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Assistant Professor

Edgard Coly
McCone Building M226
(831) 647-3506

Professor Coly teaches courses on Africa with emphasis on democracy, peace building, international migrations, environment, security and public health (Sub-Saharan Africa). A nominee for the Institute’s Excellence in Teaching Award, Professor Coly is a frequent contributor to Voice of America, a U.S. Government–funded international news outlet. In addition to presenting papers and chairing panels at academic conferences, he also worked as a consultant for Lidget Green, a contractor for the United States Defense Language Institute (DLI). Professor Coly’s expertise was sought by the National Foreign Language Center of the University of Maryland – College Park in Object Assessment.

Courses Taught

Courses offered in the past two years.

  • Current term
  • Upcoming term(s)

The objective of this course is to inform students about issues in contemporary France, and also to improve their skills in oral and written communication. The course will deal with the following issues:

1. France and Europe: the geography of France, Paris and the urban life, the regions and provinces, languages spoken in France, the European union.

2. The political life: the French Republic, the State, the political parties and elections.

In addition to the readings from the book La France Contemporaine 4th edition by Edmiston and Dumémil (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2009), students will watch news from the French TV stations France 2 or TV5and will do research using the internet, newspapers, and periodicals available at the MIIS library.

Students will practice using the lexicon and structures relevant to their professional objectives. They will have short oral presentations and writing assignments in which they will review the lexicon and grammatical structures encountered in the readings. The course will also include the review of grammar points that pose difficulties for non-native speakers.

Working in groups of 2, students will prepare an oral presentation on a contemporary topic not covered in class.

The level of French required for this course is about the equivalent of four semesters of college French. Students should be able to communicate their ideas clearly both orally and in writing.

Spring 2017 - MIIS, Spring 2018 - MIIS

View in Course Catalog

The course will provide an overview of migration, human rights, and the role of regional and international organizations. We will discuss the recent crisis of refugees from around the world, immigrants’ identity and their integration in the host country and the impact on the people and the economy. The influence of globalization, demographic shifts, regional and international conflicts on the future of migration will also be among the topics to be presented and discussed in this course.

We will closely look at the following:

• International migration laws

• The rights and duties of migrants

• Immigration and the rise of nationalist groups / parties

• Brain Drain

Students are expected to be familiar with the reading of the day in order to fully participate in class discussions,

This class will focus mostly on improving speaking, reading and listening skills. The writing component of language acquisition will weigh less than other skills.

The level of French proficiency recommended is Intermediate High to Advanced Low on the ACTFL language proficiency scale. http://www.actfl.org/publications/guidelines-and-manuals/actfl-proficiency-guidelines-2012/english

Spring 2018 - MIIS

View in Course Catalog

This course aims at informing students about contemporary France. It will also aim at improving students’ oral and written competencies in French. This course is linguistically accessible. Readings are mostly from the chapters of the sole required book. The readings are approximately 15 pages a week, divided in segments of two. The course will be looking at the following issues:

1. Social life: family and sexuality, work and leisure, social welfare.

2. Cultural life: religions, immigration and education.

3. Information and technology: media, technology and trade.

Besides the readings from the book: Edmiston & Duménil, La France Contemporaine, 4th edition. (Heinle Cengage Learning, 2009), students will watch the news from TV5 or France24 and search the internet for supplementary information. Furthermore, a student will be chosen each day to summarize a one-page article from the editorial page of Le Monde; an exercise that will allow students to be up-to date with French life. www.lemonde.fr

Students will practice the lexicon and structures that are related to their professional goals through class discussions and readings.

There will be a grammar component on structures that may be problematic to most of the students.

This class will focus mostly on improving speaking, reading and listening skills. The writing component of language acquisition will weigh less than other skills.

The level of French proficiency recommended is Intermediate Low to Intermediate Mid on the ACTFL language proficiency scale. http://www.actfl.org/publications/guidelines-and-manuals/actfl-proficiency-guidelines-2012/english

Fall 2016 - MIIS, Fall 2017 - MIIS

View in Course Catalog

This course aims to highlight the complexity and challenges of peace building in Burundi, a country that has been plagued by rooted conflicts. Students will learn to identify and understand the characteristics of this divided society and the nature of conflict amongst its ethnic groups. Students will learn the theories and framework that underlie the many peace building approaches and strategies and how they may (are?) be applied to Burundi. This will enhance their ability to match or evaluate the peace building strategies to the root causes of conflicts.

This course will also take a close look at the challenges faced by peacemakers engaged in peace building. The course will examine the possible tensions between actors engaged in peace building and the fighters on the ground.

Fall 2017 - MIIS

View in Course Catalog

This course will be first an analysis of the democratic experience of independent African countries (around 1950s). Then, specific examples will be isolated and studied in detail.

The course will look at a group of countries that share the same colonial heritage. The success or failure to sustain democracy is without a doubt a key factor in the stability (or lack) of some countries.

In the area of security, we will look at themes such as civils conflicts and peace building, poverty and resilience, corruption, migrations (brain drain), remnant of authoritarianism, etc.

Fall 2016 - MIIS

View in Course Catalog

Areas of Interest

I am passionate about the challenges of bringing the perspectives of African people on global issues into the classroom. I consider myself an established educator, yet despite this vast experience, I still get very excited at the prospect of meeting new students at the beginning of every semester here at MIIS. My research interests include: peace building in some of Africa’s deeply divided societies. international migrations, the state of democracy and the rule of law in Africa, democratic (?) elections in Africa, China and Africa relations, and gender inequalities.

Academic Degrees

  • PhD in French Studies, University of Colorado-Boulder, 2000

Professor Coly has been teaching at the Institute since 2001.