Today, the fall semester at American University begins and I start teaching, “Education for International Development.” Here is a snippet from the syllabus I put together.
This course will expose students to various perspectives from across the globe that seek to address the myriad development challenges societies face around the world. Students will investigate such questions as: what are the most pressing development issues facing humans around the world? How do theories of international development approach these challenges? What role does education play in empowering individuals and communities to address these challenges? What barriers do communities face in gaining access to an adequate education? How can ordinary people get involved in helping advance development goals and achieving education for all?
To answer these questions, the course is designed to look at education for international development both theoretically and programmatically in achieving specific development goals and outcomes in the following fields: economic growth, health promotion, civil society, youth development, peace building, women’s empowerment, and environmental sustainability.
The course will include a mixture of readings, videos, class discussions, activities, papers, guest speakers, and group projects. This mixture will allow you to delve into the core questions of the course, develop a basic understanding of the various fields and educational approaches within international development, and provide each of you with an opportunity to participate in the learning experience in ways that play to your strengths while at the same time challenging you to develop other skills and knowledge.