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Graduate Programs

Course Descriptions

 

WINTER 2014

ED 503G - Children’s and Young Adult Literature and the Arts (2 cr)
This course will examine children’s and young adult literature and literacy techniques as well as basic principles and concepts in the teaching of visual and performing arts to children. Students will learn to respond thoughtfully to various forms of children’s literature. They will identify genre characteristics, establish a purpose for selection, identify and analyze literary elements, and generate essential questions and activities relevant to a genre and title. Students will create developmentally appropriate genre and author studies. Students will investigate and discuss research unique to teaching each art form to children. They will demonstrate their ability to work with the media, tools, and techniques of dance, music, theater and visual arts to express ideas. Students will use the arts to engage children in expressing ideas, emotions and beliefs. They will use imaginative and reflective thinking to analyze children’s creations and performances, integrate the arts and make connections among the arts and other discipline. In addition, students will use technology in order to conduct research in the arts. Field experience required.

ED 505G - Foundations of Special Education (2 cr)
This course will cover what every teacher should know about Special Education. Topics to be discussed include: special education laws (Section 504, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, and the No Child Left Behind Act), and the preparation, implementation and evaluation of IEPs. Also, there will be a focus on developing a thorough knowledge base of the services provided by other agencies. Field experience required.

ED 557G - The Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Student with Special Needs (2 cr)
This course will address the learning needs of and teaching strategies for children from culturally diverse backgrounds with limited English proficiency and special needs. Students will learn how to identify this particular population of children and distinguish them from children whose learning needs are primarily based in second language proficiency or primarily in special education, but not both. After learning how to identify this population of children, students will learn teaching strategies to address children’s multiple needs, how to monitor and report progress, and how to collaborate with parents and with resource-providers in their school and in the community.

ED 571G - Understanding Children with Mild & Moderate Disabilities (2 cr)
This course centers on the characteristics of students with mild and moderate disabilities. Particular attention is given to learning disabilities, speech and language impairments, visual and hearing impairments, physical and health related issues, intellectual disabilities, autism spectrum disorders, and emotional and behavioral disorders. Behavior management principles, curriculum modifications, instructional materials, and teaching strategies will be examined in terms of student success within a regular education setting, as will the importance of understanding RTI and knowing special education terminology. A crucial component that helps to ensure that students with mild to moderate disabilities receive proper placement and services is the evaluation process. Emphasis will be given to the Pre-Referral stage, where students at risk are first identified, to the preparation of an Accommodation Plan for students who qualify under Section 504 and the development of an Individualized Education Program (IEP) for those students who meet the eligibility criteria for special services.

SPRING 2014

ED 501G - Curriculum Instruction and Assessment in Social Studies and World Geography (4 cr)
The course will address three major aspects of social studies. Initially, there will be a focus on the development of geography skills and global awareness through the study of five world regions and the convergence of environmental, cultural, political and economic systems of globalization. Secondly, the course will focus on developing history skills such as critical, creative and analytical thinking, problem solving, valuing, and decision making. Lastly, the course will apply cooperative learning, vocabulary and concept formation, and online resources to the study of the Social Studies. Throughout the course, there will be a focus on the organization of curriculum, instructional methods and student assessment processes.

ED 502G - Curriculum Instruction and Assessment in Science, Health, and Physical Education (2 cr)
The first section of this course will focus on science education. Attention will be given to cognitive development and scientific reasoning skills, the scientific method of inquiry, and elements important to teaching science and assessing student understanding. The second section will focus on health education, addressing the “Coordinated School Health Program”, law and policy around health and safety, signs and symptoms of maltreatment, and the assessment and interpretation of content for presentation to different cognitive and developmental levels. In both science and health there will be a focus on application through investigations, and lesson and unit plan development based on the strands and standards of the Science and Technology, and Comprehensive Health Frameworks for the elementary grades. The third section will focus on the planning and development of the elementary physical education program. This component will be developed through a concurrent six hour workshop offered during the semester. Field Experience may be required.

