The award supports the internationalization of teacher preparation programs by advancing and disseminating research and best practices. GTEI Fellows design global learning classrooms, with the long-term goal that the teacher candidates of these classrooms will design their own Global Learning Classrooms with their future students.
“Supporting global learning is a strong thread weaved throughout my teaching, service and research,” Byker said. “It is truly an honor to be selected as a fellow.”
As one of the program’s five fellows, Dr. Byker’s global outreach in academia speaks for his award. In his current courses, ELED 3223, an elementary social studies methods course, and ELED 4220, an integrated instructional design course, Byker develops assignments where teacher candidates research global resources at their clinical schools to create a virtual library of diverse texts that build global competencies and understanding. He also teaches courses in culturally responsive pedagogy, instructional design, and social studies methods and specializes in curriculum foundations, educational technology integration, global citizenship education, and global competencies.
Dr. Byker’s research examines the integration of digital technology for the development of global competencies among teacher candidates and practicing teachers. This comparative and international research agenda has allowed him to conduct ethnographic field studies in Cuba, England, Germany, India, South, Africa, South Korea, and across the United States.
“Dr. Byker's acceptance as a Global Teacher Education fellow attests to his commitment and focus on the development of global and cultural competencies among K-12 students, teacher candidates, and practicing teachers,” said Dr. Michael Putman, Chair of the Department of Reading and Elementary Education. “He has actively engaged in and contributed to international education in the department and College through his teaching, research, and service.”
Under the mentorship of a global learning expert, each fellow revises an undergraduate or graduate course for initial licensure teacher candidates.
Byker will teach the revised course in an initial teacher preparation program, produce an accompanying module to try out with students, and produce a short video case study of the module.
The coursework revision aligns with the Department of Reading and Elementary Education endeavors to supplement a proposed minor, Applied Understandings in Global Education.
“Dr. Byker’s knowledge of international contexts has enabled the department to create a course of study for a proposed minor that is practical, relevant, and aligned with the internationalization goals of the College of Education,” said Putman. “This honor will allow Dr. Byker to further his global insights, as well as better position the department and College to be national leaders in preparing teachers to enter and teach in international contexts.”
by: Tayler Greene