Course Descriptions

153.        Introduction to Teaching.

This course is intended for students who do not plan to become certified teachers. It is an introduction to curriculum design, assessment, and practices that support student engagement. The course is ideal for students considering teaching in private schools, non-school environments (libraries, museums, outdoor education programs) and considering programs like Teacher For America. Through a combination of readings, lesson planning exercises and multiple reflections on teaching and the type of teacher students would like to become, the course will serve as excellent preparation for teaching in a variety of contexts. The course is not open to students who took EDUC 250 or who plan to take EDUC 250.

173.        Childhood and the Education of Children.

This course will explore: philosophy of and for children; literature written for children and about childhood; and books on early childhood education and policy. A guiding assumption of our exploration is that philosophical attentiveness to children and their educations can teach us a great deal about what we should hope for from educational reform, and what it means to be an educated person. The course does not have prerequisites, but it is reading-intensive and students will be expected to develop a final project that blends themes from the course with their own interests.

203.        Contemporary Issues in American Education.

This course introduces students to the range of current and critical issues in American education. In this course, we will consider how political, ideological, social and cultural forces shape schooling. Through class discussions, assignments, and other class activities, students will explore current, overarching questions in education including: What is the purpose of schooling? Who benefits/suffers from these purported ideals and goals? Are schools designed to equalize society? Or do schools further reproduce societal norms and social class? Should schools play a role in challenging the status quo? How are social constructs such as race, class, and gender reproduced in the classroom? How do capitalism, globalization, and democracy play out in education? Further, what is the teacher’s role and responsibility for educating students within the political and historical context of schooling in America?

225.        Rhetoric and Community Peer Mentors.

This course is designed to train students who will work as rhetoric and communication mentors in the University's WORD Studio. Permission of instructor required. Fulfills ARTS Distribution (2013 curriculum).

253.        Contemporary Educational Policy.

When one looks at the landscape of educational reform, one is tempted to compare it to the classic Western film The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. There have been visionaries and opportunists, and sometimes it is hard to tell the difference between the two. Sadly, we often forgot that in the rush to reform schools, the biggest casualties are often those most at risk: students. In this course we will look at attempts to reform education, and—in the process—question whether it is the system that is most in need of reform or the reformer mindset. This is not to say that the status quo is necessarily acceptable or desirable. But, it is to say that maybe we are looking for improvement in all the wrong places. We will do a range of readings in educational philosophy, educational theory and educational policy, with the goal that each student will create a final project aimed at responding to questions related to education reform and educational reformers.

273.        Teaching and Teachers.

The main goal of this course is to ask two related questions. What is good teaching? Can good teaching be taught? Using a variety of sources—novels, film, educational research, journalism, autobiography—we will think together about the complexities of teaching and the variety of (often conflicting) visions of what good teaching is. By the end of the semester you will have develop a vision (or visions) of what good teaching looks like, and you will determine if—and possibly how—it can be taught.

309.        Feminist Learning Theories.

This course, multi-listed with the Education and Philosophy departments, is an interdisciplinary examination of three complementary theoretical approaches: feminist philosophy, feminist epistemology, and feminist pedagogy. Together we will ask how minority perspectives on the world such as those defined by critical theory, gender, (dis)ability, intersectionality, indigenous ways of knowing, and postmodernist theory demand new methods of learning and teaching in the 21st century. Course readings will come from book and article selections by Deloria, hooks, Freire, and Wilshire among others. Pre-requisites, one of the following: Intro to Philosophy, education course, or gender studies course.

325. Sexuality Education.

The field of sexuality education can be examined through various disciplinary lenses, including but not limited to, law, medicine, journalism, religion, literature, and sociology. As such, this course will look at an array of sources, both scholarly and popular, to make sense of debates in the field. Students will deeply engage with issues of disability, heteronormativity, stigma, patriarchy, and morality, as they relate to sexuality education, from a variety of perspectives. Sexuality education is more than just learning about our body's biological and anatomical systems; there are deep historical, social, and cultural factors that influence this area of public health. Issues of diversity, equity, and positionality have profound effects on who is included and excluded from conversations about sexuality education. This course will push back on the status quo of sexuality education that has long excluded marginalized groups (e.g., the LGBTQ community, women, people with disabilities) in harmful, dehumanizing ways.

353.        American Philosophies of Education.

This course will examine how American thinkers and writers describe the struggle to become an educated person. The authors that we will read together this semester all come to a point where they ask: Why does the world seem to conspire against individuals who aim to become educated? Each of our authors sees the struggle for education in different ways, describing it as a struggle: against the old (world); against our self and our self-conceptions; against injustice; against our language; against our forms of thinking and ways of knowing; against racism and other forms of prejudice; against our limitations (real and perceived). Together we will witness the struggles for education that our authors manage to (beautifully) express, and we will work together to discover what lessons these expressions hold for our understanding of education and our own struggles to become educated.

408.        Critical Aspects of Teaching ESOL.

This course will critically examine the ESL teach-abroad phenomenon and while not a teaching certification course, students will leave this course with a fundamental understanding of and practical applications for teaching ESL/EFL. This course will examine trends and issues in the field of TESOL, will practice writing and teaching lesson plans, and will highlight the importance of understanding culture, learner characteristics, and situational information in planning and teaching. Students will also gain practical experience teaching English. Students will develop an understanding of the complexities of teaching ESL/EFL and why being a native English speaker is not enough of a qualification for success. Fulfills DIV13 (diversity) requirement. Dual listed as LANG 408, ESL 408 and AFS 408.

455.        Language Acquisition and Literacy Development Across the Curriculum.

A multidisciplinary consideration of the ways young people learn the language arts (speaking, reading, writing and listening) across the subject matter disciplines. This course addresses language acquisition and literacy development for students who are native English speakers and students who are English language learners. A field experience in the public schools is required. Students must register for one of the 1.5-hour CBL labs to complete the field experience.