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Top General Info Course Material Course Objectives Expected Outcomes Course Organization Assessment Attendance Electronic Communication Accommodations Honor Policy Assignment Submission Grading Weights Schedule and Readings Final Paper Printable Versions

EDD 631, Section 9759
Educational Research Seminar: Overcoming Adversity
Spring, 2013

“If you’re going through hell, keep going.”
–Sir Winston Churchill

Tuesdays, 6:30 – 8:10 pm
Room 3S – 112

Instructor: El Samuels, Ph.D. Office: 3S–207A
E-mail: el.samuels@csi.cuny.edu Phone: 718-982-4130
Office Hours: Tuesdays, 5:30 – 6:20 pm
And by appointment

Consistent with our mission to promote quality teaching and learning in p–12 school settings, our Department of Education prepares educators who possess intellectual autonomy and professional responsibility. To this end we emphasize the following: the gaining of content knowledge and pedagogy; the engagement of all students; and the demonstration of professional dispositions.

Course Material

All course materials will be made available before covered in class online in the online course schedule. They will also be made available through BlackBoard. Additional materials related to this class are available on this online table. Nearly all materials are copy-right protected and only intended for uses related to EDD 631.

Course materials will mostly be primary sources (e.g., peer-reviewed journal articles) and book chapters, but there will be a few non-primary sources, too.

Course Objectives

Even if they aren’t final courses you take, the EDD 630/631 sequence likely represents the most advanced courses in education you will complete. They provide the opportunity to synthesize your various areas of educational knowledge into an understanding and perspective that is uniquely your own. Therefore, the primary objective of the sequence is your ability to demonstrate the creation of a sophisticated and state-of-the-art position on a specific topic.

To this end, the objectives of EDD 631 are:

    1. continue our exploration into the field of overcoming adversity to succeed academically,

    2. conduct the research you proposed in EDD 630,

    3. synthesize these data into an understanding of the events that advances your understanding of your chosen area,

    4. present those results and your interpretation of them in your final paper, and

    5. lead a class discussion about your area—summarizing your expected findings if you have none yet, or presenting your results if you do.

In general, I regard students in EDD 630/631 as nascent colleagues. You are, literally, becoming masters of your profession, and I respect your accomplishments. I can lead and teach you, but I believe it is more honest and true-to-life to treat you as fellow professionals who have a lot to offer both me and your fellow class members.

Expected Outcomes of EDD 631

  1. Develop an understanding of how students can overcome adversity to succeed academically.

  2. Gain strategies that can help students in your classes succeed in spite of troubles in their lives.

  3. Develop a sophisticated understanding of the area of research you have chose to investigate last semester.

  4. Create a defensible interpretation of the data you collect on this area of research.

  5. Present your understanding to the class through a lead discussion and to me in your final paper.

  6. You will also present your paper to a small group of colleagues at the Celebration of Research. This event will be held during finals week in 1P, and stands in lieu of a final. The brochures for the celebrations in AY 2007–2008, AY 2008–2009, and AY 2009–2010 should give you an idea of what’s involved.

Course Organization

Especially during the first part of the semester—while we are awaiting IRB approval of your proposals and you are then conducting your research—we will explore the facets of academic resilience and how you as a teacher can use this knowledge to help your own students.

As the semester progresses, I will (try to) talk less, and instead let you lead class discussions about your areas of research. The exact format you use is up to you, and you are free to incorporate hands-on activities, non-primary sources, etc.

Throughout the semester, please feel free to come to me outside of class (in person, through email, etc.) with questions, comments, etc., especially as you collect your data and are forming your conclusions

Assessment and Management


Regular class attendance and participation is expected. As per college policy, a student who is absent for more than four hours, (this includes accumulated time missed due to lateness), will be assigned a grade of WU, unless excused by the instructor.

Electronic Communication

I will post course information online and communicate with you through email. You may use the computers on campus (e.g., in 3S-206) to access relevant websites and email. However, if you do not have ready access to the Internet outside of school and using the college facilities is problematic, please let me know as soon as possible so that we can work around this. Please let me know of any problems right away since I will expect you to read or respond to communications sent to your declared e-mail address or made available to you online.

Special Accommodations

Please let me know as soon as possible of any special accommodations you may require. I will happily do all I possibly can to meet any needs you have.

Honor Policy

It should go without saying that you are expected to conduct yourself in an honorable and honest way in all aspects of this course. Of course, any known deviations from this will result in a failing grade for this section and forfeiture of access to this section in the future.

Assignment Submission

Your final proposal should conform to American Psychological Association guidelines. More information about how your assignments will be graded are conveyed through the rubrics for the assignments, given at the end of each assignment.

Grading Weights

Material Course Grade
Class Participation and Course Engagement 30%
Designing a Learning Environment to Support Disadvantaged Students 20%
Leading of Class Discussion 10%
Final Research Paper 40%

Tentative Section Schedule

Following is a tentative schedule for our section. Of course, this schedule and its content may well be altered to better meet your needs and interests as well as the course objectives.

Note: Some of the presentation titles are links. These access downloadable files—usually PowerPoint (2003 or 2007) files that can be opened with either Microsoft PowerPoint, LibreOffice.org Impress, or online programs like Google Docs, Zoho, or similar programs. However, keep in mind that the usage of the work contained herein—including the student work—is protected by a Creative Commons licence. Please respect and acknowledge the hard work of my students. And, of course, the articles linked to here are all protected by copyright licences.

A fuller list of articles related to the topics we cover in EDD 631 is given here. Of course, note that nearly all of the materials linked to through that page as well are copy-right protected and only for uses related to this course.

Any updates to the schedule will be made to this online schedule. You may have to refresh this page in your browser window (e.g., by pressing the F5 key) to see the changes.

