Context and Unique Characteristics

Murray State University has long recognized teacher preparation as a major institutional focus. Established in 1922 by the Kentucky General Assembly as Murray State Normal School, the institution was renamed Murray State College in 1948 and achieved university status in 1966 as Murray State University. Murray State serves as a nationally recognized residential comprehensive university, with a strong extended campus and online presence, offering high-quality associate, baccalaureate, masters, specialist and doctorate degrees. Academic programs are offered in the core areas of arts and sciences, agriculture, business, health and human services, teacher education, communications, engineering and applied technologies, and nursing. Teaching, research, and service excellence are core values and guiding principles that promote economic development and the well-being of the citizens of the Commonwealth of Kentucky and the region.

The mission of the College of Education and Human Services at Murray State University is the preparation of leaders for successful careers that positively impact communities as advocates and practitioners, through student-centered, authentic and engaging academic programs. The College is charged with serving the 22 school districts in the 18 surrounding Kentucky counties. Most of our school district partners are located in rural areas that present unique and diverse settings for our teacher candidates. Several unit programs are provided at extended regional campuses in Henderson, Hopkinsville, Madisonville, and Paducah. Candidates can earn undergraduate degrees in elementary education, middle school education, learning and behavior disorders, and interdisciplinary early childhood education, and several graduate degree areas. The Murray State University College of Education and Human Services has a rich tradition of partnerships with schools and communities in the region, which fosters simultaneous renewal and benefits our students.

Description of Organizational Structure

Murray State University is comprised of the six colleges and schools: (1) Hutson School of Agriculture, (2) the School of Nursing and Health Professions, (3) the College of Education and Human Services, (4) the Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business, (5) the College of Humanities and Fine Arts, and (6) the Jesse D. Jones College of Science, Engineering and Technology. Academic units report to the VP/Provost for Academic Affairs, who reports directly to the University President.

The College of Education and Human Services is comprised of five academic units: (1) Department of Elementary and Early Childhood Education (ECE); (2) Department of Adolescent, Career and Special Education (ACS); (3) Department of Educational Studies, Leadership and Counseling (ELC); (4) Department of Criminal Justice and Social Work (CLHS); and (5) Center for Communication Disorders (CDI). The mix of programs across these units include graduate and undergraduate programs, as well as educator preparation and non-educator preparation programs. Leaders of each unit report to the Dean of the College.

All five units within the College are supported by the COEHS Recruitment and Retention Center, the Curriculum Materials Center, and the Kentucky Academy for Technology Education. EPP programs are additionally supported by the Office of Teacher Education Services and the Teacher Quality Institute. These support units also report to the COEHS Dean's office. Within the college's academic units are self-supporting Centers, whose purpose is to provide outreach to students and the community. Specifically, the Speech and Hearing Clinic (CDI), the Center for Environmental Education (ECE), the Center for Gifted Studies (ELC), and the Counseling and Assessment Clinic (ELC). Centers are self-sustaining and provide students with opportunities for enhanced clinical practice and community outreach.

Vision, Mission, and Goals

The mission of the College of Education and Human Services at Murray State University is the preparation of leaders for successful careers that positively impact communities as advocates and practitioners, through student-centered, authentic and engaging academic programs. The college vision is to produce graduates who foster excellence in their communities. The college's education programs support that mission and vision by ensuring candidates exemplify the knowledge, skills, dispositions, leadership qualities, and decision-making skills necessary to serve as effective educators in their communities. The goal of the college's educator preparation program is to produce candidates who demonstrate the characteristics of a Murray State University graduate, the proficiencies delineated by Kentucky Teacher Standards, and the knowledge required by learned societies.

EPP's Shared Values and Beliefs for Educator Preparation

There are three Core Values for the College: (1) Committed to Excellence, (2) Driven by Innovation, and (3) Focused on Service. Each value aligns to one of the three core values of the University (Hope, Endeavor, Achievement) and is clarified in terms of three characteristics that should be emulated by our faculty, staff, and students regardless of program. Committed to Excellence is aligned to the University value of Achievement and is characterized by accountability, responsibility, and transparency. Driven by Innovation is aligned to the University Value of Endeavor and is characterized by evidence-based, competitive, and strategic. Focused on Service is aligned to the University Value of Hope and is characterized by respect and empathy, advocacy and inclusion, and collaboration.

"Educator as a reflective decision-maker" is the unit's theme. Undergraduate candidates demonstrate professional dispositions throughout their coursework, field experiences, and student teaching. Murray State University candidates will become educators who are inclusive, responsible, enthusiastic, caring, confident, and ethical. Graduate candidates exhibit the same dispositions while developing their capacity as teacher leaders who foster excellence in their classrooms, schools, districts, and communities.

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