Education Department Faculty Spotlight: Dr. Amanda Bozack

Dr. Amanda Bozack has been an educational psychologist at the University of New Haven for five years. Her interest in educational psychology came about because of her special relationship with horses and learning.

Dr. Bozack loves horses and has ridden them her whole life. She has given horseback riding lessons to children and elderly women. As a result of this experience, she found that people learn in different ways, and that she liked to learn about learning.

While pursuing her education, Dr. Bozack used the concepts of psychology to help horseback riding instruction. She wanted to help teachers of horseback riding become better teachers. In order to complete her Master’s degree, Dr. Bozack’s thesis focused on her beliefs of horseback riding instruction. Because Dr. Bozack really liked school, she received both her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Arizona.

Upon finding a great job offer at the University of New Haven, Dr. Bozack had to leave behind her horses in Arizona. However, she found an adjunct professor who connected her with a barn to ride horses. As a result, Dr. Bozack has the best of both worlds. She gets to teach pre-service teachers and ride horses.

As the coordinator of foundational courses in the UNH Teacher Pre-Service Program, Dr. Bozack offers instructors support with resources, assignments, and grading rubrics. She also performs assessments on assignment and textbook satisfaction.

Dr. Bozack has a lot of things going on. She is currently teaching an undergraduate service-learning course on adolescent development that allows students to learn about themselves, in terms of whom they were in the past and who they are now.  She also teaches a graduate course on educational psychology, which is a survey of psychological concepts related to education.

In terms of research, Dr. Bozack is working on a high school literacy project with Notre Dame High School in order to better understand the reading motivation of adolescent boys. This project has led to one published article, one article in press, and a host of conference presentations. She is also working on her primary area of interest by studying the effectiveness of Connecticut’s new teacher induction program with Dr. Tina Freilicher and Dr. Amy Salvaggio.

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