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What to Expect as a 2015 CTELL Scholar

Participation in the CTELL program for 2015 is a summer to fall commitment that consists of 2 three-credit graduate courses:

ED 605B Paradigms in ESL/Bilingual Education SERIES:  In this course we will explore cultural, social, linguistic and political aspects of bilingual/bicultural and multicultural education with an emphasis on challenging the deficit framing of students whose language and culture are different from those considered to be “mainstream” in US schools.   Immigration, its history, and its impact on educational practice and language instruction will also be explored with an emphasis on the psychological adaptation process for immigrant and refugee students and their families.  Intercultural communication and competence will be examined through the prism of culturally relevant pedagogy and educational empowerment through family and community engagement.  Understanding one’s self as a cultural and social being will be facilitated as students reflect individually and collectively on multiple group membership and racial and ethnic identity. 

ED 604 Language Acquisition in the Content Areas SERIES:  In this course, we will provide a comparative overview of first and second language acquisition theories and practices and explore the factors that influence language development as it relates to cross-curricular content.  Emphasis is placed on curriculum design, instructional strategies, differentiation, as well as linguistically and culturally appropriate ways to assess language and content development. 

One face-to-face session is required for participation in the program.  You will meet both of your instructors and the others in your cohort.  Face-to-face sessions are typically held during the third week in June at locations around the state depending on the cohort you are selected for. The face-to-face session is required for all participants without exception.

After the face-to-face session. instruction for both courses is provided in a complete on-line version.  You will take both courses with your assigned cohort. Please see specific yearly schedules for actual dates and times.

Online learning is a very different experience from a face-to-face class.  It has a different feel.  It has a different energy.  It typically also takes more time and there typically is a learning curve getting used to the technology (i.e. Blackboard) and communicating almost exclusively in writing.  It is, however, an intimate and transformative experience --- just in a different way from being with each other in the physical classroom.  I especially love online learning because it allows our classroom to stretch from Fort Atkinson to Arcadia and from Reedsburg to Sparta. 

It’s important to understand that the online learning experience is much more conducive to one’s personal schedule but it isn’t “self-paced.”  The courses are taught in modules.   There are requirements and expectations like any other graduate course, they just have more fluidity.  Some things within a module can be done at any point within that module.  Some things within a module can be done ahead.  Some things within a module have specific deadlines.   Some instructors choose to release modules sequentially and some all modules at the beginning of a course. 

In preparing to take an online course, it’s important to remember that a three credit graduate course typically has 36 contact hours in a face-to-face format with two to three hours of reading and preparation between classes.  That’s the general outline used in creating our online courses.   Six hours will be spent together during the face-to-face session.  30 additional hours will be required for the completion of the additional modules and an additional eight to ten hours necessary for completing assignments. Each three-credit course will require academic readings, full-class and small group online discussion, blogs, wikis, and other online learning tools,  as well as the completion of several projects during each term.  Typical weekly commitment is a minimum of 4 – 6 hours. 

When planning summer vacations and events, being absent from your online learning community for more than two days is typically not acceptable unless agreed upon with your instructor prior to the start of a course.