Education | Educational Psychology
P251 | 5167 | Lauren Supplee
Overview of the major theories and research findings in the study of
cognition, development, classroom management, motivation, instruction,
and assessment. The course covers topics of cognition, language,
personality, social, emotional, and physical development focusing on
the elementary school years. The course also presents some of the
controversies, research methods, and issues in assessment in the
At the end of the course you should be able to:
1. Describe teaching as it relates to developmental processes.
2. Identify important developmental concepts and transitions in the
elementary school years.
3. Engage in conversations and write as a professional in your field.
1. Woolfolk, A. (2001). Educational Psychology (8th ed.). Needham
Heights, MA: Allyn and Bacon. (*Copy on reserve in Education Library)
2. Course Packet available at Mr. Copy
1. Attend all classes.
2. Read assignments prior to class and be prepared for thoughtful,
thorough discussion as a professional in your field.
3. Participate in class activities and discussions.
4. Complete course assignments as scheduled.
5. Bring to class the course packet on the days articles are assigned.
6. Engage with others thoughtfully and respectfully.
Note: This student attendance policy was initiated in January, 1996:
Excessive absences are defined as the equivalent of two consecutive
weeks of absences from a class in a 15-week semester without notifying
the instructor. Students who are identified as having excessive
absences are to be reported to the Office of the Registrar.
It is not possible to meet the course expectations without regular
class attendance. You are responsible for all class content (e.g.
reading assignments, instructions, explanations, schedule changes,
etc.) whether present or not. Class will begin at the scheduled time,
so please be on time.
E-mail accounts: Students are required to have an active e-mail
account. You will need to check your e-mail on a regular basis (i.e.,
at least twice a week) to receive messages related to this course.
Not checking your e-mail is not an acceptable excuse for not knowing
about any changes or additions to the course!
Please Note: Students with visual, hearing, physical, and/or learning
disabilities, which may require modification of curriculum,
instruction, or assessment should contact the instructor. I wish to
fully include persons with disabilities in this course. Modifications
and accommodations will be
made after the student has presented documentation indicating
qualification for services from DSS (Disabled Student Services). See
the Handbook for Students with Disabilities for eligibility
Below are overviews of what each of the assignments consist of and
more detailed directions can be found throughout the course packet
around the dates you should begin work on them.
Journal Article Assignment (20 points) Due: Jan 23rd
A two page summary/reaction paper to an journal article related to an
educational psychology topic. The article must present an empirical
(or research) study and not a theoretical discussion. The article can
be on any topic related to cognition, development, motivation,
discipline, diversity, environment, or assessment. It may not be one
of the articles assigned to read for this class. The student will
photocopy the article and hand it in along with the reflection paper.
Textbook Critique (20 points) Due: Feb 6th
Many textbooks, especially used by elementary school teachers and
students, surprisingly, are not written by teachers, psychologists, or
domain experts. Instead, someone is hired to do research on various
topics and write the book. Therefore many times the textbook does not
coincide with what we know about learning and development. The
student will choose a chapter from a textbook (available in the
education library) and write a 2-3 page critique of the chapter based
on the information learned in class on cognitive development.
Television Assignment (20 points) Due: Feb 15th
One of the articles assigned for the course ("Developmentally
Appropriate Television: Putting Children First" discusses how
television can impact children's development. The student will choose
two 30 minute children's television shows or shows on during prime
time watching hours (defined by 3 p.m. - 8 p.m.) for children and
watch them. They will then write a 2-3 page critique of the shows
based on the information presented in the article and in class on
social, emotional and moral development in elementary school children.
Lesson Plan Assignment (70 points) Due: March 22nd
Using articles assigned for the course on learning theories
(identified by ** on the syllabus) along with the information
presented in class on the behaviorist, information processing, and
constructivist theories of learning design three short lesson plans
attempting to teach the same topic (e.g. how to dance, or play
basketball, or learning simple addition of two numbers) using the
three different theories. This project should not exceed 12 pages.
The project will be graded especially for the ability to apply the
three learning, theories to a practical area but please be creative
and have fun with this project.
TAKING SIDES DEBATE (40 points)
Self-Esteem Debate: Feb 8th ; Rewards Debate: March 20th ; Inclusion
Debate: April 3rd
The Taking Sides Debates are three group projects. On the first day
of class you will choose one of the three topics (self-esteem,
rewards, or inclusion) and a side of the debate (for or against).
