Fitchburg State University

Recent Posts

Master of Science in Criminal Justice Faculty Spotlight

Posted by Fitchburg State University on September 25, 2023 at 1:17 PM

Meet Anthony Frongillo, professor of "Leadership & Management" in our Professional Studies concentration, Criminal Justice, MS.

  • How long have you been teaching in the Master of Science in Criminal Justice (MSCJ) program? What is your background in the criminal justice world?

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Topics: Criminal Justice, Graduate Programs

Master of Science in Criminal Justice Alumni Spotlight

Posted by Fitchburg State University on August 17, 2023 at 4:00 PM

Check out this alumni spotlight on Lt. John Boucher, a recent graduate from our Master of Science in Criminal Justice (MSCJ) program, Professional Studies concentration, who was promoted from Sgt. to Lt. while in the online program.
What was your experience like in the online MSCJ program?

The Fitchburg State University MSCJ online program was ideal after a 20+ year gap between my undergraduate and graduate degrees. For an adult learner, it provided flexibility to accommodate a busy professional schedule by offering remote, classroom, and hybrid options to ensure the challenge of the graduate degree journey was self-paced. Professors, advisors, and the school community were flexible and accessible - providing support and perspective through video conferences, phone conversations and in-person meetings to discuss relevant class topics and my individual professional development goals. I found the depth of professional diversity to be valuable. Each professor offered a practical experience that was current, informed, and credible beyond their academic perspective.  Invested in each student's comprehension of the curriculum, I found their willingness to debate refreshing and open-minded, leading by example to teach students "HOW" to think critically, not WHAT to think on any given topic.

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Topics: Criminal Justice, Graduate Programs

Advanced Placement Summer Institutes Instructor Spotlight - Patricia Fox

Posted by Fitchburg State University on June 26, 2023 at 10:27 AM

Tell us a little about yourself.

I am recently retired from a 40 year high school career in which I taught both English and Theatre as well as directing plays. In retirement, I have been able to devote more time to becoming a better photographer, read more books and am looking forward to resuming international travel. So much to do!

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Topics: Graduate Programs, Advanced Placement Summer Institutes

The Value of Process Documentation in the AP Art and Design Portfolio

Posted by Fitchburg State University on June 14, 2023 at 3:48 PM

“Students create a portfolio of work to demonstrate inquiry through art and design and development of materials, processes, and ideas over the course of a year. Portfolios include works of art and design, process documentation, and written information about the work presented.” (AP Art and Design Course and Exam Description.5) 

In the Sustained Investigation section of the Art and Design portfolio, the process documentation of working with images is as important as the final product. Teachers often want to know how many process images vs. final products are recommended for success. The question is important, but the answer is as individual as each of our students. The Sustained Investigation section of the student’s portfolio is guided by questions. Exploring through inquiry is a cognitive act. Artmaking, language, attention, learning, memory, and perception all contribute to gaining knowledge and comprehension. Artmaking makes thinking and knowledge visible. Writing about thinking in the portfolio supports the integrity of the artmaking.

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Topics: Advanced Placement Summer Institutes

Advanced Placement Summer Institutes Instructor Spotlight! - Rachel Ryan

Posted by Fitchburg State University on June 2, 2023 at 4:26 PM

Tell us a little about yourself:

I became active in politics at eleven when my mother made me volunteer for the campaign she was running for her best friend. I was hooked and knew I wanted to be involved in politics from then on. 


How long have you been involved with AP courses? How did you get started as a consultant?

I took the first AP US Government and Politics exam when it was offered and began teaching it a couple of years into my teaching career. I have been teaching the course for over 25 years. I teach at the Taft School in Watertown, CT, where we run an APSI.   For six summers, I was the assistant director of the program. I loved the program so much that I decided to apply to be a consultant. I love teaching other teachers who are passionate about government and politics.  


What is the most helpful advice you’ve received?

The most helpful advice that I have received is to attend the reading. Once I did that for the first time, I knew exactly how to teach my students. It is also so much more fun and interesting than you think. I have also met wonderful people who are now terrific friends. 


What is one piece of advice would you give AP instructors?

The best advice that I can give is to stay on top of current events. I have learned more about this subject by following the news closely. I listen to NPR and podcasts. I read major newspapers and blogs and will catch up on the headlines with the cable news. I then bring current events into the class, which the students enjoy and learn from.  


