Courses

EDUC 231 Perspectives on Education

This course introduces students to foundational perspectives (anthropological, historical, philosophical, psychological, and sociological) on education and helps students apply these perspectives to contemporary schools and classrooms. The course considers several large questions: What should be the purpose of education in a democratic society? What should be the role of the school? Who should participate in making decisions about schools? In what ways do schools reflect and perpetuate larger social inequities, and, alternately, how can they contribute to a more just and inclusive society? Students must complete at least thirty hours of fieldwork.

EDUC 235 Teaching in the Sciences

We all possess an innate curiosity about the natural world, especially during childhood. This course explores the excitement and challenges of teaching sciences in the traditional classroom setting and experientially through lab and outdoor experiences. Through readings, conversation, research, writing, practice, and field placement in local schools, students approach the teaching of science as visionaries whose classrooms are ones of imagination, curiosity, investigation, and skepticism. A thirty-hour field placement in a local school is required. Recommended background: math or science majors preferred. A previous education class is recommended.

EDUC 242 Race and Justice in American Education

This course considers how racial identity, class, culture, and privilege intersect with education systems and structures to shape students’ schooling experiences and academic outcomes. Through readings, discussion, projects, and fieldwork, students explore several questions: What are race and racism, and how do they matter to education? How has the U.S. tradition of racially segregated and unequal schooling played out historically? What are the effects of that legacy for children and for society today? And how do schools currently work to address opportunity gaps? Topics covered include bilingual education, tracking, and access to higher education. A thirty-hour field experience is required. Recommended background: EDUC 231.

EDUC 255 Adolescent Literacy

This course examines various perspectives on and issues in adolescent literacy in today’s middle and high schools, focusing primarily on critical sociocultural frameworks for the study of current practices and beliefs. Topics include not only what we mean by literacy, but also how youths today make meaning within various discourse communities and contexts. Topics include multiple literacies, literacy across the curriculum, the influence of complex technologies, diverse learners, and current policies and paradigms influencing instruction. This course interweaves theory with practice through a required thirty-hour field placement in a local middle or high school. Recommended background: EDUC 231.

EDUC 263 Comparative and International Education

This course explores education across international contexts. Students reflect on similarities and differences in educational systems around the world, and understand that institutional practices reflect social, cultural, and national ideologies. Students evaluate educational systems against international standards and outcomes, and consider relationships among schooling, society, and development. Topics include global aims, policies, and outcomes; learning environments and pedagogies; and issues of equity across class, gender, race, ethnicity, and dis/ability. Additionally, students engage in research on an educational system of one country from among a selection of choices representing different regions of the world. Recommended background: EDUC 231.

EDUC 265 Teaching through the Arts

In this course students explore interdisciplinary approaches to integrating the arts into all subjects in schools. Students consider methods and models of utilizing the arts in educational settings as well as theories of creativity. Class sessions include large- and small-group work, participatory experiences, lectures, group discussions, and student-led activities and presentations. A thirty-hour field placement in a local school is required. Recommended background: EDUC 231.

EDUC 274 Educational Psychology

Students explore the contributions of psychological science to the study and practice of education and learn how education provides a unique context for psychological science research. How can developmental psychology theories apply to education? What does research say about effective and ineffective ways to support motivation? What role does motivation play in learning? What are the applications of developmental and cognitive psychology for learning and instruction? How can empirical research in psychological science be used to debunk popular myths? What are the challenges in translating psychological research to educational practice? A thirty-hour field placement experience is required. Prerequisite(s): EDUC 231 or PSYC 101.

EDUC 290 Internship in Education

In this course, students engage in immersive, yearlong internships in the field of education. Internships occur in local schools and organizations and feature close collaboration between community partners, the college’s education department, the Bates Center for Purposeful Work, and the Harward Center for Community Partnerships. Internships are offered in a range of subfields including but not limited to educational policy, leadership, administration, after-school programming, nonprofit management, advocacy and activism, research, higher education administration, and early childhood education. Recommended background: EDUC 231.

