About this Course
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English

Subtitles: English

100% online

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.

English

Subtitles: English

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

Week
1
2 hours to complete

American Public Education: Critical Issues & Historical Context

As we launch the course, we will explore the history of public schooling and school reform in the United States. The approach to public education in the United States is unique, with governance, quality, and approach residing at the state and local level. As a result, efforts to improve and reform public schools in the United States are complex. Together, we will unpack these critical foundational characteristics of American public schooling, and explore the ways in which these contextual factors influence topics explored throughout the course.

...
5 videos (Total 49 min), 3 readings, 1 quiz
5 videos
Public Schooling & Local Control13m
American Public School Funding13m
Concepts of American School Reform, pt. 1: The Theories Behind Reform7m
Concepts of American School Reform, pt. 2: The History of Reform11m
3 readings
Welcome to the Course!10m
Glossary for Historical Context of American Public Education10m
Optional Further Readings10m
1 practice exercise
Historical Context of American Public Education20m
Week
2
2 hours to complete

The No Child Left Behind Act

This week, we will examine federal strategies to improve public schooling, beginning with the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). NCLB is the 2001 reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Enacted during the presidency of George W Bush, NCLB emphasized accountability, choice and flexibility. Discussion of the goals and intentions of NCLB will naturally lead us to consider the controversies around federal involvement in public education given the nature of the locally controlled approach to the American system. We will explore divergent opinions about NCLB theory of action and effectiveness.

...
6 videos (Total 41 min), 5 readings, 1 quiz
6 videos
Building Up to NCLB, 1965-20017m
Part 1: Accountability and Choice8m
Part 2: Flexibility and Literacy4m
Part 1: The Aftermath of NCLB9m
Part 2: Arguments For and Against NCLB5m
5 readings
Glossary for NCLB Historical Lens10m
Glossary for NCLB Summary Lens10m
Glossary for NCLB Analytical Lens10m
Optional Further Readings10m
MOOC survey10m
1 practice exercise
No Child Left Behind20m
Week
3
2 hours to complete

The Common Core State Standards

As we continue our exploration of federal involvement in public education, we will discuss the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), the creation of a shared set of common standards and assessments for public education. We will examine the history of the creation of standards in the United States, revealing the fact that the concept of standards has been evident for decades. What can we learn from this history? How is the Common Core like or not like these previous efforts? We will consider the goals and intentions behind the Common Core, as well as the divergent opinions about its effectiveness.

...
5 videos (Total 47 min), 5 readings, 1 quiz
5 videos
American Schooling Standards, 1892-201510m
Part 1: Developing the Standards7m
Part 2: Implementing the Standards9m
Arguments For and Against CCSS15m
5 readings
Glossary for CCSS Overview10m
Glossary for CCSS Historical Lens10m
Glossary for CCSS Summary Lens10m
Glossary for CCSS Analytical Lens10m
Optional Further Readings10m
1 practice exercise
The Common Core State Standards20m
Week
4
2 hours to complete

Interlude 1: Interview and Panel Discussion on NCLB and CCSS

We had the pleasure of interviewing several experts in the education space from around Chicago and the Urban Education Institute. Listen as they discuss topics surrounding NCLB and CCSS. They will have a variety of perspectives from that of a researcher to a practitioner. Which do you identify with? Did any of the participants resonate with you?

...
7 videos (Total 80 min)
7 videos
NCLB Interviews9m
CCSS Interviews19m
Federal Intervention Interviews4m
Panel 1, part 1: School Improvement at Scale15m
Panel 1, pt. 2: Standardized Tests13m
Panel 1, pt. 3: School-level Reform12m
4.8
13 ReviewsChevron Right

Top reviews from Critical Issues in Urban Education

By MLMar 10th 2017

Logically organised, informative and enjoyable. This was an excellent introductory course to Urban Education Issues and provided me with a solid starting point for exploring the subject.

By BCJan 27th 2019

Help a lot, got to learn a lot from this course. As I am student-teacher, this course is really helpful to reflect upon the concerns and issues in the education.

Instructor

Avatar

Sara Ray Stoelinga

Sara Liston Spurlark Director and Clinical Professor
Urban Education Institute

About The University of Chicago

One of the world's premier academic and research institutions, the University of Chicago has driven new ways of thinking since our 1890 founding. Today, UChicago is an intellectual destination that draws inspired scholars to our Hyde Park and international campuses, keeping UChicago at the nexus of ideas that challenge and change the world....

Frequently Asked Questions

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