University (Thunder Bay, Ontario)
Phone: 815-226-5172
E-mail: EBott@rockford.edu
Elisa Bott, assistant professor of Education and interim director of Early Childhood Education programs, has enjoyed a varied career of over 20 years in education in both the public and private systems in Canada and abroad. She began her career as an outdoor education teacher, then taught in preschools and elementary schools, was an instructional coach, and a curriculum consultant for both Literacy and Numeracy (Kindergarten through high school).

She has presented at numerous international conferences on teacher professional development strategies and effective implementation of best practice in Literacy and Numeracy. While in Shanghai China, she worked as an Assistant Principal at the British International School of Shanghai. Lisa has published numerous articles and book reviews on teacher professional development. She has always been and remains a passionate advocate for effective teacher education and professional development. Her favorite role however, is that of Mom to her three boys.
Adjunct Professor of Education
Dean, College of Social Sciences, Commerce and Education; Professor of Education
Ph.D., Education, Curriculum and Instruction, Southern Illinois University
M.Ed., Education, Salisbury State University
B.Mus., Music Education, West Virginia University
Phone: 815-394-5204
E-mail: DDew@rockford.edu
Dr. Debra Dew serves as the Director of Elementary Education. In addition to securing clinical placements for students seeking elementary certification, she teaches the middle school programs class, the elementary student teaching seminar, and the field experience class. She has extensive experience as a K-12 music teacher in the Maryland Public Schools.

Dr. Dew received her BMUS from West Virginia University, her MS from Salisbury State University, and her Ph.D. from Southern Illinois University. She is a member of the Association of Teacher Educators, the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, and Phi Delta Kappa.Debra Dew is a former public school music teacher. She teaches middle and secondary education methods courses and specializes in effective practice related to teacher education. An active member of the Association of Teacher Educators (ATE), Dr. Dew has served on several national committees.
Unit Compliance Accreditation Specialist
M.A.T., Teacher Leadership, University of Illinois-Springfield
B.S., Early Childhood Education, University of Illinois-Urbana/Champaign
Phone: 815-226-4377
E-mail: LEaston@rockford.edu
Laura Easton serves as the Education Unit’s Accreditation Compliance Specialist, who oversees the assessment plan and federal and state accreditation projects for the Education program. Laura is also an early childhood adjunct instructor. She has experience in teaching kindergarten and early elementary students in the greater Rockford area.
Assistant Professor of Education
Ed.D., Northern Illinois University
M.S., Northern Illinois University
B.A., Northern Illinois University
Phone: 815-226-3365
E-mail: LGerzel-Short@rockford.edu
Assistant Director of the Library of Congress Project
Phone: 815-226-3336
E-mail: MGriffith@rockford.edu
Assistant Professor of Education
Ph.D., History of Education, Indiana University
M.A., Ethnomusicology, University of Limerick (Ireland)
B.M., Music Education, Ithaca College
Phone: 815-226-4097
E-mail: JHardesty@rockford.edu
Jacob Hardesty is an Assistant Professor of Education at Rockford University, where he teaches foundations courses in educational history and research methods.  He completed his Ph.D. in 2013 at Indiana University in educational history.  His work has appeared in the High Ability Studies, American Educational History Journal, a forthcoming issue of History of Education Quarterly, and edited volumes.  He also serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Historical Research in Music Education.  Dr. Hardesty has a B.M. in Music Education from Ithaca College and an M.A. in Ethnomusicology from the University of Limerick, Ireland.  Before coming to Rockford, he taught music for four years in public and Catholic schools, as well as education courses at DePauw University and Indiana University.

Dr. Hardesty’s primary research interest involves the historical connections and tensions between popular culture and public education. His dissertation, which he is currently revising as a book, explores educators’ perceptions and responses toward the impact jazz would have on young people in the 1920s. More than a musical genre, jazz operated as the clearest diving line between a Victorianist ethos of restraint and an emerging modernist alternative. Despite a general dislike among both groups, university faculty and administrators allowed students more agency to shape the culture of their institutions than their secondary school colleagues, who sought to minimize young people’s exposure to jazz.
Adjunct Associate Professor of Education, Visiting Lecture, & 1st Year Advisor
Phone: 815-226-4174
E-mail: RJames@rockford.edu
Licensure Officer
Phone: 815-226-4159
E-mail: EJohnson-Lovett@rockford.edu
Elizabeth Johnson-Lovett is the Licensure Officer with the Education Department at Rockford University. Elizabeth started working at Rockford in the Education Department as the Administrative Assistant. After working with the Education Department and Education students for four years, she took on the role as the Certification/Licensure Officer. Elizabeth is the liaison to the Illinois State Board of Education and entitles teacher candidates with their teaching licenses and endorsements.

