I believe that people learn and grow when they work together to solve problems that hold meaning and significance for their lives. While experts are important, they are never smarter than a group of committed individuals working together in pursuit of social justice.
Here are seven short videos that offer my perspective on Social Change.
Every day that I teach, I learn. What excites me about MIIS is the daily act of co-creating knowledge with people from diverse backgrounds who are idealistic about their studies, knowledgeable about the world, and passionate about building a learning community. This environment feeds my soul and reinforces my own passionate pursuit of social justice.
Beryl Levinger is a highly regarded development professional who focuses on five issues: evaluation; capacity development; strategic planning; education; and health.
Last year alone, she worked in eleven countries with such organizations as the World Bank, UNHCR, USAID, Save the Children, the Carter Center, the International Committee of the Red Cross, Freedom from Hunger, Project Concern International, Partners in Health, the Packard Foundation, the Inter-American Development Bank, and Stanford University’s Center for Ocean Solutions. With a career that includes senior positions at AFS Intercultural Programs (president), CARE (senior vice president) and Save the Children (vice president), Beryl draws on a rich array of experiences and intense interaction with students to enliven her classes. A former vice chair of both Pact and InterAction, Beryl has worked in nearly 90 countries. For the past 15 years, she been research director or co-director of Save the Children's State of the World's Mothers Report, a publication that offers a comparative perspective on the health, education and gender issues faced by girls and women throughout the world. Beryl has won numerous international awards for the quality of her contributions to the field of development.
Beryl's Teaching Philosophy
Here's what Beryl says about her teaching:
"Research clearly demonstrates that learning a skill in one setting or around one particular challenge does not guarantee that the learner will automatically transfer that knowledge to a new setting or problem. To address the “learning transfer challenge," I use a cognitive apprentice approach to teaching and learning. This involves authentic problem-solving and the subsequent delinking of problem-solving skills from specific contexts in order to facilitate knowledge transfer. To help learners recognize the content that they should be able to apply across settings and contexts, I close every class with a set of student-generated Big Ideas. I also liberally sprinkle my teaching with the introduction and application of “tools” that are designed to help students apply new knowledge to a wide variety of issues and places."
"Collaboration is critical for an era where no single individual can have all the skills and knowledge needed to solve complex, wicked problems. Accordingly, I strive to be a facilitator and choreographer of diverse learning experiences that enable our students to work brilliantly with and learn from others."
PhD, Educational Planning, University of Alabama; MA, Educational Administration, University of Alabama; BS, Social Sciences, Cornell University
Careers in Organizational Capacity Development
Students with this concentration will be ready to help social organizations become more effective as partners, implementers and public policy advocates. They will also be able to serve as internal or external consultants on projects designed to improve institutional effectiveness. Anyone with this concentration would be well prepared to assume a leadership role within an organization. They would know how to work with a governance structure; how to shape organizational culture; and how to help stakeholders set a direction and engage in activities that lead to mission fulfillment.
Courses offered in the past four years.
▲ indicates offered in the current term
▹ indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]
DPMI8610 - FoundationsDevlopmntProjctMgmt ▹
Spring 2016 - MIIS
DPMI8620 - Applied Devlopmnt Project Mgmt ▹
Spring 2016 - MIIS
DPMI8650 - DPMI DevlopmntPracticum (Plus) ▹
The Development Project Practicum is an academic and professional program in which students complete professional assignments (typically three to seven months) with an organization that they have helped identify. The practicum is designed to afford students the opportunity to utilize DPMI skills in the field. Participants develop a set of negotiated deliverables which are reviewed and approved by the faculty program director and the Center for Advising and Career Services. Credit is offered on a pass/fail basis. The Development Project Practicum may be completed in conjunction with DPMI 8698 for 12 credits in any given semester, or at any time after a DPMI Certificate of Completion has been earned. Please visit http:miis.edu/dpmi">go.miis.edu/dpmi or contact email@example.com for more information.
Summer 2014 - MIIS, Fall 2014 - MIIS, Spring 2015 - MIIS, Summer 2015 - MIIS, Fall 2015 - MIIS, Spring 2016 - MIIS
DPMI8684 - Kenya:NGO Capacity & Education
The Development Planning, Management and Innovation Institute/Kenya program combines instruction, field visits, team-designed projects for client organizations (the Omega Foundation and a group of its NGO grantees), and readings. These elements are blended together to give program participants an in-depth understanding of the complexities of designing, delivering and monitoring projects that address the challenges that development organizations face in expanding educational opportunities for the populations they serve. Participants will work side-by-side with Kenyan professionals from leading NGOs to design innovative solutions that address local priorities. Learners will gain skills in fostering participatory development (with a thematic focus on education), leading change, measuring progress, crafting attractive funding proposals, and using monitoring data to communicate results.
