• Comparative Education

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Comparative Education Wednesdays 4:15-7:00
EDPL605, Fall 2002 TWS 3238
Professor Carol Anne Spreen Office Hours:
EDPL, College of Ed
Benjamin Building 2105 C Monday 3-5 or
301-405-3572 by appointment
The course provides an overview of methods, major concepts and current trends in
comparative education. It will enable students to identify strengths and limitations of international
comparative research, and to learn about relevant studies and scholars dealing with
methodological and conceptual issues of comparative education. The assignments will support
these learning objectives, and in addition, help students to develop specific research skills that are
necessary to develop academic literature reviews and research papers.
In compiling the syllabus for this class, I made an effort to provide material that will
address interests of both domestic and international audiences. Thus, while our overarching
concern will be to understand education as a world-wide phenomenon, we will look at some
issues of US education from an international perspective, as well as issues pertinent to other
countries. Examples, comparisons and cases are selected from countries in Africa, Asia, North
and South America, Eastern and Western Europe.
Textbooks and Reading Assignments
Course packets are available in the BSOS Duplicating Services Office, Room 1105 Tidings Hall,
Telephone: 405-1707.There are two Readers(#1 and 2) and one Supplemental Reader. These are
the primary reading sources for the course.
Books-- please also purchase (from the campus bookstore or from Bookholders.com) and read:
Arnove, R.F. & Torres, C.A (1999). Comparative Education. The Dialectic of the Global and the
Local. Rowman & Littlefleld, New York.
Noah, H. and Eckstein, M. (1998) Doing Comparative Education: Three Decades of
Collaboration. Comparative Education Research Centre, University of Hong Kong. ***
NOTE***The Noah and Eckstein book can be read online and can be downloaded from the
Comparative Education Research Centre’s (University of Hong Kong) website:
http://www.hku.hk/cerc/ or the direct link to the book is
Recommended (not required) texts (for IEP students):
Altbach, P.G. & Kelly, G. (1984) Education and the Colonial Experience. New Brunswick,
Feinberg, W. & Soltis, J. F. (1992). School and Society. New York: Teachers College Press.
– Comparative Education- Carol Anne Spreen – Fall 2002 Syllabus ---- 1 (9)
Part 1: Comparative Education: An Historical Overview
Session 1: Forces Shaping Comparative Ed and New Directions for the Field
Readings: Sadler, M. (1900) How Far Can We Learn Anythying of Practical Value
from the Study of Foreign Systems of Education? Notes from an address
given at Guildford Educational Conference, Christ Church, Oxford.
Pollack, E. (1993) Isaac Leon Kandel (1881-1965). Prospects, 3(4)
Kelly, G. & Altbach, P. (1986) Comparative Education: Challenge and
Response. Comparative Education Review 30 (1): 309-327.
Altbach, P. (1991) Trends in Comparative Education. Comparative
EducationReview, 35 (3): 491-507.
Session 2: Towards a Science of Comparative Education
Read: Noah & Ekstein (pp 1-40;97-105)
Arnove & Torres (Intro, pp 1-24)
Foster, P. (1992) Comparative Education. Encyclopedia of Educational
Research, 6th edition. New York: Macmillan Publishing: 197-208.
Noah, H. (1985) Comparative Education: Methods. Encyclopedia of
Education Research, Vol. 2. New York: Pergamon Press: 869-872.
Part 2: The Uses and Abuses of Comparative Education
(1) Using Comparative Education for Making Generalizations
Session 3: Theory-building
Readings: Noah & Eckstein (1998) chapter 9 (pp75-92)
Bray, M. & Thomas, R. M (1995) Levels of comparison in education studies: Different
Insights from Different Literatures and the Value of Multilevel Analyses. Harvard
Educational Review, 65(3), 472-490.
Epstein, E. (2001) The Problematic Meaning of “Comparison” in Comparative
Education. In Kumpner, K. (et als) (eds) Comparative Education. ASHE Reader Series.
New York: Simon and Schuster.
– Comparative Education- Carol Anne Spreen – Fall 2002 Syllabus ---- 2 (9)
Kazamias, A. (199?) Comparative Education. Encyclopedia of Educational Research. 5th
Edition. NY: Falmer (?) Press.
Paulston, Rolland G (1993). Mapping Discourse in Comparative Education Texts.
Compare, 23/2, 101-114.
Carnoy, M. (1992) Education and the State: From Adam Smith to Perestroika. In Arnove,
Altbach, and Kelly (eds.) Emergent Issues in Education. Comparative Perspectives.
(Chapter 9:143-159) Albany: State University Press.
Bray. M (1986) Education and Nation Building. In Bray, Clarke & Stephens Education
and Society in Africa. (pp23-35.)
Heyneman, S. (1995) Economics of Education: Disappointments and Potential. Prospects
Schriewer, J. (2000) World System and Interrelationship Networks: The
internationalization of Education and the Role of Comparative Inquiry. In Popkewitz
Educational Knowledge: changing relationships between the state, civil society and the
educational community. (305-334) New York: SUNY Press.
