Urban Education - Policy, Research, & Practice Concentration

The Policy, Research, & Practice concentration is for students interested in a broad theoretical foundation in urban education, coupled with academically-based community service, (without certification) – and for students preparing to submatriculate* into the elementary, middle years, or secondary Master’s/certification program at GSE. 


1. URBS 202 or EDUC 202 – Urban Education  

The following course lists are not exhaustive; other courses may be substituted but require prior approval from the Urban Education advisor

2. Child or Adolescent Development course -

PSYC 151 - Language and Thought (requires PSYC 001)
PSYC 280 - Developmental Psychology (requires PSYC 001)
PSYC 281 - Cognitive Development (requires PSYC 001)
EDUC 326 - Tutoring in Urban Schools: A child development perspective
EDUC 360 – Human Development

EDUC 513 - Development of the Young Child (* Elementary)
EDUC 522 – Psychology of the African-American 

EDUC 560 – Human Development 

EDUC 561 - Adolescent Development 
EDUC 557 - Developmental Theories and Applications with Adolescents (*
middle or secondary)

3. Urban Context course -

Any Urban Studies (URBS) course focused on the United States will fulfill this requirement.
URBS 103 – Industrial Metropolis
URBS 104 - Transformation of Urban America
URBS 112 – Urban Sociology 

URBS 160 - Race & Ethnic Relations 

URBS 210 - The City

URBS 250 - Urban Public Policy

URBS 258 - Global Urban Education

URBS 420 - Perspectives on Urban Poverty
HSOC 461 - The Child in the City

4. Pedagogy or Curriculum course -

EDUC 250 - Learning from Children (aka Observing Children)

EDUC 414 - Children’s Literature
EDUC 535 - Literature for Children and Adolescents (*any)
EDUC 540 - Teaching Diverse Learners (*any)
EDUC 545 - Perspectives on curriculum and pedagogy for social justice (*Secondary)
EDUC 616 - Teaching & Learning
EDUC 671 - Adult Literacy (*Secondary)

5. ABCS course* related to urban education - 

URBS 323 - Tutoring in Schools: Theory & Practice
EDUC 326 - Tutoring in Urban Schools: A child development perspective
EDUC/ENVS 421- Science and Social Studies in Elementary and Middle Schools

PHYS 137 - Community Physics Initiative
ENGL 121 - Writing for Children-Beauty, the Book and (the Blog)

For a full, updated listing of ABCS courses, please consult the Netter Center for Community Partnership's website. https://www.nettercenter.upenn.edu/abcs-courses/current-courses

6. Elective –

URBS 460 - Comprehensive School Reform as Applied Public Policy

URBS 473 - Community Organizing: History and Theory 

PSCI 545 - Politics and Education (*Secondary)
EDUC 548 - American Education Reform: History, Policy, Practice (*Secondary)
EDUC 646 - Contextualizing the School to Prison Pipeline (*Secondary)

7. CAPSTONE – a problem-based or theory-based research project that students can complete in the context of a (second) ABCS course (see above), a senior thesis course, or an independent study.


*These are the courses within each category that are most likely to be accepted as submatriculation courses. Do not take them before you have been accepted to submatriculate, if that is your goal.


For additional information about the Urban Education Minor please contact the program advisor:

Amy Stornaiuolo
Graduate School of Education
3700 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6216
215-898-9327 amystorn@upenn.edu