By the program's conclusion, participants will be able to:
• Use a professionally recognized set of tools, techniques, and approaches to design a funding proposal that incorporates best practices for addressing a priority challenge related to education or general well-being
• Design a simple monitoring framework for this project
• Create a facilitated event plan to engage stakeholders
• Create an exit strategy, sustainability plan and implementation plan the project
• Incorporate a design thinking perspective into the project
• Create a working environment that builds social capital
Summer 2014 - MIIS
DPMI8686 / ICCO9686 - DPMI:Health,Educ,GendrInRWANDA
Credit: course can be taken for no credit or for 4 units on a Pass/Fail basis. A certificate of completion will be awarded to participants who successfully complete all assignments.
Instructor of record: Dr. Beryl Levinger
The program will focus on use and mastery of tools and frameworks that represent “embedded theory.” Tool mastery will prepare participants to foster sustainable development. The tools to be featured in the program are widely used by bilateral and multinational organizations including USAID, the World Bank, and UNDP.
Note: While there may be some content overlap with current DPMI offerings, the examples and projects will all be Rwanda-specific and focused on HIV/AIDS, education or gender.
Students who enroll will be eligible to participate in DPMI8650A (DPMI+). Students who have already completed DPMI 8698 A and/or 8698 B are also eligible to enroll. For students who have previously participated in a DPMI session, this program will allow them to hone their skills further with more elaborate assignments.
Spring 2015 - MIIS
DPMI8698 / ICCO9690 - Directed Study
DPMI 8698A Foundations of Development Project Management
Participants will learn the necessary components of project design. Implementation of strategies to ensure sustainable benefits and alternative evaluation methods will also be discussed. At the module's completion, participants will create an overall evaluation plan for a project along with a detailed project implementation plan using the results framework (RF), an approach to project development that is widely used in bilateral and multinational organizations including USAID, the World Bank and UNDP.
DPMI 8698B Applied Development Project Management
This course features two modules. Participants master tools and skills needed to effectively assume the roles of facilitator, trainer, and change agent. Local human resource development is an important component in every development project. The module focuses on transferring skills to participants so they can conduct their own training programs. Topics covered include needs assessments, adult learning practices, community mobilization, stakeholder negotiation, conflict mediation, and the training of trainers. In the other module, participants, working within a context of social entrepreneurship, become proficient in the use of tools and techniques to conduct an analysis of vision and mission; identify core competencies; and forge strategic partnerships to enhance organizational effectiveness. Innovative software applications are introduced to support a simulation.
DPMI Directed Study Courses (DPMI 698):
DPMI participants may enroll in either one or two DPMI directed study courses. Although both courses carry the same number (DPMI 698), the course titles that appear on a student's transcript differ. The first DPMI 698 course (Foundations of Development Project Management) is a prerequisite for the second DPMI 698 offering (Applied Development Project Management). In other words, students may not enroll in Applied Development Project Management unless they have already completed Foundations of Development Project Management or are concurrently enrolled in it.
DPMI 698-Foundations of Development Project Management (3 credits)
Requires completion and submission of deliverables for Module I and the 5-page Statement of Development Philosophy. Students enrolled in this course during the Summer should submit their notebook link to Beryl and firstname.lastname@example.org">miis.edu by August 27. Students registered in the Fall semester should submit their notebook link by November 15. The submission due date to post your week one deliverables online for students registered in the Spring semester is March 31. The development philosophy statement for January DPMI Monterey participants is due to email@example.com by May 1. The development philosophy statement deadline for summer DPMI training participants is October 31.
DPMI 698-Applied Development Project Management (3 credits)
Requires completion and submission of deliverables for Modules II and III in the same presentation site used for Module I. Due dates are the same as above.