Rust, V. (1996) From Modern to Postmodern Ways of Seeing Social and Educational
Change. In Paulston (ed) Social Cartography, Mapping Ways of Seeing Social and
Educational Change. (pp 29-51) New York: Garland Publishing.
(2.) Using Comparison for Analyzing National Education Systems
Session 4: Studying National Variation
Bottani, N. & Wallberg, H. (1992). What are the international indicators for? (pp. 7-12)
In Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development, the OECD International
Education Indicators. Paris, France: Centre for Educational Research and Innovation.
Simons, Marlise (1995). France Finds a Reading Test Incomprehensible. New York
Times, December 12, international section, page 3.
Psacharopoulos, G. (1989) Time trends of the returns to education. Economics of
Education Review, 8(3): 225-231.
Session 5: International Standards, Assessment and Educational Quality
Noah, H. & Eckstein, M. (1998) Part III. Achievement, Assessment, and Evaluating
Learning. (Chapters 18-27, pp179-286) In Doing Comparative Education. Hong Kong:
Comparative Ed Research Centre:
– Comparative Education- Carol Anne Spreen – Fall 2002 Syllabus ---- 3 (9)
Benveniste, L. (2002) The Political Structuration of Assessment: Negotiating State Power
and Legitimacy. Comparative Education Review 46(1):89-118.
(3.) Using Comparison for Studying Educational Transfer/Educational Borrowing
Session 6: Research on Ed. Borrowing and Lending
Phillips, D. (1989) Neither a Borrower nor a Lender Be? The Problems of Cross-national
Attraction in Education. Comparative Education 25(3); 267-307.
Halpin, D. & Troyna, B. (1995) The Politics of Educational Policy Borrowing.
Comparative Education 31(3): 303-310.
Barrington, J. (1983) The Transfer of Educational Ideas: notions of adaptation. Compare
Steiner-Khamsi, Gita (2000). Transferring Education, Displacing Reforms. In Jürgen
Schriewer (ed.), Discourse Formations in Comparative Education. Frankfurt/New York:
Lang, pp. 155 – 187.
Steiner-Khamsi, G. (2002) Re-Framing Educational Borrowing as a Policy Strategy. In
M. Caruso and H. Tenorth (eds.) Internationalisation: Comparing Educational Systems
and Semantics. Frankfurt: Peter Lang: 58-89.
Session 7: Colonial Education
PLEASE NOTE: This section requires purchasing an additional reader.
Comparative Education EDPL605 Supplement #1 will be available in BSOS.
We will a film on French colonialism in Cameroon: Afrique, je te plumarai
White, Bob W. (1996). Talk about School: education and the colonial project in French
and British Africa (1860-1960). Comparative Education, 32/1, 9-25.
Foley, Douglas (1984). Colonialism and Schooling in the Philippines, 1898-1970. In
Philip G. Altbach & Gail P. Kelly (Eds.), Education and the Colonial Experience (pp.33-
53). New Brunswick: Transaction.
Tsurumi, E. Patricia (1984). The Non-Western Colonizer in Asia: Japanese Educational
Engineering in Taiwan. In Philip G. Altbach & Gail P. Kelly (Eds.), Education and the
Colonial Experience (pp.55-74). New Brunswick: Transaction.
– Comparative Education- Carol Anne Spreen – Fall 2002 Syllabus ---- 4 (9)
Heggoy, Alf A. (1984). Colonial Education in Algeria: Assimilation and Reaction.In
Philip G. Altbach & Gail P. Kelly (Eds.), Education and the Colonial Experience (pp. 97-
115). New Brunswick: Transaction.
Smith, Andrea L. (1994). Colonialism and the Poisoning of Europe: Towards an
Anthropology of Colonists. Journal of Anthropological Research, 50, 383-393.
Session 8: U.S. Educational Exports
Steiner-Khamsi, Gita and Quist, Hubert O. (2000). The Politics of Educational
Borrowing: Re-Opening the Case of Achimota in British Ghana. Comparative Education
Review, 44/3, 272 - 299.
Gaines, Kevin (1993). Black Americans’ Racial Uplift Ideology as “Civilizing Mission.”
(pp. 433-455). In Amy Kaplan and Donald E. Pease (eds.), Cultures of United States
Imperialism. Durham: Duke University Press.
Lawson, Robert F. (1994). The American Project for Educational Reform in Central
Europe. Compare, 24/3, 247-257.
Berman, Edward H. (1972). Tuskegee - in - Africa. The Journal of Negro Education, 48
(2), 99-112.
Passow, Harry A. (1982). John Dewey's Influence on Education around the World.
Teachers College Record, 83 (Spring), 401-418.
Zhixin Su (1996). Teaching, Learning, and Reflective Acting: A Dewey Experiment in
Chinese Teacher Education. Teachers College Record, 98/1, 126-152.
