Celia Johnson


Westlake Hall 243
(309) 677-3187

Ed.D., Illinois State University
M.S.E.D., Illinois State University
B.S.E.D., Illinois State University


I was hired at Bradley as a generalist because of my broad background and experience base in elementary, early childhood, and special education. This has afforded me many opportunities to teach several different classes in those programs through the years. In 2005 I was asked to coordinate the Special Education programs which narrowed my focus. Currently, I teach courses in classroom management, literacy, and methods in special education at the undergraduate and graduate levels. My primary area of expertise is in the area of social/emotional and behavioral disorders. I was formally trained in Life Space Crisis Intervention (LSCI) in 1993 and received my senior trainer certificate (LSCI) in 2006. LSCI is based on psychoeducational theory which is the core of my teaching in all my classes.


Because of my broad background, I have had many opportunities to do scholarly work.  A lot of my research and publications have focused on learning environments in a variety of contexts that include early childhood, special education, violence prevention, and general areas of education such as classroom management and literacy. Other topics and areas of interest that I have published include the achievement gap, bibliotherapy, home schooling, peace education, teacher preparation, supporting children exposed to domestic violence, and professional development schools.  I currently have a variety of publications as book chapters, refereed articles, children’s literature, electronic sources, ERIC documents, proceedings, and others. My most recent research involves the use of mental imagery to teach alphabetic principle to children in kindergarten. This project is being support by internal grants allowing collaboration with undergraduate and graduate students.

Additionally, I have worked on various grants as an outside consultant for research on universal pre-kindergarten, Early Head Start programs, and violence prevention initiatives through The Center for Prevention of Abuse in Peoria, IL.

Enhancing my personal scholarship are the opportunities I have as a member of the Editorial Board for the book series, Advances in Learning Environments Research; manuscript reviewer for the American Educational Research Association proposals; thesis/dissertation reviewer for Australian Catholic University and Curtin University; and reviewer/consultant on Prevention Curricula for The Center for Prevention of Abuse.


I serve on several committees within the department, college, and university. Additionally I serve the community as follows:

  • Member – Peoria’s Advisory Board – Heart of Illinois Safe From the Start
  • Member – Heart of Illinois Safe From the Start Coalition
  • Illinois Articulation Initiative
  • Early Childhood Forum

I serve the profession in a variety of venues as a result of membership in the following professional organizations.

  • American Education Research Association (AER)
    • Learning Environments SIG (President, Program Chair, Newsletter Editor, Awards Chair)
  • Phi Delta Kappa (PDK)
    • Heart of Illinois/Bradley University Chapter (President, VP of Programs, Special Projects Coordinator, Foundations Representative)
  • Council for Exceptional Children (CEC)
  • National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)
    • Illinois Association for the Education of Young Children (ILAEYC)
    • Heart of Illinois Association for the Education of Young Children (HIAEYC)
  • Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development
  • International Reading Association (IRA)
    • Illinois Reading Council (IRC)