Mission Statement

The College of Education and Integrative Studies is a learning community focused on meeting the present and future needs of students in our communities. We educate students to become highly qualified and significant leaders in our society. We are committed to the principles of diversity, ethics and social justice, and life-long learning. Central to our mission are innovative and integrative thinking, reflective practice, collaborative action, and learning by doing.

DBL Program at CEIS Celebrates its 22nd Anniversary with Exhibit

Doreen Gehry Nelson

This year, the Designed Based Learning (DBL) program, founded by Professor Doreen Gehry Nelson in 1969, will celebrate its 22nd year anniversary in the College of Education and Integrative Studies (CEIS). To commemorate Professor Nelson’s work, from October to December 2017, the UCLA Special Collections Library, which houses her archive, will host a symposium and exhibit of artifacts submitted by students and teachers impacted by the program.

“This is a great moment for our college,” said CEIS Dean Jeff Passe. “We want people to see how the DBL program results in student achievement in math, reading and language arts.  Our K-12 teacher graduates have reported dramatic improvements among students, especially English Language Learners and students with learning disabilities, as well as fewer classroom discipline problems. The upcoming UCLA exhibit, recognizing the work of K-12 teachers and students, may inspire educators to enroll in our DBL program.”

DBL is a hands-on teaching methodology that taps into students’ natural creativity to develop higher-level thinking skills and enhance comprehension of the K-12 curriculum. A certificate in DBL requires five core classes while a master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in DBL includes only six additional courses.

The program’s founder, Professor Nelson, is a recipient of the California State University’s Wang Family Excellence Award and an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects. She has over 40 years of experience in both public and private education. 

 “When I began my career in education in 1960, I found that traditional ways of teaching were not leading to student success," said Professor Nelson. "Using our methodology, students learn how to problem solve by applying essential 21st century workforce skills such as critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity.”

Among those participating in the exhibit and symposium include Daphne Chase, a graduate of the DBL master’s program and second grade teacher at Wilson Elementary School in San Gabriel.

“The master's degree in DBL provided the paradigm shift that took my classroom to the next level,” she said. “My students are excited about learning as they use their own designs to think creatively and critically. The master's program taught me how to design my own curriculum to teach students with a depth I never would have thought was possible for second graders.”

The Doreen Gehry Nelson Archive of Design-Based Learning: A K-12 Teaching Methodology for Invoking Creative Thinking Exhibit will open Saturday, October 14, at the UCLA Special Collections Library. The program will begin at 1 p.m. with a symposium addressing the impact of the DBL methodology followed by a reception. The exhibit will run from October 14 to December 31, 2017. For more information about DBL, visit www.designbasedlearning.org or contact Professor Nelson at (310) 387-8261.

For more information about CEIS, contact Ashley Jones at (909) 869-5370.