CIE Logo

The Center for International Education


Who We Are

Academic Programs





Off Campus

On Campus


Photo Gallery

CIE Merchandise - Check out the Mouse Pads!
Click Here

Updated March 29, 2007

Institutional Profile -- Core Capabilities -- Summary -- CIE Contact Information

Institutional Profile

The Center for International Education (CIE) was established in 1969 as a graduate academic and research organization committed to promoting participatory education in development settings. In its teaching, research and projects, CIE strives to link international and domestic activities, and to promote constant dialogue between educational theory and practice. The Center is committed to developing participatory, learner-centered approaches for a variety of educational challenges, including: basic education, access and quality, gender issues, staff development, global education, adult & family literacy, popular education, participatory management and evaluation, cross-cultural training, and action research.

The Center has a long and successful history of designing, implementing, and evaluating educational initiatives in Asia, Central & Latin America, Africa and Caucasia as well as in North America. Financial support has come from many sources including: USAID, the World Bank, USIA, UNESCO, FAO, national governments, state agencies, school systems, and private foundations. Contracts and grants administered by the Center since 1969 total over 25 million dollars.

The Center has a core of five full-time and associated faculty members, fiscal and administrative support staff, and several adjunct faculty members. Graduate students, who are mid-career professionals, contribute to the Center's activities and enrich their academic programs by working as teachers, trainers and research assistants. In developing and implementing programs, CIE draws on technical expertise from the University of Massachusetts and the Five College Consortium to supplement its own extensive experience and technical skills. CIE has collaborated on projects with faculty and staff from the departments of Public Health, Anthropology, Agricultural Economics, Communications, Educational Research, Economics, Women's Studies, and Management.

There is an active network of over 500 CIE members working throughout the world in education and development. This network provides a rich reserve of expertise and contacts. In addition CIE has collaborated with numerous other institutions over the years in implementing programs: schools, universities, NGOs and PVOs.

The Center publishes papers and books that offer practical information for field projects and personnel. These publications are distributed throughout the world. The current publications list includes about 40 titles in participatory action research, nonformal/popular education and training, gender issues, materials development, literacy, and alternative approaches to development. A series of Technical Notes provides practitioners with methods which can easily be adapted to local settings.

top of page

Core Capabilities

Growing out of almost forty years of experience, CIE has developed particular expertise in a number of selected fields. These are briefly summarized below to indicate the kinds of service and expertise that CIE has built a reputation for.

Program Development and Implementation

CIE has been a partner in implementing many large-scale development education projects, both formal and nonformal, in Africa, Asia and Latin America. We were pioneers in the field of nonformal education and have used that expertise in many different settings. In a typical program CIE may provide one or more of the following services: long-term technical assistance; short-term consulting services; institutional capacity building; research and evaluation; staff training; and program planning. Our operational philosophy is grounded in the belief that joint problem solving and participatory management has the best chance of achieving program goals.

Program Evaluation and Research Design

CIE has both experience and capability in using a variety of approaches to evaluation. The Center is particularly well known for qualitative, participatory and practitioner-based approaches to evaluation. CIE has conducted training in evaluation methods for staff from a number of organizations and has carried out evaluations of programs, materials and institutions.


Training mid-career professionals in development and education lies at the heart of our mission. CIE has designed and implemented training and study programs serving the needs of a variety of groups and individuals. Most programs fall under one of three training formats: degree training; customized short-term professional training for specific clientele; and the management and support of degree candidates at institutions of higher education. The Center has provided graduate degree training to over 500 mid-career professionals from more than 50 countries and has conducted short-term training for hundreds of individuals from around the world.

Curriculum Development

Many of CIE's projects involve developing curricula particularly for adult and nonformal training contexts. Much of the work focusses on developing community and women's leadership skills for tasks ranging from micro-enterprise development to community health. CIE focuses on building local capacity to design, develop and evaluate curricula appropriate to local interests, needs and resources.

Materials Development, Media and Technology

CIE has pioneered many uses of educational media and technology for development ranging from low-technology options for local initiative to uses of Instructional Technology for education and development. Some CIE techniques include: web-based learning and action, community drama, role plays, puppet shows, fotonovelas, radio programs for distance education, video and theater, electronic learning aids, and simple audiovisual tools.

Summary of Core Capabilities

Formal School-Based Education

Nonformal Education

Teacher Education

Training Design & Materials

Basic Education Improvement

Adult & Family Literacy

Staff Development

Community Health Education

Organizational Development

Education for Girls & Women

Access and Gender issues

Participatory Action Research

Cultural Aspects of Education Management

Participatory Approaches to Evaluation

Global & Environmental Education

Popular Education

Education Reform & Evaluation

Education for Refugees and Immigrants

Policy, Planning & Leadership Accelerated Learning

Center for International Education
Admissions Coordinator
University of Massachusetts
285 Hills House South
Amherst, MA 01003

Telephone: (413)545-0465 | Fax: (413)545-1263