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M.A. in Education K-12 Faculty

Our professors are distinguished scholars, active researchers, published writers, and faithful Christians who demonstrate what it means to be both Christ-followers and leaders in their academic fields. As mentors and role models, they play a huge role in the integration of faith and learning at Bethel.


Cheryl Bostrom

Adjunct Assistant Professor | c-bostrom@bethel.edu | Started at Bethel: 1995

Areas of expertise

My areas of expertise include teaching, academic research and writing, communication, and leadership.


Nathan Elliott

Adjunct Instructor | nathan-elliott@bethel.edu | Started at Bethel: 2013

Areas of expertise

Response to Intervention Instructional technology integration Curriculum development Differentiated Instruction STEM integration Early literacy/numeracy development Formative assessment Continuous improvement process Professional Learning Communities Professional development Standards based grading Classroom management


Mary Fonken-Holden

Adjunct Instructor | m-holden@bethel.edu | Started at Bethel: 2011

Areas of expertise

Dr. Fonken-Holden has 40 years of experience with Anoka-Hennepin School District as a Teacher, Assistant Principal and Director of Student Services prior to coming to Bethel. Her area of expertise is in culturally responsive instruction in K-12 schools.


Randy Moberg

Adjunct Instructor | ram44555@bethel.edu


Patricia Paulson

Professor of Science Education | patricia-paulson@bethel.edu | Started at Bethel: 1999

Areas of expertise

Paulson focuses her research on trustworthy practices for learning science, focusing specifically on scientific practices. She has led the GEMS program, coordinates the STEM certification program, teaches Life Science Concepts, Applied STEM Practices, and Science Curriculum and Methods at all levels. Paulson also teaches in the Ed.D. program.


Jay Rasmussen

Professor of Education | rasjay@bethel.edu | Started at Bethel: 1997

Areas of expertise

I have now served for 27 years as a teacher educator and I am currently a Professor of Education at Bethel University. My teaching responsibilities include undergraduate and graduate level courses in literacy education and assessment. My administrative responsibilities include serving as a Faculty Development Coordinator at Bethel and as the Program Director for the M.A. Program in Education: K-12. From 1997-2006 I helped develop and oversee four master’s programs and one doctoral program as the Director of Graduate Programs in Education at Bethel. Previous to my university teaching/administrative experience, I was employed as an elementary classroom teacher and building principal for eight years. I hold a B.A. degree in elementary education from Florida State University, a M.A. degree in educational administration from the University of Minnesota, and a Ph.D. degree in curriculum and instruction (with an emphasis on reading, language arts, and children's literature) from the University of Minnesota.


Lisa Silmser

Adjunct Assistant Professor | l-silmser@bethel.edu | Started at Bethel: 2002


Ruslana Westerlund

Adjunct Faculty for the Graduate School of Education | r-westerlund@bethel.edu | Started at Bethel: 2002

Areas of expertise

English Language Development Bilingual Education Academic Language ESL/Bilingual Program Evaluation Teacher Change Science of Implementation Policy Implementation


Gretchen Wrobel

Professor of Psychology | g-wrobel@bethel.edu | Started at Bethel: 1988

Areas of expertise

Wrobel conducts research on curiosity as it affects relationships in adoption, including the adopted person, adoptive parents, and birth parents.

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