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School of Education faculty awarded grant from the University System of Maryland’s Center for Computing Education

| By Molly Robey
Irene Bal, and Kelly Keane, Ed.D.
Irene Bal, lecturer of Educational Technology, and Kelly Keane, Ed.D., senior lecturer and director of the Educational Technology program
Kelly Keane, Ed.D., senior lecturer and director of the Educational Technology program, and Irene Bal, lecturer of Educational Technology, received a $49,561 one-year grant from the Maryland Center for Computing Education (MCCE) within the University System of Maryland Preservice Computer Science Teacher Education Grant Program to create a series of online micro-credentials centered around K-8 computational thinking (CT).

This new micro-credential program will include three stacked, competency-based courses, with the equivalent seat time of 45 hours, to engage Loyola pre-service students, graduate students, and alumni and Baltimore City Public School educators on the topic of CT. 

“In our digital world, computational thinking should be integrated into all subject areas,” said Keane. “We hope that the creation of these courses support educators in their knowledge and skills of CT and its role in solving critical problems inside and outside of the classroom.” 

The faculty will partner with Loyola’s teacher education and computer science departments as well as Baltimore City Public Schools to develop and launch this new series of courses.

“We’re honored by the opportunity to strengthen the teacher workforce and introduce pre- and in-service educators to the world of computational thinking,” said Bal. “These new courses will be designed to help teachers grow their understanding of this thinking strategy and help them implement it effectively into their curricula.”  

Micro-credentials are an initiative through the Educational Technology program at Loyola and can be found on Loyola’s continuing education platform, ASPIRE. The micro-credentials are self-paced, online, specialized professional learning opportunities that allow pre-service and in-service educators to apply their new learning directly to their current or future classrooms and work environments. The CT micro-credentials will launch for Loyola and Baltimore City educators in May 2020 and be available to the public in January 2021. For more information, visit www.loyola.edu/microcreds.
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