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Education College Pilots Fully Online Student Fieldwork and Advisement

Bank Street College of Education will launch a fully online fieldwork and advisement pilot for its graduate math education program.

Currently, students in Bank Street's Leadership in Mathematics Education master's degree program take courses at the school's New York campus each July over three years and perform their fieldwork at the schools they work at during the academic year. Work on adapting those courses to a distance-learning format has already begun, making the fieldwork and advisement piece "the final element needed to provide students the option of earning the master's degree entirely online," according to a news release about the pilot.

Work on the new program, which will maintain a 7-1 student-to-advisor ratio, will begin in the fall, and the pilot will formally launch in the spring of 2014. In order to refine the program over the course of the pilot, math teachers  will be connected "with Bank Street experts online over the course of a semester," according to information released by the school.

"Translating Bank Street pedagogy for distance teaching and learning requires much more than simply writing courses for online," said Robin Hummel, program director for Bank Street's math leadership programs and co-leader of the project, in a prepared statement. "The program will continue to build upon the student-centered approach for which Bank Street is famous. When you go through a program together with the same people, taking the same courses at the same time, and come to rely on each other to learn and grow, learning is a collaborative experience. Creating that experience online is possible because the connections don't begin and end during classroom hours."

The pilot will be funded in part by a $50,000 grant from 100Kin10, an organization that seeks to increase the number of "excellent" science, technology, engineering, and math students.

More information about the Bank Street College of Education is available at bnkst.edu.

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is the multimedia editor for Campus Technology and THE Journal. He can be reached at jbolkan@1105media.com.

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