Date Topic Prep/Material Covered Event/Notes
Jan. 29 Course overview, goals, strategies, etc. The syllabus  
Feb 5 – 14 Intervention Evaluation and IRB Submission Workshops  Begin IRB Submission Due Feb. 14
Feb 19 Nurturing Adaptive Development, Part I
  1. MacCallum, J. & Beltman, S. (2002). Role models for young people: What makes an effective role model program? National Youth Affairs Research Scheme.
Feb 26 Nurturing Adaptive Development, Part II
  1. Duckworth, A. L. & Seligman, M. E. P. (2005). Self-discipline outdoes IQ in predicting academic performance of adolescents. Psychological Science, 16, 939 – 944.

  2. Gailliot, M. T. & Baumeister, R. F. (2007). The physiology of willpower: Linking blood glucose to self-control. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 11, 303 – 327.
Mar 5 Nurturing Adaptive Development, Part III
  1. Day, L., Hanson, K., Maltby, J., Proctor, C. & Wood, A. (2010). Hope uniquely predicts objective academic achievement above intelligence, personality, and previous academic achievement. Journal of Research in Personality, 2010, 44, 550 – 553.

  2. Miller, R. L., Brickman, P., & Bolen, D. (1975). Attribution versus persuasion as a means for modifying behavior. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 31, 430 – 441.
Mar 12 Nurturing Adaptive Development, Part IV
  1. Ayduk, O., Mendoza-Denton, R., Mischel, W., Downey, G., Peake, P. K., & Rodriguez, M. (2000). Regulating the interpersonal self: Strategic self-regulation for coping with rejection sensitivity. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 79, 776 – 792.

  2. Day, L., Hanson, K., Maltby, J., Proctor, C., & Wood, A. (2010). Hope uniquely predicts objective academic achievement above intelligence, personality, and previous academic achievement. Journal of Research in Personality, 44, 550 – 553.

  3. Gailliot, M. T. & Baumeister, R. F. (2007). The physiology of willpower: Linking blood glucose to self-control. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 11, 303 – 327.

  4. Sethi, A., Mischel, W., Aber, J. L., Shoda, Y., & Rodriguez, M. L. (2000). The role of strategic attention deployment in development of self-regulation: Predicting preschoolers’ delay of gratification from mother-toddler interactions. Developmental Psychology, 36, 767 – 777.
Mar 19 Nurturing Adaptive Development, Part V
  1. Miller, R. L., Brickman, P., & Bolen, D. (1975). Attribution versus persuasion as a means for modifying behavior. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 31, 430 – 441.

  2. Vick, R. M. & Packard, B. W.-L. (2008). Academic success strategy use among community-active urban Hispanic adolescents. Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 30, 463 – 480.

  3. Robbins, S. B., Lauver, K., Le, H., Davis, D., Langley, R., & Carlstrom, A. (2004). Do psychosocial and study skill factors predict college outcomes? A meta-analysis. Psychological Bulletin, 130, 261 – 288.
Begin Working on Designing a Learning Environment to Support Disadvantaged Students (a.k.a. “Re-Design Assignment”) Assignment
Mar 26 – Apr 2 No Class   Spring Break
Apr 9 Review of School-Based Interventions, Part I
  1. Castro, F. G., Garfinkle, J., Naranjo, D., Rollins, M., Brook, J. S., & Brook, D. W. (2007). Cultural traditions as “protective factors” among Latino children of illicit drug users. Substance Use & Misuse, 42, 621 – 642.

  2. Chen, G. (2008). Communities, students, schools, and school crime: A confirmatory study of crime in U. S. high schools. Urban Education, 43(3), 301 – 318.

  3. Devaney, B. L., Ellwood, M. R., & Love, J. M. (1997). Programs that mitigate the effects of poverty on children. Children and Poverty, 7, 113 – 131.

  4. Osterling, K. & Hines, A. (2006). Mentoring adolescent foster youth: Promoting resilience during developmental transitions. Child & Family Social Work, 11, 242 – 253.
Send Re-Design Assignment to Other Students
Apr 16
  1. Peer Review of the Re-Design Assignment

  2. Evaluation and Results Section Workshop
  1. Bring a Hard Copy of Your Completed Re-Design Assignment to Class for Peer Review

  2. Email (or Deliver to My Mailbox in 3S–208) the Final, Revised Version of Your Re-Design Assignment by April 19th
Apr 23
  1. Class Presentations and Discussion of the Re-Design Assignments

  2. Review of School-Based Interventions, Part II
  1. Designing a Learning Environment to Support Disadvantaged Students

  2. Administration for Children and Families, Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation (2005). Head Start impact study: First year findings. Washingdon, DC: Department of Health and Human Services.

  3. Reynolds, A. J.; Temple, J. A., Ou, S.-R., Arteaga, I. A., & White, B. A. B. (2011). School-based early childhood education and age-28 well-being: Effects by timing, dosage, and subgroups. Science, 333, 360 – 364.

  4. Schweinhart, L. J. (2007). Crime prevention by the High/Scope Perry Preschool Program. Victims & Offenders, 2, 141 – 160.
Apr 30 Review of School-Based Interventions, Part III  
May 7 Student-Led Discussions    
May 14 Final Paper Workshop Peer Review of Final Papers Bring 2 hard copies of your final paper to class
May 22
5 – 7 pm
Celebration of Student Inquiry Presentation of Research to a Small Group of Peers 5 – 6 p.m.: Roundtables in 1P Atria

6 – 7 p.m.: Presentations in the Williamson Theater
May 24 Final Paper Due Please Email Me Your Final Paper or Put It in My Mailbox in 3S–208

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