ED 503G - Children’s and Young Adult Literature and the Arts (2 cr)
This course will examine children’s and young adult literature and literacy techniques as well as basic principles and concepts in the teaching of visual and performing arts to children. Students will learn to respond thoughtfully to various forms of children’s literature. They will identify genre characteristics, establish a purpose for selection, identify and analyze literary elements, and generate essential questions and activities relevant to a genre and title. Students will create developmentally appropriate genre and author studies. Students will investigate and discuss research unique to teaching each art form to children. They will demonstrate their ability to work with the media, tools, and techniques of dance, music, theater and visual arts to express ideas. Students will use the arts to engage children in expressing ideas, emotions and beliefs. They will use imaginative and reflective thinking to analyze children’s creations and performances, integrate the arts and make connections among the arts and other discipline. In addition, students will use technology in order to conduct research in the arts. Field experience required.

ED 505G - Foundations of Special Education (2 cr)
This course will cover what every teacher should know about Special Education. Topics to be discussed include: special education laws (Section 504, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, and the No Child Left Behind Act), and the preparation, implementation and evaluation of IEPs. Also, there will be a focus on developing a thorough knowledge base of the services provided by other agencies. Field experience required.

ED 507G - Curriculum Instruction and Assessment in Reading and Language Arts (4 cr)
This course focuses on the fundamental principles that inform research-based literacy and reading instruction as defined by the National Reading Panel Report (NRPR), No Child Left Behind. The five areas defined as key to the foundation of reading include phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and text comprehension instruction. In this course, these areas of study are used as a basic framework from which to address several other topics including assessment (formal and informal), models of reading (cognitive, linguistic, psycholinguistic), best practice, the use of literature and basal-based instruction, the writing process, teaching linguistically diverse students, and the developmental stages of reading, writing and spelling. The course offers students a comprehensive knowledge base to support and extend reading and language arts instruction.

ED513G - Diagnostic Assessments (2 cr)
Diagnostic assessments are used to determine student eligibility for Special Education benefits and services, as well as for planning instructional interventions. This course will examine basic concepts of measurement, legal and ethical considerations, and formal as well as informal diagnostic assessment tools.

ED 538G - Curriculum Instruction and Assessment in Early Childhood Math (4 cr)
This course focuses on the fundamental principles and concepts in a prekindergarten through grade two mathematics program that includes number sense, numeration, patterns and functions, geometry and measurement, and data analysis. Assessment strategies, adaptations for special needs and classroom management will be addressed. The course offers a comprehensive content knowledge of math that can be applied to real-life problem solving, communication, and decision making.

ED 553G - Assessment of English Language Learners (4 cr)
This course will examine a variety of assessment approaches. It will include those associated with Massachusetts mandated state testing programs (MELA-O and MEPA), as well as other formal and informal assessment instruments used for placement, progress monitoring, and summative evaluations. Students will select, administer and interpret assessment results and will understand normal variations in proficiency. Progress in skills and literacy development will be aligned to the Massachusetts State English Language Proficiency Benchmarks and Outcomes for English Language Learners (June 2003).

ED 557G - The Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Student with Special Needs (2 cr)
This course will address the learning needs of and teaching strategies for children from culturally diverse backgrounds with limited English proficiency and special needs. Students will learn how to identify this particular population of children and distinguish them from children whose learning needs are primarily based in second language proficiency or primarily in special education, but not both. After learning how to identify this population of children, students will learn teaching strategies to address children’s multiple needs, how to monitor and report progress, and how to collaborate with parents and with resource-providers in their school and in the community.

ED 570G - Reflective Teaching: Processes for Deepening Professional Practice (4 cr)
In recent years, new ways of improving instruction and student performance have emerged to complement traditional supervisory models and formal professional development experiences. A variety of processes and protocols help teachers develop habits of mind which are reflective and dialogue-centered. For example, this course will introduce candidates to the curriculum design process called Understanding by Design. Through reflection on enduring understandings and essential questions, candidates will construct units using the Backward Design Model. In addition, candidates will reflect on student work using the Turning Protocol and other collaborative methods. Candidates will analyze and reflect on the meaning of numerical data on student achievement and instructional practice. Finally, there will be reflection on practice using the strategies of differentiated instruction and formative assessment to enhance student learning. Candidates will engage in structured group discussions and authentic projects.

