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Undergraduate Programs

Major

An undergraduate major in Education is a second major only. Students take a minimum of 10 courses, including five core requirements and five in a concentration. Up to three of these courses may overlap with the primary major, if that major also approves.

Students work with their Education advisors to customize a program in one of two concentrations: Educational Studies or Teaching and Learning.

Educational Studies:
This concentration focuses on the social and cultural foundations of education with particular attention to race, gender, sexuality, and other dimensions of societal organization. Scholarship in Educational Studies considers these dimensions in relation to public schools, policies, pedagogies, and political movements. Guided by critical theory and drawing from disciplinary approaches in anthropology, history, philosophy, sociology, and law, students explore places where knowledge is produced, structures affecting that knowledge production, and forces that shape education.
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Teaching and Learning:
This concentration focuses on learning and teaching within and across contexts and academic disciplines. Students study general educational concepts and philosophies, including theories of cognitive, social, and emotional development. They also specialize in areas related to their primary majors, including to understand the epistemic aims and practices, views of learning and approaches to instruction particular to the disciplines. For example, a student whose primary major is history would study how learners take up the practices and dispositions of historians.
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Core Requirements

The core requirements are designed to touch on a range of aspects of education research in practice. All students must choose at least one course from each of the following five areas.

Introductory courses

  • ED 1 School and Society
  • ED 11 Observing Theory in Action
  • ED 13 The Global Educator
  • ED 14 Food and Schools

Cognitive and social development

  • ED 130 Human Development and Learning
  • CD 51 Intellectual Development of the Young Child
  • CD 82 Social Policy for Children and Families
  • CD 151 Advanced Intellectual Development of the Young Child
  • CD 152 Development of Thought and Language
  • CD 153 Culture and Learning: Issues for Education

Literacy

  • CD 154 Development of Literacy
  • CD 155 The Young Child's Development of Language
  • ED 191 Foundations of Literacy

Educational Studies/Foundations

  • ED 160 Post-colonial Theories
  • ED 161 Anthropology and Sociology of Schooling
  • ED 162 Critical Histories of U.S. Education
  • ED 163 Philosophies

Teaching and Learning

  • ED 10 Teaching and Learning in K-12 History and Social Studies
  • ED 110 History and Political Science/Political Philosophy Curricula
  • ED 111 Development of Knowledge and Reasoning in the Science Curriculum
  • ED 112 Mathematics Learning Environments
  • ED 113 Language Arts Curricula in the Middle and Secondary School
  • ED 114 Linguistic Approaches to Second Language Acquisition
  • ED 116, 117 Interdisciplinary Elementary Curriculum
  • ED 119 Development of Knowledge and Reasoning in Engineering
  • ED 191 Art Education, A Global Perspective

Educational Studies Concentration Requirements

Five courses earned in coursework and a capstone paper. For this concentration, majors must take one course from each of the following areas. Some courses appear in more than one area, but a course can only count in one. Students may take courses not listed, in any of these areas, with approval from their advisor prior to registration.

Foundations (1 course, in addition to the core requirement)

  • ED 160 Post-Colonial Theories in Education
  • ED 161 Anthropology and Sociology of Schooling
  • ED 162 Critical Histoies of U.S. Education
  • ED 163 Philosophies

Theory (1 course)

  • ED 160 Post-Colonial Theories in Education
  • ED 167 Critical Race Theory
  • ED 168 Pedagogies
  • ED 191 Feminist Theories in Education

Electives (1 course)
Students choose electives in consultation with their major advisor, from courses including the following.

  • AMER 180 African Americans in the Post-Civil Rights Era
  • AMER 194 Race and Racialization in Native America
  • ANTH 130 Anthropological Thought
  • ANTH 169 Anthropology of the State: Subject, Citizen, Sovereignty
  • CD 164 Cultural Diversity in Child and Family Services
  • CD 177 Bilingual Children in U.S. Schools
  • EC 124 State and Local Public Finance
  • EC 127 Urban Economics
  • EC 145 Economics of Higher Education
  • ED 142 Education of the Exceptional Child
  • ED 169 Radical Lesbian Thought
  • ED 191 Any Color You Like
  • ENG 191 Black Feminist Theories
  • ENG 192 Fanon and Black Textual Revolution
  • FAH 1 or 2 Introduction to World Art (I or II)
  • HST 128 Civil Rights Movement
  • HST 129 Black Political Thought in the Twentieth Century
  • PH 125 Racism and Social Inequality
  • PS 105 Constitutional Law
  • PS 106 Racial and Ethnic Politics
  • PS 118-06 Topics in American Politics: Community Organizing
  • SOC 149 Sexuality and Society
  • SOC 187 Immigrant Children & Children of Immigrants
  • SOC 188 Racial Identity in Historical Perspective
  • UEP 240 US Social Welfare Policy

Advanced Seminars (1 course)

  • ED 160 Post-Colonial Theories in Education
  • ED 167 Critical Race Theory
  • ED 168 Pedagogies
  • ED 169 Radical Lesbian Thought
  • WGSS 190 Doing Feminist Research

Educational Studies Capstone Experience
Students concentrating in Educational Studies have three options for the capstone experience.

