Academics & the Arts


The Grand View Teacher Education Program is committed to the preparation of ethical teachers of excellence within the liberal arts tradition. It is a dynamic and respected teacher-preparation program in the greater Des Moines area.

Education faculty, in partnership with practicing teachers, model effective teaching and classroom management behaviors. Students spend at least three semesters in supervised in-school settings in preparation for the student teaching experience. Critical thinking and problem solving strategies are emphasized, and students are coached in the development of a personal teaching philosophy and style.


Dr. Linda Espey, professor of education, department chair
Welcome to the Education Department! I teach Instructional Planning and Assessment, Teaching Elementary Math, and I supervise student teaching. I also coordinate our e-portfolio effort in the Education Department - this helps us continue to improve our programs for the benefit of future teachers and students. I blend theory and application by having students think about their future classrooms.  I have two sons and two very clever beagles. See you in class! Faculty Website


Dr. Lindsay Grow, assistant professor of education
Because of my interest in literacy, I teach courses like Individualized Reading and Teaching Literacy grades 3-8.  I also have a passion for equipping students to be prepared for a global society and enjoy teaching Instructional Technology.  I have a B.A. in elementary education from the University of Northern Iowa with endorsements in reading, English/language arts, and music.  I have experience teaching fifth grade and a M.A. in education and Ed.D., both with an emphasis in literacy, from the University of Kentucky.  My research interests are related to the identity development of preservice teachers.  I enjoy cooking, spending time with my family, traveling, and playing the violin.

Dr. Sharon Brindle, assistant professor of education
Welcome to Grand View and the Education Department. I teach K-2 Literacy Methods, Elementary Classroom Management, and conduct seminars for middle and high school practicum experiences and student teaching. In addition, I am also responsible for placing students for practicum experiences and student teaching. My undergraduate degree is from Iowa State University and my graduate work is at Drake University. As a former elementary principal, middle school counselor, and classroom teacher, I enjoy working with preservice teachers. I enjoy traveling and spending time with family. I have two daughters and a very spoiled black lab dog.

Dr. Chad Timm, associate professor of education
As a former secondary social studies teacher, I teach courses like Introduction to Education, Secondary Teaching Methods, and Social Studies Methods.  My philosophy of teaching rests on a desire to take new understandings outside of the classroom and put them into practice.  I aim to teach prospective teachers to utilize the historical, philosophical, and social foundations of education as tools to develop critical contexts in which to understand the present. Understanding the various forces that have shaped American education over the course of its history can help students prepare to meet the challenges of tomorrow.  I also teach courses and coordinate the Logos Honors Program. I'm obsessed with pop culture and enjoy using us to introduce people to philosophers like Michel Foucault, Pierre Bourdieu, and Jacques Lacan. I love the jazz music of John Coltrane, and to spend time outdoors with my incredible wife and four children. I look forward to working with you on your journey to become an educator!

Jennifer Wells, associate professor of education
For more than 15 years, I taught in the general and special education settings K-8. With these experiences, I developed a passion for working with at-risk and special education populations.  I teach Introduction to Education and Special Education courses.  I received my B.A. from the University of Iowa with a specialization in special education and earned my M.S. from Drake University in teaching and learning and special education.  Currently, I am pursuing my Ph.D. from Iowa State University in special education/mental health/social justice.  In my experiences as an educator, I have seen the high level of dedication and skill it takes to be effective and want to empower pre-service teachers. I am committed in working with students to find their own strengths and passions to be life-long learners.  My research interests are in the impact of mental health supports on schools, global education, and teacher training for pre-service and service teachers.  I love traveling with my two children, gardening, and listening to live music across the city.

Dr. Kris Kilibarda, professor of education and Director of the Jacobson Institute for Innovation in Education
I have been active in science education for the past 20 years. During that time I taught science at the high school level and science and education courses at the college level. In an increasingly complex world, it is essential that all people are able to use creative and critical thinking in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) to explore solutions to problems and to innovate. I love igniting a passion for teaching science and STEM because I know excited, confident educators are essential for creating the next generation of STEM literate citizens. At Grand View I teach research and methods courses. As the Director of the Jacobson Institute for Innovation in Education I will explore and share educational models and ideas that show promise in transforming education.

