University of Vermont

Faculty Biography

Faculty Biography | Binta M. Colley

Binta M. Colley

Binta M. Colley, Ph.D.Assistant Professor

Contact Information:
Waterman 534A

Dr. Colley has three main research interests:(1) Integrating social studies across disciplines for k-12 classroom; ( 2) how can the arts be used in education to enhance learning in the K-16 level and (3) how do family, school and community affect students’ educational outcomes? A recent addition to that list has been her involvement in the SPIRES as a Food Systems Fellow. To answer these research questions, she uses both qualitative and quantitative research strategies and engages in various interdisciplinary collaborative projects. Her work with family, school and community has been published as an invited chapter in Family school community partnership series 2005 monograph: Promising practices for family involvement across the continent. Her arts integration research was published in KDP and projects include curriculum development with high and middle school art teachers in the D.C. area, NYC elementary school teachers, and middle school history teachers in New Mexico.

Areas of Expertise:

Curriculum and Instruction; Fine Arts and Education; Teacher Education

  • Curriculum and Instruction: Curriculum and Instruction are a major part of the methods courses I teach. Understanding how an integrated curriculum enriches the teaching and learning experience of k-12 students is key to helping develop master teachers. In addition, I use those skills to consult with institutions outside of the university who are trying to develop cohesive curricula for their programs.
  • Fine Arts and Education: With a background in the arts and an interest in the brain, creativity and learning, my research focuses on the importance of integrating the arts throughout the curriculum and across disciplines. I incorporate the arts in all of my courses, and my research focuses on how the arts can increase academic performance. I have lectured in China on the arts, creativity and learning.
  • Teacher Education: Research focuses on the reflective practitioner and the importance of giving students opportunities to reflect upon and own their knowledge. Work includes how to train teachers to teach across the disciplines by integrating social studies and the arts in the curriculum.


Selected Publications

  • Colley, K. & Colley, B. (2013). Resilience and success: The professional journeys of African American women scientists. Peter Lang Publishers, NY.) (In Production for summer 2013).  [abstract]
  • Colley, B. (2012). Teaching social studies methods through the performing arts. The Educational Forum. Kappa Delta Pi, January.  [abstract]
  • Colley, B. (2013) “Cooking transformations: Bringing Dewey back to the kitchen-room.” In Food Pedagogies, Mike Goodman, Ed., London: Ashgate. urned)  [abstract]
  • Colley, B., Billics, A., Lerch, C. (2012), Reflection: A key component to thinking critically. The Canadian Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching.  [abstract]
  • Colley, Bilics, A B. & Lerch C. (2005). Zone of proximal development and scaffolding online with classroom based instruction. Encyclopedia of Online Learning and Technology  [abstract]
  • Colley, B. (2005). Family and community involvement practices in West Africa. In D. B. Hyatt (Ed.), Family school community partnership series 2005 monograph: Promising practices for family involvement across the continents. Greenwich, CT: Information Age Publishing.  [abstract]
  • Bilics, A, Colley, B., Gonsalves, L., Jones, S., McIntyre, A., Smith-Mumford, P., Weaver, B. and Monica Weaver (1998). Engaging in cross-racial dialogue: Does/can talk lead to action. Special Issue: "How could you not hear it?" Writings on race, color and whiteness. Transformations: A Journal of Curriculum Transformation and Scholarship. Vol. 9, No. 2, Fall. The New Jersey Project.  [abstract]
  • Colley, B., Bilics, A., & Lerch, C. (2012). Reflection: A key component to thinking critically. The Canadian Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching, 3(1), 1-19.

Selected Presentations

  • Colley, B. (2011). The brain, learning and creativity. Lecture, Inner Mongolian University Arts College, Hohot, Inner Mongolia, May.
  • Colley, B., Bilics, A., Lerch, C. (March 2011). "Students Thinking Critically through Reflection". International Alliance of Teacher Scholars: Lilly West 2011.
  • Colley, B. (2010). "Taking Charge: Black and Hispanic Parental Involvement in Urban Education." 2010 American Educational Studies Association (October 27-31)
  • Colley, B., Reyes, C. and Smith, S. Brite Fellowship: English Language Learners
  • Colley, B. Workshop on project based curriculum development

Courses Taught in the Last 5 Years

Inquiry Block - Fieldwork; Inquiry Block - Social Studies Methods; Integrating the Arts


  • Ph.D. in Teacher Ed and Curriculum Development from Boston College, Lynch School of Education
  • M.Ed. in Curriculum Development from Cambridge College
  • B.A. in Fine Arts from Columbia Colley

Awards & Honors

  • CUPS Mini Grant from Community and University Partnerships: This grant of $1500 was used to enhance the visual aids used at Shelburne Farms and the Sustainability Academy. Students created, repaired, and worked on visual aids needed by faculty and teachers. (2011)
  • Project Brite: Educational Alliance Fellow from Educational Alliance: Brown University: This award included a stipend and a one year commitment to research and review work on English language learners. As an Educational Alliance Fellow, I was also mentored through the process of incorporated ELL issues throughout the curriculum. (2007)

Professional Associations

  • American Educational Research Association (AERA), American Educational Studies Association (AESA), Association for Childhood Education International (ACEI), Kappa Delta Pi (KDP), National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS), Pi Gamma Mu