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[photo, Administration Building, Towson University, 7720 York Road, Towson, Maryland] Towson University originated as the State Normal School, which was authorized in 1865 (Chapter 160, Acts of 1865). At that time, "normal" meant "standard", and described schools that promoted standardized teaching methods. Opened in Baltimore City in January 1866, the State Normal School was the first and only institution devoted exclusively to the preparation of teachers for the public schools of Maryland.

Originally, the School occupied four different sites in Baltimore City. It started at the Red Men's Hall, 24 North Paca Street, in 1866. It then moved in 1876 to the Athenaeum Club Home at Charles and Franklins Streets. In February 1876, the School resettled in a new building at Carrollton and Lafayette Streets.

Administration Building, Towson University, 7720 York Road, Towson, Maryland, August 2003. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.

[photo, Richmond Hall, Towson University, Towson, Maryland] Moving to Towson University's present suburban location in the summer of 1915, the School opened for classes that September. When the Baltimore City Training School for Teachers closed in 1924, its students transferred to the State Normal School, doubling the School's enrollment.

As the School was renamed the Maryland State Teachers College at Towson in 1935, the Bachelor of Science degree in education was established (Chapter 554, Acts of 1935). Later, in 1946, an arts and sciences program was introduced. The College increased its offerings in the arts and sciences and became Towson State College in July 1963 (Chapter 41, Acts of 1963). Two years after, it began expanding its graduate program.

Richmond Hall, Towson University, Maryland, August 2003. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.

The Maryland State Teachers College was designated as Towson State University in July 1976, and became part of the University of Maryland System in 1988 (Chapter 246, Acts of 1988). When the System was renamed the University System of Maryland, the University became Towson University in July 1997 (Chapter 114, Acts of 1997).

Towson University is a liberal arts-based university. On a campus of over 300 acres, the school lies just north of Baltimore City. The University offers over 40 majors and 60 concentrations leading to the bachelor's degree. The Graduate School offers 26 master's degree programs.

The University is organized into five divisions: Academic Affairs; Administration and Finance; Innovation and Applied Research; Student Affairs; University Advancement; and University Marketing and Communications.


The Division of Academic Affairs oversees eight colleges: Business and Economics; Education; Fine Arts and Communication; Graduate Studies and Research; Health Professions; Honors; Liberal Arts; and the Fisher College of Science and Mathematics.


Stephens Hall, Room 218, Towson University

The College of Business and Economics traces its origins to the creation of the departments of economics (1966), business administration (1970), and accounting (1981). In 1982, these departments were restructured to form the School of Busines and Economics. The School was renamed College of Business and Economics in 1996.

Under the College are six departments: Accounting; E-Business and Technology Management; Economics; Finance; Management; and Marketing.


Hawkins Hall, Towson University

The College of Education offers the baccalaureate degree in education with certification in early childhood education, elementary education, and special education, as well as programs for certification in secondary education and kindergarten through 12th grade (K-12) education. Graduate degrees also are offered in these areas and in reading, teaching, instructional technology, and human resource development.

Six departments make up the College. They are: Early Childhood Education; Educational Technology; Elementary Education; Instructional Leadership and Professional Development; Special Education; and Secondary Education.


Center for the Arts, Room 3001, Towson University

The College of Fine Arts and Communication consists of six departments: Art; Dance; Electronic Media and Film; Music; Mass Communication and Communication Studies; and Theatre Arts.


7800 York Road, Towson

The College of Graduate Studies and Research began as the College of Graduate and Extended Education and reformed as the College of Graduate Education and Research in May 1999. In 2005, it became the College of Graduate Studies and Research. It consists of the Graduate School, and the Office of University Research Services.


Towson Center, Towson University

The College of Health Professions began in 1981 as the College of Allied Health Sciences and Physical Education. In 1996, it reformed as the College of Health Science Professions, and assumed its present name in 2001.

Five departments make up the College of Health Professions: Communication Sciences and Disorders; Health Sciences; Kinesiology; and Occupational Therapy and Nursing.


Linthicum Hall, Towson University

The College of Liberal Arts consists of ten departments: English; Family Studies and Community Development; Foreign Languages; Geography and Environmental Planning; History; Philosophy and Religious Studies; Political Science; Psychology; Sociology, Anthropology, and Criminal Justice; and Women's Studies.


Smith Hall, Towson University

The Jess and Mildred Fisher College of Science and Mathematics formerly was the College of Natural and Mathematical Sciences. By 2001, it was called the College of Science and Mathematics. In June 2005, it became the Jess and Mildred Fisher College of Science and Mathematics.

The College includes the School of Emerging Technologies and the departments of Biological Sciences; Chemistry; Computer and Information Sciences; Mathematics; and Physics, Astronomy, and Geosciences.


Stephens Hall, Towson University

The Honors College was formed in 1998.


Administrative Building, Towson University

The Division of Innovation and Applied Research was established in 2004 as the Division of Economic and Community Outreach. In 2013, it reformed under its present name.

For businesses, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and the Towson community who are interested in collaborating with the University, the Division of Innovation and Applied Research serves as a point of entry. The Division's team of 70 expert researchers and technical staff draw upon their diverse strengths, experience, and unique approaches to problem solving to create customized solutions to critical issues facing Maryland's workforce and economy.

Under oversight of the Division are Applied Research and Technical Services; the Center for Professional Studies; Entrepreneurship; and the Office of External Affairs.

In addition to addressing economic and social issues, the Division oversees the adult education component of the University, formerly in the College of Extended Programs.



Administrative Building, Towson University

The Division of University Advancement started as the Division of Institutional Advancement, and was renamed the Division of University Advancement in 2005.

The Division is responsible for Alumni Relations and Development.


The Division of University Marketing and Communications was established in 2012.

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 Maryland Manual On-Line, 2015

July 1, 2015

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