Jesse Wilcox, assistant professor of education
I love to teach and have a passion for helping teachers become the best they can be for themselves and for their students. I teach Middle School Methods, Secondary Science Methods, Engaging All Learners, Teaching Elementary Science, Physical Science, and Mind, Brain, and Learning.  Prior to GV, I was a high school science teacher and an associate reading and special education teacher in a first grade classroom. Each of those experiences helped me understand the importance of helping students to become lifelong learners.  My scholarly interests include:  preparing pre-service teachers to understand and implement effective teaching practices, investigating how to accurately develop students’ views of learning, and researching how to ease the transition from pre-service to in-service teaching.  Outside of my professional life, I enjoy gardening, bicycling, reading, traveling, and spending time with my wife and children.

Student Showcases

Grand View education students are doing innovative work! This section showcases award-winning projects by our students and is always "under construction."


Addison Masters is a secondary education major pursuing an endorsement in all social sciences. He is a native of Des Moines, Iowa. Addison constructed this website,, while enrolled in EDUC 245 Instructional Technologies. He chose digital citizenship as his topic because it encompasses various aspects of what it means to exist in a digital world. When Addison is not at school or at work, he enjoys spending time with his wife and three-year-old son. He also enjoys bicycling and screenprinting in his free time.



Kerri Kochheiser is an elementary education major with an endorsement in reading and language arts. Her website,, is centered on the topic of online privacy and safety and was created for Dr. Grow’s instructional technologies course. Kerri believed that with more children going online, especially in the classroom, that safety issues should be addressed. Her website presents the issues and also tips to improve safety. Kerri was born and raised right here in Des Moines. She spends her free time coaching softball, being outside, and binge-watching Netflix.

Rebecca Garrison is a secondary education student pursuing a business endorsement.  Her website,, presenting pros and cons of 1:1 computers in the classroom, was created in Dr. Grow’s EDUC 245 class.  As a parent and future educator, she was interested in the national debate concerning the use of technology in schools.  Originally from St. Louis, she has lived in Des Moines for the past 20 years.  Some of Rebecca’s favorite pastimes are enjoying her children’s activities, creating family meals, reading a gripping novel, and flower pot gardening.



Melissa Robinson returned to Grand View in 2012 to earn her bachelor's degree, majoring in secondary education and applied mathematics.  She created this website,, in her Instructional Technologies class. She choose this topic because she believes plagiarism happens more often than we know and some students don't realize they are plagiarizing. She hopes her website will aid in lowering plagiarism statistics. She is originally from Des Moines, but has settled in the country by the town of Maxwell.  She likes to spend time with her three sons, friends and family. She enjoys singing with her sons on their karaoke machine, going to concerts, listening to all types of music, and starting water fights and any activity outside.

Mallory Blaine is a currently entering her senior year at Grand View University. She is studying elementary education with endorsements in special education and reading. She decided on special education due to her extensive volunteer work for Special Olympics Iowa and her current position at Jensen Elementary as a program associate for the resource room. Mallory enjoys spending her free time reading and being outdoors as much as possible. During the month of June, Mallory was given the opportunity to tutor a third grade student for her teaching literature 3-8 class. The blog that she created,, gives a detailed description of their time together and not only how her student grew as a reader but how she progressed as a mentor/tutor.

Whitney Warner is a secondary education major from Altoona, Iowa.  She is working on completing an endorsement in English/language arts.  Whitney chose to research digital writing because of her interest in writing and multimedia.  She enjoys spending time with family and friends and likes to use photography as her creative outlet in her spare time. “Digital Writing for Education,” located at, was created for Dr. Grow’s Instructional Technologies class for the Spring 2014 semester.




Student Showcase Archives

Grand View education students are doing innovative work!  This section showcases award-winning projects by our students and is always "under construction."


