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Information Technology and Administrative Management

College of Education and Professional Studies

Dr. Elizabeth Fountain, FlexIT Program Coordinator

Office: SAM 206M
Phone: 509.963.1408

I’m thrilled to join the ITAM department as a Lecturer. I’ve been in higher education for nearly 20 years, with roles as faculty member, program director, Dean, and Associate Provost. I earned my bachelor’s degree in philosophy and my master’s in psychology from Seattle University, and my doctorate from Capella University. I have taught courses in leadership, critical thinking, communications, and psychology, at the undergraduate, Master’s, and doctoral levels. I love teaching because it gives me a chance to keep learning. My teaching style is highly interactive, and emphasizes real-world applications of what we’re studying. In my online courses, you’ll do a lot of reading, quizzes, and homework – and we’ll have the most fun in discussion, where we get to interact, ask questions, pose problems, tell stories, and learn from one another.

To the discipline of administrative management, I bring fifteen years of leadership and management experience. My Ph.D. is in higher education leadership, and I served in middle and executive management roles in a non-profit university. My areas of greatest interest are the cultural, ethical, and relational areas of leadership, and the best ways to advance teaching and learning.

My passion is creative writing, and my first novel was published in the spring of 2013. My second is due out in June 2014. I moved to Ellensburg in the winter of 2011, and I love books, music, movies, dogs, vegetarian food (yes, French fries are vegetarian!), and taking long walks leaning into the diabolical Kittitas Valley wind. I also love to travel and meet new people in places like New Orleans, Washington, D.C., Mexico, Bulgaria, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, and, of course, beautiful places closer to home like Soap Lake, Washington.

“Every day, good luck comes in the strangest of ways.”

~Chris Rea (British singer/songwriter)

Advice to students:

When I do student orientations, I offer three pieces of hard-earned advice:
First, work hard. You’ll get out of your education roughly what you are willing to invest in it. Do the reading, complete the assignments, take the learning seriously (but not yourself).

Second, use support. Friends, family, teachers – anyone who is willing to be there for you. Support is a gift, and no one succeeds alone. Show your gratitude for those who support you by learning everything you can.

Third, at any university event that offers free food – take it! If there are leftovers, take them home! It’s one of the best perks of being a student.


Doctor of Philosophy, Capella University: Higher Education Leadership
Dissertation topic: Creating institutional commitment to learning-centered education

Master of Arts, Seattle University: Existential-Phenomenological Therapeutic Psychology

Bachelor of Arts, Seattle University: Psychology and Philosophy (summa cum laude)

Teaching and Mentoring Experience

1995-Current: Associate Faculty at City University of Seattle
Teach, design, & develop courses in leadership, organizational systems, organizational communications, organizational training & development, psychology, critical thinking.

Undergraduate courses taught
Critical Thinking, Organizational Communication, Organizational Systems, Psychology of Adolescents, Psychology of Gender

Master’s level courses taught
Couples Counseling, Group Counseling Psychology, Individual Counseling Psychology Theory, Integrative Research Project, Practicum, Psychology of Loss and Grief, Psychology of Trauma and Violence, Research Project/Thesis, Systems Theory: Diversity and Cultural Psychology

Doctoral program dissertation chair
Serve as Dissertation Chair for students in the Doctor of Education program.
Doctoral courses taught
Cultural Competence in a Diverse Society, Leadership Theories and Future Trends

Curriculum design & development
I co-created and teach the core classes for a continuing education certificate program in partnership with Boeing focused on providing training & development professionals with in-depth knowledge and skill in adult learning theory, curriculum design, and development. Additional course development experience includes courses in leadership, higher education leadership, psychology, organizational communications, and human services leadership.

2012-2014: Contributing Faculty at Walden University
Serve as Dissertation Chair and Mentor for doctoral students in the Doctor of Business Administration program; teach Doctoral Study Mentoring and Doctoral Study Completion

1997-1998: Adjunct Faculty at Bastyr University
Undergraduate courses taught
Human Development, Psychology of Nutrition

Graduate seminar
Working with Trauma Survivors

Professional Experience

Consultant, 2011- Current
In my role as consultant, I assist with projects related to specialized, professional, international, and/or regional accreditation, institutional research, assessment, and strategic planning.

