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EDU-402-20, Amer Edu In Historical Perspec (WN13)

INSTRUCTOR: Melissa Falen

SCHEDULE/DAY/TIME:   Saturdays (January 5, 12, 19 & 26); 9:00 am – 4:00 pm)


This course is designed to assist learners in developing an informed understanding of the origins, evolution, and dimensions of the educational enterprise in the United States and the historical development of teaching as a profession.  Learners will critically analyze the meaning, intent, and effects of schooling by considering a variety of interpretations of historical issues in American education.  This course also intends to promote an understanding of the presence of normative influences in educational thought and practice, while encouraging the learner to develop useful perspectives and skills in searching for and applying creative and effective resolutions to educational problems.


The faculty member and the learner cohort group will work together to achieve the following learning outcomes during the course:

-Examine various philosophical approaches to education and develop their own philosophical grasp of what education is and can be. EDoT 10; ACEI 1.1, 1.3, 2.1.

-Critically analyze the moral and ethical dimensions of their past and present learning  experiences, and future plans as a professional educator.  EDoT 2; ACEI 1.1, 1.2, 2.1.  

-Refine the articulation of a point of view, guided by reason rather than rhetoric. EDoT 1, 5; ACEI 1.1, 1.3, 2.1. 

-Evaluate personal and cultural assumptions about education by examining the multifaceted, and sometimes conflicting roles that schools play in the shaping of American society.  EDoT 8; ACEI 1.1, 1.3, 2.1.

-Evaluate from sociological and ethical perspectives some of the major developments that have contributed to the evolution of American schools. EDoT 1; ACEI 1.1, 1.3, 2.1. 

-Analyze, synthesize, and evaluate a variety of interpretations of historical issues in the chronicles of American education.  EDoT 1, ACEI 1.1, 1.3, 2.1.

-Evaluate why it is often difficult to achieve consensus regarding educational purposes and programs in schools in the United States.  EDoT 9, ACEI 1.1, 1.3, 2.1. 

-Identify and analyze the influences of Horace Mann, John Dewey, and others who have influenced American schools.  EDoT 2, ACEI 1.1, 1.3, 2.1. 

-Analyze and evaluate the role of education in relation to dominant and subordinate cultures in the US. EDoT 3, ACEI 1.1, 1.3, 2.1.  

-Recognize the diversity of learners in American schools today, the culturally and educationally diverse nature of contemporary American society, and the changing demographics of the school population.  Identify implications for teachers and administrators working with learners reflecting such a wide range of individual differences. EDoT 3, ACEI 1.3, 2.1.

-Describe and evaluate the procedures and policies of the assessments of students, the underlying assumptions upon which they are based, and the ethical issues they raise. EDoT 5, ACEI 1.1, 1.3, 2.1.

-Compare, contrast and critique recent proposals for educational reform. EDoT 10, ACEI 2.1.


Assigned text and other readings

Small-group discussions in class

Interactive lecture

In-class oral presentations (group facilitation)

Written assignments 

Peer collaboration


Weekly readings  

Class preparation for active participation in discussions

Completion of all weekly and course assignments

Active participation in class and small groups

Mid-term and Final Exam

Power Point Presentation


-Syllabus and course material found on JOULE

-Webb, Dean, & Rippa, AlexanderHistory of Education, A Custom Edition for Notre Dame of Maryland University. Pearson Learning Solutions, 501 Boylston Street, Suite 900, Boston, MA 02115

-Other readings as assigned


Assessment (effective September 2010) for SOE undergraduates is based on the following grading scale:

95% to 100%  =  A                 79% to 83%    =  C+  Less than 60%  =  F

90% to 94%    =  B+               70% to 78%    =  C 

84% to 89%    =  B                 60% to 69%    =  D


Webb:  Chapter 2 & 3

Rippa:  Chapters 1 & 2

(Note:  above readings are in the textbook)                           

Grendler article (available on Joule)