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Salisbury University BW
A Maryland University of National Distinction
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Department of Early and Elementary Ed.
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Dr. Patricia Dean (website)

Patricia Dean

Dr. Patricia Dean received her Ph.D. from Penn State University in Curriculum and Instruction with emphasis on Language and Literacy Education. Prior to her moving to Salisbury in 2002, Patricia resided in northwestern Pennsylvania where she taught  K, 1st & 2nd Grade, and Gifted Education (Grades 1 through 12) over many years.

Currently you will find Dr. Dean teaching a wide variety of courses at SU. The early childhood methods courses focus on teaching children from Pre-K through Grade 3. The subjects she instructs include Emergent Literacy, Social Studies, Inquiry Learning (encompassing all subjects), threading the Arts throughout all of the courses. She also teaches the Children’s Literature course and the K-Grade 3 Language Arts course for early childhood/elementary education majors. Getting teacher candidates to love to read children’s books is high on her list. There’s no shortage of materials for the children’s literature course; her office is like a mini children’s library! Her Graduate courses focus mainly on literacy.

If studying abroad within the education department sounds interesting, talk with Dr. Dean! She has lots of information (and experiences!) about international opportunities, including engaging students in the course, Creative Arts in Bologna, Italy (Summer I) and promoting internships each semester to New Zealand. She also studied for 3 months in Italy to immerse herself in the  Reggio Emilia Approach, incorporating the philosophy into her courses.

Over the past 20 years, Dr. Dean has been invested in studying diverse cultures and focusing on social justice issues. She’s an avid reader and continues to read current professional literature to deepen her knowledge, to enhance learning for all children and to gain a better understanding of many different cultures worldwide.

The National Green Earth Book Award is awarded annually in 5 categories, for esteemed children’s books that promote environmental stewardship. Dr. Dean is a member on each selection panel. If you would like to learn more about the Green Earth Book Award, please go to: and you can view the winning books that have been awarded since the onset of the award in 2005.

Dr. Dean has been a member of the International Literacy Association (ILA), State of Maryland International Reading Association (SoMIRAC) and a member of the Eastern Shore Reading Council (ESRC) for many years. Serving as both Program Director and President of the Literacy and Social Responsibility Special Interest Group within ILA, Dr. Dean is also on the Social Justice Book Award, reviewing a plethora of books annually with winners to be announced during the July International Literacy Conference.

Dr. Patricia Dean resides in Salisbury and spends as much time at Assateague as she can (with a book and her dog!). If she’s not at the beach, she’ll be reading, grooming her flower bed, searching the sky for  eagles and osprey, traveling with university students (or own her own..), or working diligently at Salisbury University, and always with a camera in her pocket. 

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