Evening & Graduate Programs

Teacher Workshops & USM Events

USM Overland Park Campus Info Session

USM offers regular Info Sessions to provide you with the latest info on the graduate and degree-completion programs that can help you take the next step in your career.

Complete the form below to request more info or register for an upcoming info session. 

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USM For-Credit Teacher Workshops

The University of Saint Mary offers excellent workshops for educators geared toward professional development that supports the goals of teacher practitioners. The workshops are perfect for recertification and professional development, and the cost is just $100 per hour of graduate credit.

Textbooks are required in some of the workshops.

  • Please purchase your text in advance in order to read the introduction and chapter 1 before the workshop.
  • The texts may be available at the USM online bookstore or at Amazon.com.
  • Please check copyright years to ensure you purchase current editions.

Workshops are held at the University of Saint Mary Overland Park Campus, located at 11413 Pflumm Road in Overland Park. Workshop enrollment size is limited in order to provide the best possible learning environment.

To register, complete the attached form and payment information and send by scan or fax to Joe Perez, admissions counselor at Perez80@stmary.edu, fax 913-345-2802, or by regular mail to the address at the top of the attached registration form.

For more information, please contact Dr. Carolyn Doolittle, director of education programs, Overland Park Campus, at Carolyn.Doolittle@stmary.edu or (913) 319-3009.

Download and return this registration form, or

Register Online!


Spring Online and Hybrid
Continuing Education Courses:

The Curriculum of Popular Culture: Media Portrayals of Teachers & Educational Systems — (3 credit hrs.)
EDUCW 573/673

Online course sessions; held in class forum, beginning the week of January 12 through May 1

Course Description:
Popular culture influences every aspect of our daily lives. We listen to popular music, read magazines and newspapers, watch television, and go to the movies. The images portrayed in these media influence our perspectives of people, places, and institutions. The images of teachers and classrooms through popular media often affect the way the public conceptualizes what educational systems are. The media gives us many positive messages about schools and teachers. These messages include the idea that schools and teachers can have an affirmative and tremendous impact on their students and society as a whole. However, negative stereotypes and biases about teachers and educational systems abound in movies, television, contemporary music, and even “news” reports. This course allows the participant to critically look at the media’s portrayal of teachers and schools. Examining media portrayals of teachers and schools, both negative and positive, can not only open a dialogue about teachers’ and schools’ images, but also encourage us to examine our conscious and unconscious attitudes about the work of educators and educational systems.

For more information on this course, go to:

  • Instructor: Carolyn Doolittle, Ed.D.,– Associate Professor of Education, University of Saint Mary

  • Recommended for: Grades K-12

  • Recommended Text: Dalton, Mary M. (2010). The Hollywood Curriculum: Teachers in the movies. New York: Peter Lang
All video materials for course are provided by the instructor.

Teaching Reading with the Social Studies Standards — (3 credit hrs.)
EDUCW 599/699

Online course sessions, beginning the week of January 12 through May 1

Course Description:
The use of children’s literature plays an important role in social studies instruction at all grade levels. The purpose of this course is to integrate the 10 Themes of Social Studies, English Language Arts, College Career Ready Standards with an exceptional range of children’s literature. This course will provide strategies for before, during, and after reading and methods to apply the strategies to all ten Social Studies themes.

  • Instructor: Patricia Carnahan, Ed.D.,– Associate Professor of Education, University of Saint Mary

  • Recommended for: All educators; grades K- 6; secondary social studies instructors

  • Required Text: Altoff, Peggy and Golston, Syd (2012). Teaching Reading with the Social Studies Standards. Silver Spring, MD: National Council for the Social Studies

Outside the Classroom Walls—Invaluable Field Trip Experiences to Enrich Your Curriculum — (3 credit hrs.)
EDUCW 598/698

On-line and field-experiences; beginning the week of January 12 through May 1

Course Description:
This workshop is intended to emphasize the value of having our students getting outside of the classroom walls to enrich what they are learning inside. This course will provide field trip resources available in the Kansas City and surrounding area in all curricular areas, with a special emphasis on Social Studies, Science and visual literacy integrations. Resources and contact information for local field trip opportunities will be provided. Participants will visit a local field trip destinations to experience it for themselves, and make classroom connections. Information will be shared with other classroom participants through the class forum.

