Benedictine University’s School of Education equips candidates with the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that will shape and influence learning through critical thinking, research-based decisions, and best practices. These practices produce outcomes for teacher candidates to become highly effective practitioners who actively engage with content to promote critical thinking skills, innovatively manage the learning environment, and consistently monitor student progress to adjust curriculum delivery while collaborating with others to positively impact students, the community, and the professional field. As an integrated whole, the conceptual framework contains the overarching purpose of the unit: to create effective practitioners.
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Dr. Joyce Jeewek joined the school of education faculty full-time in 2006. Formerly, she worked as an elementary teacher, reading specialists, special education intervention manager, principal, district curriculum director, and an adjunct faculty member for Northern Illinois, Lewis and Benedictine Universities. Dr. Jeewek's passion is education! Dr. Jeewek earned her Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction, a Masters of Science in Education for Language Arts and Reading, and a Bachelor of Science in Education with a concentration in Mainstreaming from Northern Illinois University. In 2010, Dr. Jeewek added an ESL endorsement from Benedictine University to her resume.
Dr. Jeewek's research interests include qualitative studies where teachers, as practitioners, examine ways to improve student learning. Her areas of interest include: reading and the language arts, assessment driving instruction, differentiated instruction, effective reading comprehension and writing strategies, family literacy, English Language Learners, children's literature and family literacy. Her work is published in peer-reviewed journals, including the Illinois Reading Council. Dr. Jeewek delivers numerous presentations at local, state, and international conferences. Dr. Jeewek has also had her students present at various conferences. She teaches children's literature, reading and the language arts, and reading assessment courses to both undergraduates and graduate students.
Professional development is important to Dr. Jeewek. She is currently president of the Prairie Area Reading Council and is a voting board member of the Illinois Reading Council. Dr. Jeewek is a member of the Kappa Delta Pi, international education honor society Chapter Services Committee, in charge of developing strategic plans for the organization. She also is a member of both the International Reading Association's Arbothnot and Jerry John's Award Committee and the Illinois Reading Council's Barack Obama Literacy Award Committee. In 2009, Dr. Jeewek was awarded an Honorable Mention Award by the Barack Obama Literacy Fund and received a small library to use in her children's literature courses for future educators. As a Prairie Area Reading Council board member for the past seven years, Dr. Jeewek has been a part of a council that has received both Honor Council and Council of Excellence from both the Illinois Reading Council and the International Reading Association. She has also received numerous membership and speaker grants and membership idea awards from the Illinois Reading Council.