EDSS 530 – Spring 2012


University Hall Room 442/441

Monday 8:00 am – 2:15 pm

Tuesday 5:30 pm – 9:45 pm

Professor: Jeffery Heil

phone: (619) 944-7599

Office hours: by appointment


College of Education Mission Statement

The mission of the College of Education Community is to collaboratively transform public education by preparing thoughtful educators and advancing professional practices. We are committed to diversity, educational equity, and social justice, exemplified through reflective teaching, life-long learning, innovative research and on-going service. Our practices demonstrate a commitment to student-centered education, diversity, collaboration, professionalism, and shared governance. (Adopted by COE Governance Community, October, 1997).

Course Description

The purpose of this course is to give the future high school teacher the opportunity to explore models and strategies that are on the cutting edge of the high school reform movement as we move forward through the 21st Century. Recent reform documents and the emergence of online education, with its overarching theme discussed in the book Disrupting Class provide the framework for the course. This theme is explored using the basic tenet of connectivism and the learning theories of Lave and Wenger. The use of a personal learning network (PLN) will be explored in great detail. Assignments connected to the creation and maintenance of a PLN are aimed at linking theory to practice. Consequently, one of the requirements embedded in these assignments is the expectation that many of them will be completed through reflection on an educational blog.


Admission to the Single Subject Credential Program, appropriate sequence of single subject courses prior to this course, and (or) permission of instructor.

Student Learning Outcomes


Upon completion of this course, the teacher candidate will be able to demonstrate knowledge, understanding, appreciation, and practical skills for applying:

1.        Characteristics (dispositions) and practices (strategies) of the teacher in the reformed, 21st Century high school;

2.        Community connections, such as relationships with parents, service learning, and school to career;

3.        Research in teaching and learning, in particular action research;

4.        Observation and reflection as an integral part of practice; and

5.        Characteristics and practices of the reformed, 21st Century high school.

Teacher Performance Expectation (TPE) Competencies

The course objectives, assignments, and assessments have been aligned with the CTC standards for Single Subject Credential. This course is designed to help teachers seeking the California Single Subject Credential to develop the skills, knowledge, and attitudes necessary to assist schools and district in implementing effective programs for all students. The successful candidate will be able to merge theory and practice in order to realize a comprehensive and extensive educational program for all students, as well as demonstrate their understanding and ability to apply each of the TPE’s that merge theory to practice in order to realize a comprehensive and extensive educational program to meet the needs of all students. Failure to meet a minimum competence in any of the TPE’s by the completion of the program will prevent the acquisition of the Single Subject Credential.

The following TPEs are given primary emphases:


Learning About Students

TPE 11

Social Environment

California Teacher Performance Assessment (CalTPA)

Beginning July 1, 2008 all California credential candidates must successfully complete a state-approved system of teacher performance assessment (TPA), to be embedded in the credential program of preparation.  At CSUSM this assessment system is called the CalTPA or the TPA for short.

To assist your successful completion of the TPA a series of informational seminars are offered over the course of the program.  TPA related questions and logistical concerns are to be addressed during the seminars.  Your attendance to TPA seminars will greatly contribute to your success on the assessment.

Additionally, COE classes use common pedagogical language, lesson plans (lesson designs), and unit plans (unit designs) in order to support and ensure your success on the TPA and more importantly in your credential program.

The CalTPA Candidate Handbook, TPA seminar schedule, and other TPA support materials can be found on the COE website:

Authorization to Teach English Learners

This credential program has been specifically designed to prepare teachers for the diversity of languages often encountered in California public school classrooms. The authorization to teach English learners is met through the infusion of content and experiences within the credential program, as well as additional coursework. Students successfully completing this program receive a credential with authorization to teach English learners. (Approved by CCTC in SB 2042 Program Standards, August 2002)

Course Requirements

Required Reading: (I recommend purchasing books from: , or )

Pink, D. H. (2008). Disrupting Class: How disruptive innovation will change the way the world learns. New York: McGraw Hill.

Pink, D. H., (2005). A Whole New Mind: Why right-brainers will rule the future. New York, NY:  Penguin.

Recommended Reading:

Lave, J., & Wenger, E. (1991). Situated Learning: Legitimate peripheral participation. New  York, NY: Cambridge University Press.

*Several other readings are required and will be available for download.

Assignment Completion Expectations

Graduate Level Professionalism: Expectations are that are assignments will be professionally done (i.e. typed and at the quality representative of graduate work)

Referencing Sources: Citations should always be used when utilizing information from another source.

Assignment Overview [total points – 100 pts.]

  1. Class participation (30% of grade): Students are responsible for completing the assigned readings/activities before class (or during the week of a class session that was not F2F). Most class reading/activities will be assigned weekly on the class blog.  The individual student blog will be a space to reflect/complete any reading reflection or writing on an assigned activity. Additionally, students are expected to actively engage in critical dialogue in each class session and in an online environment.

  1. School/classroom visit (10% of grade): Students will visit a learning institution that integrates technology into the curriculum and write a blog post (250+ words) reflecting on the experience (due within one week of the visit) . . .
  1. How was technology integrated into the curriculum?  Do you feel that it promoted student learning?
  2. Is there anything you saw that makes this classroom/school unique?
  3. What did you learn and how does it relate to the class questions?

  1. Personal Learning Network (PLN) (40% of grade): Each student will create a personal learning network, or PLN, to investigate an area of education that aligns with his/her passion.  Participation in the network will be continuous throughout the course. The following digital tools, and some other tools discussed/discovered by the class, will be the medium of the PLN: Twitter, Diigo, personal blog, digital discussion forums, and possible a content curation site. Part if this process is to find your professional voice in a digital environment.  This will entail not only blogging and participating in weekly online educational chats, but commenting on other blogs/posts from educators around the globe. Consider a more personalized version of the thematic course questions:
  1. What am I learning? How does my learning occur?
  2. In what ways does the personalization of my virtual environment promote learning?
  3. Where am I learning?  What is the process by which technology enhanced my learning?