EDUC 310 Critical Perspectives on English Language Learning

Language is a key medium of human communication as well as an expression of group belonging, sociocultural diversity, and intergroup relations of power. Thus the establishment of English Language Learning (ELL) policy and practice is a highly charged endeavor. This course introduces students to the basic neuroscience of language acquisition, best practices in ELL pedagogy, the history of ELL policy development, and the cultural politics of bilingualism in the United States. Through local and online transnational community-engaged learning projects as well as class discussion and course texts, students consider the role of English language teaching and learning in the lives of affected students, families, teachers, and communities; whether English language teaching and learning can have a social justice means and ends; and, finally, the implications of these discoveries for policy and practice.

EDUC 320 Community Education/Community Action

Education at its best builds on the strengths and actively addresses the needs of communities and neighborhoods. This guiding philosophy is manifested in the development of full-service community schools, after-school programs, adult and cooperative learning programs, and grassroots efforts to educate for social change. This course offers an introduction to the theory and principles of community education as well as engagement in community capacity building through service-learning projects. The course is well-suited to students committed to service-learning and centers on partnerships with schools and a variety of organizations in the community. A thirty-hour field placement is required.

EDUC 343 Learning and Teaching: Theories and Practice

Students explore learning and teaching with an emphasis on reflective practice. They consider various theories and research on learning, instructional design, and educational philosophy. This knowledge serves as a basis for critically examining curriculum development, classroom practice, and the roles of teachers and students in today’s schools. Students apply what they learn by creating and teaching a mini-curriculum unit in a local classroom. The teaching fulfills part of the required thirty-hour field experience for the course. Recommended background: EDUC 231 and 362.

EDUC 360 Independent Study

EDUC 362 Basic Concepts in Special Education

Students learn the legal requirements (IDEA, ADA) for providing special services to, and the characteristics of, students who need additional support to learn. They explore a variety of strategies and modifications teachers can use to help students with various learning differences, styles, and abilities succeed in the mainstream classroom. They critically examine how differences in students’ gender, cultural, socioeconomic, racial, and ethnic backgrounds affect the quality of the education they receive. A thirty-hour field experience is required. Because this course is required for certification as a teacher in Maine, it is also required for Bates students pursuing the minor in Teacher Education. Recommended background: EDUC 231.

EDUC 365 Special Topics

A course or seminar offered from time to time and reserved for a special topic selected by the department.

EDUC 378 Ethnographic Approaches to Education

This course provides an introduction to fieldwork for those planning to conduct qualitative research for a thesis in the social sciences. Ethnography focuses on the daily lives and meaning-making processes of people who associate regularly in local networks, institutions, or communities. Ethnographers observe, interview, and participate in the routine activities of the people they study. They also explore the connections between locally situated activity and broader realms of symbolic meaning and social organization. This course introduces students to interpretive methods with which to examine the webs of meaning that give shape to educational spaces. Through active engagement in empirical research in educational settings across the Lewiston-Auburn community, students grapple with theoretical assumptions, procedures, and standards of quality in ethnographic research. A thirty-hour field experience is required.

EDUC 379 Understanding Migration to Maine

In this course, students learn about lesson plan design and place-based, project-oriented approaches to teaching contemporary social issues utilizing local migration as a fund of knowledge for the classroom. Since the turn of the twentieth-first century, Maine has welcomed thousands of new Americans. Why did these new residents leave their nations of origin or choose to make Maine their home? What are their lives like now? Students explore these questions through readings, discussion- oriented seminars, and community-engaged learning; they guide Maine youth to do the same by producing lesson plans honoring recent immigrants’ struggles and accomplishments. Recommended background: EDUC 231.

EDUC 380 Education, Reform, and Politics

The United States has experienced more than three centuries of growth and change in the organization of public education. This course examines 1) contemporary reform issues and political processes in relation to school, research, legal, policymaking, and student/family constituencies and 2) how educational policy is formulated and implemented. The study of these areas emphasizes public K-12 education but includes postsecondary education. Examples of specific educational policy arenas include school choice (e.g., charter schools, magnet schools, and vouchers), school funding, standards and accountability, and college access. A thirty-hour field experience is required. Prerequisite(s): EDUC 231.

