Updated January 20, 2014
Spring 2014 Course Descriptions
Education is a powerful force that spurs national growth and development. This course attempts to develop and encourage an understanding of the drivers, challenges and outcomes (benefits and liabilities) of education. We will examine issues related to the interconnectedness and continuously globalizing “developed” and “developing” countries.
In the first part of the course, we will discuss a variety of grand social narratives about education and its impact on development, including beliefs about the outcomes of education. We will then examine topics that shape or drive education; for example, cultural values, history, politics, globalization and the legacy of colonization. We will turn to a discussion of the challenges to education, including how education is influenced by war, limited resources, gender and cultural issues, and child labor.
The three main questions we will be discussing in this course include:
This course provides an introduction to the assumptions, language, logic, and methods of qualitative inquiry in a variety of settings. The emphasis is on the modes of thinking and specific practices associated with generic as well as collaborative approaches to qualitative research. We discuss paradigms, their usefulness in understanding the assumptions implicit in all inquiry, and the typical assumptions of qualitative inquiry. We also focus on conceptualizing and designing qualitative studies and discuss strategies for developing researchable questions and the issues associated with involving participants in the research process. The major work of the course is the conduct of a small-scale qualitative research project which entails a number of activities: (1) designing the project; (2) negotiating agreement to conduct inquiry; (3) practicing the specific methods typically used in qualitative research: interviewing, observing, and document or artifact review; (4) analyzing and interpreting the data gathered through the fieldwork; and (5) writing up the process and findings in a set of coherent and well-argued papers. Since learning about qualitative research is best accomplished by doing it, immersion in the course and its work is essential and typically requires a substantial time commitment. Permission of the instructor required
Through readings, discussion, class exercises and assignments, we will work through the following topics:
The purpose of this course is to help you develop the skills you need to design training programs for adult learners in non-formal education, human services, and community development. The goal is to prepare you to:
The course will be relevant to those interested in designing training for both international and U.S.-based training contexts.
Educ 720 Development Theories for Educators
(Nordtveit) Tuesday 1-4 pm – 275 Hills South
This course examines various theories of social and economic development, including growth and critical theories.The course also looks at alternative lenses for development including feminist approaches, development ethics, sustainable development, ecological approaches, and human rights perspectives. It identifies the assumptions, underlying values, and operational principles characteristic of specific theories and explores their implications for development-related work. The course also offers a theoretical perspective for analyzing the role played by education in different development perspectives.
744 NGOs & International Development
We will examine critical research and policy issues concerning the NGO sector across different scales of operation -- local communities, government agencies, international donors, and multi-lateral institutions. We will evaluate the impact of NGOs on institution-building, NGO management processes including accountability and transparency, and NGO-government-donor relationships and develop a comparative understanding of the NGO sector in each of the major regions of the world.
This course is for graduate students in international education, public policy, anthropology, sociology, political science or a related social science field. Some familiarity with the NGO sector is expected and work experience in an NGO is desirable though not required. This course is open to seniors from the Five Colleges interested in working in the NGO sector.
Educ 793W Master's Seminar
This seminar is intended to provide final-semester Master’s students with guidance in conceptualizing and writing up their Master’s projects. It offers a mixture of group planning and support as well as guided individual study for those students in international education who are working on their projects.
The seminar is divided roughly into three phases. During the first phase, we will work together as a small seminar clarifying and refining the plan for completion of the Master’s project. During this phase, students work with the seminar and their advisor to develop a full outline for the project. For those who have not yet completed a prospectus, this phase will serve as orientation to the timeline for completing their prospectus. During the second phase, seminar members work independently and in bi-weekly meetings of everyone on their projects. Consultations are arranged as needed to ensure progress on the project. The second phase is designed for discussion of problems or issues that have arisen as writing progresses. The third phase entails weekly meetings to share progress, receive feedback on written work, and prepare for the presentation of the Master’s project at a Tuesday Center meeting near the end of the semester.
This course is for Master's candidates in International Education in their final semester. They will be automatically enrolled - you cannot enroll online.
Educ 870 Introducation to Research Methods in International Contexts
(Nordtveit) Wednesday 1-4 pm – 275 Hills South
This is an introductory course required for new Masters students in International Education, and open for other students at Masters and Doctoral levels desiring an effective introduction to research methodology. The course has a three-pronged goal. Firstly, it seeks to guide the students in making a mindful choice of a theoretical paradigm of research, and in understanding its underlying epistemology (system of knowing). Secondly, it provides an overview of quantitative, mixed and qualitative methods, with the aim of making the students “literate” in methodology, i.e., capable of reading and understanding research reports and documents that are using various methodological approaches. Finally, it seeks to assist the students through the steps of research preparation, from problem sensing and literature review, through the creation of a research design and submission of the necessary documents for human subjects review. In this, the course first and foremost takes a practical stance: it is designed to help prepare Master's for their Master's project and new Doctoral students for research to be used in their comprehensives or their dissertation.