|Lara Scott earned a BA at Arizona State University in Human Communication; M.Ed. in Counseling/Psychology from Northern Arizona University; and completed a post-grad program in Clinical Counseling at Ottawa University. She is both a Licensed Associate Counselor and a Certified Guidance Counselor in the State of Arizona.
At Grand Canyon University, Lara is an online instructor for the Undergraduate Psychology and Graduate Addictions Counseling program. Her experience includes: academic counseling at the high school level; counseling individuals and families involved with CPS (Child Protective Services); intervention and behavioral counseling with incarcerated youth; youth on probation; domestic violence; abuse; grief; marriage; and DSM IV diagnoses.
|Lara's lived in Arizona for 17 years, currently teaches both online and in the classroom and is an on-call therapist for a behavioral health hospital. Lara and her husband are very active in their church's marriage ministry, both teaching and volunteering. She is also a volunteer with the Phoenix Chapter March of Dimes and Foundation for Blind Children. They have a four-year old daughter and enjoy traveling and trying new foods/restaurants.
How has facilitating online courses at GCU helped you find your purpose?
My personal purpose is to serve God in every area of my life. My career purpose is to teach others the tools necessary to reach their life goals and function at their best. GCU has provided the opportunity to do both. It's truly rewarding to be in an environment where my spiritual beliefs and teaching techniques are supported. I am blessed to be an integral part of others' education, guiding students as they work diligently towards their academic goals.
What is one effective teaching strategy you use in your online classes?
One effective teaching strategy is "open comments and questions". As long as students follow the guidelines of being respectful to one another and the questions/comments are relevant, the "floor" is open.
Working in the field of Psychology and Counseling can bring about both interesting and controversial topics. I believe students not only learn from the instructor, but from one another, as well. One of my personal goals as an instructor is for students to gain as much knowledge as they desire about the subject area. Therefore, I like to create a learning space that is supportive and nonjudgmental.
What is a GCU online student success story you can share?
About a year ago, I had a graduate student who was recovering from a brain tumor. This resulted in difficulty with cognition and memory. She was focused on graduating and intent on earning a 4.0 GPA. The student and I set regular weekly phone meetings to review the materials. She submitted her assignments early for review and was especially active in the forums and CLCs. It was wonderful, as an instructor, to see her dedication. She was aware of her personal barriers and put forth more effort and time to achieve her goals. She earned an "A" in the class and her story continues to remind me that nothing is impossible.