Research

Faculty, staff, and students in the College of Education and Human Services conduct research designed to produce knowledge that contributes to a better educated, healthier, and more just society.  Such research is characterized by a commitment to scholarly rigor as well as ongoing improvement and innovation, equity and social justice, and stewardship of ethical best practices.

Our research reflects a commitment not only to add to the bodies of knowledge and practice in the disciplines represented in the college, but also to address the consequential issues faced by local, national and global communities.  Through their research, faculty, staff, and students seek to provide useful answers to questions about organizational and programmatic processes, contextual factors, and outcomes in education and human services.

Faculty members hold numerous grants from federal, state and local agencies as well as private funders to support both research and programmatic work.  Faculty and staff members have received external funding from a variety of funders, including the US Department of Education, National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, NJ Department of Health and Senior Services, and the Spencer Foundation.  For example, the Spencer Foundation is funding faculty research on the development of prospective leaders’ thinking related to the role and use of data in supporting student learning and school improvement; and on the design and validation of a new measurement instrument called the Dialogic Instruction Tool (DIT), to be used for formative and summative evaluations of teachers’ use of dialogic pedagogical practices.  The National Science Foundation is funding faculty research on the development of effective evaluation systems, with a focus on STEM education programs.

In 2009, the College received the largest federal grant ever awarded to Montclair State University—a 5-year $6.3 grant from the U.S. Department of Education for The Newark-Montclair Urban Teacher Residency Program (NMUTR).  Based on the medical residency, the NMUTR prepares future teachers through apprenticeships with practicing teachers in the Newark Public Schools and also provides support and professional development for those mentor teachers.  Several faculty members are conducting research on this innovative clinically–based teacher preparation program in the hope of contributing to the understanding of this innovative but under-studied approach to the simultaneous preparation of future and current teachers.

As part of our commitment to data-driven research and evaluation, the College launched the Center for Research and Evaluation on Education and Human Services (CREEHS) in 2010.  CREEHS conducts high quality multi-disciplinary and multi-method research and evaluation studies to produce useable knowledge in education and human services, and to contribute to public policy that addresses the most pressing issues in education and human services. CREEHS collaborates with and provides services to educational agencies and institutions, community organizations, and health-related government and human services agencies. Housed within the College of Education and Human Services, CREEHS also provides a venue for researchers, faculty, and graduate students to collaborate in carrying out thoughtful and responsive evaluation and research studies.

In 2011, the College received a 5-year, 1.4 million dollar grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education programs for a project entitled: "Restructuring Preservice Preparation for Innovative Special Education." This project will restructure Montclair State University's existing post-baccalaureate Dual Certification MAT program to prepare middle and secondary educators through three interdisciplinary strands of teacher preparation: inclusive pedagogy, intensive content area preparation in mathematics or science, and integrative STEM education. The program is designed to prepare teachers for inclusive middle and secondary math and science classrooms who have knowledge and expertise to increase student achievement in the critical fields of science, technology, engineering and math, promote educational reform through collaborative,integrative teaching practice, and provide a more skilled and diverse STEM workforce for the future.Project faculty and staff are conducting research on this cutting-edge teacher preparation program to further understand the implications of merged general education/special education teacher preparation and its effect on the STEM achievement of students with disabilities.