Dan Butin Education Dissertation Editor

Dan Sarofian-Butin, PhD, was the Founding Dean and is now a Full Professor in the School of Education & Social Policy at Merrimack College. He is also the Executive Director of the Center for Engaged Democracy. Dr. Sarofian-Butin is the author and editor of more than eighty academic publications, including eight books, three of which have been translated into other languages. Dr. Sarofian-Butin’s scholarship focuses on engaged learning, community engagement, teacher preparation and policy, and higher education policy given the rise of digital learning technologies. He has been named as one of the top 200 “Public Presence” Education Scholars four years in a row and blogs at the Huffington Post and InsideHigherEd. Dr. Sarofian-Butin has consulted for, among others, the US Department of Education, the National Science Foundation, and the Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U) on these topics and has been a speaker on these topics nationally and internationally at institutions such as Duke University, MIT, the University of Toronto, and the University of West Indies. He has been interviewed in national and international media outlets such as the Los Angeles Times, the BBC and Forbes magazine. Prior to working in higher education, Dr. Sarofian-Butin was a middle school math and science teacher and the chief financial officer of Teach For America. More about Dr. Sarofian-Butin’s work can be found at www.danbutin.net.


Teacher preparation -- whether through traditional programs within higher education or through "alternative" pathways -- is usually composed of two key components: (1) academic coursework and (2) field-based experiences such as student-teaching. I refer to the former -- which is usually a combination of subject matter content knowledge, pedagogical preparation, and pedagogical content knowledge -- as the opportunity to learn; the latter I refer to as the opportunity to practice. My academic work focuses on an all-too-often missing component: the opportunity to change. Namely, teacher preparation offers one of the few opportunities for future teachers to think through the assumptions and implications of their educational experiences and goals and begin to develop, articulate, and implement a more robust model of what engaged teaching and learning would look like. We have all been shaped by an implicit “apprenticeship of observation” that normalizes and routinizes a passivity that privileges shallow learning and undermines our attempts to create exactly the kind of engaging experiences we all claim to want to create in our classrooms. This “opportunity to change” is especially critical given the demographic changes in our society, deep civic divides, and changing societal notions of what it means to be educated. Below are links to some of my key articles on these issues as well as a listing of all of my scholarship on these issues. 
  • Dan Sarofian-Butin. (2017). “Democracy Dies in Dualisms: A Response to Atkinson’s ‘Dewey & Democracy’.” Democracy & Education, 25(2), Article 7.
  • Dan Butin. (2016). “A Review of Marie Menna Pagliaro’s A Blueprint for Preparing Teachers: Producing the Best Educators for Our Children”, In Teachers College Record. (invited book review. Was one of the most viewed articles in Teachers College Record in 2016.)
  • Dan Butin. (2013). “Beyond Dependency: Strategies for Saving Foundations”, Critical Questions in Education. Volume 4(2). pp. 60-71. (co-authored with Aaron Schutz).
  • Dan Butin. (2010). The Education Dissertation: A Guide for Practitioner-Scholars. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press. [To be translated into Chinese in 2017.]
  • Dan Butin. (2010). “So Close and Yet So Far To Go: A Review of Teacher Education, Diversity, and Community Engagement in Liberal Arts Colleges” in Teachers College Record.
  • Dan Butin. (2008). “Student Resistance” In Encyclopedia of the Social and Cultural Foundations of Education, edited by Eugene F. Provenzo, Jr. NY: SAGE Publications.
