20109-2011 Undergraduate Catalog


Students may: complete a minor in education leading to a Pennsylvania certification to teach at the secondary level; complete requirements for certification after they graduate through the post-baccalaureate Teacher Education program; or complete a minor in educational studies.


Jody Cohen, Senior Lecturer
Alison Cook-Sather, Professor
Heather Curl, Instructor
Debbie Flaks, Instructor
Howard M. Glasser, Postdoctoral Fellow in Science Education
Alice Lesnick, Senior Lecturer and Director

The field of education is about teaching people how to teach—and more. The Bryn Mawr-Haverford Education Program is built around four mutually-informing pursuits: teacher preparation; the interdisciplinary study of learning as a central human and cultural activity; the investigation of the politics of schooling; and students’ growth as reflective teachers, learners, researchers and change agents.

Courses in the Education Program address students interested in:

•   The theory, process and reform of education in the United States

•   Social justice, activism and working within and against systems of social reproduction

•   Future work as educators in schools, public or mental health, community, or other settings

•   Examining and re-claiming their own learning and educational goals

•   Integrating field-based and academic learning

Each education course includes a field component through which professors seek continuously to integrate theory and practice, asking students to bridge academic and experiential knowledge in the classroom and beyond it. Field placements in schools and other educational settings range from two hours per week in the introductory course to full-time student teaching in the certification program.

The Bi-College Education Program offers several options. Students may:

•   Explore one or more aspects of education in areas of particular interest—such as urban schooling—by enrolling in single courses;

•   Pursue a minor in education leading to secondary teacher certification;

•   Pursue a minor in educational studies;

•   Complete the secondary teacher certification program after they graduate through the Post-baccalaureate Teacher Education Program;

•   Complete elementary certification through the Swarthmore and Eastern Colleges’ elementary education certification program;

•   Sub-matriculate (as juniors or seniors) into the University of Pennsylvania, Graduate School of Education’s elementary or secondary education Master’s program; or

•   In a five-year program, complete both the A.B./M.A. program in French, Physics or Mathematics (or possibly other departments that offer the AB/MA option) and the secondary teaching certification program.

The secondary certification sequence and the minor are described below. Students interested in either of these options—or in pursuing elementary education at Swarthmore or sub-matriculating into the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education (not described here)—should meet with a program adviser as early as possible for advice on scheduling, preferably by the sophomore year.

Requirements for Certification

The Bryn Mawr/Haverford Education Program is accredited by the state of Pennsylvania to prepare undergraduates for secondary certification (grades 7-12) in the following areas: biology, chemistry, English, mathematics, physics, social studies (as well as citizenship education and social science), and world languages, including Chinese, French, German, Latin, Russian and Spanish. Pursuit of certification in Chinese, German, Latin and Russian is subject to availability of student-teaching placements.

Students becoming certified in a foreign language have K-12 certification. Certain interdisciplinary majors and double majors (e.g., romance languages, comparative literature, East Asian studies) may also be eligible for certification provided they meet the Pennsylvania standards in one of the subject areas listed above.

To qualify for a teaching certificate, students must complete an academic major in the subject area in which they seek certification. (Within their major, students must select courses that help them meet or exceed the state standards for teachers in that subject area.) Students must also complete a minor in education, completing the secondary certification track courses listed below:

•   EDUC 200 (Critical Issues in Education)
•   PSYC 203 (Educational Psychology)
•   EDUC 210 (Special Education)
•   EDUC 275 (English Learners in U.S. Schools: Policies and Practices)
•   EDUC 301 (Curriculum and Pedagogy Seminar)
•   EDUC 302 (Practice Teaching Seminar) and EDUC 303 (Practice Teaching) These courses are taken concurrently and earn triple credit.

Furthermore, for social studies certification, as well as certification in the sciences, students must take courses outside their major to meet state standards.

Students preparing for certification must also take two English and two mathematics courses and must attain a grade point average of 3.0 or higher (state requirements). They must attain a grade of 2.7 or higher in EDUC 200 (Critical Issues in Education) and EDUC 301 (Curriculum and Pedagogy Seminar) in order to practice-teach and must attain a grade of 2.7 or higher in EDUC 302 (Practice Teaching Seminar) to be recommended for certification. They must also be recommended by the director of the Education Program and the chair of their major department.

Critical Issues in Education should be taken by the end of the sophomore year if at all possible. The Curriculum and Pedagogy Seminar is offered during the fall semester for seniors and must precede Practice Teaching.

Practice Teaching is undertaken for 12 weeks in a local school during the spring semester of the senior year. Note: Practice Teaching is a commitment to be at a school for five full school days each week for those 12 weeks.