Since this is the beginning of the semester and many will not know
much about these topics the assignment will be more random than
purposive. The students will then be assigned to a group based on
their topic and side (e.g., self-esteem/yes group). A
point/counterpoint discussion of the topic can be found in the course
packet. The group will then meet outside of class and find at least 4
additional articles on the topic to support their "side" of the
debate. On the assigned day, in class all of the students in the
class should read the point/counterpoint in the course packet. The
two sides will then formally debate their topic, presenting their side
using the information gained from the outside sources, and then after
the formal debate structure will field questions, comments and
discussion by the class. One of the class members will moderate the
debate and discussion to ensure the discussion remains on topic and
members of the class remain respectful of one another's views and
opinions. The group will hand in a Reference list with the articles
(along with copies of the articles) used in preparation for the
debate. The points for this assignment will be broken down as the
Points will breakdown as following:
Annotated reference list: 10 points
Presentation (including organization of presentation) including
evidence of thoughtfulness
and critical thinking on the topic: 20 points
Group participation rating*: 10 points
*Each member of the group will provide a description and rating of
other group member's performance and participation in the group
activity. A numerical rating on a scale of 1-10 along with verbal
description on the performance of each group member should be
submitted either by paper or e-mail on the day of the debate.
Please note you must attend class on the day your group is presenting.
If you do not attend you will be given a zero for this project.
Activity Points (30 points)
Activity points are decided considering: attending class, being
on-time, being active in class discussions, activities and group
Final Exam (100 points) Due by 10 a. m. May 1st
The final take-home exam will be an integration of what you have
learned throughout the semester. You will be given the exam questions
on the last day of class.
Please note that as the instructor, I reserve the right to make
changes to the syllabus as needed. In the case of any changes, I will
let you know at the earliest date possible in class or via e-mail.
Final course letter grades will be based on TOTAL POINTS earned on the
assignments. The purpose of all assignments is to identify and apply
information that will assist you in becoming a practicing teacher.
Below each assignment has been given a total number of points
Journal Article Assignment: 20 points
Textbook Critique: 20 points
Television Assignment: 20 points
Lesson Plan Assignment: 70 points
TAKING SIDES DEBATE: 40 points
Activity Points: 30 points
Final Exam: 100 points
A = 185 +
A - = 170-184
B+ = 155-169
B = 140-154
B- = 125-139
C+ = 110-124
C = 95-109
C- = 80-94
D+ = 65-79
D = 50-64
D- = 35-49
F = 34 or below
These points may change at the discretion of the instructor if
alterations are needed in the assignments.
"Beginning in the Fall, 1999, IUB students taking coursework leading
to licensure will be required to obtain a grade of ‘C' or better in
each Professional Education course. Field experiences require an ‘S'
grade. Students who do not obtain a ‘C' or better will be required to
re-take the course." This course is a Professional Education course,
and therefore you must accumulate at least 110 points or you will be
required to re-take this course.
ASSIGNMENTS THAT ARE INCOMPLETE OR SHOW LACK OF MEANINGFUL THOUGHT MAY
BE ELIGIBLE FOR ONE COURSE LETTER GRADE DEDUCTION ON THE ASSIGNMENT.
ALL MATERIALS SHOULD BE TYPED AND FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS!
Late Assignments: Any item that is not turned in on the date that it
is due will be docked on half letter grade for each day that it is
late. You may submit assignments via an e-mail attachment but it must
arrive in my inbox by the scheduled ending time of class (10:45 a.m.
or 10 a.m. in the case of the final exam)! (Remember the time appears
on the top of the e-mail!) Please be careful to get things in on time.
Missed class presentations will be counted as a zero unless there are
extraordinary circumstances, which must be documented in writing or
you make arrangement with me well in advance of the presentation!
Assignments will be graded on the following areas:
1. Following instructions given in the assignment
2. Referencing appropriate theories or theorists and/or research to
support your argument
3. Appropriate application of theories or theorists in the assignment
that shows understanding of the material
4. Evidence of critical thinking and reflection about the material
and issues related to the topic including practical application issues
5. Spelling and grammar (especially since your computer provides
these functions for you!)
6. Clear, concise writing. Students who write long papers without
focus in attempt to fill pages will not be rewarded for this effort!
All other policies and regulations (e.g. regarding "academic honesty")
as stated in the Undergraduate Bulletins apply in this course. If you
are unfamiliar with these policies and regulations, then you are
required to make yourself familiar with them immediately.
M101 Field Experience/Lab Description and Policies
Field experiences will be arranged through the early experience office
(Room 1020). You will gain 21 hours (minimum) exposure to real
classroom life. Attendance in lab is mandatory. The lab will only meet
on the weeks in which you are not in the field (more information will
be distributed from the early experience office). If you miss more
than 2 labs, you will not pass this course (note: grading for this
course is pass/fail). Your grade in the lab/field component is
determined by your performance in the following areas:
1. Acquisition of 21 hours of field experience
2. Attendance of lab
3. A satisfactory rating of field performance by your cooperating
4. Completion of all lab assignments
5. Participation in lab activities.
How you act influences not only the teacher's and principal's
perceptions of you, but the whole teacher education program at Indiana
University. These teachers and principals have been kind enough to
open their classrooms to us...I only ask that you return the kindness
by presenting yourselves in a favorable way, including your behavior
in the classroom as well as your promptness and courtesy.