Elizabeth has been involved in teaching and education for a number of years. She has a passion to help students learn so they can become productive and engaging community members. She currently serves as a school board member to a local school district and has been serving since 2005. Elizabeth has also been teaching CCD at her church for over 20 years. She has taught grades Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 5th grade.

By being employed at Rockford University, Elizabeth was able to complete her long time goal to complete her Bachelor’s Degree. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Management Studies in May 2011. Elizabeth proved to her two daughters that you are never too old to learn and achieve your goal. Both of Elizabeth’s daughters have attended Rockford University. Her oldest daughter is currently working on her Bachelor’s Degree in Management Studies while also working full time.
Adjunct Professor of Education
Director of Licensure Programs
M.A., Anthropology, McGill University (Montreal, Canada)
B.S., Education, Northern Illinois University
B.A., Philosophy, Macalester College
Phone: 815-226-4096
E-mail: MLagunas@rockford.edu
Maitreyi Lagunas has worked in private and public schools in DeKalb and Rockford, Illinois teaching elementary and middle school.  Maitreyi is presently pursuing her Reading Specialist.  She lives in Rockford with her husband and 3 children, and in her free time, she enjoys reading, gardening, and exercising.
Administrative Assistant Library of Congress Grant
Phone: 815-394-5044
E-mail: NMorris@rockford.edu
Director of Elementary Education, Assistant Professor of Education
Ed.D., Educational Leadership, Northern Illinois University
M.Ed., Educational Leadership, Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville
B.A., Education, Eastern Illinois University
Phone: 815-226-3337
E-mail: SueSmith@rockford.edu
I have been involved in the field of Education since 1974. During my time in Prek-12 education, I have been a high school English/Journalism teacher, an elementary principal, middle school principal, assistant superintendent and a superintendent. During my eighteen years in the classroom, I coached several sports including tennis, cross-country, and track.

As an administrator for 15 years, I worked with all of facets of administration including the administration of the bilingual, Title 1, and school improvement grants as well as being in charge of the day-to-day operation of a building or district. Since I have come to Rockford University, I have continued to serve the field of education by preparing future educators by teaching classes in middle school methods, classroom management, and student teaching.
Associate Professor of Education
M.A.T., Reading Specialist, Rockford University
M.S., Education, Administration, Northern Illinois University
M.S., Education, Special Education, Loyola University, Maryland
B.S., Theology, Way College of Biblical Research, Indiana
B.S., Physical Education, Towson University, Maryland
A.A., Harford Junior College
Phone: 815-226-4181
E-mail: LStafford@rockford.edu
Professor Stafford brings to the Rockford University community teaching expertise from the regular classroom to separate setting special education classrooms; preschool to adult; recreation, camps and conferences; instruction to supervision.  She received the “Excellence in Teaching” award for Rockford University in 2013 and has been acknowledged by the Illinois Board of Education as “Those Who Excel” for classroom teacher.  She serves as Special Education Faculty in the Education Department providing instruction on exceptional children – Survey, Methods, Classroom and Behavior Management, Literacy, and Diagnosis. Lynn is a member of the Council of Exceptional Children, Kappa Delta Pi, Illinois Reading Council and the Association and Supervision of Curriculum Instruction.  She has served on accreditation university teams for ISBE, Content Test review teams for Pearson and is a qualified scorer for licensure for edTPA. She provides professional development for local agencies and serves as a tutor for the Rockford Area Literacy Council.
Assistant Professor of Education: Director, Reading Specialist program
M.A.T., Reading, National University, Costa Mesa, California
B.A., Liberal Studies, Concordia University, Irvine, California
Phone: 815-226-4178
E-mail: KWagner@rockford.edu
Kimberlee Wagner is an Assistant Professor in the Education Department. She teaches literacy courses in the early childhood, elementary, and reading specialist programs. Professor Wagner spent six years teaching elementary grades in Southern California. After moving to Illinois in 2003, Professor Wagner taught art, music, Title I Reading, and Reading Recovery in several local school districts.  Professor Wagner received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Liberal Studies from Concordia University in Irvine, California, and her MAT in Reading from National University in Costa Mesa, California. She is currently in the dissertation phase of an Ed.D in Reading, Language, and Literacy at National Louis University. Her research interests are guided reading and professional development practices for teachers.
Adjunct Professor of Education
Adjunct Professor of Education
Adjunct Assistant Professor of Education
Adjunct Professor of Education
Adjunct Professor of Education

