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Teaching About the Wider World: TC launches a unique program to help U.S. teachers think globally

Supporting teachers to teach about the U.S. and the wider world

A new Global Competence Certificate (GCC), program, designed and offered by Teachers College in conjunction with World Savvy and the Asia Society, is providing in-service teachers with the tools to help their students understand the United States in the context of the wider world.

The first cohort of GCC participants – 23 in-service teachers from public, private and independent schools in nine states and the District of Columbia – are set to begin the program September 15. Over the next 15 months they will complete a package of 10 high-touch online courses and spend three weeks in the field at Teachers College-affiliated sites in Bangladesh, Tanzania, Colombia, Uganda and La Push, Washington State.

 “We’re all implicated in the world, of course” says William Gaudelli, Associate Professor of Social Studies and Education, who led development of the GCC curriculum. “Yet teachers rarely have any kind of systematic preparation in their knowledge of the world, how it works in an interdependent, global age, and how to understand this country as an actor in it.”

Participants in the Global Competence Certificate Program earn a Certificate in Global Competence plus either 48 Continuing Education Units or 12 Graduate Credits. 

Partial scholarships are available, and admissions are conducted on a rolling basis from October 13 through December 12, 2014. For more information, and to apply, visit: www.globalcompetencecertificate.org

World Savvy, co-founded by Dana Mortenson, a graduate of Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs, in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, is dedicated to preparing the next generation of leaders to function as responsible global citizens. The Asia Society, founded in 1956 by John D. Rockefeller 3rd, is the leading educational organization dedicated to promoting mutual understanding partnership between Asian nations and the United States.

The GCC courses will be taught by Gaudelli and several other faculty members, including Sandra Schmidt, Assistant Professor of Social Studies & Education, and Olga Hubard, Associate Professor of Art Education. Eleanor Drago-Severson, Professor of Education, is developing a version of the program for people working in the nonprofit sector.

The courses, which were co-designed with web specialists, use platforms provided by Blackboard and other online education companies, and make extensive use of media to take advantage of the online learning space.  Some of the classes are synchronous, allowing students to interact directly with each other.

The curriculum is divided into three areas, Think, Learn and Do.

The “Think” portion, which explores the rationale for why global learning is critically important in the 21st century, includes an introductory course taught by Gaudelli in which teachers develop a global profile of their own schools.

“We look at how their schools are connected to the wider world – where their students come from, what languages they speak, where energy is sourced from, where waste goes ”

The “Learn” courses focus on the content of globalization, Gaudelli says. “What’s the International Monetary Fund? What are transnational corporations and how did they get to be so powerful globally? What are human rights, how global are they, and how did they get to be what they are today? What does it mean to live sustainably?”

The “Do” section is about project-based learning and classroom discussion. Teachers are provided with online resources and specific assignments and classroom activities they can use with their students.

The field visits are aimed at helping teachers prepare students to “work in a world that’s not like a classroom,” Gaudelli says, and to understand how global issues are being addressed at the local level.

“For me, that piece was non-negotiable,” Gaudelli says. “In 1992, as a high school social studies teacher, I went with my students to Russia for a month.  It was transformative. We were in St. Petersburg when the country was in shambles economically. Teachers need those rich, disorienting cultural experiences in other parts of the world to bring back to their work in the classroom.”

Plans are to enroll up to 100 students in the GCC program by spring. Within TC, Gaudelli says, the effort could eventually expand to become a full-fledged degree program.

“I have a great sense of urgency about this work, and it only grows over time,” Gaudelli says. “There are conflicts breaking out regularly and a host of problems that are not bordered but require a concerted, global response. Global interdependence creates a growing need to get our act together in a timely way to address significant problems.”  -- Joe Levine


Published Monday, Sep. 8, 2014

Teaching About the Wider World: TC launches a unique program to help U.S. teachers think globally

Supporting teachers to teach about the U.S. and the wider world

A new Global Competence Certificate (GCC), program, designed and offered by Teachers College in conjunction with World Savvy and the Asia Society, is providing in-service teachers with the tools to help their students understand the United States in the context of the wider world.

The first cohort of GCC participants – 23 in-service teachers from public, private and independent schools in nine states and the District of Columbia – are set to begin the program September 15. Over the next 15 months they will complete a package of 10 high-touch online courses and spend three weeks in the field at Teachers College-affiliated sites in Bangladesh, Tanzania, Colombia, Uganda and La Push, Washington State.

 “We’re all implicated in the world, of course” says William Gaudelli, Associate Professor of Social Studies and Education, who led development of the GCC curriculum. “Yet teachers rarely have any kind of systematic preparation in their knowledge of the world, how it works in an interdependent, global age, and how to understand this country as an actor in it.”

Participants in the Global Competence Certificate Program earn a Certificate in Global Competence plus either 48 Continuing Education Units or 12 Graduate Credits. 

Partial scholarships are available, and admissions are conducted on a rolling basis from October 13 through December 12, 2014. For more information, and to apply, visit: www.globalcompetencecertificate.org

World Savvy, co-founded by Dana Mortenson, a graduate of Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs, in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, is dedicated to preparing the next generation of leaders to function as responsible global citizens. The Asia Society, founded in 1956 by John D. Rockefeller 3rd, is the leading educational organization dedicated to promoting mutual understanding partnership between Asian nations and the United States.

The GCC courses will be taught by Gaudelli and several other faculty members, including Sandra Schmidt, Assistant Professor of Social Studies & Education, and Olga Hubard, Associate Professor of Art Education. Eleanor Drago-Severson, Professor of Education, is developing a version of the program for people working in the nonprofit sector.

The courses, which were co-designed with web specialists, use platforms provided by Blackboard and other online education companies, and make extensive use of media to take advantage of the online learning space.  Some of the classes are synchronous, allowing students to interact directly with each other.

The curriculum is divided into three areas, Think, Learn and Do.

The “Think” portion, which explores the rationale for why global learning is critically important in the 21st century, includes an introductory course taught by Gaudelli in which teachers develop a global profile of their own schools.

“We look at how their schools are connected to the wider world – where their students come from, what languages they speak, where energy is sourced from, where waste goes ”

The “Learn” courses focus on the content of globalization, Gaudelli says. “What’s the International Monetary Fund? What are transnational corporations and how did they get to be so powerful globally? What are human rights, how global are they, and how did they get to be what they are today? What does it mean to live sustainably?”

The “Do” section is about project-based learning and classroom discussion. Teachers are provided with online resources and specific assignments and classroom activities they can use with their students.

The field visits are aimed at helping teachers prepare students to “work in a world that’s not like a classroom,” Gaudelli says, and to understand how global issues are being addressed at the local level.

“For me, that piece was non-negotiable,” Gaudelli says. “In 1992, as a high school social studies teacher, I went with my students to Russia for a month.  It was transformative. We were in St. Petersburg when the country was in shambles economically. Teachers need those rich, disorienting cultural experiences in other parts of the world to bring back to their work in the classroom.”

Plans are to enroll up to 100 students in the GCC program by spring. Within TC, Gaudelli says, the effort could eventually expand to become a full-fledged degree program.

“I have a great sense of urgency about this work, and it only grows over time,” Gaudelli says. “There are conflicts breaking out regularly and a host of problems that are not bordered but require a concerted, global response. Global interdependence creates a growing need to get our act together in a timely way to address significant problems.”  -- Joe Levine


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