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Nancy Alex

Secondary Program Coordinator, Assistant Professor of Teacher Education

Contact Information

Dominguez Hall 101K

970.248.1517

nalex@coloradomesa.edu

Education

PhD, Educational Administration and Policy Studies: University of Denver
MA, Curriculum and Assessment: Adams State College
BS, Science Education: University of Wyoming
BS, Biology: University of Wyoming

Biography 

Nancy Alex, PhD, currently teaches everything from foundational courses such as What it Means to be an Educator, Pedagogy and Assessment and Content Methods to colloquia with student teachers. Alex believes learning is very much a social endeavor. As a result, students are collectively engaged in thoughtful exploration of the content, discussion and activity. 

Alex's scholarly interests are varied but tend to focus on issues of social justice in the educational world particularly around school finance. In addition, instruction and classroom practices are always of interest: engagement, classroom management and formative assessment. 

Alex has taught in public schools at the secondary level for 13 years. In addition to her classroom work, she has been both an elementary and middle school principal. Beyond work in the public schools, she developed a Professional Development Schools program in five mountain school districts in Colorado. Within the program, she taught teacher preparation courses, coordinated student internship experiences, supervised and evaluated interns as well as provided mentor training. 

In an instructional setting, teaching, learning and relationships are inextricably linked. Learning is a social activity orchestrated by the teacher to draw attention, interest, investment and effort of the students and is best accomplished when learners feel there is a valued relationship that exists between themselves and their teacher. The best learning occurs when students feel they are known, cared for and trusted. 

Student can trust that Alex will model a constructivist approach to content allowing them the challenge of sense-making. Student must be constantly aware of content but also the modeling of instructional strategies that can be modified and employed in their particular secondary content. 

It is critical for students to connect educational theory with experiences in the classroom. Whether this be through observation and analysis of a classroom environment, working to integrate "best practice" in small or whole group settings, or engaging in purposeful conversations with mentors about application of theory, students are able to identify the relevance of their coursework.