Course date

3 July - 14 July, 2000
Application deadline
15 February, 2000
Course Director(s): 

Thomas Timar

Graduate School of Education, University of California, Riverside, United States of America
Course Faculty: 

Patricia Gandara

National Education Policy Center, School of Education, University of Colorado, Boulder, USA

Gabor Halasz

National Institute of Public Education, Budapest, Hungary

Rodney Ogawa

Education, University of California at Santa Cruz, United States of America

Peter Rado

Open Society Institute, Budapest, Hungary

Vaiva Vebraite

Vice-Minister of Education and Science, Lithuania

This course introduces students to concepts of methods of policy analysis. It comprises three strands. The first examines also the political, economic, social, and cultural contexts that shape policy. The second examines educational policy systems. The third examines the relationship between policy making and implementation. The purpose of the course is to

  • help students develop a deeper understanding of the relationship between educational issues and problems, policy development, and the institutional structures needed to support those policies; 
  • strengthen students' skills in analyzing policy arguments (pulling apart assumptions, assessing evidence) in order to construct a persuasive policy analyses; 
  • provide students with skills to conduct policy analysis; and
  • sharpen students' understanding, knowledge, and use of policy analysis.

Course level, target audience

The course is intended to serve as an introduction to policy analysis, both methods and concepts. It is intended for individuals with an interest in educational policy analysis. Preference in selection of course participants is given to individuals who work in ministries of education, NGOs (such as foundations or professional organizations), or academics with an interest in educational policy. Past participants have included junior level university faculty in political science, economics, or sociology; World Bank or OSI staff; journalists; and government officials.

Teaching Methods

The format for the course combines lecture, discussion, group collaborative work, and participant presentation. The course is organized around a high level of active participation in discussion and development of group projects. Application requirements Participants are required, as a condition of participation in the program, to submit a brief paper (5 to 10 pages in length) discussing the major changes that have occurred in education in their respective countries over the past 10 years. The paper should include a discussion of what new problems have emerged and how government has attempted to deal with them.