School of Education Reorganization

Reorganization graphic with colored boxes

The School of Education at the University of Pittsburgh has implemented an ambitious reorganization plan to better support an engaged academic structure and a new administrative configuration for our School. The reorganization allows us to accomplish our mission-vision to ignite learning with students, families, communities, and with ourselves.

Please email us at SOE_Reorg@pitt.edu if you have any questions about the reorganization. 


Enhanced Academic Structure

The University of Pittsburgh School of Education, which previously had six academic units, will now be organized into three academic departments. This restructuring will allow for more interactive academic experiences for students, increased cross-disciplinary collaboration within our School, and enhanced opportunities for engagement among students, faculty, and staff. Additionally, it will produce a more transparent operational infrastructure and more effective administrative efficiencies.

New Academic Departments

Departments serve as our School’s academic homes for students, faculty, and staff in ways that support their learning, teaching, research, and engagements.

  • Educational Foundations, Organizations, and Policy
  • Health and Human Development
  • Teaching, Learning, and Leading

New Training Divisions

Training divisions are cross-functional by nature and provide operational expertise for academic programs.

  • Research Training
    • PhD program and research-oriented master's degree programs
  • Innovative Leadership
    • EdD program; superintendent's, districts, and community-based leadership
  • Undergraduate and Graduate Professional Training
    • Teacher education and professional learning; practice-based master's degree programs; certificate, intervention, and continuing education programs

Improved Physical Space

Concurrent with the reorganization, the School of Education underwent a major physical renovation on the fifth floor of Wesley W. Posvar Hall. The renovation creates a more inviting, modern, and highly functioning space for students, faculty, and staff.

With the renovation, our School has added the following new additions to our space: an expanded Dean’s Colloquium Room for large meetings, a Welcome Center, a Student Engagement Suite, and large study areas for students. Additionally, the renovations have resulted in new faculty and staff work spaces and more open areas for collaborations. We are grateful for the financial support provided by the University of Pittsburgh's Provost's Office.


Reorganization Frequently Asked Questions

Why did the School of Education undergo a reorganization?

Under the leadership of Dean Valerie Kinloch, our School of Education identified the need to reorganize in order to better commit to and fulfill our new mission-vision (watch video). Key elements of our mission-vision are to ignite learning, to strive for well-being for all, to disrupt and transform inequitable educational structures, and to agitate and innovate.

Our new academic structure better positions our School to respond to both challenges and opportunities in education. It also allows for greater efficiencies that will lower costs and allow the School to better collaborate with students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the greater community.

 

What will the reorganization change, and what will stay the same?

The reorganization has changed our School’s academic structure by reducing the number of academic departments from six to three academic departments, which streamlines services and reduces redundancies. Previously, our academic departments were: Administrative and Policy Studies, the Center for Urban Education, Health and Physical Activity, Instruction and Learning, Learning Sciences and Policy, and Psychology in Education. Our three new academic departments of the school will be: Educational Foundations, Organization, and Policy; Health and Human Development; and Teaching, Learning, and Leading. 

In addition, the reorganization created three new training divisions: Research Training, Innovative Leadership, and Undergraduate and Graduate Professional Training. These divisions will be responsible for working with and across our academic departments to meet our strategic goals regarding curricular improvements, new program designs, and admissions and enrollment. 

While there are lots of changes happening, our School remains committed to equity, justice, and innovation in education and in health and human development, and we continue to take seriously our partnerships with students, families, and communities.

 

How will the reorganization affect me as a student, faculty, staff, or alumni member?

The reorganization will have a positive effect on our school community. Our goal is to make each stage of the reorganization a transparent process. 

  • Students – We anticipate that there will be a limited impact on students, as the reorganization will strengthen existing and create new academic programs and improve our advising and mentoring structures. Overall, it is our belief that it will improve the student experience by making our School less compartmentalized by academic departments.
  • Faculty - As a result of the reorganization, faculty will be reorganized into new academic departments and will participate in new training divisions. Faculty can expect to engage with a more collaborative structure that will provide increased opportunities for cross-disciplinary work. 
  • Staff - As a result of the reorganization, staff may be reorganized into new academic departments and may have more visible roles and responsibilities. 
  • Alumni - The reorganization will help us to elevate the importance of alumni outreach and engagement. 

 

What is the timeline for completing the reorganization?

The School of Education received formal approval for the reorganization on January 1, 2020. The development and implementation of the processes and procedures of the reorganization will occur during spring 2020. 

What's the difference between the Academic Departments and the Academic Divisions?

The new structure of academic departments and training divisions are important to the new structure of our school.

Academic departments are the academic homes for students, faculty, and staff, particularly when it comes to engagements with teaching, research, and functional areas. Among other important things, academic departments focus on teaching, curricular improvements, course enrollments, and relevant faculty and staff actions. They also focus on creating and sustaining collaborative departmental cultures that elevate how we talk about and engage in creative forms of teaching, research and scholarship, advising, and mentoring.

Training divisions are cross-functional by nature and involve faculty and staff from different academic departments who are working at the School-level. They are responsible for many important things such as program approvals and course modification processes, and they collaborate with others on admissions recruitment and enrollment as well as curriculum mapping across all academic units.