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College Welcomes New Faculty

Published: Sep 12th, 2016 •• Category: Faculty Laurels, Spotlights


The UF College of Education appointed a half-dozen professors to the college’s full-time faculty this year. The appointments were in special education (two), the Anita Zucker Center for Excellence in Early Childhood Studies, ESOL/bilingual education, higher education and administration, and research and evaluation methodology (two).

The mini-profiles below can help you get better acquainted with our new faculty:

Benedict, AmberAmber Benedict, visiting assistant professor in special education

  • Comes from: post doctoral associate research position in special education at UF College of Education.
  • Research interests: Improving instruction for students with learning disabilities, including how general and special education teachers’ professional learning opportunities contribute to students’ literacy . . . “I am interested in exploring how teachers’ knowledge and instructional decision-making is related to the enactment of effective instructional practices, and ultimately student achievement.”
  • Noteworthy: Won an award from the Council of Exceptional Children’s Division of Research for her dissertation on professional development innovation using lesson study to support teams of general and special education teachers. … Previously taught elementary and middle school students with exceptionalities in Iowa, Arizona and Florida.

Gonsalves, VivianVivian Gonsalves, visiting clinical assistant professor in special education

  • Comes from: Served as professor-in-residence for the UF COE’s Advancing the Development of Preservice Teachers (ADePT) program, which focuses on strengthening students’ internship year in the college’s unified elementary education program.
  • Research interests: Elementary teacher education, reading instruction, prevention and remediation of reading difficulties, instruction in high-poverty areas and professional development for teachers.
  • Noteworthy: Former UF College of Education ProTeach student. … “It was during my UFLI (University of Florida Literacy Initiative) training when I truly developed a passion for working with struggling readers. As a clinical faculty member, I now have the privilege of teaching the UFLI model to preservice teachers enrolled in our teacher education program.”

KNOPF, HermanHerman Knopf, research scientist in the Anita Zucker Center for Excellence in Early Childhood Studies

  • Comes from: Yvonne & Schuyler Moore Child Development Research Center at the University of South Carolina, Columbia.
  • Research interests: Child care accessibility, parent selection of child care, early childhood workforce professional development, and use of administrative data.
  • Noteworthy: Returning to UF after having earned bachelor’s (Special Education), masters (Early Childhood Education) and doctorate (Curriculum and Instruction) degrees here. Title of his Ph.D. Dissertation: “Describing Quality Child Care from the Perspective of African-American Mothers.”

Kozuma, JoJo Kozuma, lecturer in ESOL/bilingual education

  • Comes from: University of Florida, where she earned a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction.
  • Research interests: Cross-cultural analysis of how sociolinguistic community structures support the development of bilingual speakers.
  • Noteworthy: Previously taught Japanese language and culture as well as English as a second language. … English-to-Japanese book translator in the sports field.

Peck-Parrott, Kelli

Kelli Peck Parrott, clinical full professor higher education administration

  • Comes from: Texas A&M University, where she was clinical professor and director of the master’s program in student affairs administration and human resource development.
  • Research interests: Focus on generational issues at work, student affairs administration and student development.
  • Noteworthy: Served as a trainer for companies such as Halliburton through the Center for Executive Leadership. … Earned a doctorate in higher education administration at Bowling Green State University with her dissertation “Crime on Campus: Communication Practices, Policies, and Ideal Practices of Campus Law Enforcement Officers and Campus Judicial Officers.”

SERAPHINE, Anne

Anne Seraphine, clinical assistant professor in research and evaluation methodology and coordinator of a new master of arts in education degree in Program Evaluation for Educational Environments.

  • Comes from: full-time adjunct lecturer in the college’s research and evaluation methodology program.
  • Research interests: How to best train evaluators to be culturally responsive, the intersection of exemplary teaching of evaluation and the challenges of online delivery, and statistical and psychometric procedures when applied to evaluation applications.
  • Noteworthy: Helped develop the new REM master’s degree by evaluating professional literature and standards and surveying evaluation programs at institutions comparable to the University of Florida . . . “As a result, with input from the REM faculty, I was able to select and build a sequence of courses for the new curriculum that should provide students with an exemplary, theory-based program in evaluation.” . . . She proposed four new courses; the university approval process is nearly complete for the program major and the courses.

Writer: Charles Boisseau, 352-273-4449