  • Instructor: Dan Doolittle—7th and 8th grade literacy instructor, Ottawa Middle School

  • Recommended for: All educators; grades K- 12

Spring 2015 Weekend Sessions:


Designing Thematic Units to Teach the College/Career Readiness Standards — (1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 587/687

Two Sessions: January 16 & 17 (Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.)

Course Description:
Gone is the NCLB culture where educators teach a curriculum handed to them on a pacing guide they are forced to keep. The process of digging into the CCSS and expectations of the assessment demands that educators move beyond writing a lesson plan from a guide in a book to one which allows kids to explore and guide the pace of learning. This workshop provides an opportunity to sit down with the standards and examine strategies for designing lessons that will support student learning and provide evidence of student learning. Participants will create a unit plan with emphasis placed on the higher order skills to ensure concepts are mastered and can be communicated, demonstrated and utilized.

  • Instructors:
    Claudia Chandler, MAT,—English Language Arts, Grade 6; Reading Intervention, Grades 6-8, Ottawa Middle School
    Melissa Lefort—7th & 8th Grade English Language Arts Teacher & ESOL Program Coordinator, USD 290.

  • Recommended for: Any K-12 teacher, newly licensed teacher, or pre-service teacher who is struggling with the transition from NCLB lesson planning to the task of designing Common Core learning plans.


Understanding Students' Career Choices — (1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 588/688

Two Sessions: February 6 & 7; (Friday 6-9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.)

Course Description:
Secondary school teachers do much more career and educational counseling than school counselors do. This workshop is designed to help secondary school teachers understand the issues and thought processes their students are dealing with as they try to make their first significant career or educational decisions. Topics will include the theoretical basis for adolescent career decision making, hands-on experience with the main instruments used as assessments and interventions, sources of information, and tips for finding help.

  • Instructor: David Strohm, Ph.D.,– University of Saint Mary

  • Recommended for: Teachers, grade 5-12 interested in career-focused education

Engaging Through Games and Cooperative Learning Structures — (1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 590/690

Two Sessions February 20 & 21 (Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 9 .a.m-4 p.m.)

Course Description:
During this workshop, participants will be engaged in a variety of games that encourage active involvement in lessons throughout a variety of content areas. This high-energy workshop will leave you with tools and games to use on the very next day of class. Bring a flash drive with you to class, and you will walk away with several game templates that can be modified and used right away.

  • Instructors:
    Amber Boyington—ELL Math, Olathe USD #233
    Megan Roberts—ELL Language Arts, Olathe USD #233
    Cathy Hubler—6th Grade Science, Olathe USD #233

  • Recommended for: Educators grades 4-12

Co-Teaching & Collaboration — (1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 591/691

Two Sessions February 27 & 28 (Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.)

Course Description:
Today’s classrooms have students with a diverse range of abilities and needs that bring unique challenges to teaching in a standards-based learning environment. Co-teaching brings together two or more certified/licensed professionals who can use their expertise to design rigorous learning experiences tailored to meet the unique needs of all students. For example, general educators may have specific expertise in the areas of curriculum and instruction, classroom management, knowledge of typical students, and instructional pacing. Special educators may have additional expertise in the areas of differentiating instruction, monitoring progress, understanding learning processes, and teaching for mastery. Participants will become familiar with 4 approaches to co-teaching. In addition, scheduling, role clarification, administrative support, lesson planning, and other logistical issues will be explored.

  • Instructor: Danita Long—Special Education Teacher Leader, KCKPS

  • Recommended for: educators and Special Education Educators K-12 – especially if you teach in an inclusion classroom of students with special needs or students for whom English is a second language


Writing Across the Content Areas(1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 592/692

Two Sessions March 6 & 7 (Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.)

Course Description:
With the arrival of Common Core came the standards for English Language Arts & Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects. This workshop will cover lesson design and strategies that will incorporate these new demands for teachers in content areas other than ELA. We will break down the standards and what they mean for the content areas. Then we will cover a variety of strategies to incorporate mini-lessons for ELA and quick ways to assess these reading and writing standards while still focusing most of your instructional time on your specific content.

