R.D. Nordgren’s courses always contain readings and learning activities relating to how the educator can be successful in the “schools that are” as well as the “schools that should be.” A constructivist at heart, he ensures that his students are allowed to learn through the lenses of their own experiences, and can “own” that learning in true democratic fashion. He views the school leader as one who models life-long learning and inspires others to join her in the making the schooling process active, engaging, and meaningful.
Dr. Nordgren is passionate about progressive school reform, specifically pertaining to the school leader’s role in effecting and sustaining change. Since coming to higher education seventeen years ago (University of South Florida, Cleveland State University, and National University) he has taught in various education areas including teacher education, curriculum and instruction, and urban education to go along with leadership and change. Dr. Nordgren has published over 30 articles, book chapters, and reports on a wide variety of topics including postmodernism, non-cognitive variables, urban education and Critical Theory, refugee education, and democratic learning environments. His Making Schooling Relevant for the Global Age (2003, Rowman Littlefield) is single-authored while he co-authored Case Studies in Curriculum Theory (2009, Sage) and Educational Psychology and Teaching Methods (2010, Cengage).
Originally from Illinois, Dr. Nordgren taught middle and high school English/language arts for six years in Florida; he was also a site-based administrator for another six in the Sunshine State. His higher education degrees were earned at the University of South Florida: a B.S. in English Education, an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership, and a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies (School Management Specialist).