Fall 2024

Fall 2024 Course Descriptions

KROC 500 Foundations: Peace, Justice & Social Change (3 units)(McDougal & Choi-Fitzpatrick; Fall 2023)

The course introduces students to a series of big ideas for making the world more peaceful and just, and how to apply them in shaping their own lives and careers of purpose. The first half of the course features lectures and discussion sections that explore foundational theories behind peace, justice, and social innovation, where they overlap, and where they are in tension. The second half of the course explores specific fields of inquiry and practice in a more intimate setting, with an emphasis on comparing diverse approaches to common problems. Throughout the course, students will be challenged not simply to learn a spectrum of ideas and practices, but to understand how they fit together, where and how to learn more, and how to craft their own educational and professional trajectories so that they can part of the change they want to see in the world. This process has four essential elements: 1) building an inclusive, resilient, and productive culture; 2) getting everyone up to speed on the defining aspects of our field; 3) introducing the unique expertise and experience of Kroc School faculty and staff; and 4) helping you to turn your passion for positive social change into a career.

Dr. Choi-Fitzpatrick’s section on Wednesdays is synchronous online.

KROC 510 Leadership and Organizations (3 units)(Roche; Fall 2024)

Students in this course gain understanding about their personal purpose, goals and leadership style and begin to create their own plan to gain agency and grow as adaptive leaders. The course prepares students to become effective leaders in the peace and justice field by bringing core concepts and theories about leadership, organizations and change alive through experiential learning, case analysis, individual assessment, and self-reflection.

KROC 512 International Justice & Human Rights (3 units)(Sharp, Fall 2024)

This course is an introduction to human rights at the level of intellectual theory and discourse and at the level of “real world” action, controversy and struggle. It examines the moral, philosophical, legal and political bases for international human rights, as well as the complex cocktail of actors and organizations involved in human rights advocacy and enforcement. Other specific topics—including transitional justice, R2P, torture, the law of war, and gender-based repression—will vary from semester to semester and instructor to instructor.

KROC 515 Environmental Peace & Justice (3 units)(McDougal; Fall 2024)

Evidence is mounting that unprecedented economic growth experienced by human societies has induced a state of crisis for the Earth’s ecological systems. Many of the public goods provided by them – fresh water, clean air, abundant fisheries, nutritious soils, low sea levels, and moderate weather, to name a few – are increasingly at risk. Their failure poses existential threats to the societies humans have collectively built over millennia, and heightens the risk of violent conflict. This course will critically examine connections between the three legs of the proverbial sustainable development stool: environment, economy, and peace. We will explore specific issues in an applied, place-based framework, focusing on ways of understanding larger challenges as they manifest themselves in the San Diego region. We will also ask fundamental questions about environmental sustainability: How do current development paradigms create environmental conflicts? What role can we expect technology to play in offsetting our ecological impact or solving our conflicts over scarce resources? What does environmental justice look like? And ultimately, what are our prospects for peace and progress in the face of environmental peril? Class time will be spent on a combination of exploratory field trips, discussions, debates, and participatory community engagement. Deliverables will include reflective journal-keeping, an issue brief, a policy memo, and a final project.

KROC 521 Social Innovation (3 units)(Choi-Fitzpatrick; Fall 2024)

In this introductory course to social innovation, students are introduced to the strategies and processes for creating social change through innovation. Students learn by interacting with social and political entrepreneurs, activists, organizations, and social movements in San Diego/Tijuana. Students analyze cases of individuals and groups who have catalyzed important positive social change through different organizational platforms – in the market, in government, within the nonprofit sector, and increasingly in the space between these three sectors. Throughout the course, students examine social innovation connecting field experiences with readings and in-class discussions. They are introduced in action to the tools and methodologies of participatory innovation, design thinking and measurement and evaluation.