EDUC 384 Education in a Globalized World

We live in an era characterized by global flows of ideas and information, commodities, and people. In this course students examine the impacts of globalization on education policy and practice. Students explore how these transformative forces influence schools and schooling in different geographical, national, and cultural contexts. Topics address a set of concerns with enduring resonance to the field of educational studies, including social inequity and change; relations of power; and constructions of race, gender, and social class. A thirty-hour field experience is required.

EDUC 390 Discipline, Race, and Schooling

French philosopher Michel Foucault said that schools “serve the same social functions as prisons and mental institutions: to define, classify, control, and regulate people.” We have all spent enough time in schools to understand this sentiment viscerally. Yet, depending on race and other ascribed social identity categories, we have experienced the disciplining potential of schools in starkly different terms. In this course, students examine racial disproportionality in rates of exclusionary discipline and ask how the more recent shift toward restorative approaches impacts black and brown students. Recommended background: EDUC 231.

EDUC 447 Curriculum and Methods

This course continues study of the concepts needed to understand curriculum design and program evaluation, and helps students develop the skills needed to design and teach curriculum units in their subject area. The course is part workshop: as part of the seminar (448, taken concurrently), students plan, develop, teach, and evaluate their own curriculum units. At the same time, students read about and reflect on classic questions in curriculum and instruction, such as: To what extent are teachers responsible for developing their own curriculum? Should curriculum and instruction focus on transmitting established knowledge, developing individuals’ talents, or preparing successful members of society? Can teachers assess students’ knowledge in ways that allow them to learn from the assessments? What particular teaching methods are appropriate for the different disciplines? Students develop a repertoire of methods to use in student teaching and in future teaching. Prerequisite(s): EDUC 231 and 460.

EDUC 448 Senior Seminar in Teacher Education: Reflection and Engagement

The seminar helps students reflect on and engage with their experiences as teachers. Students refine their own philosophies of education and build on these philosophies to plan and teach classes in their placement. The seminar provides opportunities to reflect with critical inquiry on effective practices, and addresses essential questions such as: What does good teaching look like? How do I plan lessons to ensure student engagement? Why is it important to be a reflective practitioner? Candidates complete a state-mandated portfolio that demonstrates an understanding of the knowledge, skills, and dispositions expected of those entering the teaching profession. Prerequisite(s): EDUC 231, 362, and 460.

EDUC 450 Seminar in Educational Studies

In this capstone course students explore the question: What is the purpose of education? Course assignments and class discussion allow students to reflect upon and synthesize material introduced in previous education courses, courses in related fields, and their field experiences. Students produce and present a culminating collaborative project. This course does not have a required field work component. Prerequisite(s): EDUC 231 and three additional courses in education. Open to seniors only.

EDUC 460 Student Teaching I

This is an intensive field experience in secondary education. Students begin by observing a cooperating teacher in their academic field, spending one or two class periods each day in the middle or high school. Soon they begin teaching at least one class per day. In regular, informal meetings, they are guided and supported by their cooperating teachers and a supervisor from the Bates Department of Education. Students also meet for seminar sessions at Bates to address conceptual matters and to discuss problems and successes in the classroom. These seminars include workshops in content area methods and extensive informal reflective writing. Students begin to move toward proficiency in four areas of practice: curriculum, instruction, and evaluation; classroom management, interactions, and relationships; diversity; time management and organizational skills. Prerequisite(s): EDUC 231 and 362.

EDUC 461 Student Teaching II

This course continues and deepens the experiences and reflection begun in EDUC 460. Students spend four or five class periods each day in a local middle or high school observing, teaching, and becoming fully involved in the life of the school. Students continue to meet regularly with their cooperating teacher and Bates supervisor. Integrated into the seminar (448), students spend extensive time planning their classes and reflecting in writing on their experiences. Prerequisite(s): EDUC 231, 362, and 460.

EDUC S19 Theory and Practice of Writing and Tutoring

This course explores the intersection of thinking, learning, and writing, and in particular, the teaching and tutoring of writing. Students receive the training and background necessary to engage students as writers, and to partner with faculty in the teaching of writing. Students explore writing across the curriculum (WAC), rhetoric and composition, writing center theory, peer-led learning, assignment design, active learning, and critical thinking. The course incorporates both seminar and practicum elements: students discuss readings drawn from the literature on writing centers and WAC, and apply the content of the course by supporting high school student writers in a thirty-hour field experience.

