ED 233W Syllabus (Fall 2021)

ED 233 W: Applied Adolescent Learning and Development

ED. 233W

Fall Term 2021

Instructor: Dr. Dana Ulveland

Office: ED 237

e-mail: ulvelad@wou.edu

Office Hours:

(Please Email For Zoom Appointment)

Monday: 11:00 – 1:000
Wednesday: 1:00 – 2:30
Thursday: 10:00 – 11:30

Other hours by arrangement


Course Description

Teacher candidates learn to apply theories of human development and learning to a variety of classroom settings. Major theories of learning are examined as they apply in elementary/middle through high school grades and instructional decision-making. Teacher candidates seeking licensure at the elementary/middle level can take this class or ED 242.

In this course, we will examine the unique needs of the adolescent learner by critically examining relevant learning theories as well as instructional design practices. Students will examine prevailing institutional constructs and investigate the validity of those constructs by considering the latest neurological and cognitive studies that apply to adolescent learning. Students will examine dynamics that lead to learning success and begin to prepare instructional practices that lead to empowered possibility for both the learner and the educator.

Course Objectives

A. Begin to understand the contextual / cultural factors that give rise to our understanding of the teen. This includes understanding some of the narratives, historical events, epistemological frameworks and cultural practices underpinning teaching / learning environments as they apply to the adolescent learner.

B. Understand how the unique physical, social, and emotional characteristics of adolescents influences middle and high school classroom dynamics

C. Explore the neurological basis of learning and development in an attempt to understand the ways in which  neuro-research might inform or apply to theories of learning and development in a variety of classroom settings.

D. Understand how adolescent learning and development theories are being applied to a variety of classroom settings

E. Develop an awareness and sensitivity to the needs of diverse student populations and their families.

F. Develop a sensitivity to the social/cultural context and language that impacts our construction of adolescent learning environments.


To see how these outcomes align with standards: Outcomes Alignment ED243W


Required Evidence Showing That Objectives Have Been Met

Three Written  Responses (First = 30%; Second = 35%; Third = 35%)

Each student is asked to work on a series of written reflective responses to questions provided. These are responses to the content and to questions we are exploring throughout the course. Not only do these reflective responses consider the content at hand, but they help us consider how our responses to, and understanding of, the content might inform our own future teaching.

There will be three sets of reflective responses.

**** First Set of Responses Due Monday, October 11th  ****

**** Second Set of Responses Due Monday, November 1st ****

**** Third Set of Responses Due Thursday, December 2nd  *****


Your success is my success. I want you to do well in this class. Please let me know if you are having difficulty or falling behind so that I can help you succeed.


Final Grade Assignment

A   (96 →100)

A-  (91 → 95)

B+  (86 → 90)

B   (81→ 85)

B-  (76 → 80)

C+  (71 → 75)

C  (65 → 70)

C-  (60 → 64)

D  (< 59)


Required Texts and Resources

No textbook required. All readings will be available online.


Tentative Schedule Outline 

*** Click below on Week One: (Monday, September 27th) to get to the first lecture***

Week One: (Monday, September 27th)


What is an adolescent?

Adult Under Construction

What Makes Me Me?

Week Two: (Monday, October 4th)

Adolescence: Biological Being of Social Construct

John Taylor Gatto: The Paradox of Extended Childhood

**** First Set of Responses Questions Due Monday, October 11th   **** 


Week Three: (Monday, October 11th)

Media manipulation

The Merchants of Cool

Week Four: (Monday, October 18th)

Cultural Comparisons

A Bit of History

Jacob Riis and G. Stanley Hall

Stanley Hall and Margaret Mead

Week Five: (Monday, October 25th)

The Causal Modality Framework

Fork Frames

Adolescent Frames


**** Second Set of Responses Due Monday, November 1st  ****


Week Six: (Monday, November 1st)

Teenagers Secret Life of Growing Up

Teen Biographies


Week Seven: (Monday, November 8th)

Creating Your Own Workshop

Teaching the Adolescent Brain

Anatomical changes taking place in the adolescent brain.

Cognitive and behavioral functions.

Classroom practice.

Week Eight: (Monday, November 15th)

Continuing Your Workshop: Part 2

The Engaged Teen

Classroom practices that support academic learning.

Personalizing education.

Connecting the classroom and the world.