Rachael Ryan has been teaching AP US Government and Politics for 25 years.  She began reading the AP exams in 2006 and is currently a Table Leader. Rachael received her BA in US Government from Georgetown University and a Master’s in Liberal Arts from Harvard University. She helped edit AMSCO’s American Government by David Wofford and edited the test bank for WW Norton’s American Politics Today. Rachael has been teaching at the Taft School in Watertown, CT, since 2000.  She has worked on numerous political campaigns and is currently an elected member of the Watertown Town Council. In 2014, Rachael was awarded The Littlejohn Family Chair 2014, which “is awarded to a faculty member whose commitment to the whole student exemplifies the underlying philosophy of the Taft education, and who demonstrates a passion for his or her academic discipline, a profound caring for the emotional and intellectual life of students, and has made a significant and positive difference in the lives of her students.” She lives in Watertown, CT, with her husband and two children.

Interested in attending the AP Summer Institutes at Fitchburg State University?

Registration deadline for Week 1 is July 3!

Learn more about our 100% online Master of Science in Criminal Justice,  Professional Studies Concentration

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Topics: Advanced Placement Summer Institutes

Lab Work: The Key to Engagement and Boosting Scores - Written by: Sue Biggs, Advanced Placement Summer Institute Instructor

Posted by Fitchburg State University on May 30, 2023 at 11:48 AM

Using Lab work to boost both engagement and your students’ AP Chemistry Scores. Many AP chemistry teachers feel as if they do not have time to do lab work. I think that this feeling is caused by a number of different factors. Perhaps you might think that you can deliver the material better with lecture or POGILS or worksheets. Perhaps you think your class periods are too short and you don’t have any double periods. Perhaps you feel overworked and that you don’t have time to set labs up. Perhaps you don’t have the time or inclination to collect lab notebooks or grade long lab reports. Perhaps you have done some of the AP of chemical supply company lab protocols and found those procedures to be a time drain taking far too long. Perhaps you don’t know what AP means by “inquiry” and you just don’t know where to begin. Perhaps you don’t have enough equipment, probeware, or supplies. Perhaps you do not have any labs that “work” or help to really illustrate the concepts you are trying to teach.

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Topics: Graduate Programs, Advanced Placement Summer Institutes

Are you ready to join the growing movement to help expand your knowledge of AI possibilities in education?

Posted by Fitchburg State University on April 21, 2023 at 10:57 AM

The educational landscape as we know it is drastically changing. Teachers are currently questioning how and if artificial intelligence (AI) should be used in education. Products that educators currently are using, such as Canva for Education, have recently incorporated AI features to help streamline workflow, increase productivity, and spark creativity. Other educational companies have also announced soon to be released AI features. It's important that educators understand that AI has been in the background of our daily lives prior to ChatGPT's existence and now AI will be more reliably available.  

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Topics: Center for Professional Studies

HIST 9210: The Vietnam War: An International Perspective

Posted by Fitchburg State University on January 17, 2023 at 2:45 PM

Looking for a history course to take this summer? Then check out the Summer B 2023 course, HIST 9210: The Vietnam War: An International Perspective.

From the early twentieth century, Vietnamese resistance against French colonialism
became a long struggle led by Ho Chi Minh. After the Japanese invasion during the Second World War, the American OSS cooperated with Vietnamese forces against Japan and then supported their independence. But during the Cold War, the domino theory led Washington to increasingly view Southeast Asia as a key area to resist Communism. After the division of Vietnam into North and South in 1954, America made a commitment to build up South Vietnam and this led to the decade-long war which took many lives. This class examines the wars in Vietnam in global perspective and the impact of the conflict on the peoples of Southeast Asia.

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Topics: Economics, History, and Political Science

New Course Spring 23 - Imperialism, War and Resistance HIST 9031

Posted by Fitchburg State University on December 5, 2022 at 9:05 AM

Burning of Arochukwo, Nigeria, 1901.  Imperial arson was widespread.

Before the World Wars, before D-Day, Stalingrad, Verdun, and the Somme, the major western powers of Europe and the Americas enjoyed decades of relative peace.  but this era of peace was actually a period of almost incessant war:  by the turn of the last century European imperial powers and states with predominantly European settler populations, had taken control over vast areas of the globe in Africa, Asia, and the Americas. This class will examine this era of global war, focusing on both methods of conquest and on the emergence of multiple forms of resistance. We will look at both similarities and differences between conquest and resistance in regions including, the Great Plains, the Pampas or grasslands of Argentina, Africa, Southeast Asia, and Central Asia.

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Topics: Programs and Majors, Humanities