Prof. Karen Cowden. M.A. Ed

Professor of Reading/Professor of English for Academic Purposes/Education and English
Endowed Chair - William C. Demtree, Jr.

Karen Cowden, Professor of Reading, M.A. Ed.

Karen is an innovator in developing reading activities that creatively connect students’ learning styles and integrate curricular pathways. She also is skilled at building collegiality through collaborative college wide initiatives. As a leader, and the calm in the center of a storm, she is thoughtful by nature, provides an atmosphere of open, honest feedback, and lives by mutual respect. She supports college-preparatory students in the tricky balance of adoption into the college environment. Her lessons build students’ skills with encouragement and a lot of fun. Students are regularly offered opportunities for interactive peer-pairing learning experiences, collaborative activities, and opportunities to repair work that was not their desired result on their first attempt. For her, the foundation of her practice is to help students develop a different way of thinking, behaving, and living to contribute as citizens who display academic demeanor. All of her work is built on the joy of being allowed to stand alongside her students as a mentor.

Master of Arts - Elementary Education, University of Central Florida
Bachelor of Science - Communication, The Florida State University
State of Florida - Elementary Education Grades 1-6

Endorsements on Licenses

State of Florida ESOL Endorsement
• ESOL for Basic Subject Teaching – March 2002
• Teach 1 – Applied Linguistics – March 2003
• Teach 2 – Cross Cultural Communications – April 2004
• Teach 3 – Curriculum and Materials – April 2005

State of Florida Reading Endorsement - 2005

Professional Positions

Valencia Community College, Orlando FL
• Professor of Reading – Tenure-Track (Fall 2009- Present)
• Reading Instructor - Adjunct (Spring 2007, Summer 2007*, Summer 2008 – Fall 2009)
• Reading Professor – 4 month contract (Fall 2007 and Spring 2008)
• Senior Instructional Lab Assistant, Communications (Summer 2007-Fall 2007)
*Earned Associate Faculty Member Credentials

Collegial Service –at Valencia Community College

• At-Large Representative – West Campus Faculty Senate (2009-2011)
• At-Large Representative – Faculty Council (2009-2011)
• Action Research Destinations Project– Metacognition Matters (2008)
• LinC Destinations Project – REA 0002/ENC 0012 (2010)
• REA 0002 Peer-Tutor Program Creator/Advisor (2010)
• Supplemental Learning Leader Instructor (2010)
• New Scholars Network Member/Contributor/Instructor (2007)
• “Get into Reading” Presenter – “Winter Dance” (2010)

Professional Trainings/Seminars
• Teaching and Learning Academy – Year 1 (2009-2010)
• Fall Formations – Conference Attendee (2007)

Professional Organizations

• Member, Association of American Women in Community Colleges (2007)

When I am not teaching classes you can find me swimming, cycling, running (I enjoy doing triathlons), reading, designing or creating something, and laughing!

Pop on by my office and enjoy a cup of tea with me!


West Campus


On-Campus: Monday & Wednesday

8:45 a.m. - 9:45 a.m. (Mon & Wed)

11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. (Monday only)

Virtual: Friday

10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.



10:30a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Need help?: HELP IS AVAILABLE: Make an appointment with a Senior Lab Instructor in the Communications Center for support with skills: