School of Education and Human Development

Fiona J. Hughes-McDonnell Ed.D.

Director of Educator Preparation and Accreditation; Associate Professor of Teacher Education
Headshot of Fiona McDonnell

Office Location

8 Bailey Hall

Phone

207-780-5055

Academic Degrees

  • Ed.D., Harvard Graduate School of Education
  • M.A. Education, Tufts University
  • B.A. Zoology, University of New Hampshire

Profile

Dr. McDonnell researches and publishes in the field of teacher education. She is a long-time educator and has held a range of leadership roles in public education that include senior academic leader at a community college, and associate principal for curriculum and instruction and secondary science teacher in the PK-12 public school system. She has served on the NH Council for Teacher Education and Professional Education Standards Board, the Massachusetts Alliance for Socio-Emotional Learning and Boston Area Girls STEM collaborative.

Areas of Expertise

  • Progressive and Holistic Education
  • Teacher Development
  • Critical Exploration in the Classroom
  • Inquiry-Based Learning and Teaching
  • Collaborative Processes for Looking at Student Work
  • STEM Education
  • Preparation of STEM Teachers
  • Qualitative and Ethnographic Research Methods
  • Epistemology
  • Science and Science Education
  • School Re-Design and Transformation
  • Democratic Education, and the contributions of Piaget
  • Inhelder
  • Dewey and Duckworth to the field of education

Presentations

  • “Genevan Learning Research as a Pedagogy of Teacher Education.” In “Reclaiming ‘Constructivist’ Commitments to Democracy and Equity within Pedagogical Practice and Theory,” a panel paper presentation with Susan J. Mayer, Mary Kay Delaney; discussion chair Jeremy Berman. Jean Piaget Society: Society for the Study of Knowledge and Development, Philadelphia, May 28-30,
  • “Critical Exploration in the Classroom as a Deep Learning Pedagogy for Preparing Teachers to Create Deep Learning Communities in the K-12 Classroom,” Jean Piaget Society: Society for the Study of Knowledge and Development, Philadelphia, May 28-30,
  • “A Democracy of Ideas,” Association for Moral Education, 42nd Annual Conference, Cambridge, MA, December 8-11, 2016.
  • “Learning to Teach for Understanding.” In “Welcoming Interactive Dynamic Engagement in Classrooms: Piaget and Inhelder Speak to Education Today.” Jean Piaget Society: Society for the Study of Knowledge and Development, Chicago, June 9-11,
  • “A Service Learning Project with a Neighborhood Elementary School Provides a Context for Preparing Preservice Teachers for the Challenges of Teaching Inquiry- Science” (with Based A. Houston-King, Kuehl, T. Rosien), Massachusetts Association for Colleges of Teacher EducationCollege of the Holy Cross, Worcester, MA. Fall Conference, October 31, 2014.
  • “Developing Professional Practice through Involving Students of Teaching in Learning Research,” American Educational Research Association, Philadelphia, PA, April 2014.
  • “Teaching as transitioning from I-it to I-thou relationships among learners, teachers and subject matter.” In B. Shorr (Chair), Between I and Thou: Developing Curriculum through a Pedagogy of Relation, Jean Piaget Society: Society for the Study of Knowledge and Development, Quebec City, Canada, June 7, 2011.
  • “Using the Inquiry Learning Cycle to Teach Science in the Elementary Grades,” NEA-NH Fall Conference, Bow, NH, October 8, 2010.
  • “Science Learning as a Creative Act.” In Duckworth (Chair), Development through creativity and ‘wonderful ideas’: Student explorations of art and science, Jean Piaget Society: Society for the Study of Knowledge and Development, Baltimore, MD, June 2006.

Professional Activity

  • Critical Explorers, Cambridge, MA, Board of Directors
  • Southern New Hampshire Science Teachers’ Collaborative, founding member
  • Alternative Education Resource Organization
  • Alliance for Self-Directed Education