Recent examples include:
City University of Seattle, specialized/professional accreditation submissions:

  • Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs
  • American Association of Intensive English Programs
  • Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Programs
  • Professional Educator Standards Board of the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction

City University of Seattle, institutional research and assessment:

  • Faculty Survey
  • Student Satisfaction Survey
  • Using e-portfolios for program assessment

Cornish College of the Arts, regional accreditation process and reports:

  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities Comprehensive Self-evaluation Report & Year One Report
  • Developing assessment tools and mechanisms in academic departments

University of Maryland, University College

  • State system submissions for new academic programs in cybersecurity

Associate Provost, City University of Seattle: 2009-2011
As the Associate Provost I was responsible for formalizing and implementing CityU’s Academic Affairs strategies, goals, and priorities, for providing direction and guidance to the Deans to achieve those strategies, goals, and key outcomes, and for leading the necessary academic support systems.

Primary responsibilities:

  • Provided direction and guidance to the Deans to implement university and Academic Affairs strategic priorities;
  • Worked with the Chairs to oversee the activities of the standing committees of the Academic Affairs Council (AAC);
  • Ensured alignment of academic standards across domestic and international operations, coordinating participation in policy and standard-setting processes;
  • Led assessments of academic plans, student learning outcomes assessment, and program review efforts, and ensure all programs have effective learning outcomes assessment processes in place;
  • Assisted in the oversight of regional and professional accreditation, and regulatory approval processes, nationally and internationally.


  • Coordinated implementation of student learning outcomes assessment process across schools and programs;
  • Implemented annual student learning outcomes assessment reports and synthesized results across the institution;
  • Co-chair of decennial accreditation self-study steering committee; co-chair of subcommittees on standards one (mission and goals), two (effectiveness of academic programs), and policies related to international programs; co-author of self-study report;
  • Member of peer evaluation panel for six institutions in the region submitting Year One Reports as part of Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities’ new seven-year accreditation model.

Key Projects 2010-11 Academic Year:
For the 2010-11 academic year, I lead key university-wide strategic projects:

  • Prepared to serve new populations with full four-year undergraduate curricula;
  • Integrated applied learning and study abroad;
  • Developed an academic skill assessment and placement model for implementation across undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

Director, Office of Institutional Effectiveness, City University of Seattle: 2007-2011
The Office of Institutional Effectiveness was a component of the President’s Office, and as the Director I was charged to work cross-departmentally to coordinate and oversee the university’s strategic planning, assessment, and institutional research functions.

Primary responsibilities:

  • Compiled and analyzed institutional and programmatic performance;
  • Designed and integrated assessment processes within all units, programs, and services;
  • Coordinated the strategic planning process and key performance indicators for the institution;
  • Supported academic planning and assessment, including learning outcomes assessment and program review;
  • Provided data and analysis for accreditation reports and self-studies;
  • Provided data and analysis for reports for regulatory approval processes;
  • Publicized key data to the university’s constituents.


  • Designed process to link strategic planning with continuous improvement model;
  • Revived student satisfaction survey, alumni survey, and teaching faculty survey and provided means for integrating results into the annual planning process;
  • Coordinated twice-yearly strategic planning retreats for faculty and staff;
  • Implemented dashboard reporting system in collaboration with finance and admissions offices.

University service: Academic Affairs Council, Academic Assessment Committee, Academic Technology Committee, President’s Executive Team, Strategic Planning Committee, Scholarship Committee.

Dean, School of Arts and Sciences (formerly Human Services and Applied Behavioral Science), City University of Seattle: 2002- 2007 (Interim 2002-2003)
The School of Arts and Sciences includes graduate and undergraduate programs in psychology, counseling, communications, and general studies, and provides general education courses for all university programs. Its programs are delivered in classroom, online, and mixed-mode delivery formats.

Primary responsibilities:

  • Accountable for the quality of all academic programming, as well as providing leadership and strategic direction for the school;
  • Developed enrollment projections and operating budget, with accountability for performing to projections;
  • Ensured compliance with all university policies and accreditation standards;
  • Directly supervised Program Directors for graduate and undergraduate programs, and one non-exempt position.


  • Increased enrollments in the school by 40% between academic year 2002/03 and 2005/06;
  • Transitioned the school from a narrow focus on psychology programs to its current responsibilities for general education and communications;
  • Implemented the school’s first fully online program, with annual enrollments reaching over 800 in three years;
  • Re-engineered the school’s curriculum development process to an outcomes-based, industry-responsive model;
  • As Chair of the Academic Assessment Committee, instituted policies and processes on program review, authentic assessment of student learning, and assessment of effective instruction.