  1. Digital Reflection Project (20% of grade): At the end of the semester you will produce a digital project reflecting your learning in the course and how you see yourself applying what you have learned.  It can be a website, a video, or another creative digital tool that uniquely represents a culmination of your learning experience.  The projects will be embedded on student blogs before the last day of class.  

Grading Standards

Grades will be based on the following grading scale:



















Below 60%

Late submission of any assignment will be worth up to 50% of its maximum value, unless prior arrangements have been agreed to with the instructor.

Note: Students must maintain a B average in the credential program and obtain a grade of no lower than C+ in any individual course in order to receive credit for that course.

College of Education Attendance Policy

Due to the dynamic and interactive nature of courses in the College of Education, all students are expected to attend all classes and participate actively. At a minimum, students must attend more than 80% of class time, or s/he may not receive a passing grade for the course at the discretion of the instructor. Individual instructors may adopt more stringent attendance requirements. Should the student have extenuating circumstances, s/he should contact the instructor as soon as possible. (Adopted by the COE Governance Community, December, 1997). 

Course-Specific Attendance and Participation Policy: This course approaches content in a variety of ways. Structured interactions, group processes, oral presentations, guided discussion of readings, and self-disclosure exercises are the norm. Students are expected to have read assigned materials by the date indicated in the syllabus, and should be prepared to discuss readings individually or in variously structured groups. The degree of your engagement in these processes forms the basis for points assigned. Due to the fast paced and highly interactive nature of the course, regular attendance and full participation are expected: teaching and learning is difficult (if not impossible) if one is not present for and engaged in the process. Therefore, the above COE Attendance Policy is amplified as follows:

Inform the instructor prior to an absence.

All-University Writing Requirement

All CSU students must demonstrate competency in writing skills as a requirement for graduation. At California State University San Marcos, students complete the graduation writing assessment through the All-University Writing Requirement. This requirement mandates that every course at the University must have a writing component of at least 2,500 words (approximately 10 pages). This course will require a number of formal and informal written assignments, to model both formative and summative options for assessment. These include quick-writes, reading logs, as well as individual and group reports. The sum of these writing activities will more than satisfy the minimum university requirement.

Students with Disabilities Requiring Reasonable Accommodations

Students with disabilities who require reasonable accommodations must be approved for services by providing appropriate and recent documentation to the Office of Disable Student Services (DSS). This office is located in Craven Hall 5205, and can be contacted by phone at (760) 750-4905, or TTY (760) 750-4909. Students authorized by DSS to receive reasonable accommodations should meet with their instructor during office hours or, in order to ensure confidentiality, in a more private setting.

CSUSM Academic Honesty Policy

“Students will be expected to adhere to standards of academic honesty and integrity, as outlined in the Student Academic Honesty Policy. All written work and oral presentation assignments must be original work. All ideas/materials that are borrowed from other sources must have appropriate references to the original sources. Any quoted material should give credit to the source and be punctuated with quotation marks.

Students are responsible for honest completion of their work including examinations. There will be no tolerance for infractions. If you believe there has been an infraction by someone in the class, please bring it to the instructor’s attention. The instructor reserves the right to discipline any student for academic dishonesty in accordance with the general rules and regulations of the university. Disciplinary action may include the lowering of grades and/or the assignment of a failing grade for an exam, assignment, or the class as a whole.”

Incidents of Academic Dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Students. Sanctions at the University level may include suspension or expulsion from the University.

Plagiarism: As an educator, it is expected that each student will do his/her own work, and contribute equally to group projects and processes. Plagiarism or cheating is unacceptable under any circumstances. If you are in doubt about whether your work is paraphrased or plagiarized see the Plagiarism Prevention for Students website If there are questions about academic honesty, please consult the University catalog.

Use of Technology

Students are expected to demonstrate competency in the use of various forms of technology (i.e. word processing, electronic mail, WebCT6, use of the Internet and Web 2.0 tools, and/or multimedia presentations). Specific requirements for course assignments with regard to technology are at the discretion of the instructor. Keep a digital copy of all assignments for use in your teaching portfolio. All assignments will be submitted online, and some will be submitted in hard copy as well. Details will be given in class.

Electronic Communication Protocol

Electronic correspondence is a part of your professional interactions. If you need to contact the instructor, e-mail is often the easiest way to do so. It is my intention to respond to all received e-mails in a timely manner.

Please be reminded that e-mail and on-line discussions are a very specific form of communication, with their own nuances and etiquette. For instance, electronic messages sent in all upper case (or lower case) letters, major typos, or slang, often communicate more than the sender originally intended. With that said, please be mindful of all e-mail and on-line discussion messages you send to your colleagues, to faculty members in the College of Education, or to persons within the greater educational community. All electronic messages should be crafted with professionalism and care.

Things to consider:

In addition, if there is ever a concern with an electronic message sent to you, please talk with the author in person in order to correct any confusion. For more guidance see Core Rules of Netiquette at

Tentative Schedule

Due to the dynamic nature of the Spring 2012 Single-Subject Program schedule, there is a possibility that the schedule will be changed due to the needs of the class.  A link to the online-collaborative schedule will be given on the first day of class. Professor will update the expectation of the class weekly on the class blog.  Students are required to read the blog weekly to ensure the topic and assignment for each week is clearly understood.

EDSS 530 Spring 2012                Heil