Requirements for the Minor in Educational Studies

The Bi-College minor in educational studies is an interdisciplinary exploration of the cultural, political, and interactional dimensions of teaching and learning and is designed for students with a broad range of education-related interests, such as plans for graduate study in education, pursuit of elementary or secondary certification after graduation or careers that require educational expertise. Many professions and pursuits—management and training positions, research, administration and policy work, and careers in social work, health and law—involve using an educator’s skills and knowledge. Civic engagement, community development and work towards social justice also require knowledge of how people learn. Because students interested in these or other education-related pursuits major in different subject areas and have different aspirations, they are encouraged to design a minor appropriate both to their major area of study and to their anticipated futures.

All minors in educational studies must consult with a program adviser to design a coherent course of study that satisfies the requirements below:

•   EDUC 200 Critical Issues in Education
•   Two required education courses (EDUC 210, 220, 225, 240, 250, 255, 260, 266, 270, 275, 280—see course descriptions below)
•   One education-related elective (see program adviser for options)
•   EDUC 310 Defining Educational Practice
•   EDUC 311 Fieldwork Seminar

Students must attain a grade of 2.7 or higher in EDUC 310 (Defining Education Practice) in order to take EDUC 311 (Fieldwork Seminar).

The Portfolio/Final Project

To synthesize their work in the minor or the certification program, students create a portfolio (Education Minors also may have the option of completing a final project in lieu of the portfolio). The portfolio or final project draws on the work students produce in their courses as well as in their other activities (volunteering, summer programs, community work, etc.) and serves as a summative expression of what education students do and learn in preparation for their futures as educators.

Title II Reporting: Title II of the Higher Education Act (HEA) requires that a full teacher preparation report, including the institution’s pass rate as well as the state’s pass rate, be available to the public on request. Copies of the report may be requested from Ann Brown by e-mail at abrown@brynmawr.edu or phone at (610) 526-5376.

EDUC B200 Critical Issues in Education
Designed to be the first course for students interested in pursuing one of the options offered through the Education Program, this course is also open to students who are not yet certain about their career aspirations but are interested in educational issues. The course examines major issues in education in the United States within the conceptual framework of educational reform. Fieldwork in an area school required (six visits, 1.5-2 hours per visit). Enrollment is limited to 25 students with priority given to students pursuing certification or the minor in educational studies. Writing intensive.
(Cohen, Division I: Social Science)

EDUC B205 Brain, Education and Inquiry
(Grobstein, Division II: Natural Science)
Cross-listed as BIOL B205

EDUC H210 Perspectives on Special Education
The goal of this course is to introduce students to a range of topics, challenges, dilemmas, and strategies in understanding and educating all learners—those considered typical learners as well as those considered “special” learners. Students will learn more about: how students’ learning profiles affect their learning in school from a functional perspective; how and why students’ educational experience is affected by special education law; major issues in the field of special education; and a-typical learners, students with disabilities, and how to meet diverse student needs in a classroom. Two hours of fieldwork per week required.

EDUC B219 Writing in Theory/Writing in Practice
(Hemmeter, Division III: Humanities)
Cross-listed as ENGL B220
Not offered in 2010-11.

EDUC B220 Changing Pedagogies in Mathematics and Science
This course examines perspectives related to teaching and learning math and science, including questioning why (if at all) it is important for people to learn these subjects, what is viewed as successful teaching and learning in these disciplines, and how people learn math and science. Fieldwork in an area school required.
(Glasser, Division I: Social Science)
This is a half-credit course.

EDUC B225 Empowering Learners: Theory and Practice of Extra-Classroom Teaching

This Praxis course is for students in extra-classroom tutoring and mentoring roles on and off campus. In addition to school settings, sites of play and livelihood are examined as sites of teaching and learning for people of various ages and phases of life. Focus is on learning to facilitate and assess learners’ growth within a context, challenging prescribed roles, and identifying structural barriers and opportunities.
This is a half-credit course.

EDUC H240 Researching Education on Campus
This course teaches students to use and interpret observation, survey, interview, focus group, and other qualitative methods of educational research, as well as to read and write about such research. Students work in teams to design and begin carrying out campus-based action research projects in areas of concern to Bi-College stakeholders. In addition to class meetings, research teams meet regularly.
(Lesnick, Division I: Social Science)

EDUC H250 Literacies and Education
A critical exploration of what counts as literacy, who decides, and what the implications are for teaching and learning. Students explore both their own and others experiences of literacy through reading and writing about power, privilege, access and responsibility around issues of adult, ESL, cultural, multicultural, gendered, academic and critical literacies. Fieldwork required. (Writing Intensive). Priority given to those pursuing certification or a minor in educational studies.
(Cohen, Division I: Social Science)
Not offered in 2010-11.

