The College of Educational & Behavioral Sciences (CEBS) is one of the well-established faculties, which was evolved from the former Pedagogical Sciences Department. The history of Pedagogical Sciences (Pdsc) department is as old as the history of Bahir Dar University (BDU). PdSc Department, the then Academy of Pedagogy, was established in 1972, by the tripartite agreement of the Imperial Government Ministry of Education and Fine Arts, in collaboration with UNESCO and UNDP. The Department of Pedagogical Sciences has made tremendous changes in the course of those years. The current Faculty of Educational and Behavioral Sciences is, thus, the outcome of the then Pedagogical Sciences department.
According to the UNDP, UNESCO and Ethiopian project document, the basic proposals included that an institute for the education of primary teacher-educators is established at Bahir Dar under the leadership of the MoE and was called the Ethiopian Academy of pedagogy; the nucleus of which is the department of pedagogical science.
The department, therefore, started to train learners in the field of pedagogical sciences as a major study area since 1973 when Academy of Pedagogy was inaugurated under the auspices of the Ministry of Education and Fine Arts. Its general purpose was, thus, to train multipurpose primary education professionals capable of adopting primary education to rural life and rural development. Therefore, the major impetus to the inception of the Academy of pedagogy was quality of education, shortage of teacher educators and Ethiopianization of the staff of the TTIs.
Later in 1977/8, the first-course catalog containing the four-year degree program was produced, which included Amharic, English, Geography, and Mathematics as minor areas of study till 1999. The department has once again decided to upgrade the minor area subjects into major areas. After making training needs assessment all over the country, the department changed its major-minor training into composite major training. Since 2000, the department started to provide a Composite Major bachelors degree in Pedagogical Sciences and in one of the pre-existing subject areas. This has stayed for the last ten years.
In order to reform its programs, the Department, starting from the year 2006/07, conducted an extensive needs assessment on the availability of graduates who could work in different areas of the education sector. The needs assessment result revealed that there is a high scarcity of adequately trained individuals who could work as School Psychologists, Special Needs Experts, Adult Educators and Community Developers, Educational Planners and Administrators and Curriculum Experts in different institutions and at different levels of government structure. Furthermore, since 2005, the department has launched a Master’s degree program in fields of Educational Psychology, Curriculum Studies, Educational Leadership, Educational Planning and Management, and Principalship.
In 2008, consequently, pedagogical sciences department has been upgraded from department to Faculty level with its name the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences (CEBS). Currently, CEBS has launched 6 undergraduate, 9 postgraduate and 3 Ph.D. programs that would satisfy the huge demand of qualified human resource in the area.