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multicultural awareness project for institutional transformation map it

Multicultural Awareness Project for Institutional Transformation: MAP IT

Jeanne L. Higbee

Presentation made at the

17th International Conference on

The First-Year Experience

contact information
Contact Information
  • Center for Research on Developmental Education and Urban Literacy (CRDEUL) General College, University of Minnesota

Appleby Hall, 128 Pleasant Street SE Minneapolis, MN 55455

web sites for resources
Web Sites for Resources
  • Go to to download the full MAP IT report and a comprehensive bibliography free of charge
  • Go to http://www.gen.umn/research/ctad to download the film, “An Uncertain Welcome” and other materials related to Universal Instructional Design and curriculum transformation free of charge
presentation agenda
Presentation Agenda
  • Introduction: The value of diversity in the first-year experience; the role of the General College Multicultural Concerns Committee
  • Conceptual and Theoretical Foundations
  • Research Process and Summary of Quantitative and Qualitative Findings
  • Implications for Practice
conceptual and theoretical foundations
Conceptual and Theoretical Foundations
  • Definition Issues
  • Changes in Our Approaches to Diversity and Multiculturalism
  • Theoretical Framework: James Banks
defining diversity

Defining Diversity

“Diversity signifies the simple recognition of the existence of different social group identities.”

(Miksch et al., 2003, p. 5)

inclusive definition of diversity
Inclusive Definition of Diversity
  • race
  • gender
  • ethnicity
  • religion
  • socioeconomic class
  • age
  • home language
  • sexual orientation
  • disability
defining multiculturalism

Defining Multiculturalism

“If diversity is an empirical condition . . ., multiculturalism names a particular posture towards this reality.”

(Miksch et al., 2003, p. 6)

defining multiculturalism1

Defining Multiculturalism

“an idea, an educational reform movement, and a process”

(Banks, 2001, p. 2)


“As an idea, multicultural education seeks to create equal educational opportunities for all students, including those from different racial, ethnic, and social-class groups. Multicultural education tries to create equal educational opportunities for all students by changing the total school environment so that it will reflect the diverse cultures and groups within society and within the nation’s classrooms. Multicultural education is a process because its goals are ideals that teachers and administrators should constantly strive to achieve.”(Banks, 2001)

transitions in how we have approached diversity in the u s
Transitions in how we have approached diversity in the U.S.
  • intolerance
  • tolerance
  • acceptance
  • affirmation
  • celebration
  • critical reflection
  • transformation
james banks 5 dimensions of multicultural education
James Banks’ 5 Dimensions of Multicultural Education
  • content integration
  • knowledge construction
  • prejudice reduction
  • equity pedagogy
  • empowering school culture
multicultural awareness project for institutional transformation map it1

Multicultural Awareness Project for Institutional Transformation (MAP IT)

Adapted for higher education

from Banks et al. by

Karen L. Miksch, Jeanne L. Higbee, Rashne R. Jehangir, Dana Britt Lundell, Patrick L. Bruch, Kwabena Siaka,

and Michael V. Dotson


Adapted with permission ofJames A. Banks, Center for Multicultural Education, University of Washington, Seattle, for higher education from:

Banks, J.A., Cookson, P., Gay, G., Hawley, W.D., Irvine, J.J., Nieto, S., Schofield, J.W., & Stephan, W.G. (2001).

Diversity Within Unity:

Essential Principles for Teaching and Learning

in a Multicultural Society.

Seattle, WA: Center for Multicultural Education,

College of Education, University of Washington.


map it contents
MAP IT Contents
  • 10 Guiding Principles
  • The MAP IT Process: Focus on collaboration
  • 4 Questionnaires: Administrator, Faculty and Instructional Staff, Student Support Services, Student
  • Bibliography
guiding principles
Guiding Principles
  • Institutional Governance, Organization, and Equity
  • Faculty and Staff Development
  • Student Development
  • Intergroup Relations
  • Assessment
research process
Research Process
  • Collaboration with Multicultural Concerns Committee in General College (GC)
  • Pilot study of faculty and staff within the General College, University of Minnesota: Quantitative and qualitative findings
  • Pilot study of GC students
  • Administration to MCTC students, ongoing
  • Follow-up study of GC students, ongoing
summary of qualitative findings from faculty staff pilot study
Summary of Qualitative Findingsfrom Faculty-Staff Pilot Study
  • Gathered and analyzed open-ended comments from respondents
  • Responses were about the guiding principles, related to their work and learning environments, or reactions to survey itself
  • Looked at themes and issues people brought up themselves, emphasizing what emerged from their perspectives and concerns about multiculturalism in the institution
qualitative findings cont d
Qualitative Findings, cont’d.
  • Examples of common issues:
    • Position in the college (employment category as it relates to individual work in multiculturalism)
    • Policies and Practice (how policies and principles of multiculturalism play out in reality--good or bad)
    • Power proximity (how people perceive their own influence and ability to change things)
    • Concerns/Perceptions of Individual versus Community (reactions such as isolation, passion about work, frustration/anger, segregation, etc.)
    • Professional Development (training, information--availability or lack thereof)
quantitative results from faculty staff pilot study in gc
Quantitative Results from Faculty-Staff Pilot Study in GC
  • Pilot used a 5-point scale
  • Does the General College (GC) ensure that all students have equitable opportunities to learn and meet high standards? M=4.30
  • Do admissions policies allow for enrollment of students from diverse backgrounds? M=4.70
quantitative results cont
Quantitative Results (cont.)
  • Does GC provide appropriate role models for all students? M=3.50
  • Are successful efforts being made to recruit a diverse administrative, teaching, student support services, and clerical staff? M=3.93
  • Do teaching strategies accommodate diverse student interests and learning styles? M=3.80
  • Are students in GC taught about stereo-typing and other related biases? M=4.20
quantitative results cont1
Quantitative Results (cont.)
  • Are students taught about values that are shared by many cultures, such as justice, equality, freedom, peace, compassion, and charity? M=4.05
  • Do faculty and staff implement these values in their interactions with students? M=3.93
  • With one another? M=3.66
  • Is advocacy around multicultural issues central to the student services mission? M=4.41
student perceptions from pilot
Student Perceptions from Pilot
  • Revised questionnaires use a 4-point scale
  • Do you think it is beneficial to be part of a multicultural environment? M=3.49
  • Does GC operate in a manner that values a multicultural learning environment? M=3.42
  • Do administrators, faculty, and staff demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of diverse groups? M=2.95
student perceptions discussion questions
Student Perceptions: Discussion Questions
  • How do you think that your students might respond to these questions?
  • Do you think that your faculty’s, staff’s, and administrators’ perceptions would line up with those of your students?
  • How might you use this assessment tool in your institution? Your classroom?
implications for practice

Implications for Practice

How can we promote the centrality of multiculturalism in our everyday practice in higher education?