Michigan State University is leading an international effort to create life-changing solutions for individuals with intellectual disabilities. The DOCTRID Research Institute was launched three years ago by the rehabilitation counseling faculty in the MSU College of Education and the large-scale Daughters of Charity Service in Ireland. DOCTRID (Daughters of Charity Technology and Research in Intellectual Disabilities) will be one of the world’s largest connected efforts to improve life for individuals with intellectual disabilities such as autism through innovative research.
Under the auspices of the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA), the College of Education served as the major international study center for the path-breaking Teacher Education and Development Study (TEDS-M). Professors Jack Schwille and Teresa Tatto served as the lead investigators for this cross-national study of the mathematics preparation of future teachers. The study focused on the relationships between teacher education policies, institutional practices, and the mathematics pedagogy knowledge of future teachers at the end of their pre-service education. According to the (2013) report, “An Analysis of Teacher Education Context, Structure, and Quality-Assurance Arrangements in The TEDS-M Countries, “… countries where future teachers have greater knowledge of mathematics and mathematics teaching pedagogy” typically place the greatest emphasis on policies that enable the teaching profession to compete for high ability secondary school graduates. Leading countries also ensure a rigorous system of accreditation of teacher preparation programs, among other findings. More information can be found at TEDS-M.
Also, with support of the United Nation’s Children’s Fund and in collaboration with Claremont Graduate University, the college’s Dr. Amita Chudgar analyed large-scale quantitative evidence and developed in-depth country case studies to develop the most systematic, cross-national understanding of teacher distribution available to date. New data and information will foster policy solutions to ensure an equitable distribution of high-quality teachers for all children, especially marginalized children.
Outreach and Development Projects
In keeping with the land-grant mission of the university, the OISE is actively engaged in local and international outreach and service initiatives. The OISE pursues a proactive – yet selective – program development strategy that leads to the design and implementation of quality programming, projects and research opportunities.
The college has established a strong partnership in India with the Azim Premji Foundation. The foundation’s aims of creating a more just and equitable society parallel the MSU land-grant tradition of public outreach. Led by Dr. Punya Mishra, a professor of educational psychology and educational technology, the college is assisting the leaders of the new Azim Premji University (APU) develop a high-quality graduate school of education in Bangalore. The goal of APU is to foster young talent and create new knowledge to serve India’s educational system. MSU education professors have conducted faculty workshops and reviewed curriculum for two master’s degree programs (in education and teacher education) for this institution. The sharing of knowledge among faculty from APU and MSU could ultimately extend to include student exchange trips and joint research efforts.
In the Tanzania Partnership Program (TPP), College of Education doctoral students and faculty work with Tanzanian partners to plan, implement, and evaluate innovative education projects in two rural Tanzanian villages where most residents live below the poverty line. TPP links university- and field-based scientific research in order to help villagers meet everyday challenges in overcoming poverty (health, environmental, access to water and basic education, etc.). Projects focus on the areas of school feeding, school gardens, early childhood education, gender equity, children with disabilities, out-of-school youth, in-school clubs, and the use of cell phones for learning. The TPP team actively engages community members in state-of-the-art educational projects that can be replicated and scaled-up.
In addition, the College of Education is home to the MSU Confucius Institute (CI-MSU) that was established in May 2006. It is a collaborative effort of Michigan State University, the Office of Chinese Language Council International (Hanban), and Open University of China. CI-MSU is the premiere Confucius Institute, offering innovative programs and services to meet the rising demand for high-quality Chinese language and culture education worldwide. It was selected for three consecutive years as the Confucius Institute of the Year by the Chinese Ministry of Education. Its e-textbook Chinese Your Way and multiplayer Chinese learning game Zon have won international Chinese language curriculum awards. CI-MSU understands the diverse needs of Chinese language learners and the institutions that wish to offer Chinese language programs. CI-MSU has custom-designed products, programs and services for young children, K-12 students and adults.