Assistant Professor of Education
Melissa Mercer was hired into the Albion College faculty in August, 2004, and she brings a unique perspective to the teacher preparation program. As a professional museum educator, she has spend countless hours in schools--mostly K-8--and is comfortable teaching all ages and classroom and non-classroom settings. Her passion, however, is to help prospective teachers grow personally and professionally in order to be ethical, reflective, empathetic, and knowledgeable educators and role models for children and youth. She believes that "learning" should be considered broadly to include knowledge and skill gains, attitude and disposition changes, acquisition of multiple perspectives, and identity transactions, among other things. Her work often directs prospective teachers to look to places outside classroom walls for inspiration in their teaching. Dr. Mercer's research focuses on the intersection of Free Choice Learning Environments (FCLEs are places like museums, zoos, planetaria, historic sites, art galleries, and parks) and teacher education.
Dr. Mercer has a B.S. in physics from University of Michigan, M.A.T. in museum education from George Washington University, M.Ed. in science education in museum settings from University of Florida, and Ph.D. in science education (focusing on preparing future teachers to use FCLEs to inspire them to think differently about "learning" and "teaching") from University of Michigan. So far at Albion College, she has taught the introductory courses for the old and new programs, Elementary and Secondary Math and Science Methods courses, Summer Science Camp, Reading in the Content Area, and Student Teaching Seminar, and she has supervised elementary and secondary student teachers. She is excited to be a part of the Albion College/Albion Public Schools collaboration and looks forward to discovering with Albion Public School teachers and the community how she can play a part in rejuvenating the local school district.