College of Education Earns TAP Award of Distinction

Higher education institutions recognized for commitment to advancing educator effectiveness.

College of Education Dean Scott Ridley (second from left) accepts the TAP award along with representatives from Arizona State and the University of Indianapolis.

The National Institute for Excellence in Teaching (NIET) Friday (March 7) surprised Texas Tech University with the TAP School Award of Distinction.

The award honors an organization for its dedication and commitment to advancing educator effectiveness. Arizona State University and the Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning (CELL) at the University of Indianapolis also received the award, which was presented before more than 1,200 educators and policy leaders during a special luncheon at the 14th National TAP Conference in Los Angeles.

“Receiving this recognition from NIET confirms for us that we are moving in the right direction,” said Scott Ridley, dean of Texas Tech’s College of Education. “We are achieving our goals of producing the measurably best educators and building partnerships with local, regional and statewide partners that will impact the future of our state and its students. In addition to what we are accomplishing here in Texas, this recognition and our continuing work with NIET allow us to network with other colleges of education and impact the quality of teacher preparation at the national level.”

TAP: The System for Teacher and Student Advancement is America’s leading education reform that aligns career advancement, professional development, educator evaluation and performance-based compensation. For more than a decade, TAP has worked to improve teacher effectiveness and student achievement in high-need urban, rural and suburban schools and districts across the country. It is managed and supported by NIET.

“NIET is pleased to partner with Texas Tech, ASU and CELL on expanding the TAP System across their states,” said Gary Stark, president and chief executive officer of NIET. “This exciting work not only strengthens the effectiveness of teachers already in schools, but also ensures that the next generation of teachers is well-prepared to meet the challenges of the future.”

For photos, videos and individual press releases on the honorees, visit the TAP newsroom at

Initiatives of the National Institute for Excellence in Teaching are improving the educational experience for more than 175,000 teachers and 2.4 million students.


Texas Tech Regents Approve Increase in Tuition, Fees Graduate Students Impress Judges with their Research Lecture Series Continues to Promote African-American Culture, History

College of Education

The College of Education at Texas Tech University offers a full range of programs, including 9 doctoral degrees, 10 master's degrees, two bachelor's degrees and numerous specializations which can lead to careers in public or private education as teachers, professors, administrators, counselors and diagnosticians.

Programs in the college are housed in three departments.

The Department of Curriculum & Instruction offers advanced degrees that prepare leaders, researchers, and professors with the knowledge, skills, and practical application experience needed to analyze, construct, and evaluate curricula in ways that create optimal learning conditions for all learners. Language and literacy, bilingual education and STEM education are just a few of the specializations offered by C&I.

The Department of Educational Psychology & Leadership consists of a diverse group of academic programs that equip students with a comprehensive knowledge of learning, motivation, development, and educational foundations. The disciplines of counseling and school psychology are housed within the EP&L department as are programs to prepare future college administrators, primary and secondary school and district leaders, as well as practical and academic educational psychologists.

The Department of Teacher Education focuses solely on teacher preparation, ensuring that teacher candidates are ready for the classroom on day one. The Teacher Education Department is home to TechTeach, an innovative teacher preparation program that puts teacher candidates into public school classrooms for a full year and requires that students pass teacher certification tests prior to entering the classroom. Various paths to teaching careers, including fast-track distance programs statewide and alternative certification options, are also housed in this department.