  • Instructor: Melissa LeFort—7th & 8th Grade English Language Arts teacher & ESOL Program Coordinator, USD 290

  • Recommended for: 5-12 Teachers of Social Sciences, Sciences, and Technical Subjects

Revisiting the Exceptional Child: Resources and Strategies for Success! — (1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 550/650

Two Sessions March 13 & 14 (Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.)

Course Description:
With today’s diverse classrooms it’s often difficult to have the information we need at your fingertips to meet the needs of all of our learners. This workshop will be focus on understanding the characteristics of and strategies for working with the most common disabilities seen in the general education classroom. Exceptionalities will include: learning disabilities, communication disorders, cognitive disabilities, ADHD, Autism, and behavior disorders. Participants will compile a resource and intervention with ready to use ideas.

  • Instructor: Maureen Hogan—Student Services Coordinator, Nativity Parish School

  • Recommended for: All instructors, grades K-12

Appie Hour — (1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 584/684

Two Sessions March 20 & 21; (Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.)

Course Description:
Instructor will present 10 of her favorite educational apps over the 2 day workshop. All apps will be presented, explained and then used by participants. Time will be given for practice and set up for usage in the classroom. Many of the apps selected will also be web based so Ipads are not completely necessary. If participant does not have an ipad one will be provided for practice.

  • Instructor: Lee Gruss – Middle School Science, St. Paul's Episcopal Day School

  • Recommended for: Grades K-12

Seeing is Believing—The power of visual texts in the learning process — (1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 556/656

Two Sessions March 27 & 28 (Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.)

Course Description:
Students are barraged with messages every day that come to them in non-linguistic representations; that is, through images. Because of television, advertisements, and the Internet, the primary tool for advancing literacy in the 21st Century may not be a book—it could possibly be a visual text. As the focus on understanding visual texts in the Common Core Standards indicates, today’s students must learn to process words and images in order to get the “whole” message. This workshop will provide a research-based framework from which to ground instruction in teaching literacy skills through images. Various strategies will be modeled to resource instructors in teaching their students learn to see more critically and see to learn more effectively. A field trip to the Nelson-Atkins Art Museum on Saturday will be included.

  • Instructor: Carolyn Doolittle, Ed.D.,– Associate Professor of Education, University of Saint Mary

  • Recommended for: Instructors grades K-12


Progress Monitoring IEP Goals — (1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 593/693

Two Sessions April 10 & 11 (Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.)

Course Description:
Progress monitoring is a scientifically based practice that is used to assess students’ academic performance and evaluate the effectiveness of instruction. Progress monitoring can be implemented with individual students or an entire class. Progress monitoring has been outlined as a seven step process by the Department of Education which includes writing measurable annual goals, developing data collection tools, and the process for collecting and evaluating the data as well as systematically communicating student progress to IEP team members.

  • Instructor: Danita Long—Special Education Teacher Leader, KCKPS

  • Recommended for: Special Education graduate students or Special Education Instructors and all interested educators (PreK-12)

Reaching the Student with Limited English Proficiency — (1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 594/694

Two Sessions April 24 & 25 (Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.)

Course Description:
As numbers of students that qualify as English Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) increases, so does the demand for teachers to stretch the Universal Lesson Design to its capacity. This workshop will cover the process for identifying who qualifies as ESOL and what this means for a classroom teacher. Attendees will be exposed to a variety of supports and strategies for lesson design and assessment to accommodate all levels of English proficiency.

  • Instructor: Melissa LeFort—7th & 8th Grade English Language Arts teacher & ESOL Program Coordinator, USD 290

  • Recommended for: Any teacher in any content area and administrators looking for strategies that enable staff to create and implement lessons with clear, rigorous, and meaningful objectives.


Effective Mentoring — (1 credit hr.)
EDUCW 578/678

Two Sessions May 1 & 2 (Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.– 4 p.m.)

Course Description:
Participants will work through various scenarios that will provide them with the skills to communicate effectively with students, parents, colleagues, and administrators. Participants will also organize plans for how, as mentors, we can effectively work with new teachers and truly provide them the support they need. The session will highlight how to create a mentor relationship that is enthusiastic, focused, and promotes positivity.

  • Instructor: Paula Hough, Ed.D.,—Instructional Coach, Turner USD 202, Kansas City, KS

Recommended for: All teachers, grades K-12

Register Online!