Message from Ester de Jong, Director of the School of Teaching and Learning

Welcome to the College of Education at the University of Florida. I am Ester de Jong, the Director of the School of Teaching and Learning.

As educators, we are entering a new era. Karl Fisch, an education contributor for The Huffington Post, notes, “We are currently preparing students for jobs that don’t yet exist, using technologies that haven’t been invented, in order to solve problems we don’t even know are problems yet.”  The ever-changing, diverse realities of our world today challenge those in our School to consider:

  • How can we create learning environments that foster 21st century skills for our learners across different teaching contexts (informal/formal, online/blended/face-to-face)?
  • How we can best prepare professionals who can design and construct such learning environments for diverse groups of learners in complex contexts, from pre-kindergarten to higher education?

To answer these questions, our faculty in STL pursues a diverse and rich research-driven agenda across disciplines, which has garnered state and national recognition.

Our mission in STL is to prepare our students to develop the knowledge and skills to contribute to our understandings about teaching and learning for the purpose of a just, compassionate, and informed citizenry. We have various degree and certification programs and each program provides students with a broad range of experiences, including robust course work, clinical and other practical experiences, and collaborative projects.  As a result, whether they become classroom teachers, teacher leaders, teacher educators, and/or researchers, our graduates will be leaders in their field.