KROC 523 Social Entrepreneurship (3 units)(Cordeiro; Fall 2024)

How can we translate ideas into sustainable initiatives with social impact? In this course students develop the mindset and capabilities of entrepreneurs or intrapreneurs for social change. Through the design of real world projects, students learn key elements for designing sustainable initiatives that create a new social equilibrium better than what existed before: value proposition, financial modeling, measurement and evaluation, among others.

KROC 530 Conflict Analysis & Resolution (3 units)(Federman, Gamaghelyan; Fall 2024)

This course will examine how conflicts are identified and analyzed, from low-level political violence to major armed conflict and what theories and tools exist to resolve these conflicts. Students will read classic works in this interdisciplinary field, gaining an understanding of the different scholarly approaches taken to prevent and resolve armed conflict. Students will work in teams on particular case studies, applying theories learned.

Dr. Gamaghelyan section is hybrid and requires instructor permission.

KROC 531 Intervention Design (3 units)(Farid, Federman; Fall 2024)

The Intervention Design course is a required course for the MS-CMR program. It provides a framework for students to synthesize and apply knowledge and practical skills gained during the program to create a specific conflict management/resolution project. The course is also a chance to create a key Kroc School Portfolio item that students can showcase to prospective employers, donors, or partners.

Throughout the course students will learn how to do the following:

  1. Conduct conflict analysis
  2. Identify and frame a critical need or problem within that conflict context and translate that need or problem into an actionable goal.
  3. Develop a robust literature review and theory of change, demonstrating an ability to apply the learning from the program to develop a theoretically-grounded approach to the problem.
  4. Recognize various intervention design strategies ranging from program design and action research to applied research and advocacy in order to choose an appropriate one for the particular context.
  5. Integrate a number of conflict management and resolution approaches to develop a course of action and recommendations that result in outcomes that culminate in the conceived goal.
  6. Create a robust and persuasive written, visual and oral presentation of the intervention.

Dr. Farid’s section is hybrid and requires instructor permission.

KROC 533 Mediation (3 units) (Gamaghelyan, Staff; Fall 2024) 

This course will focus on skill-building in mediation. Students will learn and practice a variety of tools and methods of mediating conflicts and disputes. Our experiential class will be divided between learning the traditional mediation skills, practice, and theory, including the benefits and limitations of mediation as a dispute resolution method on the one hand, and alternative approaches to mediation on the other. The alternative models will include the needs analysis-based Problem-Solving Workshop, the narrative analysis-based Mediation of History, and the Evolving Designs model aimed at work in multi-party environments.

After taking this course, students will be able to: differentiate among various mediation processes; distinguish between interest-based and needs-based approaches; differentiate between the traditional and alternative mediation practices; demonstrate awareness in regard to ethical dilemmas of mediation practices;  possess the skills to serve as a mediator; design and lead context-appropriate mediation processes.

Staff section is hybrid and requires instructor permission.

KROC 571-01 Immigration and Asylum in Practice (3 units)(Deaton; Fall 2024)

The course begins with an overview of U.S. immigration and asylum policy and how it interfaces with global migration, war, revolution, and climate change. We examine the critical role that race, class, ethnicity and country of origin, and gender played in the development of U.S. immigration law and policy, and how they impact policies today. We look at U.S. asylum policy and examine the role of international law in its implementation. Does the United States comply with the 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol?

Turning to immigration issues confronting us today, we examine immigration policies of current and prior administrations, including DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), family separation, the criminalization of immigration, asylum and other topics. We look at issues specific to our Mexican-American border at San Ysidro, CA.

KROC-590-01 Finance for Leading Change (2 units)(Roche; Fall 2024)

This proposal expands the current one-credit Finance for Leading Change workshop to a two-credit semester-long course. Over the past three years, students’ feedback shows an increased interest in the subject and the need to learn more and deepen financial concepts. Core financial management practices are common to all organizations independent of profit or social purpose. This need implies that an understanding of fundamental financial, accounting, and budgeting practices, tools, and techniques is essential for creating sustainable business models for social impact. This course will give the students a more profound ability to read and interpret financial statements and ratios, analyze working capital and cash flow needs, interpret return on investment models, and create economic forecasts and budgets.

