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CEPS Spring 2014 Graduate Course Offerings

In addition to regularly offering the introductory or first-tier courses in each of our areas of concentration (sociology of education, history of education, philosophy of education and comparative education) CEPS tries to offer a rich, rotating menu of advanced seminars addressing — and often interdisciplinarily crossing — each of these areas.  For most accurate course listings please consult locus.

In Spring 2014 we will be offering the following courses:

* ELPS 412 Sociological Analysis of Urban Education and Policy (Phillippo) WTC Tuesdays 7:00-9:30

* ELPS 420 Philosophy of Education (Shuffelton) WTC Wednesdays 7:00-9:30

* ELPS 444 American Schooling and Social Policy: A Historical Perspective (Instructor TBD) WTC Mondays 7:00-9:30

And in Spring 2014 we will be offering the following advanced courses / seminars:

* ELPS 457 Comparative Theory (Jules) WTC Thursdays 4:15-6:45

This advanced seminar combines the study of international relations with comparative and international education to provide students with an understanding of the educational consequences and realities of the political dynamics of contrasting systems within the larger settings of state and society, international political economies, interstate, and regional relations. The seminar will explore a variety of theoretical approaches as well as a series of controversial topics, including integration, international organizations, non-governmental organizations, the environment, development, food security, and educational regulation governance. The goals of the course are: assist students in gaining a deeper understanding of the economic, political, cultural, and dynamic factors that influence education and knowledge production processes across the globe; allow students to become more aware of the impact of global trends and issues upon the field of education; and to help students to develop the necessary skills needed to be critical of the current roles and approaches in comparative and international educational research.

Students will focus on understating the broader dynamics of changing and contesting state relations (i.e. regionalization, balkanization, and standardization) in a emerging post-financial crisis world that is now categorized by four distinctive polarities: (a) the emergence of the ‘gated global economy’ that is tied to state capitalism and stems from the pausing/cooling down of trade based globalization; (b) the fortification of the post-Washington consensus module that moves away from a focus on minimal government intervention, neo-liberalism, and market-friendly approaches and places emphasizes on sustainable, egalitarian, and democratic development; (c) the demise of the orthodox BRICs economies (Brazil, Russia, India and China and South Africa) and the rise of the N-11 or NEXT 11  countries or emerging markets (Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, Turkey, South Korea, and Vietnam); and (d) the US’s Asia ‘pivot’ by the Obama administration under the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) in the post-Arabic Spring era.

This seminar allows student to select two or more case studies across four distinctive polarities identified above to identify how these new trajectories and paradigmatic shifts will influence national agendas, regional institutions, and international donors spending. Core questions resolve around notions as to whether or not (a) The Finnish module, that is currently held up on a pedestal as the beacon of success, has reached its tipping point?; (b) Is donor aid and development exhausted?/ Is education experiencing ‘Aid-Fatigue’; (c) Do league tables still matter with the rise of regionalization?; and (d) What does a realistic post-2015 development agenda looks like in an increasingly gated world?

In focusing on these questions above, students will employ a comparative lens to design a research paper, the final output of this class, around the existing theoretical modules and paradigms that currently exist within comparative and international education. Students will assess what existing modules may be beneficial to our understanding of the current educational climate, described as “educational fragmentation” or ”educational controls”, and perhaps predict the future educational trends in a world that now focuses on shaping globalization in pursuit of broader goals. Students will leave this class with a deepening understanding as:  (a) How they can shape educational agendas in the new global market spaces that preferences labor benchmarks and environmental and intellectual-property protection; (b) The ability to apply theoretical modules to real-world settings and contexts; and (c) The skills to analyze and write about national or international educational politics.