EDUC S20 Creating Educational Experiences at Morse Mountain

Many people have visited state or national parks, where they have taken part in ranger-led programs that have engaged them in how the natural world works. In this course, students learn first-hand how experiential education works. They collaborate on building a project-based field trip. The planning addresses curriculum, instruction, assessment, and the logistics of running a field trip. They are then joined by students from the Phippsburg Community School, who participate in field trips at the nearby Bates-Morse Mountain Conservation Area. Experiential learning can be the foundation of some of the most authentic learning in a child’s life. This course provides a framework to learn the importance of these experiences.

EDUC S26 Qualitative Methods of Education Research

Policymakers and practitioners often rely upon rich descriptive data to inform their understandings of schools and students. This sort of ethnographic, qualitative research typically involves observation and interviewing. This course introduces students to these methods, exploring the fundamentals of research design, data collection, and data analysis. Students consider questions concerning validity, positionality, and the ethics of qualitative research. Working in partnership with a local school or organization, students carry out a community-engaged qualitative research project, articulating research design, conducting observations and interviews, analyzing data, and presenting results. A thirty-hour field experience is required.

EDUC S27 Literacy in the Community

The field of “new literacy studies” calls into question the traditional emphasis upon discrete reading and writing skills. In an expanded definition scholars place literacy within anthropological and cross-cultural frameworks that consider reading and writing practices within families, communities, and cultures. This course introduces students to the literature of new literacy studies and educational anthropology in conjunction with a thirty-hour service-learning placement in the Lewiston area. The course also offers an introduction to English Language Learning pedagogy. Students are asked to investigate the impact culturally informed knowledge and experience have upon the literacy practices of those community members with whom they work closely.

EDUC S29 Tour, Teach, Perform

This course uses the diverse collective skills of the students in the class as base material for the creation of a theater or dance piece that tours to elementary schools. The first two weeks are spent working intensively with a guest artist to create the performance piece. The remaining weeks are spent touring that piece, along with age-appropriate movement workshops, to elementary schools throughout the region. This course is open to performers and would-be performers of all kinds. This course may be repeated for credit.

EDUC S50 Independent Study

FYS 300 Exploring Education through Narratives

In this seminar, stories, once the primary way knowledge passed from one generation to another, are the basis for examining educational topics and issues. Students read fictional, biographical, autobiographical, and other narratives to learn more about some aspect of education and/or schooling. Topics include teachers and teaching; teacher/student roles; gender identity; students’ experiences in school; and how race, class, ethnicity, sexuality, or other differences may cause some to feel like outsiders. Students conduct fieldwork and independent research.

FYS 440 Roots of Nonviolence

How does an ancient text urging a distraught warrior into battle spark a nonviolent resistance movement spanning continents and centuries? This text, the Bhagavad-Gita, inspired Thoreau at Walden Pond and Gandhi as a practical guide for daily living. Thoreau’s essay “Civil Disobedience” influenced Gandhi’s satyagraha movement and both men’s lives and writings fueled Martin Luther King Jr.’s nonviolent struggle for civil rights. This seminar explores the legacy of these potent texts and powerful leaders and implications for moral life, democratic politics, and transformative social change.

FYS 460 Environmentalism, Social Justice, and Education

It is widely believed that the environmental movement and the social justice movement are closely connected. Many of the same forces that lead to environmental degradation are also the root causes of social injustice. This course encourages students to debate emphatically and write persuasively about these connections as they are revealed locally in the Lewiston-Auburn area (including field research in the local community); nationally in cities like Flint, Michigan, and the fracking fields of eastern Ohio; and globally by considering the eco-militants of the oil-rich Niger River Delta in Africa.

FYS 510 Creativity: Theory and Practice

What is creativity? Can people learn to be more creative? How do scholars study creativity and the creative process? In this course, students explore the answers to these questions through reading scholarly works from the interdisciplinary field of creativity studies. They examine cultural conceptions of creativity and the conditions that facilitate creative outcomes across disciplines. Together and individually, students practice developing the research-based attributes, skills, and habits associated with developing personal creativity.