Arizona State University partners with educators and policymakers in developing countries as they work to build and enhance capacity to serve the educational needs of their citizens. To make this possible, ASU International Development works across the university to tap numerous, diverse disciplines that produce new knowledge and drive innovation in education systems at all levels.
As home to the largest teaching college in the United States—the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College—ASU offers an exceptional array of capabilities and knowledge assets for international development projects focused on K-12 education. In addition to consistently ranking among the top five graduate teaching programs in the nation, the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College leads multiple cross-disciplinary efforts to enhance educational outcomes for K-12 students in the U.S. and abroad. Some of ASU’s capabilities in education include:
- The Center for Advanced Studies in Global Education, housed at the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College, supports research projects around the world—from China to Costa Rica to Argentina—and offers scalable professional development programs that have drawn hundreds of leading educators and administrators from countries including India, South Sudan, Palestine and Mexico.
- ASU can rapidly apply cutting-edge research from U.S. Department of Education-funded projects at the frontiers of educational and pedagogical innovation, and mine a wide array of domestic education projects for insight that can be mapped onto international contexts.
- ASU’s cutting-edge capacities in online education delivery allow us to train teachers anywhere at low cost. The Sanford Inspire Program at ASU provides educators with free, online tools and resources that can be readily deployed in pre-K-12 classrooms to enrich students’ educational experience.
India Support for Teacher Education Program (In-STEP)
The India Support for Teacher Education Program (In-STEP) is a recently concluded USAID project, led by ASU in partnership with India’s Ministry of Human Resource Development, that responded to India’s need for qualified teachers in light of rapidly expanding educational access. In-STEP provided 110 teacher educators from Indian teachers’ institutes with training in designing and implementing better teaching methods, use of information technologies, and design of reform measures to improve accountability and outcomes. Each teacher developed a reform plan for testing, and where possible, worked to implement reforms in Indian teachers’ institutes, promoting participatory approaches to education improvement in place of centralized, top-down reform strategies.
Students in an In-STEP classroom in New Delhi (credit: ASU International Development)
Higher Education Reform
For two years running, U.S. News and World Report has ranked Arizona State University as the most innovative university in the U.S., ahead of even MIT and Stanford. ASU’s radical transformation has challenged the most basic assumptions of how higher education institutions operate, demonstrating that a university can achieve excellence in research and teaching while realizing unprecedented inclusiveness. As an international exemplar in higher education transformation, ASU is sharing its approach to institutional design in order to help universities worldwide achieve better outcomes. ASU has numerous assets that demonstrate its ability to support university design and higher education reform in the developing world:
- ASU’s Center for Education Through eXploration (ETX) is advancing the concept of teaching through exploration of the unknown, centering on transdisciplinary questions rather than established disciplines. The ETX Center develops and deploys digital learning products and platforms that are engaging, adaptive and transdisciplinary, capable of advancing education through exploration at scale in emerging country contexts.
- With over 100 international university partnerships and linkages to ministries of education and governments throughout the world, ASU has extensive experience in understanding and satisfying local partner needs.
- The Education Innovation Summit is an annual ASU-hosted education event that brings together entrepreneurs, investors, philanthropists, politicians, educators and other advocates of education innovation to stimulate opinions, debate, fundraising, strategic alliances and overall community activism toward the global enrichment of higher education.
- ASU is a founding member of the recently launched University Innovation Alliance, a coalition of 11 public research universities collaborating to boost the number of students from all economic backgrounds who earn a college degree. The research and capabilities of the alliance are scalable to support the development of higher education in the developing world.
U.S.-Pakistan Center for Advanced Studies in Energy (USPCAS-E)
Funded with $17.9 million in USAID support and led by ASU, the U.S.–Pakistan Center for Advanced Studies in Energy (USPCAS-E) is a partnership between ASU and two leading Pakistani universities, the National University of Science and Technology Islamabad and the University of Engineering and Technology in Peshawar. USPCAS-E leverages ASU’s expertise in higher education, university design, applied research and energy to help Pakistan unleash its enormous potential for economic growth through its universities. The partnership focuses on applied research relevant to Pakistan’s energy needs and serves as a bridge between the government, industry and academia to undertake sustainable policy formulation.
Through technical assistance provided by ASU and under the umbrella of the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan, the centers at both universities are expected to become Pakistan’s premier sustainable energy think tanks that will generate cost-effective, sustainable solutions for Pakistan’s energy challenges.
Send-off reception for UPCAS-E exchange scholars, Islamabad, Pakistan, 2016 (credit:ASU International Development)