Learning Sciences Certificate: Project oriented courses

Two of these courses satisfy the project-based course requirement for the SESAME Learning Sciences Certificate. The synthesis course, SCMATHE 210, is also required for completion of the certificate.

Additional project oriented courses may be added over time. It is also possible to petition the SESAME executive committee to apply a project-oriented course not on this list toward the certificate.

Most project oriented courses are offered in alternating years. At least one project oriented course is offered every Fall and Spring semester. Depending on the year, there may be two project oriented courses offered in Spring.

Project oriented courses

SCMATHE 220C: Instructional Design in Science and Mathematics Education: Designing Educational Technologies (Linn)

In this project-oriented course students, individually or in small groups, are mentored to design and refine an innovative use of technology in any topic area to strengthen teaching and learning in college, precollege, laboratory, or informal contexts. Students explore theories of instruction; design of assessments; issues in diversity, gender-equity, and accessibility in design of technologies for learning. Offered Spring semester in odd numbered years.

EDUC 222: Politics and Pedagogies at the Intersections of Data, Technologies, and Inequalities (Philip)

In the last decade, our society has witnessed an exponential growth in data. The Economist encapsulated the defining characteristic of our rapidly changing society with two succinct headlines: “Data, data everywhere” and “The data deluge.” As people increasingly generate heaps of “digital breadcrumbs,” often unintentionally and unknowingly, our social, cultural, political, and economic lives are evermore intertwined with digital data. With the increasing ubiquity of data, old forms of inequality adapt, diminish, and/or transform and new forms of inequality emerge. In particular, the pervasiveness of data presents new challenges (and possibilities) for democracies. This project-oriented course examines the societal risks and promises of our data-entrenched society and how classrooms might address the new emergent necessities of democracy. Offered Fall semester.

EDUC 222C: Design-Based Research Forum (Abrahamson)

design-build-implement-analyze-theorize-publicize practicum forum for participants to learn about design-based educational research work and to receive support with their original and ongoing projects. Following several orientation weeks, in which we discuss fundamental resources and participate in hands-on activities, subsequent readings are customized to individual students. The course culminates with presentations, and students submit an empirical research paper. Offered every Fall semester.

EDUC 224A: Mathematical Thinking and Problem Solving (Schoenfeld)

This course explores contemporary research on mathematical thinking, teaching, and learning, with a particular emphasis on “higher order thinking skills” and problem solving – what are they, and what kinds of classroom environments promote their development. That emphasis is placed within the larger question of, “What are the properties of powerful learning environments – environments from which students emerge as knowledgeable and resourceful thinkers and problem solvers?” The course offers a combination of readings, hands-on activities, and a capstone project. Offered Fall semester of odd-numbered years.

EDUC 224B: Paradigmatic Didactical Mathematical Problematic Situations (Abrahamson)

Paradigmatic Didactical Mathematical Problematic Situations are contexts for collaborative inquiry into the practice, epistemology, and pedagogy of mathematics. Building on the Learning Sciences literature, the course creates opportunities for students to engage in interesting mathematical problems from secondary-school content. Final projects include design, implementation, and analysis of a lesson. Offered Fall semester of even-numbered years.

EDUC 224C: Gender, Mathematics and Science (Linn)

The course explores commonly asked questions concening gender, mathematics, and science. We will discuss whether these are appropriate questions and examine evidence related to the questions. This course will also consider whether policies and practices concerning gender, mathematics, and science should be changed and, if so, identify some of the steps that could be taken to improve the current situation.  Offered Spring semester of even-numbered years.

EDUC 274A: Measurement in Education and the Social Sciences I. (Wilson)

Students design an instrument, investigate its measurement properties (specifically, validity, and reliability), and refine it. The act of measuring is positioned as a link between qualitative observations and quantitative measures. Design of instruments is discussed in a variety of contexts, such as interviewing, standardized testing, and performance assessment. We will discuss both classical and modern testing approaches from conceptual and practical points of view. Offered Fall semester.