COE: EdD: Heritage Leadership: Sustainability, Social Justice, and Participatory Culture
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The Heritage Leadership Learning Community engages students in serious discussion of topics related to sustainability, social justice and participatory culture. Heritage refers to natural and cultural heritage. Modern society has a rich inheritance in the natural world. Unfortunately, climate change and related system-level shifts threaten the ecosystem services upon which we all depend. Similarly, some argue that cultural diversity is now as endangered as biological diversity.

  • It takes heritage leadership to sustain the natural systems that sustain us
  • It takes heritage leadership to sustain cultural landscapes, including those places where we encounter “the other”

Heritage leaders reveal the essential unity of nature and culture, highlighting the pathologic that emerges when we relegate these interdependent phenomena to isolated spheres. Heritage leaders foster diverse knowledge structures, societal values, and engagement pathways. If participants engaged in a heritage leadership learning community ask essentially questions, generate useful models, and refine the scope and methods of effective practice, they can safeguard and even enliven heritage.

Heritage leaders should be adept at helping audiences share personal experiences, explore patterns and linkages, and examine underlying mechanisms. Advocates for social justice have long recognized the link between social justice and environmental equity (i.e., equal opportunity to obtain environmental benefits and equal protection from environmental harms). Similarly, scholars have identified parallels between how we treat our most vulnerable citizens and how we treat the natural world. Ecology is complex, but human ecology is even more complex. Thus, heritage leaders should be able to facilitate an examination of such topics as bias, privilege, the intended and unintended effects of economic and governance systems, racism and other “isms,” historic trauma, oppression, modern day slavery, symbolic meanings and interactions, ecological aesthetics, a land ethic, voice, agency, culpability, reparation, reconciliation, and healing truth.

Practitioner-leaders from diverse informal education sectors should ask this question before applying and enrolling: Do I want to gain competence and capacity to address sustainability, social justice, and participatory culture at my site, in my organization, in my local community, and through networking and partnerships, at the national and global level? If the answer to this question is yes, and especially if you can pinpoint instances when you have addressed these challenges in your professional practice, this learning community will be a good fit for you!

For more information about the topic of this community, click on the Key Faculty tab below. For information about applying, contact the program director.

Doctor of Education, Educational Practice (EdD)



Slide 1 EdD student Britt Tate finds her place inspiring St. Louis students with art education
Britt Tate (with her rabbit Bunilla Ice) is part of the College of Education’s Heritage Leadership for Sustainability, Social Justice and Participatory Culture EdD cohort and splits her time between Bryan Hill Elementary School and Columbia Elementary School teaching art. As a product of public schools, she believes that every student deserves a passionate, enthusiastic teacher – no matter what neighborhood they live in. (Photo by August Jennewein)
Slide 2 Heritage Leadership Program Draws Crowd from Across the Country and Around the Globe
That concept of empowerment – of using leadership as a mechanism for encouraging others to engage and grow and thrive – was a theme often returned to by many members of the cohort as they introduced themselves and shared their research interests over the course of the week.

 Students seeking the Ed.D. degree are expected to meet the Graduate School’s relevant practitioner doctoral degree requirements and procedures.

Degree requirements

1. Learning Community of Practice Seminars15-20
EDUC 7600
Learning Community of Practice I
EDUC 7610
Learning Community of Practice II
EDUC 7620
Learning Community of Practice III
EDUC 7630
Learning Community of Practice IV
EDUC 7640
Learning Community of Practice V
EDUC 7650
Learning Community of Practice VI
2. Laboratory of Practice
EDUC 7889Laboratory of Practice3
3. Required Common Courses
EDUC 7215Data Analysis for Educational Practitioners3
EDUC 7395Research and Technical Writing for Educational Practitioners2
EDUC 7615
EDUC 7625Building Socially Just and Ethical Educational Communities3
EDUC 7710Research Methods and Design for Educational Practitioners 3
ED REM 7781Qualitative Methods in Educational Research I3
4. Tools Courses
EDUC 7310Integrating Technology in Learning for Educational1
EDUC 7325Grant Writing for Educational Practitioners1
5. Specialization30-60
Courses in an area of specialization (can include Master’s or Education Specialist work)
6. Dissertation in Practice
EDUC 7998Dissertation in Practice Research8

 Total: minimum 80 hours, post-bacclaureate

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Theresa Coble, Ph.D.
E. Desmond Lee Endowed Professor of Experiential and Family Education

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Phyllis Balcerzak, Ph.D.
Assistant Teaching Professor

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Carl Hoagland, Ed.D.
Professor Emeritus

Carl Hoagland is the Emerson Electric Endowed Professor of Technology and Learning and the Director of the E. Desmond Lee Technology and Learning Center. He previously served as the Executive Director of The Regional Consortium for Education and Technology, a technology center that served over 30 K-12 school districts in Eastern Missouri and Sout...
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Timothy Makubuya, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor

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Keith W Miller, Ph.D.
Orthwein Endowed Professor for Lifelong Learning in the Science

Keith W. Miller is UMSL's Orthwein Endowed Professor for Lifelong Learning in the Sciences. His Ph.D. is in computer science, and his research specialties are computer ethics, online education, and software testing. His Des Lee Collaborative community partner is the Saint Louis Science Center. He is also part of UMSL's Technology & Learning Center.