Student-Centered Coaching

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Summer Registration Now Open!

Student-Centered Coaching Enhanced Certificate
Student-Centered Coaching Online Certificate
Student-Centered Coaching: Content-Focused Certificate

Program space fills up fast! Contact Lindsay Stoetzel to be notified when registration opens.
Check back in the future to stay updated, or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter!


Instructional coaching is a field with promise and possibility. A successful school or district coaching model can create a powerful professional learning community committed to student success. The goal of school-based instructional coaching is to increase student learning by providing continuous, relevant and job-embedded support to teachers (Sweeney, 2010). In order to do so, schools employ a variety of instructional coaching models, however, not all models lead with a focus on evidence and student learning. Student-centered coaching is the model that embraces these practices and puts teachers in the best position to improve student learning.

Student-centered coaching is about (1) setting specific targets for students that are grounded in the standards and content and (2) working together with educators to ensure that the targets are met (Sweeney, 2010). The University of Wisconsin Madison is excited to offer a series of four courses that are dedicated to enhancing and defining the knowledge and skills of instructional coaches.

Through our student-centered coaching programs, current coaches or aspiring coaches will engage in dialogue and job-embedded professional development to ground their coaching work in student evidence and further refine coaching practices.

certificate Participants will: 
  • Identify the core practices of student centered coaching and compare them to other coaching models to help inform coaching strategies that result in student learning
  • Analyze student assessment data in order to make instructional decisions
  • Plan collaboratively with educators to improve student learning
  • Conduct student centered coaching cycles that use student evidence to guide the sessions
  • Recognize factors that may create barriers to effective coaching and work collaboratively to develop approaches to address these factors
  • Reflect on one’s own coaching work and use that reflection to continually grow and improve



Because of an outreach grant, we are able to offer this certificate program at the reduced cost of $600 per non-credit course. Each course can also be taken for 3 UW-Madison credits at the total cost of $1,000 per course. For more information please contact Lindsay Stoetzel at




Student-Centered Coaching Certificate

  • 4-course series offered completely online.
  • Job-embedded professional development that applies the practices of student-centered coaching to authentic participant contexts.
  • Professional learning communities offer the opportunity to network and engage with participants in varied contexts and roles.
  • Dedicated and highly knowledgeable instructors provide ongoing feedback and resources to guide participants through the experience.
  • For an additional fee, participants may also choose to enroll in the course(s) for University of Wisconsin-Madison credit (3 credit hours per course). *Note: there are additional course requirements for those enrolling for credit.

Student-Centered Coaching Enhanced Certificate

  • Complete the 4-course series completely online.
  • Attend 4 face-to-face workshops hosted by course instructors, two featuring Diane Sweeney. Workshops will take place at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and will be distributed across certificate semesters.
  • Engage in small group consultancies to problem-solve around coaching experiences; participate in live coaching labs; dig deeper into coaching practices such as utilizing reflective dialogue, setting appropriate learning targets, and analyzing student evidence.

Student-Centered Coaching: Content-Focused Certificate

  • Complete the 4-course series completely online.
  • Complete an additional content-focused coaching course in Mathematics or Literacy.
  • Develop and expand understandings and applications for student-centered coaching within a particular content area. This will include analysis of content-area standards and learning targets; alignment and development of formative assessment to elicit meaningful student evidence; analysis and discussion around student evidence and next instructional steps.
  • Note: We welcome a wide range of content-area expertise in these courses, as they are designed for participants across the spectrum. Veteran content-area experts will have the opportunity to connect their knowledge to the student-centered coaching model and dig into persistent questions and areas of confusion. Developing content-area experts will build a deeper knowledge and foundation for the content area in relation to the work of student-centered coaching.


Diane Sweeney

Diane Sweeney has been a national consultant since 1999.  After teaching and coaching in the Denver Public Schools, Diane served as a program officer at the Public Education & Business Coalition (PEBC) in Denver.  Since then she has become a respected voice in the field of coaching and professional development.

The author of Student-Centered Coaching: The Moves (Corwin Press, 2016), Student-Centered Coaching at the Secondary Level (Corwin Press, 2013), Student-Centered Coaching: A Guide for K-8 Coaches and Principals (Corwin Press, 2010), and Learning Along The Way: Professional Development by and for Teachers (Stenhouse, 2003), Diane holds a longstanding interest in how adult learning translates to learning in the classroom.  Diane holds a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Denver and a Master’s in Bilingual and Multicultural Education from the University of Colorado, Boulder.