(4). Using Comparison for Understanding Culture
Sessions 9 & 10: Culture, Structure and Agency
Read: Noah & Eckstein (1998) chapter 10 (92-96)
Arnove & Torres (1998) Chapters 4 (115-146) and Chapter 5 (135-147)
Tobin, Joseph J., Wu, David Y.H., Davidson, Dana H. (1989). Chapter Five: A
Comparative Perspective (pp. 188-221). In Preschool in Three Cultures. Japan, China,
and the United States. New Haven: Yale University Press.
Alexander, R. (2000) Culture and Pedagogy: International Comparisons in Primary
Education. Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishers. (Chapters 1, 8, 9 & 11)
Oloko, B. (1994) Children’s Street Work in Urban Nigeria: Dilemma of Modernizing
Tradition. In Greenfield and Cocking (eds) Cross-cultural Roots of Minority Child
Development. (pp 197-224) Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
– Comparative Education- Carol Anne Spreen – Fall 2002 Syllabus ---- 5 (9)
Part 3: Globalization, Internationalization and the Convergence of
Education Reforms
Session 11: Development, modernization, democratization and education.
Arnove & Torres (1998) Chapter 3 (Chapters 12-16 in groups)
Wallerstein, Immanuel (1990). Culture as the Ideological Battleground of the Modern
World System. In Mike Featherstone (ed.), Global Culture, Nationalism, Globalization
and Modernity. Newbury Park, CA: Sage, pp. 31-55.
*** Recommended: Feinberg, Walter and Soltis, Jonas F. (1992). School and Society.
New York: Teachers College Press.
*** Escobar, Arturo (1995). Encountering Development. The Making and Unmaking of
the Third World. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
***Fuller, Bruce (1991). Chapter 2: What Drives the Expansion and Deepening
of Mass Schooling? (pp. 25-62) In Growing-Up Modern. The Western State
Builds Third-World Schools. New York: Routledge.
Session 12: Global Meanings and International Models
Read: Arnove & Torres (1998) Chapters 6 & 8
Meyers, Benevot and Kamins (199?)
Session 13: Convergence and Divergence/Homogeneity and Hybridity
Read: Arnove & Torres (1998) Chapters 1 & 2
Altbach (1984), Ritzer (1996), Appadurai (1994), Featherstone (1995),
Arnove (1983), Edwards and Hulme (1996), Mundy (1999)
Session 14: International Education Reform and Policy Implementation
Noah, H. & Eckstein. M (1998) Part IV. Educational Policy (Chapters 28-37) In
Doing Comparative Education. Hong Kong: Comparative Ed Research Centre.
– Comparative Education- Carol Anne Spreen – Fall 2002 Syllabus ---- 6 (9)
Required reading: 2 books and 2 readers and a supplemental reader (or book) on colonialism and
My walk-in office hours (no appointments necessary) are: Mondays 3-5,
I am also available by appointment. Please call or email me to schedule an
appointment. My office is located in room 2105C Benjamin Building.
Your course grade will be based on the following:
1- Literature Review of Comp. Ed. Journal Articles (20%) – due date:
2- Research Paper on Colonial Education (30%) – due date:
3- Discussion of Readings (Group discussion points/activity ) (20%)
4- Written Essay Questions (In class exam or take home paper) (30%)
Please closely follow the instructions for each of the assignments using the format outlined in
the handouts. Assignment overviews will be distributed in Session 2. In addition to preparing a
clearly written, concise paper (that is spell-checked) please be sure to use the correct style of
reference (e.g., APA format).
In this course there are no incompletes accepted. An Incomplete will automatically result in a
lower grade for the total course grade, i.e., C+ instead of B+. You have a 1-week grace period
(late submission) for one assignment only. Regular attendance is required (i.e., not more than 2
absences). The course is held in the format of lectures with structured time for discussion. Despite
the size of the class, it is designed to provide ample opportunities for your participation. To
facilitate discussion, you are expected to come to class prepared to talk about all of the required
readings. For one of the class sessions, you will be asked to prepare discussion points about the
readings together with 4-5 of your classmates. The points are intended to stimulate your
classmates’ thinking about that week’s readings and to facilitate discussion during class. These
discussion points can take many different forms. For example, your group could write a few
questions to discuss in pairs or in small groups. You could also design an activity to help us
– Comparative Education- Carol Anne Spreen – Fall 2002 Syllabus ---- 7 (9)
compare and contrast the viewpoints of the authors. The main purpose of the discussion points is
to stimulate everyone’s thinking on the subject matter at hand rather than to summarize the
readings. The discussion point groups can also serve as on-going study groups that meet
regularly to talk about the readings and assignments for the class.
All students are expected to abide by the code of academic integrity throughout this course.
Academic dishonesty, including cheating, fabrication, and plagiarism will not be tolerated and
will be reported to the Student Honor Council. The full text of the code is available on the web at
www.inform.umd.edu/Campus Info/Departments/jpo/code acinteg.html.
A student with a documented disability or any other special needs who wishes to discuss
academic accommodations should contact me as soon as possible.
Students will not be penalized because of observances of their religious beliefs.
Whenever possible, students will be given reasonable time to make up any academic
assignment that is missed due to participation in a religious observance. It is the student’s
responsibility to inform the instructor as soon as possible of any intended absences for
religious observances.
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