Pilot program breaks through educational barriers in Chile

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Ben Thorpe 07
English and Religious Studies double major
Hometown: Damariscotta, Maine

While traveling through Santiago, Chile on a post-graduation, pre-employment jaunt, a friend of a friend helped Ben Thorpe, ′07 obtain a University research position that will test and implement a profound new theory of multi-layered learning – one that could prove groundbreaking for the South American educational system.

As a project development coordinator for the English department at La Universidad Andres Bello in Santiago, Ben is preparing to launch a laboratory style classroom that studies the applicability of The Multiple Intelligences Theory, created by Harvard University professor of education Howard Gardner (howardgardner.com) Multiple intelligences suggests that every individual’s learning potential stems from one or more “intelligence entry points” such as verbal-linguistic, logical-mathematical, interpersonal, spatial, and so on. The theory holds that schools should offer individual centered education with classrooms designed to address a combination of student strengths, rather than a uniform curriculum.

How has Ben’s Messiah College experience prepared him for this important project? “English majors [at Messiah] get a lot of constructive criticism from professors and peers which proves useful on a personal and professional level,” he said. “In the workplace, where thoughtful feedback is sometimes lacking, a background in accepting and adapting constructive criticism is important to revising and ultimately improving one’s work.”

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Posted in 2007, Alumni, English, Religious Studies | Comments Off

Posted on May 22nd, 2008


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