Laura LangDr. Laura Lang Dr. Lang is a Lecturer and Senior Outreach Specialist with the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis (ELPA) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She also works as an independent literacy consultant, with collaborations across a wide range of schools and organizations in WI and in the Chicago-area. Dr. Lang received her Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction (Literacy Studies) at the UW-Madison in 2012, her M.S.Ed in Reading Instruction from National Louis University in 2000, and her B.S.Ed (Secondary English education) from Northwestern University in 1996.

Dr. Lang also serves as Past-President of the Madison Area Reading Council, a local affiliate of the Wisconsin State Reading Association and recently participated as a fellow with the Greater Madison Writing Project. She currently serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy and as reviewer for Teaching and Teacher Education. She has coauthored multiple texts for educators, most recently “Academic Vocabulary in Middle and High School: Effective Practices across the Disciplines” (2015, Guilford Press)

Catherine Compton-LillyDr. Catherine Compton-Lilly

Dr. Catherine Compton-Lilly is a Professor in Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She was an elementary school teacher for 18 years. She is the author of Reading Families: The Literate Lives of Urban Children (Teachers College Press, 2003), Confronting Racism, Poverty and Power (Heinemann, 2004), Rereading Families (Teachers College Press, 2007), the editor of Breaking the Silence (International Reading Association, 2009), and co-editor of Bedtime Stories and Book Reports: Complexities, Concerns, and Considerations in Fostering Parent Involvement and Family Literacy (Teachers College Press, 2010).

 Dr. Compton-Lilly has authored articles in the Reading Research Quarterly, Research in the Teaching of English, The Reading Teacher, The Journal of Early Childhood Literacy, The Reading Teacher, and Language Arts. Dr. Compton-Lilly engages in longitudinal research projects that last over long periods of time. In her most recent study, she followed a group of eight inner-city students from grade one through grade 11. Her interests include examining how time operates as a contextual factor in children’s lives as they progress through school and construct their identities as students and readers.

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stephanie shedrow
Stephanie Shedrow

Stephanie Shedrow is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A former middle school ELA teacher and literacy coach, Stephanie's research focuses on the impact of standardized assessments on children and families. Stephanie has also taught a variety of literacy methods courses for the Elementary Education programs at UW-Madison and UW-Oshkosh in addition to serving as a cohort supervisor.

Stephanie holds a BA in Secondary English Education from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and a M.Ed in Literacy Education from the University of Nevada. In addition, she works as an instructional designer in the Office of Education Outreach & Partnership at UW-Madison.


Julie Wright     Julie Wright

Julie Wright is a teacher, instructional coach, and consultant with over 20 years of experience in education. She taught at the elementary level for 14 years in Upper Arlington, OH and led district-wide professional development for literacy and social studies teachers for six years. She served as an adjunct faculty member at Ashland University, teaching graduate courses focused on Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment. Julie worked as an instructional coach at Harlem Village Academies in NYC. Currently, she works as an instructional coach for reading teachers and serves as the RTI coordinator for Mamaroneck Union Free School District.

Julie is a contributor to Choice Literacy and Lead Literacy, and has written for Heinemann’s Digital Campus titled Love Letters.   Julie is working on a book focused on what matters most in education today.  She holds National Board Certification as well as a B.S. in education, a master’s in language arts and reading, and extensive school leadership post-graduate work (including a pre-K through grade 9 principal license) from The Ohio State University.


Lindsay Stoetzel     Lindsay Stoetzel

Lindsay Stoetzel is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A former HS and middle school ELA teacher, Lindsay's research focuses on teacher education and professional learning for both preservice and practicing teachers. She has also taught a variety of literacy methods courses and supervised for the Elementary Education program at UW-Madison.

Lindsay coordinates the Student-Centered Coaching Certificate as an Outreach Specialist in the Office of Education Outreach & Partnerships. In addition, she works as a partner to the Madison Metropolitan School District in developing and supporting their professional development for coaches. Lindsay holds a BA in English Secondary Education from Grand Valley State University and a MA in Educational Technology from Michigan State University.

Gwyn Hughes     Dr. Gwyneth Hughes

Dr. Gwyneth Hughes works in the Education Outreach and Partnerships Office at UW Madison. She has been providing mathematics professional development in-person and online to K-12 teachers for the past seven years. Her background includes teaching high school mathematics and a PhD in Geoscience.

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