Baylor School of Education’s Susan Johnsen Received the Council for Exceptional Children Outstanding Leadership Award

May 5, 2014
Susan JohnsenSusan Johnsen courtesy photo.

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WACO, Texas (May 5, 2014) — Susan K. Johnsen, Ph.D., professor in the Baylor School of Education and director of the Ph.D. Program in Education Psychology and of the Gifted Programs, was recently awarded the 2014 Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) Outstanding Leadership Award.

The CEC is dedicated to improving the educational success of individuals with disabilities and gifts and talents. It advocates for appropriate governmental policies, sets professional standards, provides professional development, advocates for individuals with exceptionalities and helps professionals obtain conditions and resources necessary for effective professional practice.

“The CEC Award has never been given to a person in the field of gifted education so I felt very honored,” Johnsen said.

Annually, the CEC presents awards to recognize educators and CEC members who have advanced the field and quality of special education service as well as the organization itself. Johnsen has remained very active within the organization, working to improve gifted and talented education standards.

“In gifted education, I think that sometimes people believe that once you’re identified as gifted, you’re just gifted,” Johnsen said in a previous interview. “We know from research that students with gifts and talents need to be developed.”

Within CEC, Johnsen has served as member and chair of the Knowledge and Skills Subcommittee of the Professional Standards and Practice Committee and she has developed a partnership with the National Association for Gifted Children. She has 10 years of leadership with the Texas Association of the Gifted, a special interest division within the CEC. In addition to her job at Baylor, she is editor of “Gifted Child Today,” coauthor of more than 200 articles, monographs, technical reports and dozens of books related to gifted education and author of three tests used in identifying gifted students.

In December, Johnsen was recognized as the Texas Association for the Gifted & Talented (TAGT) State Advocate for the Gifted, an honor given in recognition of outstanding service, contribution and commitment to gifted and talented education and students in Texas.

For more information on the CEC, visit their website.

by Rachel Miller, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805


Baylor University is a private Christian university and a nationally ranked research institution, characterized as having “high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The university provides a vibrant campus community for approximately 15,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating university in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 11 nationally recognized academic divisions. Baylor sponsors 19 varsity athletic teams and is a founding member of the Big 12 Conference.


The Baylor School of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education and consists of four departments: Curriculum and Instruction (preparation for classroom teachers and specialists); Educational Administration (post-graduate preparation for school leadership); Educational Psychology (undergraduate and graduate programs for those who are interested in learning, development, measurement, and exceptionalities); and Health, Human Performance and Recreation (preparing for sport- and health-related careers, athletic training and careers in recreational professions, including churches).The School of Education enrolls more than 1,000 undergraduate students and 300 graduate students, employs 70 faculty, and is one of the few school s in the State of Texas that offers a yearlong teaching internship.

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