EDUC 6843

Improvement Science as Educational Change

This course explores connections between Improvement Science and past reforms, and the unique contexts of schools. Students examine how eight distinctive contemporary improvement strategies—some concurrent in schools today— illuminate the unique process of I.S. The course explores two underlying features of schools that shape and structure any reform effort underway. We explore the broad phases of “change” and educator experiences associated with any “change process” in schools, including its stages and forms. The second illuminates the importance of understanding different perspectives on reform. The course helps educators understand the unique positions and experiences of diverse role groups in schools―e.g., teachers, students, principals, and parents “experiencing educational change.” Students will gain an awareness of the emotional, social, and technical dimensions that constitute any educational improvement process.


Learning Outcomes

  • Understand educational change as a multi-dimensional process through which participants develop subjective and shared meanings of their practice and the reality of an issue of interest.
  • Understand the roots of Improvement Science—it’s process, strategies, and tools—in a range of professions (e.g., education, business, and medicine).
  • Develop a nuanced understanding of how Improvement Science draws upon elements of concurrent school improvement processes, strategies, and tools utilized in public schools.
  • Refine your collaboration skills in teams to utilize the improvement science process to address a problem of importance in your educational setting.
  • Identify tools to monitor the social, technical, and political dimensions of Improvement Science as a change process.
  • Develop reflective habits and documentation skills through weekly journal entries, group work, and process notes to strengthen improvement science inquiry.


Area: Educational Leadership