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Peter Gouzouasis, Associate Professor, Curriculum Studies
Peter Gouzouasis, Associate Professor, Curriculum Studies
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HOW CAN WE MAKE EDUCATION MORE EFFECTIVE AND INNOVATIVE?

“Our goal is to produce the most creative, prepared and innovative teachers possible – and to change the learning experience for elementary students in the process.”

PETER GOUZOUASIS Our next generation of teachers are getting a jump on next generation technology, thanks to the Faculty of Education’s Fine Arts and new Media in Education (FAME) program. The 36 FAME students worked exclusively on wireless computers during teacher education courses at UBC, and then brought that same freedom into their student teaching placements, providing a wireless laptop for every one of their students.

“Like a pencil, technology is a tool through which students learn the rest of the curriculum - it is not a separated, isolated subject,” explains Assoc. Prof. Peter Gouzouasis, who led the program this year. He adds that the student teachers delivered their entire curriculum via the computers, and focused on artistic applications - exploring music, art, dance and drama.

While using these more “fun” applications, children in eight North Vancouver School District schools developed computer skills applicable to virtually the entire curriculum. “However, one of the most unexpected benefits was to the school advisors. By allowing these computers and student teachers into their classrooms, the host teachers could learn and keep up with the latest software and technology at no cost to themselves or their school.”


EDUCATION
cont.
EDUCATION
-- Deborah Campbell, Author; Creative Writing program graduate
Deborah Campbell, Author; Creative Writing program graduate
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WHAT PURPOSE DOES A GENERAL ARTS DEGREE SERVE?

“As Canadians, we enjoy a kind and gentle society. I think that if we are to maintain and improve it, we need well-spoken, thoughtful and educated individuals to lead, question and inform.”

DEBORAH CAMPBELL As author of the book This Heated Place: Encounters in the Promised Land which chronicles the stories of people she met while traveling in Israel, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip in 2001, Campbell can attest to how fortunate Canadians are to live in a kind and gentle society. As a recent graduate of UBC’s Creative Writing program she can also attest to the value of a liberal arts education. “General education and critical thinking skills are essential if we want the next generation to be qualified leaders instead of just puppets who do what they’re told.”

These skills were key for Campbell as she sought out the individual, human stories behind the headlines of the Mideast conflict. “I wanted to paint a portrait and let readers decide for themselves what they thought of the conflict.” She credits the Creative Writing program with helping her shape those experiences into a compelling book. “I don’t think you can teach someone to be a writer, but the program provides a perfect greenhouse for developing writing talent.”

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