University service:  Chair of the Academic Assessment Committee, a standing committee of the Academic Affairs Council, the primary governance body of the university; co-wrote the University’s five-year accreditation report, Standards Two and Four, and its 2006 Focused Interim Report. Member of the Strategic Planning Committee charged in 2004 with the task of developing an inclusive vision for the university, and developing that vision into a five-year plan including institutional goals, strategic initiatives, and key performance indicators. Academic Affairs Representative to university’s enterprise planning system (Peoplesoft) implementation team; completed on time and on budget in one year.

Program Director/Senior Faculty, Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology, City University of Seattle: 1999-2002

  • Primary responsibilities:
  • Responsible for the curriculum, instruction, and student support for the division’s largest program;
  • Carried a teaching load, supervised full and part-time faculty, developed courses, coordinated the application and acceptance process, advised and mentored students, and participated in outreach and recruitment;
  • Served on university bodies such as the Senior Management Team, the Curriculum Assessment Committee, and academic conference planning committees.
  • Accomplishments:
  • Implemented major program revision from community counseling to counseling psychology focus;
  • Designed and implemented comprehensive learning outcomes assessment process;
  • Maintained leadership and continuity for entire school during 18-month period while the Dean position was vacant.

Professional Counselor, Private Practice, 1990-2000
Therapist/Case Manager, Community Psychiatric Clinic, 1989-1990

Presentations and Publications

Team Projects in Online Learning: Best Practices in Design, Implementation, and Evaluation.
Lead proposal writer and co-presenter for the first annual Conference on Teaching and Learning at City University of Seattle, April 2013.

Integration, Innovation, and Internationalization: General Education and Mission

Proposal writer and co-presenter at February 2012 Association of American Colleges and Universities annual conference on General Education and Assessment: New Contexts, New Cultures, New Orleans, LA.

Preparing Students for Global Challenges: Outcomes-Based Curriculum Planning
Lead proposal writer and presenter for Society for College and University Planning (SCUP); presented at July 2009 Annual International Conference and Idea Marketplace, Portland, OR.

So Many Outcomes and So Little Time: Solving the General Education “Problem” for Adult Learners
Co-proposal writer and presenter at February 2009 Association of American Colleges and Universities annual conference on General Education, Assessment, and the Learning Students Need, Baltimore, MD.

Global Intent, Local Delivery: Cross-Border Curriculum Planning.
Lead proposal writer and presenter for Society for College and University Planning (SCUP); presentation at July 2007 Annual International Conference and Idea Marketplace of the Society for College and University Planning, Chicago.

To Google or not to Google: Research Integrity in the Era of Information Explosion.
Co-presenter for Learning and Technology: Implications for Liberal Education and the Disciplines, Association of American Colleges and Universities’ Network for Academic Renewal Conference, Seattle, WA, April 2006.

Solving the General Education Assessment Problem.
Workshop presentation for National Assessment Institute, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, Indianapolis, IN, October 2005.

Bauer, L., Duffy, J., Fountain, E., Halling, S., Holzer, M., Jones, E., Leifer, M., & Rowe, J.O. (1992). Exploring self-forgiveness. Journal of Religion and Health, 31(2), 149-160.

Fountain, E. (2011). CityU’s approach to outcomes assessment. In K.D. Kirstein, J. Hinrichs, & S. Olswang (Eds.), Authentic Instruction and Online Delivery: Proven Practices in Higher Education (pp. 357-369). Charleston, SC: CreateSpace Publishing.

Fountain, E., & Kirstein, K.D. (2013). Team projects in online learning: Best practices in design, implementation, and evaluation. In K.D. Kirstein, C. Schieber, K. Flores, & S. Olswang (Eds.) Innovations in Teaching Adults: Proven Practices in Higher Education (pp.103-115). Charleston, SC: CreateSpace Publishing.

Kirstein, K.D., Fountain, E., Flores, K. (2009). Internationalizing business curricula: An outcomes-focused approach. Business Education Innovation Journal, 1(2).

Fountain, E. (2013). An alien’s guide to world domination (novel). Calgary, AB: Burst! Books.
Fountain, E. (2014, in press). You, Jane (novel). Calgary, AB: Champagne Book Group.

Various short stories in compilations and e-journals.

Take the Next Step to Becoming a Wildcat.