KROC 590-02 Marketing for Social Change (2 units)(Roche; Fall 2024)

Solving the most pressing issues of our times requires understanding the needs, motives, and attitudes of the main stakeholders we aim to influence. For the desired change to occur, messages and interventions must resonate to produce positive and lasting public behavior. The discipline of applying traditional marketing principles and techniques to help in solving these “wicked social problems” is known as social marketing.  For instance, successful social marketing campaigns have helped reduce and prevent smoking, decrease infant mortality, stop the spread of HIV/AIDs, decrease littering, increase recycling, and drive various other societal shifts in the U.S. and across the globe (Andreasen).

KROC 592-01 WKSH: Design Thinking (1 unit)(Rivas Espinosa; Fall 2024)

This workshop provides an opportunity for students to experience the process of Design Thinking. Students in this course gain insight and understanding on the mindsets needed to engage in the design process. It prepares students to use Design Thinking strategies to engage in social change and social innovation projects.

KROC 594-01 Facilitation & Dialogue Skills (3 units)(Staff; Fall 2024)

The ability to facilitate difficult conversations is something that effective practitioners bring to their work. Ranging from a team struggling to agree on a new direction or a community in conflict over challenging issues or a complex shared history, practitioners must learn how to deal with difference, how do to deal with discomfort and how to deal with distractions. In an era characterized by increasing division and polarization, our ability to listen in order to understand rather than reply, has never been more challenged or more important. Being able to engage in healthy dialogues as a participant is a core skill for working on peace, justice and social change.

The aim of this course is to introduce, reinforce and encourage the core skills required by practitioners facilitating and engaging in dialogue. They incorporate both the design and facilitation of conversational space. They complement the skills used by mediators and focus of the class will be on a broad range of methodologies that can be used by someone shaping and holding such spaces.

KROC 594-02 Values, Principles, and Practices of Restorative Justice (3 units)(Horrigan; Fall 2024)

Restorative justice is not a list of specific programs or a clear blueprint for systemic change. It is a theory, social movement, and set of practices that requires a radically different way of understanding and responding to individual and community needs. In this course, we will explore restorative justice and the ideas that form its foundation, question its strengths and shortcomings, examine restorative practices, and investigate opportunities to put theory into practice. We will learn together about the Indigenous origins of restorative justice and how it has been shaped by modern systems. We will think about a framework for conflict resolution that asks first who was harmed and thinks broadly about whose responsibility it is to right the wrong. We will then consider this framework as it applies to some of the most pressing social problems in contemporary society, namely racial inequality and gender-based violence. Students will conclude the course by facilitating a learning experience for peers on an area of interest in the restorative justice field.
This course is synchronous online. 

KROC 594-03 Foundations in Trauma Awareness and Resilience (3 units) (Hanessian; Fall 2024)

This interdisciplinary Foundations Course, central to the “Certificate of Trauma Awareness, Resilience and Restorative Approaches Across the Professions,” is designed to provide an integrative lens on stress and trauma, restorative practice and approaches, and individual and community resilience.

The course combines an academic understanding of the science of trauma with an experiential learning of skill-building practices which emphasize self-reflection, social and emotional awareness, resilience-centered trauma literacy for application in non-clinical settings, and a practical knowledge of restorative approaches across various disciplines.

This Foundations Course is designed for professionals as well as USD graduate students interested in developing their understanding of stress, trauma, development, and adaptive capacity; expanding trauma awareness and cultural sensitivity in context; learning core principles of restorative practice working with communities; and exploring how the integration of trauma awareness, resilience, and restorative approaches can be implemented across professions.

This course is synchronous online. 

