Course code:



I - Introductory

Meets the following requirements:

  • ED - Educational Studies

Lab fee:


Given the rapid pace of change in communications, career opportunities, learning options, and the global economy, U.S. schools are struggling to adapt.

As technology, culture, politics, and media facilitate new and more diverse means of learning, how are educators adjusting to “new” learners from toddlers through senior adults? Driving questions include: Who is leading innovation and where? What are some of the ways educators are experimenting with teaching? How are innovators changing the purposes of schools? Who is currently starting schools and why? How is brain research impacting innovation within and outside of public schools? How are digital natives, eco-warriors, and the call for global literacy accommodated in mainstream schools? If public schools, as some charge, have outlived their usefulness: what next for education?

With the objective of exploring and understanding innovative ideas for classrooms, school design, and district structures, as well as alternative places and means of learning, we will work toward a more comprehensive understanding of what is new, and potentially revolutionary, in schools and in education beyond schooling.

Evaluation will be based on class participation (including leading a discussion around a particular area of individual interest), a series of four reaction papers, and both live and virtual “field” explorations of innovative practices and organizations. The final project will be based on the design and proposal of an innovative educational option.




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