EDUC B251 Arts Teaching in Educational and Community Settings
(Cantor, Division III: Humanities)
Cross-listed as ARTA B251
Not offered in 2010-11.

EDUC B255 Technology, Education and Society Altering Environments
Examines theories and applications of technology’s role in education and the impact on teaching, learning, and society. Students investigate experiences with technology and explore and critically examine resources and their intersection with issues of power, knowledge, culture, and society. The aim is for students to develop as technological agents who can alter society through enriching educational opportunities.
(Glasser, Lesnick, Division I: Social Science)
This is a half-credit course.

EDUC B266 Schools in American Cities
This course examines issues, challenges, and possibilities of urban education in contemporary America. We use as critical lenses issues of race, class, and culture; urban learners, teachers, and school systems; and restructuring and reform. While we look at urban education nationally over several decades, we use Philadelphia as a focal “case” that students investigate through documents and school placements. Enrollment is limited to 25 with priority given to students pursuing certification or the minor in educational studies and to majors in Sociology and Growth and Structure of Cities. This is a Praxis I course (weekly fieldwork in a school required).
(Cohen, Division I: Social Science)
Cross-listed as CITY B266
Cross-listed as SOCL B266

EDUC B270 Identity, Access, and Innovation in Education

This course explores formal policies that attempt to address race, gender, and language in education and the informal ways that such policies play out in access to education and in knowledge construction and production. Participatory action research involves students in working with an urban high school.
(Cohen, Division I: Social Science)

EDUC B275 English Learners in U.S. Schools: Policies and Practices

This course focuses on educational policies and practices related to language minority students in the U. S. We examine English learners’ diverse experiences, educators’ approaches to working with linguistically diverse students, programs that address their strengths and needs, links between schools and communities, and issues of policy and advocacy. Prerequisite: EDUC 200 (Critical Issues in Education). This is a Praxis I course (weekly fieldwork in a school or other educational setting).
(Cohen, Division I: Social Science)

EDUC B280 Gender, Sex and Education: Intersections and Conflict

This course explores the intersections and conflict between gender and education through focus on science/mathematics education and related academic domains. It investigates how gender complicates disciplinary knowledge (and vice-versa), the (de)constructing and reinforcing of genders (via science and schooling), and ways gender troubles negotiation of disciplines. Implications for teaching, society, and social justice, as well as relationships among different cultural categories, will be explored.
(Glasser, Division I: Social Science)

EDUC B301 Curriculum and Pedagogy Seminar

A consideration of theoretical and applied issues related to effective curriculum design, pedagogical approaches and related issues of teaching and learning. Fieldwork is required. Enrollment is limited to 15 with priority given first to students pursuing certification and second to seniors planning to teach.
(Curl, Division I: Social Science)

EDUC H302 Practice Teaching Seminar

Drawing on participants’ diverse student teaching placements, this seminar invites exploration and analysis of ideas, perspectives and approaches to teaching at the middle and secondary levels. Taken concurrently with Practice Teaching. Open only to students engaged in practice teaching.
(Curl, Division I: Social Science)

EDUC B303 Practice Teaching in Secondary Schools

Supervised teaching in secondary schools (12 weeks). Two units of credit are given for this course. Open only to students preparing for state certification.

EDUC H310 Defining Educational Practice
An interdisciplinary inquiry into the work of constructing and researching professional identities and roles in education-related contexts. Three to five hours a week of fieldwork are required. Enrollment is limited to 20 with priority given to students pursuing the minor in educational studies.
(Lesnick, Division I: Social Science)

EDUC B311 Fieldwork Seminar
Drawing on the diverse contexts in which participants complete their fieldwork, this seminar invites exploration and analysis of ideas, perspectives and different ways of understanding his/her ongoing fieldwork and associated issues of educational practice, reform, and innovation. Five to eight hours of fieldwork are required per week. Enrollment is limited to 20. Open only to students completing the minor in educational studies.

EDUC B377 Politics of Education Reform
(Maranto, Division I: Social Science)
Cross-listed as POLS B377
Not offered in 2010-11.

EDUC B403 Supervised Work
(Cohen, Cook-Sather, Lesnick)

EDUC B425 Independent Study (Praxis III)
(Cohen, Cook-Sather, Lesnick)

EDUC B433 Practice Teaching in Secondary Schools

Supervised teaching in secondary schools (12 weeks) – for students enrolled in the Post-baccalaureate Teacher Educatino Program. Two units of credit are given for this course. Open only to non-matriculating students preparing for state certification.