While you are in your classrooms, I ask that you take about 30 minutes
to complete the observation requirement to complete the assignments.
Those observation requirements are included in a separate handout.
During the rest of your stay, the teacher has been told that you are
free to help them in a variety of ways including everything from
one-on-one tutorial help in grading papers to room decorations. They
have also been told that they can ask you to teach a small lesson, but
they are to give you plenty of preparation time. If this occurs, I
will be glad to be of assistance. The teacher that you visit may be
nervous with you in her/his classroom. The students may be more
rambunctious than usual. Please remember that the teacher sets the
rules in the classroom and when they ask for something to happen, you
need to be a role model for the children. They are curious why you are
in their classroom and they are wondering what they can get out of you
before you leave. Lab assignments are reflected alongside coursework
and required readings.
Introductory Letter: After the Office of Early Field Experiences
comes to do their orientation to field experience, you will be
instructed to write an introductory letter to your cooperating
teacher. This letter will be due on the day when the GA from the
office will return to give your placements. I will look over letters
if you would like before you hand in the final letter. More detailed
instructions will be given in the orientation.
Reflective Papers: The following reflective papers are part of your
laboratory grade. They are due at the end of the semester, though
guideline dates have been provided. Specific instructions on
questions to answer and specific things to look for are found after
the syllabus calender. The papers to be handed in are 1-2 page
reflection papers based on your answers to the questions. In
addition, each reflective paper must include at least 2 things you
liked about how the topic was handled in the classroom you are
observing and at least 2 things you would change within your own
Social Development Observation (1st lab after placements begin)
Learning Theory Observation (2nd lab after placements begin)
Motivation Observation (3rd lab after placements begin)
Discipline Observation (3rd lab after placements begin)
Environment Observation (Final Lab - all papers are due no later than
It should be noted that all readings and assignments are expected to
be done before class on the day it is assigned. The instructor
reserves the right to give an unannounced quiz if there is evidence
that the reading has not been done!
Jan 9th - First Day of Class: Introduction
Jan 11th - What is Educational Psychology?/ Research and Methods
Woolfolk p 2-16
Begin working on Journal Article Assignment, Due: Jan 23rd
Jan 16th - Cognitive Development
Woolfolk p 22-51
Jan 18th - Cognitive Development, cont.
Jan 23rd - Cognitive Development, cont.
"Teaching Young Children" article in packet
Journal Article Assignment Due
Jan 25th - Brain Development
"What do we know from brain research?" "In search of brain-based
education" articles in packet
Begin working on Textbook Critiquing Assignment, Due: Feb 6th
Jan 30th - Social & Moral Development
Woolfolk p 63-98
Begin working on Taking Sides Debate, Presented: Feb 8th
Feb 1st - Social & Moral Development, cont.
"Emerging Synthesis in Moral Education," "Developmentally
Appropriate Television: Putting Children First" articles in packet
Feb 6th - Social & Moral Development, cont.
Textbook Critiquing Assignment Due
Feb 8th - Social & Moral Development, cont.
Taking Sides: "Should Schools Try to Increase Student's Self
Begin working on DAP Television Assignment, Due: Feb 15th
Feb 8th - Learning & Intelligence: What are they?
Woolfolk p 108-117; 200-203
"What does it mean to be smart?" "The First Seven" articles in
Feb 13th - Behaviorism
Woolfolk p 203-234; 323-329
Feb 15th - Behaviorism, cont. & Social Cognitive Theory
** "Science of Learning and Art of Teaching" article in packet
DAP Television Assignment Due
Feb 20th - Information Processing
Woolfolk, p 238-273
**"Instructional Psychology" article in packet - optional reading
Feb 22nd - Constructivism
Woolfolk, p 329-361
** "Challenge of Sustaining a Constructivist Classroom Culture"
article in packet
Begin working on Lesson Plan Assignment, Due: March 22nd
Feb 27th - Motivation & Discipline
Woolfolk, p 365-397
"Clarifying Behavior Management Terminology" article in packet
March 1st - Motivation & Discipline, cont.
Woolfolk, p. 459-466
"Achievement Motivation" article in packet
March 6th - Stand and Deliver Movie
Begin working on Taking Sides: "Do Rewards Facilitate
Learning?"Present: March 20th
March 8th - Stand and Deliver Movie and Activity
March 13th - NO CLASS SPRING BREAK!
March 15th - NO CLASS SPRING BREAK!
March 20th - Diversity: Gender
Woolfolk, p 174-179
Taking Sides: "Do Rewards Facilitate Learning?"
