Dr. Tom Simek, IIRP Associate ProfessorIIRP Associate Professor Dr. Tom Simek contributed this piece about some changes to the IIRP's introductory courses. For those who have taken these classes, they might be interested to know about the changes. The changes will make it easier for people to get course credit and to take introductory courses if they live at a distance from the Bethlehem, Pennsylvania campus or if they participate in IIRP professional development events:

"A number of exciting changes will be taking place regarding the three introductory courses FN501, FN502, and FN503.  If you have already attended both the 'Introduction to Restorative Practices' and 'Using Circles Effectively' professional development events, you can earn 1-credit tuition free by registering and completing a written reflection paper emailed to your instructor. This 1-credit course, FN501 has been renamed Basic Restorative Practices: (Part I). This is retroactive to January, 2009.

"The old FN502: Restorative Conferencing and FN503: Family Group Decision Making will now be combined as FN505: Basic Restorative Practices (Part II). Students are eligible to receive 2 graduate school credits for this course. Students meet for two days and then complete 12 hours of online work as well as a reflection paper. This course explores philosophy, theories, practices, models and skills of restorative practices as they apply to families and communities, with a special emphasis on restorative conferencing and family conferencing and the informal applications of those processes. The first FN505 will be offered this December 3-4, 2011 at the Bethlehem Campus.

"Finally, we will offer a new course: FN500, which is the combined equivalent to FN501: Basic Restorative Practices (Part I) and FN505: Basic Restorative Practices (Part II). It is offered as four days of professional development plus 12 hours of coursework online and earns 3 graduate credits.

"As a faculty we are continuously updating and refining the graduate school courses to offer a more meaningful curriculum to our graduate students who can then address the needs of the populations that they serve."

To see all IIRP graduate school offerings, for fall 2011 and spring 2012, click here. You may also call the Registrar at 610-807-9745 and inquire about our free introductory courses.

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