ED 242W Syllabus (Spring 2022)

Applied Children’s Learning and Development

ED. 242W

Spring Quarter 2022

Instructor: Dr. Dana Ulveland

Office: ED 237

e-mail: ulvelad@wou.edu

Office Hours:

Please refer to my homepage for the most current office hours.


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 preschool through elementary grades and instructional decision-making.

Even though a variety of theories are considered, there will be an emphasis on each student developing their own theory of learning as it relates to current research.

This class is a project-based class and will require group work, research, and numerous presentations.

Course Objectives

A. Explore the neurological basis of learning and development. This includes developing a familiarity with how students learn and how teachers teach.

B. Evaluate and critique traditional learning theories.

C. Begin to understand the ways in which an understanding of neuro-research might apply to learning theories in a variety of classroom settings.

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


To see how these outcomes align with standards: OutcomesAlignmentED242W


Required Evidence Showing That Objectives Have Been Met


Written-Oral Inquiry Projects (70%)

Each student will be asked to work on a number of group Inquiry Projects. These are explorations into particular themes related to the course. These Inquiry Projects consider the content at hand, helping us consider how our responses to, and understanding of, the content might inform our own future teaching and learning. Projects will be presented during class. A summary of the group project will be submitted to me at the beginning of class on your presentation day. Summaries must be typed and multiple pages stapled together.

Projects types will vary and will be discussed in class.

Final Exam (30%)

A comprehensive final exam addressing material from the readings, class videos, class discussions, and extra readings will be taken as the culminating assessment.


Please note: I want you to do well in this class. Please see me if you are missing any work 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)



Louder than Words: The New Science of How the Mind Makes Meaning, by Benjamin K. Bergen

Basic Books: New York. 2004

ISBN-13: 978-0465028290
ISBN-10: 0465028292

You will find this book in the university books store, or you can obtain a Kindle ebook version for $20.99.


Evolving Course Schedule  

1. ____________________

Monday, March 28th


Part One: Brain Development and Learning

Read Chapter 1. The Polar Bear’s Nose (for next week)

Project Work: The Pecha Kucha

Video Documentary: One Of A Kind

2. ____________________

Monday, April 4th

Read Chapter 2. Keep Your Mind on the Ball (for next week)

The Automaton vs Embodied Learning

Parts of the brain

Project Work

3. ____________________

Monday, April 11th

Project Presentation One

Read Chapter 3: Meaning and the Mind’s Eye (for next week)

Project Work

4. ____________________

Monday, April 18th 

Hebbian Theory

Read Chapter 4: Over the Top (for next week)

Synaptic Plasticity

Action Potential

Project Work

5. ____________________

Monday, April 25th

Read Chapter 5: More Than Words (for next week)

Project Work

6. ____________________

Monday, May 2nd

Theme: Play

Read Chapter 6: Early and Often (for next week)

Project Work

7. ____________________

Monday, May 9th 

Read Chapter 7: What Do Hocky Players Know? (for next week)

Language and Vocabulary

Project Work

8. ____________________

Monday, May 16th 

Read Chapter 8: Lost in Translation (for next week)

Project Work

9. ____________________

Monday, May 23rd 

Read Chapter 9: Meaning in Your Grasp (for next week)

Independent work on final project/presentation

10. ____________________

Monday, May 30th (Memorial Day Holiday)

Read Chapter 10: What is Simulation Good For? (for next week)

Read Chapter 11: The Repurposed Mind (for next week)

Final Resentations

Review of class material

11. Monday, May 6th 

Wednesday June 8th, Final Examination Classroom Time, 12:00 – 1:50



Students with documented disabilities are entitled under the law to reasonable accommodations. If you have a disability and need accommodations, you should also contact the Office of Disability Services at 503-838-8250.

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.

Wolf Connection System

If the instructor determines your performance in this class is placing you at academic risk, you may be referred to Jesse Poole, Western’s Student Success Specialist. Jesse will offer to work with you to address issues and develop a student success strategy. Regardless of whether a referral has or has not been made, you are ultimately responsible for tracking your own progress in this course. If you would like to meet with Jesse regarding any academic struggles you are experiencing, please contact the Academic Advising and Learning Center at 503-838-8428.


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