Grand View junior Brian Miller was raised in Colfax, Iowa, and attended PCM Monroe high school.  He is currently in the education program majoring in elementary education with an endorsement in reading.  When Brian isn't at school, he is working his two jobs at a before and afterschool program and a gym in Ankeny.  He also enjoys recreational shooting, hunting, and playing sports.  Brian created this blog in EDUC 325: Literature for grades 3-8 while tutoring a struggling reader in a local elementary school.  Through this blog,, Brian monitored the student's progress while also giving tips to help his struggling reader, including activities to help improve fluency and comprehension.



Kelsey VerMeer, an elementary education major, just finished her junior year at Grand View University. She has endorsements in reading and language arts. When Kelsey isn’t in the classroom, she is working at the Holy Trinity afterschool program with the preschool, developmental kindergarten, and kindergarten group. In her free time she enjoys cooking, baking, and being outside. Kelsey created this blog,, in her Teaching Literacy class taught by Dr. Grow. She used it to record data and observations about the struggling reader she assisted.



Hayley Ellis is from Shenandoah, Iowa, double majoring in secondary education with a social studies endorsement, and history. On campus she's involved with Student Leadership Team, View Crew, Presidential Ambassadors and Education Club. She chose to make this infographic for an assignment in EDUC 245 - Instructional Technologies with Dr. Grow. Infographics visually communicate content to readers to hopefully make information easier to read and remember.   Hayley made this infographic after reading a few chapters from Peter Johnston's new book Opening minds: Using language to change lives.



Grand View sophomore Justina Glick was born and raised in Des Moines, Iowa, and is currently majoring in elementary education with endorsements in reading and language arts. When Justina is not busy in the classroom, she is out on the softball field playing second base for the Grand View Vikings. Justina created this Glog,, in Instructional Technologies with Dr. Grow to report about a classroom observation assignment.  She used this format to analyze the pros and cons of using technology in the classroom. Technology plays a huge role in schools today and is a great resource for learning in the classroom. Glogster doesn't display in some web browsers. Try Google Chrome or Mozilla for optimal viewing.

Alisha Sinclair is an elementary education major from Indianola, Iowa. She will be receiving her endorsements in reading and language arts. She enjoys spending time with her family and watching her son play sports. Alisha created a blog,, for the course Teaching Literacy 3-8 taught by Dr. Grow. This blog documents her experiences working with a fifth grade student who struggles with reading.


Ashley Cupp is an elementary education major from Polk City, Iowa. She will be receiving her endorsement in special education.  She enjoys fishing, running, and being outdoors.  Ashley created this blog,, for the course Teaching Literacy Grades 3-8.  The blog documents her experiences of working with a struggling reader. 



As an assignment for Individualized Reading (441) Marla McDonald created a digital story reflecting on her identity as a teacher.  Throughout this capstone course for the reading endorsement (taught by Dr. Grow), students explored who they are as a teacher.  Marla has a tremendous gift for poetry which shines through in this digital story.  Marla is an elementary education major with endorsements in reading, math and language art.  She enjoys teaching children mathematics, reading, and sharing coffee with friends. Click HERE to see Marla's digital story.

A group of students in Ann Ketch's Instructing and Assessing Struggling Readers class made this PowerPoint to showcase ideas about vocabulary instruction. Left to right: Ashley Cupp, Kari Bourne, Cassondra Platt,  Kelsey Carbajo, Saxon Dolan, (Paris Kono is not pictured) teamed together to devise this presentation.  The students learned that kids need opportunities to work with the words they are learning in a variety of ways.  Research supports using each word 12 times over 2 to 3 days for acquisition (McKeown, Beck, Omanson,& Pople,1985). They hope that teachers use powerpoints such as this to help students learn vocabulary. Click HERE to see the PowerPoint Presentation.


Adam Dirks is a secondary education major from Urbandale, Iowa. He created this website, The reality of virtual schools, in Dr. Lindsay Grow's Instruction Technologies course. Adam is involved in student leadership at Grand View and is interested in history, sports, and politics. He hopes to teach high school social studies as well as explore a career in politics in the future.