ED 571G - Understanding Children with Mild & Moderate Disabilities (2 cr)
This course centers on the characteristics of students with mild and moderate disabilities. Particular attention is given to learning disabilities, speech and language impairments, visual and hearing impairments, physical and health related issues, intellectual disabilities, autism spectrum disorders, and emotional and behavioral disorders. Behavior management principles, curriculum modifications, instructional materials, and teaching strategies will be examined in terms of student success within a regular education setting, as will the importance of understanding RTI and knowing special education terminology. A crucial component that helps to ensure that students with mild to moderate disabilities receive proper placement and services is the evaluation process. Emphasis will be given to the Pre-Referral stage, where students at risk are first identified, to the preparation of an Accommodation Plan for students who qualify under Section 504 and the development of an Individualized Education Program (IEP) for those students who meet the eligibility criteria for special services.

ED 572G - Child Development and Language Acquisition: Theories, Issues, Practices and Research (2 cr)
Critical theories and principles of child development will be explored from the physical, cognitive, language, and psychosocial aspects. The development of language and the components of syntax, phonology, morphology, semantics, and pragmatics will be investigated, and through case studies the phases of language development will be closely examined for children learning a first or second language. Current trends in early intervention screening and instruments used to assess children with communication impairments will be discussed as well as the use of augmentative and alternative communication devices. Field experience required.

ED 573G - Math Methods for the Elementary School (2 cr)
This course will focus on teaching mathematical concepts and content in the elementary grades. Emphasis will be placed on developmentally appropriate teaching and assessment methods, applications for learning across the curriculum, hands-on experiences, and internet-based activities. Experiences will be linked to the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) standards and the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks for Mathematics.

ED 574G - The Successful & Positive Classroom: Organization, Management and Accountability (2 cr)
Effective classroom organization and proactive management of student behaviors are essential elements of a safe, positive and successful classroom community. In such classrooms, time on learning is maximized, disruptions minimized, self management techniques in place, and expectations clearly set and attainable. In this course, students will examine specific systematic behaviors teachers use to create orderly, cooperative, motivating learning environments that promote student achievement. Social competency programs, peaceful mediation, conflict resolution, assertiveness training, and cooperative learning techniques will be an integral part of the course as will discussions on strategies teachers use to help students interact and communicate effectively, and become responsible and self-reliant, thoughtful citizens. The course will conclude with a brief study of the socio-moral development of children.

ED 607G – Advanced Leadership and Policy in Education (4 cr)
In this course students will examine the principles, values and beliefs that inform contemporary educational leadership and look critically at the contextual factors that influence how leaders function in schools and school districts. Students will consider the social, economic, historical and political forces that shape school conditions and review the changing impact of Federal policy and national strategies on local educational settings.

ED 620G - The College Student (4 cr)
This course provides a broad-ranging introduction to the demographics, issues, and trends of the contemporary college student. Topics include the history of college students, current student characteristics and college environments, and key issues of student development, attrition, persistence, cognitive and affective development and general outcomes. The diversity of student characteristics (e.g., racial, ethnic, socioeconomic, gender, age, marital status, full- versus part-time status) in relationship to diverse higher education environs (e.g., community colleges, online courses) will also be examined.

ED 635G - Theories of Organizational Change (4 cr)
This course explores organizational theory and organizational change within the context of non-profit organizations. Topics include industry structure, competition and differentiation; integration, diversification, and expansion; and strategic management of organizational culture and change. While themes and case studies are drawn from business practice, the key focus will be on the overall PreK-16 educational system, higher education, and community-based nonprofit organizations.

RDG 506G - Emergence of Literacy: Struggling Readers and Writers (4 cr)
This course addresses issues relevant to teaching reading and writing in the schools and a balanced approach to literacy instruction, K-12. Topics include analysis of scientifically based research on reading, reading philosophies, implementation of data driven instruction, differentiated instruction, and reading and writing across the curriculum. Topics include, but are not limited to balanced reading programs, effective literacy blocks, culturally sensitive instruction, vocabulary, comprehension, children’s literature, and technology.