Thomas M. Philip Joins the GSE Faculty

May 30, 2018

We are pleased to announce that THOMAS M. PHILIP, an alumnus of Berkeley and the GSE, is returning as the faculty director of our teacher education program, Berkeley Educators for Equity and Excellence (BE3).

Philip, currently an Associate Professor in the Graduate School of Education & Information Studies at UCLA, where he teaches in the Division of Urban Schooling and in Center X’s Teacher Education Program, will begin his appointment at Berkeley on July 1, 2018.

“The teacher education programs at Berkeley have a rich history of preparing teacher leaders who work at the powerful intersection of theory and practice as they strive toward more equitable and just schools and societies,” Philip said.

“With colleagues and partners, I am committed to making BE3 an exemplar program of teacher education that builds on the strengths, wishes, and aspirations of communities in the San Francisco Bay Area while advancing research and practice in the larger field of teacher education.”

Philip’s research focuses on how teachers make sense of power and hierarchy in classrooms, schools, and society. He is interested in how teachers act on their sense of agency as they navigate and ultimately transform classrooms and institutions toward more equitable, just, and democratic practices and outcomes. His most recent scholarship explores the possibilities and tensions that emerge with the use of digital learning technologies in the classroom, particularly discourses about the promises of these tools with respect to the significance or dispensability of teacher pedagogy.

“I strive to work on problems of teaching and learning that are politically and socially consequential for people and sit at the tensions of disparate theoretical and methodological approaches,” he said.

“I am keen to explore and nurture intersecting interests with students and faculty within the GSE and across campus, and with community partners, as we work on the complex problems of teaching and learning that matter most for young people, educators, communities, and society.”

Philip’s research has been recognized by the Spencer Midcareer Grant; the National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship; the AERA Division G (Social Context of Education) Early Career Award; the AERA Division C (Learning & Instruction) Jan Hawkins Award for Early Career Contributions to Humanistic Research and Scholarship in Learning Technologies; and the National Association for Multicultural Education’s Research Award. His scholarship has been published in journals such as Harvard Educational Review; Cognition and Instruction; Journal of Teacher Education; and Teaching and Teacher Education.

Philip holds a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, and a PhD in Cognition and Development, both from Berkeley.

More about the BE3 program

Berkeley Educators for Equity and Excellence (BE3) is an 18-month teacher education program in which candidates earn both a master’s of arts degree, and a teaching credential in either elementary or secondary education.

Educators. BE3 supports a diverse set of credential candidates to develop ambitious, equity-focused teaching practice, grounded in research, disciplinary and professional content knowledge, and built through strong collaborative relationships across the community of educators. BE3 teachers are an integral part of UC Berkeley’s GSE community of educators made up of credential candidates, doctoral students, professors, researchers, and local school partners, all of whom share the common goal of improving teaching and learning.

Equity. BE3 is committed to the realization of equitable outcomes for all K-12 students. To this end, we work to develop teachers and learners who meaningfully engage in the transformation of local educational spaces and society at large. BE3 teachers are able to recognize their own biases as well as the biases of others, including the authors of texts used in the program, in order to engage an asset-minded stance to effectively advocate against systemic barriers including micro-aggressions and culturally-based deficit framing of students.

Excellence. BE3 is devoted to the public good and committed to integrating the highest quality of interdisciplinary scholarship and classroom practice. As a community of educators grounded in theory and practice, we develop, refine and implement cutting-edge knowledge and technology for the betterment of schooling and society. BE3 teachers are knowledgeable, resourceful, and reflective educators, who strive to transform teaching and learning in public schools and communities.