DEPARTMENT INFORMATION

Office of Graduate Studies
PURI School of Business--Lower Level
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-4040
fax: 815-394-3706
Michele Mehren, Assistant Director
MMehren@rockford.edu

Hours:
Mon-Fri - 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Chat with an Admission Counselor

ON-CAMPUS PROGRAMS

The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) has granted approval for Rockford University to offer initial licensure programs in early childhood, elementary, secondary, special education, and K-12.  Program approval has been granted in the following secondary content areas: social sciences (history), science (biology and chemistry), mathematics, English, theatre arts, visual arts (K-12), physical education (K-12), and foreign language – French, German, and Spanish (K-12).

OFF-CAMPUS PROGRAMS

‌‌‌‌Since 1998, Rockford University has offered the instructional strategies track of the MAT. This track is offered at various off-campus sites throughout the state. Except for a two-week summer residency on our beautiful campus, all courses can be delivered at a location near you. The core of the instructional strategies track is a series of courses offered in partnership with PLS 3rd Learning, a course-designer firm with a national reputation for quality. PLS 3rd Learning courses are practical, based on evidence from best practices and research, and are filled with ideas that you can use in your classroom immediately. Foundations of education courses and electives, which are common to all MAT tracks, offer the theoretical foundations that guide your professional practice.

In our most recent quality review, the North Central Association commented that “The Instructional Strategies MAT program fulfills an identified user need perceived by participants and their school officials as being without equal,” and that “University personnel are highly praised for their attentiveness to student needs as evidenced both in written evaluations and team interviews.”

 
You will find that even though you may live many miles from Rockford, you can obtain an answer to any question you have from our friendly, competent Graduate Studies Office staff. All of us in the Graduate Studies Office consider our off-campus program participants to be valuable members of the Rockford University community. You also will find that the Rockford University master’s degree program is surprisingly affordable, with a full range of payment options.

We are pleased that you are considering the Rockford University master’s degree program from the many options that are available to you. Of the programs currently offered, Rockford University is among the most beneficial to teachers. We invite you to take the first step toward earning your MAT at Rockford University. More about PLS 3rd Learning

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Off-Campus Schedule

Office of Graduate Studies
PURI School of Business--Lower Level
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-4040
fax: 815-394-3706
Michele Mehren, Assistant Director
MMehren@rockford.edu

Hours:
Mon-Fri - 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Chat with an Admission Counselor

REGISTER NOW

Register NowRegister now and take up to four classes before officially applying to one of our graduate programs.

About the MAT

10/25/2016 12:49 pm

ABOUT THE MAT

Empowered Minds Learning Together

Since 1952, Rockford University has granted Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degrees. Our graduates have gone on to establish themselves as exceptional teachers throughout Rockford, the state and the nation. The Rockford University Master of Arts in Teaching program is designed to help students develop further knowledge in one or more academic disciplines, to increase understanding of the educational process, and to enhance various skills involved in teaching. Rockford University offers several programs of study which meet the professional requirements for teachers in Illinois and most other states including the Early Childhood Education program. Candidates may also complete the course work necessary for a Learning Behavior Specialist I (LBS I) in Special Education, a Reading endorsement, or a middle school endorsement in a variety of subject areas.

Rockford University, in cooperation with PLS 3rd Learning, also offers several graduate-level courses designed to provide practical, up-to-date teaching strategies for practicing educators. These courses are acceptable as an area of concentration in the Instructional Strategies program and as electives in all other programs.

Our Programs

We offer a thesis option (32 hours) and a non-thesis option (36 hours) for MAT tracks. Learn more about our On-Campus and Off-Campus programs >>

Licensure Tracks

Non Licensure Tracks

  • Instructional Strategies
  • MAT in Education

Length of the Program

Most students can reasonably complete the MAT degree in two or three years, depending upon the number of courses taken per semester. Students have up to five years to complete all degree requirements.

Endorsement Plans of Study ‌‌

DEPARTMENT INFORMATION

Office of Graduate Studies
PURI School of Business--Lower Level
5050 E. State Street
Rockford, IL 61108
815-226-4040
fax: 815-394-3706
Michele Mehren, Assistant Director
MMehren@rockford.edu

Hours:
Mon-Fri - 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Chat with an Admission Counselor

REGISTER NOW

Register NowRegister now and take up to four classes before officially applying to one of our graduate programs.