Tyler Patten is a secondary education major from Des Moines, Iowa.  He aspires to teach social studies in either a middle school or high school setting. He created this website, One-to-One Computers, in Dr. Lindsay Grow's Instructional Technologies course. He's also an athlete on the Grand View track and field team.



Devan Walker, from Des Moines, Iowa, is a senior secondary education major with emphases in biology and chemistry. She created this video on mitosis in Dr. Lindsay Grow's Educational Media course.

"My goals are to be an awesome teacher. I want to make a difference in the lives of children. I want to inspire them to do what they love. I want to show them my love of science and hopefully spark an interest in it for them, too. I love to paint pictures and do art projects."

Christine Smith is currently majoring in Elementary Education with endorsements in reading and language arts at Grand View University in Des Moines, IA.  When she has free time Christine takes joy in doing genealogy research and volunteering at Blank Children’s Hospital. She created this website on cyberbullying in Dr. Lindsay Grow’s Instructional Technologies class. The website,, talks about how cyberbullying can impact students, teachers, and families. 


Samantha Peterson is an elementary education major born and raised in Des Moines, Iowa. She will also be receiving her endorsement in reading. She enjoys working for Des Moines Public Schools with Metro Kids care, where she gets to spend 5 days a week with k-5th graders. Samantha has created this website on 1:1 computers in our school system for Dr. Grows instructional technologies course.

Awards and Accomplishments

Dr. Chad Timm, had an article titled “The space between: Building liberatory capital in a school-community partnership,” published in the International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education. He will also present papers at two national conferences. One, titled, “Mad Men in the Mirror: Don Draper’s Lacanian Identity Crisis,” at the American Pop Culture Association Conference in Washington D.C., and another titled, “Negotiating Third Spaces and Building Meaningful Cross-Class Relationships,” at the American Educational Research Conference in San Francisco.

Dr. Robin White, professor of education, had her proposal to the American Association Family and Consumer Sciences 102nd Annual Conference & Expo, held in June, accepted for inclusion in the program.

Dr. Lindsay Grow, assistant professor of education, presented a paper at the Literacy Research Association in San Diego in 2012. She also presented at the Iowa Reading Conference and served on the Iowa Reading Research Center Advisory Committee.  She has had a poster accepted for presentation at the International Reading Association, held in April 2013. Lindsay continues to work on research related to the Identity Development of Preservice Teachers. 

Twenty-two education majors attended the Iowa Reading Conference in Ames on June 25 & 26! It was a fantastic learning experience. Dr. Lindsay Grow, Dr. Brittany Cottrill, Dr. Sharon Brindle, and Linda Walker enjoyed sharing a conference experience with so many future teachers. Click HERE to see photos from the event.


The Rasmussen Center for Community Advancement Professions is home to the faculty and most courses in the Education Department.  To get a glimpse of this state-of-the art award-winning facility, go to the Virtual Tour. (Link not mobile friendly.)

The building contains an observation classroom specifically for education students, who can practice teaching techniques under the observation of faculty and other students.

Accreditation & Licensure

Grand View’s baccalaureate teacher preparation programs are accredited by the Iowa Department of Education. The Bachelor of Arts degree majors in Elementary and Secondary Education were approved in 1985, and first accredited by the Iowa Department of Education in 1987. In May, 2011, the state again approved all programs, including elementary, secondary, art, music and physical education. The next accreditation process will occur in 2017. The Teacher Education Program maintains membership in the Iowa Association of College for Teacher Education and the Association of Independent Liberal Arts Colleges for Teacher Education.

Graduates of the Education majors are required by the State of Iowa to pass two national PRAXIS II exams, one on Principals of Learning and Teaching and one on content knowledge. Of the 58 graduating Education majors for the 2014-15 academic year, 88% passed the Principles of Learning and Teaching test, and 90% passed the Content Knowledge test for their teaching area.