March 22nd - Diversity: SES
Woolfolk, p 160-165
"Children of the Garden Island" articles in packet
Lesson Plan Assignment Due
Begin working on: Taking Sides: "Is full inclusion always the best
option?" Presented: April 3rd
March 27th - Diversity: Cultural/Linguistic
Woolfolk, p. 155-159; 165-174; 180-195
"Multiculturalism at a Crossroads" article in packet
March 29th - Diversity: Abilities
Woolfolk, p 105-151
"Adapting Curriculum & Instruction in Inclusive Classroom" "Good
Questions to Ask when a Child with Developmental Delays joins your
class" articles in packet
April 3rd - Assessment
Woolfolk, p. 521-548
"Understanding Test Scores"
Taking Sides: "Is full inclusion always the best option?"
April 5th - Assessment, cont.
Woolfolk, p. 555-585
April 10th - Assessment, cont.
April 12th - Environment
Woolfolk, p 438-460
Rivlin & Weinstein article in packet
April 17th - Environment, cont.
Group presentations of environment in class project
April 19th - GUEST SPEAKER
April 27th - Final Exam Distributed, Due: May 1st by 10 a.m.
May 1st - FINAL EXAM DUE by 10 a.m.
Class Assignment Due Dates Summarized:
Jan 23rd : Journal Article Assignment Due
Feb 6th : Textbook Critique Due
Feb 8th : TAKING SIDES DEBATE: Self-Esteem
Feb 15th : Television Assignment Due
March 20th : TAKING SIDES DEBATE: Reward
March 22nd : Lesson Plan Assignment Due
April 3rd : TAKING SIDES DEBATE: Inclusion
May 1st: Final Exam Due by 10 a.m.
M101 Lab Reflective Papers
As was stated in the syllabus these are to be 1-2 page reflection
papers based on your answers to the questions given. In addition,
each reflective paper must include at least 2 things you liked about
how the topic was handled in the classroom you are observing and at
least 2 things you would change within your own classroom.
Social Development Observation (1st Lab after observations begin)
Please answer the following questions based on your classroom
1. Are there any students who seem to be isolated from the other
students? How did you make this assessment? What behaviors did these
students exhibit? How did the other students respond to them?
2. Are there students who seem to be particularly "popular" with other
students? How did you make this assessment? How did these students
behavior? How did the other students respond to them?
3. How did the teacher respond to the "isolated" and the "popular"
Learning Theory Observation (2nd Lab after observations begin)
1. Do you see evidence of behaviorism used as a learning theory in
this classroom? Can you provide a specific example? Does this method
appear to work? How did you make this assessment?
2. Do you see evidence of information processing theory used as a
learning theory in this classroom? Can you provide a specific example?
Does this method appear to work? How did you make this assessment?
3. Do you see evidence of constructivism used as a learning theory in
this classroom? Can you provide a specific example? Does this method
appear to work? How did you make this assessment?
4. Does the teacher appear to have a leaning towards one learning
theory over the other two in her classroom?
Motivation Observation (3rd Lab after observations begin)
Describe how students are motivated during a lesson. First focus on
motivational devices designed for the entire class and then on
motivational techniques designed for individual students.
The following are some possible motivators which you may observe
(remember consider both intrinsic and extrinsic motivators): the
promise of granting of rewards, warnings or administration of tests
and quizzes, explanations about the usefulness of new skills and
knowledge, the asking of intriguing questions, presentation of puzzles
or problems to solve, the use of humor to engage student's attention
and interest, and the use of personal or relevant examples from "real
life" situations. As this list is not all inclusive, be alert to other
motivational techniques employed by teachers during your observation.
Discipline Observation (3rd Lab after observations begin)
Describe any methods used by the teacher to discipline students. Use
the concepts that we've covered in class to help you correctly
describe the method of discipline. Some possible discipline methods
include sarcasm, corporal punishment, saying the student's name,
sending students from the room, ignoring the student, keeping students
after school, putting student's name on the board, sending notes home
to parents, yelling at students, and assigning additional work. As
this list is not inclusive, be alert to other discipline methods used
by the classroom teacher.
Discuss the effectiveness of the methods used by the classroom
Environment Observation (Final Lab)
To begin this observation draw a simple map of the physical classroom
setting. Then take notes on how the physical (i.e. how does the
arrangement of the desks impact movement? Location of items in the
room? Position of teachers desk? Lighting? Windows? Special "centers"
like reading or science?) and emotional environment (i.e. how the room
"feels" to you..is it welcoming? Friendly? Cold? Military-like?)
appears to impact the students' behaviors. Remember to give at least
2 things you like about the physical setting as well as at least 2
suggestions to change for your own classroom. Write your notes and
reflections up in a reflection paper and include the map of the
classroom attached to your paper.