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Educational Change in a Global Era: A Theoretical Roadmap to Current Debates

The accelerating pace and global scope of educational change is virtually unprecedented in human history. New international large-scale assessments (ILAs) such as PISA, PIAAC, Pisa-for-Development, and the Global Higher Education Rankings grab most global headlines, but parallel changes are underway at the institutional level: university internationalization, Super Global High Schools, expansion of graduate programs, and introduction of the International Baccalaureate (IB) curricula, to raise only a few prominent examples from Japan.

What is driving this momentous change? Is there a convergence in education policy and practice globally? Are we witnessing a consensual progress, coercive processes, or something else altogether? What are the likely effects of all this change? How might we begin to analyze all of this?
This course aims to provide a basic sketch – what we will call a ‘roadmap’ – to different theories that have attempted to answer these questions. It provides a general overview of 5-6 dominant theoretical schools: Functionalism, Micro-Realism, Historical Institutionalism, Macro-Realism (Marxism), World Culture (Neo-Institutionalism), post-colonialism, and perhaps post-structuralism, if time permits. Students who take the course will learn the historical backdrop of these theoretical schools, become familiar with representative works, and see how such theories are mobilized to explain empirical realities.

This course is perhaps particularly important in the Japanese context. Comparative Education in Japan has been largely dominated by two competing schools: those who work deeply with context and those who work on issues related to development (kaihatsu). Meanwhile, much of the Sociology of Education in Japan largely adheres to functionalism and historical institutionalism, and quite often begins with methodological nationalism (i.e., attempts to locate the drivers of educational change within a given national context). It is imperative that a new generation of Japanese scholars become familiar with and adept at engaging with theory: it is a crucial component of making Japanese educational research more visible and ‘intelligible’ on the global stage, as well as mount a response to theoretical schools that (mis)interpret empirical realities outside Western countries. More than anything, this course seeks to provide a space for students to understand the basics of theory and how it is an important entry-point for entering in on-going global debates. As such, no prior knowledge of theory is necessary, only a curiosity and ability to think in macro-sociological terms.

Please note: Students who took the course last year are welcome to attend again. We will cover some of the same material, but we will also think about a new way of 'mapping' the theoretical terrain, depending on who enrolls in the course. Closer to the time and depending on enrollment the instructor will adjust the course material, although the overall objectives/view discussed above will remain largely the same.
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時間割/共通科目コード
コース名
教員
学期
時限
23-212-13
GED-IE6241L3
Educational Change in a Global Era: A Theoretical Roadmap to Current Debates
Rappleye, Jeremy Adam
A2
集中
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教室
図書館研究所学部等 教育学部棟・450A演習室
講義使用言語
日本語、英語
単位
2
実務経験のある教員による授業科目
NO
他学部履修
開講所属
教育学研究科
授業計画
2020年 1月21日(火)2~5限、 23日(木)1~5限、 24日(金)2~5限 Schedule 2020 Jan 21 (Tues): 2nd-5th Periods Jan 23 (Thurs): 1st-5th Periods Jan 24 (Friday): 2nd - 5th Periods ※2019年9月2日修正
授業の方法
The primary approach to teaching is focused discussion around assigned readings. Each class will start with a brief introductory lecture to a given 'school' or theoretical project, but only as a lead in to critical engagement (discussion) with the texts. About six weeks prior to the beginning of the course, I will send all students a reading packet in PDF format. Students should read these material carefully, and be ready to engage, particularly with the underlying 'theoretical' arguments and frameworks of understanding 'change'. The class is structured around open dialogue, active debate, and sharing of student's individual research projects and perspectives on the world.
成績評価方法
Much of the course grade will come from active participation, proof of prior preparation (preparation, thinking, engagement), and class attendance. Class Participation (including attendance) will account for 30% of the grade (30 full classes x 2 points (1 point deducted for being late)). One time during this course, each student will write a 1-2 page (single spaced) Reflection Paper (10 points). Reflection Papers are submitted in hard copy. There may be a short Final Examination that will account for another 15% of the grade (15 points). The remaining portion of the grade will come from a 4-5 page Final Paper (40 points) submitted after the class, perhaps sometime in February (exact date to be announced).
教科書
There is no textbook for the course. Approximately six weeks prior to the start of the course (early December 2019), I will send all students a link to a PDF packet of course readings. Last year, the reading packet was approximately 175 pages long, with two articles presented for each of the six different theoretical 'schools'. This means students should read about two articles per week as they prepare for the class (6 weeks x 2 articles = 12 total).
参考書
There are no reference books related to this course. However, students interested in understanding the general scope and tenor of the debates covered in this course may want to skim the following: Schreiwer, J (2016) World Culture Recontextualized (London: Routledge) and Anderson-Levitt (2003) Local Meaning, Global Schooling (New York: Palgrave)
履修上の注意
If potential students have any questions prior to enrollment, they can contact the instructor directly at: rappleye.jeremy.6n@kyoto-u.ac.jp. Auditors to the course are welcome, if approval from the instructor is made in advance (via email). The issue of language is always a difficult one in international courses in Japan. The instructor understands academic level Japanese fluently (both speaking and reading) and some of the readings may be in Japanese (with English version as well). However, given that Tokyo University, Graduate School of Education seeks to increase its course offerings in English and given the presence of international students who are not fluent in Japanese, the primary language of instruction in this course will be English. However, students who do not feel fully comfortable in English should not be discouraged from the taking the course. The instructor will make every possible accommodation (including carrying out some debates/discuss in Japanese and providing translation for international students) to make full inclusion possible.
その他
※2019年9月2日 授業計画/Schedule欄を修正しました。