Week Nine: (Monday, November 22nd)

Continuing Your Workshop: Part 3

The Reflective Teen

Week Ten: (Monday, November 29th)

Project Completion

**** Third Set of Responses Due On or Before Thursday, December 2nd  *****


Week 11: (Monday, December 6th)



Accommodations: WOU values diversity and inclusion; we are committed to fostering full participation for all students. Please notify your instructor if there are aspects of the instruction or design resulting in barriers to your participation.

Disability-related accommodations are determined through the Office of Disability Services (ODS). If you, as a student, believe you may be eligible for disability-related accommodations please contact ODS, they would be happy to work with you. ODS notifies students and faculty members of approved academic accommodations and coordinates the implementation of accommodations. Academic Programs Services Center (APSC) 405
503-838-8250 (voice)  https://wou.edu/disabilityservices/ods@wou.edu

Respect: In this class, the expectation is of mutual respect. Western Oregon University is an inclusive community that celebrates diversity and strives to reflect the diversity of our pluralistic society in our faculty, staff and students. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, class, linguistic background, religion, gender identity, sex, sexual orientation, ethnicity, age, or physical ability. In this class the goal is to establish an environment that values and nurtures individual and group differences and encourages engagement and interaction. Understanding and respecting multiple experiences and perspectives will serve to challenge and stimulate all of us to learn about others, about the larger world and about ourselves. By promoting diversity and intellectual exchange, we will not only mirror society as it is, but also model society as it should and can be.

Academic Integrity: In any academic work — especially graduate work — it is important that the work you do is your own. It is also important that you give credit to others when you make reference to their ideas or their published work. This level of honesty places you ‘into’ a community of academics who work together to bring about a deeper understanding and a greater awareness of the world around us.

DISABILITY ACCOMMODATIONS: If you have a documented disability that may require assistance, you will need to contact the Office of Disabilities Services (ODS) for coordination in your academic accommodations. The ODS is located in the Academic Programs and Support Center (APSC) Suite 405. The phone/TTY is (503) 838-8250.

Military Service Statement: Veterans and active duty military personnel with special circumstances are welcome and encouraged to communicate these, in advance if possible, to the instructor.

Student Success Specialist: Students in this class may be referred to the WOU Student Success Specialist (SSS) if the instructor determines their performance in the class is placing them at academic risk. The SSS will offer to work with referred students to address issues and develop a student success strategy. Irrespective of whether a referral has or has not been made, you are ultimately responsible for tracking your own progress in this course.

WOU Writing Center: If you feel you need additional assistance with your writing, I encourage you to take advantage of the writing center. Help is available. For further information go to: www.wou.edu/writingcenter.


Up-to-Date COVID-19 Information

COVID-19 is an ongoing, dynamic situation that may change during any given term, leading to changes in rules and guidance. Find up-to-date information at: Western Oregon University: wou.edu/coronavirus,   Oregon Health Authority: govstatus.egov.com/OR-OHA-COVID-19,     CDC: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov

Vaccinations: All students who take in-person classes or who will spend time on campus are required to be fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus or submit an exemption before the start of classes. Please contact the Student Health and Counseling Center (SHCC; 503-838-8313, health@wou.edu) if you have questions about how to submit proof of vaccination or claim an exemption. Further instructions can be found on SHCC’s website at www.wou.edu/health.

Vaccination against COVID-19 remains one of the best ways to protect your health and the health of our community. At least one vaccine has now received full approval by the FDA. For more information on COVID-19 vaccines, including how you can get vaccinated, please visit: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/vaccine-benefits.html

Masks and Face Coverings 

The purpose of WOU’s Mask Policy (https://www2.wou.edu/nora/policy.entry.view_policy/?ppolicyid=1077) is to promote the health and safety of students, staff, faculty and the broader community. The State of Oregon and Western Oregon University require that masks or face coverings be worn when indoors on campus (Monmouth and Salem), except when you are actively eating, drinking or engaged in public speaking. If you are alone in an enclosed room (i.e., with four walls, ceiling and a closed door), you can remove your mask. Masks or face coverings should be worn in combination with other measures, such as physical distancing, proper handwashing and vaccinations. Masks or face coverings are also required outdoors, if physical distancing cannot be maintained.

Be prepared for the possibility of remote delivery

Due to ever-changing conditions with COVID-19, students and faculty should be prepared for the possibility that fully in-person and hybrid courses might be switched to remote delivery at any time.