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Tanya Moorehead - Associate Professor, Education

Ph.D., University of Central Florida


Tanya MooreheadHow did you come to Eastern?

“I am originally from Connecticut. My first teaching position was at Montclair State University in New Jersey. After working there for three years, I wanted to come back home and I applied for a one-year position at Eastern. Professor Hari Koirala was the search committee chair and he and the Education Department faculty were so kind and warm to me. I was pregnant at the time and worried that it might impact my hiring. I remember Provost Rhona Free had lunch with me and told me not to worry. I have come to know Eastern as a truly welcoming community.”

What is your favorite course to teach?

“I teach inclusive teaching strategies to elementary school candidates and the same topic to secondary school candidates. It gives me an opportunity to teach future teachers how to support students with disabilities by meeting their needs in inclusive settings.”

What is your research focus?

“I am very interested in how teachers support students with disabilities, using technology and evidence-based strategies. I have also conducted research on mentorship.”

What do you like most about teaching at Eastern?

“The students. I often hear from school districts — superintendents, principals — of how much they enjoy working with our graduates. I sometimes think, ‘is it us or is it the students?’  I think it’s both, a perfect mixture. The key is that we have a campus environment where everyone is learning, open to conversations. I can even invite President Núñez to speak to my class.”

We have a campus environment where everyone is learning, open to conversations. I can even invite President Núñez to speak to my class.

Tanya Moorehead posing for photo with students

What is your teaching philosophy?

“My teaching style is heavily related to building community and trust. I believe if I do that, I can create an environment where we can learn anything together. My goal is to give students the opportunity to get to know each other, so that they feel comfortable to take risks together and learn.”

Memorable moments at Eastern?

“I have many, but Commencement each year is always at the top of the list. I not only get a chance to cheer on students I have had in class as they get their diploma, I also have fun meeting their families and taking photos with them after the ceremony. One year, noted author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie was our commencement speaker and I told my parents about it in advance — they ended up coming to Commencement! I was our department’s faculty marshal that year, and also having my parents there to meet some of my students made it a perfect evening.”

Career advice to students

“As long our graduates are willing to continue to learn, they can succeed in any teaching assignment they are given. Education is challenging with all the changes we continue to see — social, economic, technological — and keeping an open mind is key to every teacher’s success.”


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Even during my worst weeks, I still looked forward to your class. Thank you for making learning fun and fueling my passion for working in a classroom. In more ways than one, I aspire to be like you when I become an educator.
Student Quote
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