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Educating the world for 101 years and counting

GSE faculty and alumnae reflect on the School of Education’s influence within Stanford and around the world

Stanford’s global reach owes greatly to scholars at the Graduate School of Education who have honed education’s power as change agent both here and around the globe, said a panel of GSE faculty and alumnae reflecting on critical moments in the school’s 100-year history. 

Not only have GSE scholars seeded global research, policy and practice, but they also prototyped the interdisciplinary collaboration that is now a Stanford hallmark, panelists said at a March 13 event cosponsored by the Stanford Historical Society.

Education was a founding department when Stanford opened in 1891, and its elevation to a school a century ago expanded its mandate for service, said Dean Daniel Schwartz.

“We collaborate with all the other schools on campus. We reach out because education is important for every discipline,” Schwartz said. 

In the post-World War II era, education faculty also shaped Stanford’s growing role in U.S. and global affairs, said Professor Daniel McFarland, who has studied the history of the school. 

Equitable Classrooms: Where Policy Meets Practice

Major contributions to the body of knowledge on the educational benefits of diverse schools and universities

We have a moral imperative to build equitable learning places to realize the intellectual, social, academic, and civic benefits of diverse schools for all students.

At Stanford University, we used sociological theories and research to design and evaluate interventions that promote equitable classrooms. Complex instruction is a theoretical research program based on robust sociological frameworks and solid empirical evidence. Well-known in the field of education, complex instruction is a pedagogical approach designed to create equitable learning opportunities and equitable outcomes for diverse populations by supporting equal-status interactions. When working with complex instruction, teachers purposefully and unceasingly plan for range and heterogeneity à priori rather than modifying or adjusting the curriculum and the instruction to “accommodate” diversity post hoc.

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