Summer 2014 - MIIS, Fall 2014 - MIIS, Spring 2015 - MIIS, Summer 2015 - MIIS, Fall 2015 - MIIS
DPPG8501 - Policy Analysis
This course introduces students to the theory and practice of policy analysis. Students will be introduced to the stages of the public policy process, including agenda setting, formulation, implementation, and evaluation. Students will also develop basic policy analysis skills, including problem structuring, stakeholder identification, summarization of current policy, development of policy options, elaboration of criteria for selection, and recommendation of course of action. These concepts are illustrated by examples policies that fall within students' range of interests. This course also introduces students to scientific methods that are used as a means for structuring policy inquiry. A series of research approaches and techniques are presented in the context of forecasting, monitoring, and evaluation for the analysis of domestic and international policies.
Fall 2015 - MIIS
DPPG8533 - Intro to Program Evaluation
This 1-unit course introduces participants a variety of evaluation approaches appropriate to public sector and nongovernmental organizations. Key issues include: uses of evaluation; the framing of evaluation meta-questions by project stage; indicator selection; the evaluation of project logic and project designs; and, the use of tools to strengthen evaluation design. Students will engage in lecture, discussion and in-class problem solving.
Fall 2015 - MIIS
DPPG8541 - Leading Capacity Development
Organizational capacity development is considered a cornerstone of all sustainable development strategies. It entails enabling major development actors (e.g., civil society organizations, government entities, networks, and partnerships) to acquire and act on new knowledge and skills as well as to adopt new forms of interaction and reflection. Capacity development initiatives have traditionally focused on training and short-term technical assistance. Through a systematic introduction of tools and frameworks, we will present and critique the major capacity development paradigms over the last 30 years. The focus of the course, however, is the creation of new tools that support the most cutting edge thinking in capacity development. We will examine capacity development as behavior change and lead a “design lab” to create a comprehensive capacity development support approach (with associated tools) that reflects an ecosystems-based theory of change. Course activities will be packaged, with the participation of students, for online consumption by local development practitioners. Prior to our first meeting, students will be expected to complete a small individual assignment that includes readings and application of content to a real world problem.
Fall 2015 - MIIS
DPPG8644 - Sem:ProgramEvaluation for SCOs ▹
This seminar introduces participants to a variety of evaluation approaches appropriate to public sector and nongovernmental organizations engaged in social change, poverty alleviation, education, health and development work. Key issues include: uses of evaluation; alternative evaluation methodologies; evaluation as the process of testing hypotheses about linkages and causality; evaluating for sustainability; stakeholder identification; participatory approaches to evaluation; cross-cultural perspectives on evaluation; funding of evaluation; and, the role of organizational leadership and management in evaluation. Seminar participants review and critique evaluations of development assistance projects sponsored by bilateral, multilateral, and nongovernmental organizations. Additionally, they develop original evaluation designs that allow them to apply critical seminar concepts to a real-life project.
Fall 2015 - MIIS, Spring 2016 - MIIS
IPSS8530 - High-Value Org Consulting ▹
This workshop will be taught by organizational expert and successful government, nonprofit, and private-sector consultant, Dr. Beryl Levinger. Participants will learn tools for analyzing an organization, its culture, its approach to meeting mission, and ecosystem analysis. They will also master key skills for effective organizational consulting including client reconnaissance; client relationship management; and the creation of value-added consultant deliverables. The 15 contact hour workshop in January will be worth 1 credits. Students wishing to earn 2 credits for this workshop will turn additional deliverables during their internship applying the tools they have learned in this workshop to better understand their host organizations.
Spring 2015 - MIIS, Spring 2016 - MIIS
IPSS8670 - High-ValueOrgCnsltingFieldWrk ▹
Students who take IPSS 8530A workshop may submit deliverables in the first month of their internship for one additional credit. These deliverables will help students apply the tools they have learned in the IPSS 8530 workshop to better understand their host organizations.
Spring 2015 - MIIS, Spring 2016 - MIIS
MPAG8644 - Sem:ProgramEvaluation for SCOs
This course will introduce different aspects of Program Evaluation in the first half of the semester. In the second half, students will conduct an evaluation in the field. Students will evaluate selected programs in organizations in the Monterey Bay area. The goals of the course include: a) understanding the process of evaluation; b) gaining familiarity with evaluation concepts, techniques and issues; c) choosing among different alternatives for conducting development evaluations, including data collection, analysis and reporting; and, d) designing an evaluation. We will have specific sessions on the following topics: a) evaluation models; b) new development evaluation approaches; c) impact, descriptive and normative evaluation designs; d) data collection and sampling; e) data analysis and interpretation; e) building a performance-based evaluation; and f) political, social and economic contexts of evaluation.
Fall 2014 - MIIS, Spring 2015 - MIIS