A hallmark of The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership is the breadth and depth of its experts from multiple disciplines and experiences.

These experts:

  • Include educators, researchers, and policymakers who are leading change in their fields and influencing the future of education on a national level.
  • Participate in Walden courses in several ways, including planning and developing curriculum, sharing insights and research through podcasts and videos, and teaching classes.
  • Provide a research-based foundation from which students can transform their teaching practice in positive and meaningful ways.

This instructional approach enables you to have access to the latest thinking in the field as part of your program curriculum.

Special Education Experts

Margaret McLaughlin, PhD
Dr. McLaughlin has been involved in special education throughout her professional career, beginning as a teacher of students with serious emotional and behavioral disorders. She is the associate director of the Institute for the Study of Exceptional Children and Youth at the College of Education, University of Maryland.

Dr. McLaughlin also directs several national projects investigating education reform regarding students with disabilities, including work with the Educational Policy Reform Research Institute (a consortium involving the University of Maryland), the National Center on Educational Outcomes, and the Urban Special Education Leadership Collaborative.

She has also developed programs for students with developmental disabilities in Bosnia, Nicaragua, and Guatemala.

Marilyn Friend, PhD

Dr. Friend is a professor and chair for the Department of Specialized Education Services at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. The author of numerous books and publications and co-author of Including Students with Special Needs: A Practical Guide for Classroom Teachers, Dr. Friend specializes in the areas of collaboration and consultation in special education, service delivery systems, teaming, and inclusive education.

She is involved in undergraduate and graduate teaching, field-based research, advising, and the development and coordination of teacher education programs for students with mild disabilities.

Dr. Friend has worked with teachers in most of the 50 states, as well as in Canada, Portugal, and Indonesia. She assists professionals to develop effective co-teaching skills, create and maintain effective teams, and problem-solve with parents and families.