  • Dan Butin. (2008). “Lessons from an Urban Classroom: A Review of Schultz’s Spectacular Things Happen Along the Way.” Educational Studies, 44, pp. 289-293.
  • Dan Butin. (2008). 100 Experiential Learning Activities for Social Studies, Literature, and the Arts. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press. (co-authored with Eugene F. Provenzo, Jr. and Anthony Angelini). 
  • Dan Butin. (2007). “Dark Times Indeed: NCATE, Social Justice, and the Marginalization of Multicultural Foundations.”, Journal of Educational Controversy, 2(2).
  • Dan Butin. (2007). “Re-Reading Dewey: A Review of David Hansen’s John Dewey and Our Educational Prospect”, Education Review.
  • Dan Butin. (2007). “Character Education and the Philosophy of Blame: A Response to Lynda Stone” Philosophy of Education Yearbook, 2007.
  • Dan Butin. (2006). “Putting Foucault to Work in Educational Research: A Review”, Journal of Philosophy of Education. 40(3). Pp. 371-380.
  • Dan Butin. (2005). “How Social Foundations of Education Matters to Teacher Preparation: A Policy Brief”. Educational Studies, 38(3). Pp. 214-229.
  • Dan Butin. (2005). “Is Anyone Listening? Educational Policy Perspectives on the Social Foundations of Education”. Educational Studies, 38(3). Pp. 286-297.
  • Dan Butin. (2005). “’I Don’t Buy It’: Student Resistance, Social Justice, and Identity Construction”, Inventio 7(1).
  • Dan Butin. (2005). “Introduction: Teaching Social Foundations” In D. Butin (Ed.) Teaching Social Foundations of Education: Contexts, Theories, and Issues.  Pp. xi-xxii. Mahwah: NJ. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • Dan Butin. (2005). “Identity (Re)Construction and Student Resistance” In D. Butin (Ed.) Teaching Social Foundations of Education: Contexts, Theories, and Issues.  Pp. 109-126. Mahwah: NJ. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • Dan Butin. (2005). “Is There a Social Foundations Canon? An Interview with Eric Bredo, Wendi Kohli, Joseph Newman and Barbara Thayer-Bacon” pp. 29-48, In D. Butin (Ed.) Teaching Social Foundations of Education: Contexts, Theories, and Issues.  Mahwah: NJ. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • Dan Butin. (2005). “Diversity, Democracy, and Definitions: Contested Positions for the Future of the Social Foundations” In D. Butin (Ed.) Teaching Social Foundations of Education: Contexts, Theories, and Issues.  Pp. 191-200. Mahwah: NJ. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • Dan Butin. (2005). Guest Editor. “How Social Foundations of Education Matters to Teacher Preparation? A Policy Brief”. Educational Studies, 38(3). Pp. 214-229.
  • Dan Butin. (2005). Teaching Social Foundations of Education: Contexts, Theories, and Issues. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Publishers. (Editor).
  • Dan Butin. (2004). “The Foundations of Preparing Teachers: Are Education Schools Really ‘Intellectually Barren’ and Ideological?” Teachers College Record.
  • Dan Butin. (2003). “The Impact of Virginia’s Accountability Plan on High School English Departments” In Daniel L. Duke. (Ed.) Leadership in the Age of Accountability.  Albany, NY: SUNY Press.  Co-authored with Daniel L Duke., and Amy Troup.
  • Dan Butin. (2003). “The Limits of Categorization: Re-Reading Multicultural Education”, In Educational Studies, 34(1). Pp. 62 – 70.
  • Dan Butin. (2002). “This Ain’t Talk Therapy: Problematizing and Extending Anti-Oppressive Education” In Educational Researcher. 31(3). Pp. 14-16.
  • Dan Butin. (2001). “If This is Resistance I Would Hate to See Domination: Retrieving Michel Foucault’s Notion of Resistance in Educational Research” In Educational Studies, 32(2), pp. 157-176.
  • Dan Butin. (2000). Rethinking High School. Charlottesville, VA: Thomas Jefferson Center for Educational Design.
  • Dan Butin. (1998). “Rethinking Educational Design in New School Construction”, In International Journal of Educational Reform. 7(2). Pp. 158 – 167. With Daniel L. Duke, Bill Bradley, Margaret Grogan and Monica Gillespie.

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