Department of Education

Education Studies Concentration

Undergraduate concentrators study education in a rigorous, multi-dimensional way that allows them to investigate thorny questions of opportunity and equity in real-world settings.

Education Studies is a multidisciplinary concentration that explores the role of education as both a foundational institution in society and a key influence on human development. We offer students a unique opportunity to do engaged scholarship by applying theory to real-world questions about education policy, practice, and the learning process. From introductory courses to advanced seminars, our classes examine how education can promote or limit equity, opportunity, and social justice. Our faculty members work closely with students to study education using analytical approaches and theoretical frameworks drawn from anthropology, economics, history, human development, political science, sociology, social work, and teaching and learning. 

The Education concentration provides students with a strong liberal arts foundation for graduate studies and prepares students to be change agents in the broad-based education sector and beyond. Concentrators go on to a wide range of careers including advocacy, counseling, education technology, law, politics & policy, research, and teaching as well as leadership in schools, districts, and state departments of education. Students interested in earning a license to teach in public schools are encouraged to pursue the Brown 5th-year Masters of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program where they will receive world-class training to be culturally-responsive educators in urban education settings.


The Education Studies concentration consists of at least 10 courses with the following four elements. No more than 3 classes of the 10 total may be from outside the Education Department.

1. Three Core Courses 

  • EDUC 300 – Introduction to Education and Society: Foundations of Opportunity and Inequality
  • EDUC 750 – Evidence and Methods in Education Research 
  • EDUC 1900 – Senior Seminar 

2. A four-course student selected Specialization

Students will define a coherent plan of study that enables them to develop a self-defined specialization of 4 courses within the field, such as:

  • Education Policy Analysis
  • Child Development
  • Education and Inequality
  • Teaching and Learning
  • Immigrant Youth
  • Education for Social Justice
  • Or any related topic of interest.

Students will define this pathway at the time of declaration. The advisor will approve the specialization. Students may refine their specialization over time, in conversation with their advisor and subject to their advisor’s approval. Classes may be a combination of courses within and outside the Education Department.

3. Three electives

Students will take three additional elective classes related to the field of education and their plan of study. Classes may be a combination of courses within and outside the Education Department.

4. An experiential requirement

Tying classroom learning to real-world experience helps students make meaning of their academic coursework and offers academic rigor to practice-based engagement with the field. Students will satisfy this requirement by engaging in a practice-based experience, reflecting on their experience, and connecting it to their academic learning in the concentration. Find more information on the experiential component here

If you have any further questions about the concentration, please email the Education Department.