Kathleen Briseno is a Professor of Special Education with expertise in creating instructional coherence.

She has worked as a special and general education teacher, school administrator, behavior specialist, and as an educational consultant to schools, agencies, and law firms. For more than twenty years, Dr. Briseno has provided guidance to the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and the State of Illinois on educational policies for special education. Her interests include teacher preparation, special education law, early intervention, behavior, how schools use data to improve instruction, and the integration of theories into practice. Dr. Briseno also works with families to help them navigate the educational system.


  • EdD, Teaching & Learning - Northern Illinois University; DeKalb, IL
  • MSEd, Curriculum & Supervision - Northern Illinois University; DeKalb, IL
  • BAEd, Special Education & Elementary Education - Northeastern Illinois University; Chicago IL
  • AA, Educational Studies, Minor in Humanities - Wright College; Chicago, IL
  • Post Graduate Work & Administrative Internship - Loyola University; Chicago, IL

Academic and Professional Highlights

Additional Roles at CUC

  • Golden Apple Scholar Liaison
  • IRB Committee Member
  • Council of Exceptional Children (CEC) - Faculty Advisor
  • Reader for Dissertations

Prior Positions

  • Special and General Education Teacher
  • Director of Special Education
  • Assistant Director of Special Education
  • Principal of Alternative High Schools
  • Behavioral Specialist
  • Mentor for Administrators
  • Editorial Reviewer
  • Field Experience Coordinator
  • Educational Consultant - Department of Children & Family Services (DCFS)

Awards and Honors

  • Volunteer of the Year - Oak-Leyden Developmental Services (2020)
  • ILASCD's 2019 Whole Child Award for designing and implementing a school district program
  • Part-Time Faculty of the Year - College of DuPage (1997, 2008, 2009)
  • Those Who Excel - ISBE (2011)
  • VFW Educational Liaison Award
  • Continental Broadcasting Network (2014)
  • Golden Apple Selection Committee
  • Community & Residential Services Authority (CRSA) - Chair
  • Young Author's Conference
  • DuPage County Regional Office of Education
  • DuPage County Transitional Services
  • Board Member - Connection of Friends
  • Exchange Club Community Education
  • Who's Who in American Education
  • Who's Who Among America's Teachers
  • Special Olympics
  • Ray Graham Association
  • DuPage Family Disability Network
  • DuPage Truancy Committee Award
  • Rotary International Education Honor

Areas of Research/Expertise

  • Improving outcomes for all students 
  • Special Education Law


  • Roadmap to Education the Whole Child Through Relationship Building: Is it Okay to Put State Standards Aside?

  • The Whole Teacher = The Whole Child.

  • The Role of Parents in Special Education

  • Teacher Evaluation

  • Is Teaching Dangerous to Your Health?

  • Building Capable Students Together

  • I am Gifted, How Can I Have a Disability?

  • What RtI is...What RtI Is Not...Response to Interventions or is it Response to Instruction?

  • Supports and Services for College Students with Disabilities

  • Grabbing a Bully by the Horns


  • ATM - Assistive Technology Magic

  • The Power of Playing - Handling Disruptive Behaviors PK-Kindergarten

  • Professional Development Presentation: Co-Teaching

  • Professional Development Presentation: Special Education Law

  • Professional Development Presentation: Adaptations and Modifications

  • Professional Development Presentation: Providing Specific Feedback to Students

  • Professional Development Presentation: IEP Writing/Goal Writing

  • Professional Development Presentation: Response to Intervention

  • Professional Development Presentation: Special Education Law

  • Mentor: Director of Special Education