  • Research paper within the Advanced Seminar
  • ED 193, 194 Research paper (1 course)
  • ED 195, 196 Thesis (2 courses)

Guidelines:

Advanced Seminar Research Paper Guidelines and Requirements
Students concentrating in Educational Studies take one advanced seminar, chosen from the list above. Within one of these seminars, students write a capstone research paper, which must demonstrate engagement with at least one theoretical framework and one area of educational research. Students submit their capstone research to the course instructor and to their advisor (or a second faculty member, if their advisor is the instructor).

Research Paper Guidelines and Requirements
The paper is a one-semester scholarly project conducted toward completion of the major in Educational Studies. The paper is advised by a committee of two faculty members agreed upon by the student and the Educational Studies academic advisor. The first reader must be in Education. The second may be in a related field. The paper is evaluated by the first and second readers. A successfully completed paper project will include, but not be limited to:

  • evidence of comprehensive research in two areas: one topic relevant to Educational Studies; one body of theory relevant to the field and the topic
  • a scholarly review of the relevant bodies of literature
  • an original argument
  • other requirements established by the paper advisor and the student
  • successful defense with committee

Thesis Guidelines and Requirements
The thesis is a two-semester scholarly project conducted toward completion of the major in Educational Studies. The thesis is advised by a chair and read by a committee of two additional faculty agreed upon by the student and the Educational Studies academic advisor. A successfully completed thesis will include, but not be limited to:

  • original, empirical research
  • evidence of comprehensive research in two areas: one topic relevant to Educational Studies; one body of theory relevant to the field and the topic
  • a scholarly review of the relevant bodies of literature
  • an empirically-driven, original argument
  • other requirements established by the thesis advisor and the student
  • successful defense with committee

NOTE: Some students may conduct research for their first major that focuses on some aspect of Educational Studies. These students should include a research methods course in their program, selected in collaboration with their Educational Studies advisor, as either an Elective or Advanced Seminar. Relevant courses include ANTH 149 Ethnographic Methods; CD 144 Qualitative and Ethnographic Methods in Applied Social Science Research; SOC 102 Qualitative Research Methods; WGSS 190 Doing Feminist Research.


Teaching and Learning Concentration Requirements

Five courses earned through coursework and a capstone experience. For this concentration, majors take a minimum of one course in each of the following areas.

Practices of teaching
These courses require students' concurrent engagement in teaching, in some capacity.

  • ED 120 Practice of Teaching: History and Political Science/Political Philosophy
  • ED 121 Practice of Teaching: Science
  • ED 122 Practice of Teaching: Mathematics
  • ED 123 Practice of Teaching: English
  • ED 124 Practice of Teaching: Languages
  • ED 125 Practice of Teaching: Latin and Classical Humanities
  • ED 127 Practice of Teaching Elementary STEM
  • ED 129 Practice of Teaching Engineering and Design

Research Methods
Students planning a research-based capstone take at least one methods class.

  • ED 191 Design Based Research
  • ED 271 Methods for Educational Research (by permission only)
  • SOC 101 Quantitative Research Methods
  • SOC 102 Qualitative Research Methods
  • CD 42 Introduction to Problems of Research: Methods and Design
  • CD 142 Problems of Research: Methods and Design
  • CD 144 Qualitative and Ethnographic Methods in Applied Social Science Research

Electives
Students choose electives in consultation with their major advisor.

  • ED 92 Prosocial Education for a Democratic Society
  • ED 142 Education of the Exceptional Child
  • ED 164 Education for Peace and Justice
  • ED 168 Pedagogies
  • ED 182 Technological Tools for Learning
  • ED 183 Grammar and Writing for Teachers
  • ED 189 The Role of "Story" in Education
  • ED 191 Any Color You Like
  • ED 198 Step-Up Boston: field experience in Education: undergraduates: contexts for human development (fulfills Development requirement)
  • PSY 121 Applying Cognition to Education
  • PSY 139 Social Cognition

Teaching and Learning Capstone Experience
For the capstone requirement, students concentrating in Teaching and Learning may pursue any of the following options, including the experience itself and an accompanying seminar they arrange with their advisor.

  • Internship Experience (1 course)
    Students arrange internships with educational institutions, such as a museum, research and development non-profit, or policy organization.
     
  • Research Project (1 course) or Senior Honors Thesis (2 courses)
    Students may (1) conduct an independent study of their own design, (2) participate on a research project with faculty and pursue a particular line of inquiry within that project; (3) participate in a research study with a local educational institution or non-profit.
     
  • Field Studies (1 course)
    Students may pursue an experience teaching in a local school or other educational setting. The details of the particular experience will be arranged in consultation with department faculty and the staff of the respective school or institution. In general, students pursuing a field experience will enroll concurrently in a corresponding Practices course (ED 12X).