KROC-594-04 Media, Nationalism, & Conflict (3 units) (Gamaghelyan; Fall 2024)

Regarded collectively, media is a means of mass communication. It is also the plural form of a “medium” or the means through which social phenomena such as nations and conflicts within and between them are (re)produced. The agencies and structures that (re)produce nationalisms and other forms of social solidarity and conflict do not simply transmit reality as it happens. Even the most impartial and multidimensional transmission is selective and therefore subjective: since it represents a particular ideology, a particular lens, a particular angle, a particular frame, a particular cut, and a particular timeframe. In other words, what we receive through media is inevitably a representation of an event and not the event itself.

The course will look into an array of media ranging from museums and architectures to cinema, literature, and social and mass media. We will explore the storytelling process that includes framing, selecting, narrating, plot construction, and other mechanisms which (re)produce and transform ideologies and other conflict discourses. We will learn to critically analyze a wide variety of texts and visual materials, differentiate between narrative structures that (re)produce violence and those that (re)produce peace, and envision discursive interventions.

KROC 597-01 Professional Portfolio (1 unit) (Cordeiro; Fall 2024)

The Kroc School equips changemakers. This course will help you to link the concepts, skills, and work-products developed in your time here with the professional requirements of the sector you wish to enter or return to upon graduation. In particular, this course will provide the time and support required to compile a professional portfolio composed of the items specified by your degree program.

Central to the Portfolio is a Curriculum Vitae highlighting your accomplishments to date. The Portfolio will also include a Reflective Essay, which serves as a coherent framework for drawing together lessons learned from your graduate studies at the Kroc School, and articulate your professional goals and trajectory. It should build upon your CV and draw upon a body of coursework and critical reflection. The essay should explain why the projects and documents completed in core courses and electives and/or practicum were selected for inclusion in the portfolio and how they are illustrative of the student’s learning.

The rest of the Portfolio consists of work products specified as eligible to include in guidelines for the MA in Peace and Justice, MA in Social Innovation, and MS in Conflict Management and Resolution. These can include policy memos, strategy memos, blogs, newspaper or magazine articles, grant applications, or book reviews.

Over the course of the class meetings, we will work to identify and refine these work products, such that they showcase your best work for a professional audience. Upon completion, students will be able to:

  1. Articulate a clear narrative about their time at USD, and its connection to their professional objectives.
  2. Highlight their accomplishments through a polished resume.
  3. Showcase professionally valuable skills and abilities

WKSH: Stress Resilience (1 unit) (Hanessian; Fall 2024, SYNCHRONOUS ONLINE)

This interactive, experiential workshop, delivered in four modules over four consecutive weeks, will explore the science and practice of stress resilience. Developing foundational knowledge about the dynamics of stress, its interconnected systems, and response patterns on brain, body, cognition, and behavior supports practitioners to strengthen skills and capacities of embodied awareness, emotional agility, cognitive reappraisal, and cultural sensitivity, which can prevent burnout and vicarious traumatic stress in the field. A basic understanding of the science of stress, state, and story, integrated with a wide variety of inclusive evidence-based practices and Indigenous approaches, provide a holistic lens on cultivating collective self-care, interdependent resilience, and sustainability.

Gender, Power and Peace (3 units) (Zanoni; Fall 2024, Hybrid)

This course invites learners to consider the intersection of gender and power as constructs that influence the practice of peacebuilding. Through the examination of critical theoretical frameworks (i.e., critical race theory, queer theory, postcolonial/decolonial theory, feminist theory, etc.) this course invites learners to activate a gender lens through an exploration of how power, structural violence, and gendered identities shape both the world we live in and how we engage as peacemakers/builders, humanitarians, human rights workers, activists, and “pracademics”. Through a series of interactive discussions, lectures, guest speakers, group-led activities, and research, learners will complete a portfolio-eligible research project and engage within their communities of praxis to apply their learning.

*This course is collaboratively designed with students and alumni of the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies