Developing and Supporting Multiculturalism and Leadership Development: International Perspectives on Humanizing Higher Education: Volume 30

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Part I: Diversity and Inclusivity

Abstract

Education needs to be viewed in a holistic manner; it does not end when one simply acquires a degree or a job. Education creates human beings, shapes them into what they are and influences their behavior and attitude toward life. It contributes to creating a long-lasting effect on people’s mind and attitude. Developing a curriculum is not an easy task as it involves various dimensions of life, and one of them is to inculcate the idea of inclusivity and multiculturalism in the minds of young learners and help them to become effective leaders in the future. The process of teaching, delivery of lessons, assessment, evaluation and various pedagogical approaches needs to be aligned to deliver multicultural education. Society’s values, beliefs and goals should be translated into a curriculum that is relevant and connects students to society. Humanizing education to instill values that supports inclusivity and equality should be built around the cultural context synthesizing opinions and facts derived from the work of researchers and academics. This book aims to review research work conducted by academics across the world. Authors argue how social justice education and inclusion should be an inherent part of the curriculum. Strategies and tools are suggested that can strengthen the learning abilities of students and create an attitude of appreciation toward inclusivity. Case studies and interventions that have been effective are cited from Africa to the USA and UK, which can help create an intentional design of a classroom environment supporting multiculturalism. The book illustrates the importance of appropriate curriculum development involving all stakeholders and the integration of multicultural education in the curriculum. Concepts such as Ubuntu and academic freedom toward leadership development have also been stressed in this book.

Abstract

Research I universities are increasingly requiring a “diversity” course as part of the general education curriculum. In this chapter, the authors explore how diversity requirement course (DRC) proposals are framed at their institution and share how instructors at their university are framing their own student learning outcomes for these courses: from the perspective of multiculturalism or from the perspective of social justice? The authors describe how a lens of multicultural education frames discussions of diversity as appreciation, awareness, and tolerance, and contend that this approach alone is not sufficient to meet either the intent of DRC initiatives or the goals of equity and inclusion in academia. The authors argue that social justice education (SJE) is a more appropriate instructional framework for DRCs, as it is a humanizing approach that necessitates the crafting of student learning outcomes which specifically address actionable strategies toward opposing marginalization. The authors include selected results from a campus-wide DRC outcomes survey and separate focus group feedback, emphasizing the critical assessment and campus climate aspects of these data. Finally, the authors examine how their faculty development programs and resources are currently assisting DRC instructors with identifying and meeting their needs, and how other faculty developers can expand their support structures in the future to align with the philosophy of SJE.

Abstract

This chapter seeks to help and support online educators in their efforts to improve tomorrow. Specifically, the chapter shares practical strategies and tools that online educators can easily apply, adapt, and/or personalize in order to help promote a mindfully multicultural classroom in their online classrooms and programs. The chapter includes a wide range of actionable tools and exercises to help online instructors optimize the learning experience for all students by building upon the unique strengths and diverse cultural backgrounds of all students in their online classrooms. The strategies help instructors leverage diversity as a means to promote equity and social justice in online programs and, ultimately, the world as a whole. The chapter relies upon Gollnick and Chinn’s (2017) six beliefs that are fundamental to multicultural education and presents strategies from two perspectives or lenses (student-focused and faculty-focused). Approaching the issue from a dual-sided lens is intended to best support the ultimate goal of improving the student learning experience. Emphasis is placed on both public and private interactions between faculty and students. Public interactions include all discussion board and announcement communications. Public interactions also include resources that are shared in the online classroom for all students’ benefit.

Abstract

The European Forum for Enhanced Collaboration in Teaching (EFFECT, 2015–2019) (EFFECT, 2019), a project co-financed by the European Commission, through its Erasmus+ programme, has been exploring effective methods for university teachers’ development at the European level, including pedagogical staff development “modules” to support inclusivity and citizenship in teaching and learning practice. Throughout the project and in this chapter, the authors have taken “inclusivity” to convey an attitude and appreciation for principles which inform “inclusion” as a practice – in the context of reflective and reflexive practice the words become largely interchangeable.

The way academic staff teach is of critical importance in any reform designed to enhance inclusion and citizenship in higher education. Conveying these values-related topics in an academic context hardly lends itself to a traditional pedagogical training model. Promoting inclusion means stimulating discussion, challenging stereotypes and unconscious biases, as well as improving educational and social frameworks. The Change Laboratory methodology (Engeström, 2001) was chosen for the pedagogical staff development workshops under EFFECT, with a view to engaging teaching staff in a deeper reflection about the topics and about their teaching practice. Change Laboratory is an intervention-research methodology that aims at reconceptualizing activity: it intends to provoke authentic reactions, responses and disagreements among the participants and provides opportunity for them to work together to reimagine their activities and to identify “concrete” solutions that address persisting issues in their practice. The theory takes a broad conceptualization of “activity” and “practice,” which is not specific to the education sector or the “classroom.” The Change Laboratory is a methodology designed to support the “expansive learning cycle” described by Engeström and as such can be understood as a theory of change which the EFFECT project team applied to a pan-European higher education learning and teaching context.

In 2017, the project team designed and implemented four physical, face-to-face pedagogical staff development workshops on inclusivity and citizenship skills based on this methodology, attended by over 100 participants from across Europe. In 2018, the workshop model was adapted to a virtual learning environment and three online sessions on inclusivity and citizenship skills for higher education teaching staff were offered.

The pedagogical staff development workshops enabled participants to use open reflective questions to provoke discussion about the challenges faced in their own learning and teaching contexts, think about their pedagogical practices and identify their unconscious biases. Most of the participants rated the workshops as very good and innovative, and considered the methodology an effective vehicle for promoting meaningful open discussion.

In this chapter, the authors reflect on the design, implementation and lessons learnt from the pedagogical staff development workshops on inclusivity and citizenship skills. The authors propose a set of recommendations for individual teaching staff and institutional leadership to consider when addressing continuous professional development for inclusivity and citizenship.

Abstract

Higher education in Botswana is believed to transform life through the provision of job opportunities for those with the privilege to access it. Parents believe that when their children graduate with degrees, this will alleviate them from poverty, and hence encourage their children to work hard and perform to their best ability. Higher education is viewed as the pinnacle a good life – an assurance of a better future for the extended family kinship.

Unfortunately, access to higher education institutions is a prerogative of those who can attain high marks in their last national or international examinations. When students do well, they receive full scholarship from the Botswana Government to attend any institution of higher learning of their choice. However, most students from the marginalized or minority groups tend to fail to access higher education due to various socio-economic challenges they face.

Part II: Humanistic Pedagogy

Abstract

A holistic approach has been applied to teaching the whole student, yet rarely emphasized in faculty development in higher education. Similarly, learner-centered instruction has become more prevalent in higher education as a way of teaching students, but less so as a concept for faculty pedagogy. This chapter examines the psychological underpinnings of holistic, learner-centered instruction and describes strategies and materials for applying these principles to faculty development so that higher education environments are humanized for culturally diverse faculty and students. Conceptual frameworks underlying the approaches emphasize humanistic theories and the needs of adult learners. Topics addressed include: motivation, cooperative learning, culturally responsive teaching, active learning, metacognition, teaching for transfer, nonverbal communication and instructional technology. Faculty development efforts described include both interdisciplinary activities and a special project with the School of Engineering. While modeling holistic, learner-centered teaching in faculty development, university instructors are engaged in their own learning of effective pedagogy and their experiences and knowledge can be used subsequently to enhance student success in their courses.

A holistic, learner-centered approach enables higher education faculty to create stimulating, nurturing, safe and respectful classroom environments which promote student engagement, content mastery, cognitive skill development, intrinsic motivation and attitudes which foster thinking and learning. Consequently, this chapter provides faculty, administrators and policymakers with tools that can be used to help students, especially at graduate and post-graduate levels, learn academic material and become enlightened global citizens with enhanced thinking abilities and affect to meet current and future personal, professional and societal needs.

Abstract

Students entering higher education often lack a sense of cultural awareness and a basic understanding of what diversity, multiculturalism, and intercultural competence (ICC) have to do with their future goals. Ironically, student populations tend to be diverse in and of themselves. Yet the critical element that is often missing is their ability to interact across these differences, to confront (and engage with) their discomfort in the face of something new and unfamiliar. Getting students to overcome this discomfort so that meaningful learning and critical skill-building can take place is challenging for a number of reasons. Students are typically more motivated to expend effort in a course if they can recognize and appreciate the value and relevance that the material may have on other areas of their lives, most notably their professional pursuits. This appreciation can best be cemented though the use of active, rather than passive, learning strategies. This chapter introduces strategies for the intentional design of a classroom environment that will engage students and promote the development of ICC. Activities and assignments designated as promoting the accumulation of specific knowledge (K), the development of particular skills (S), or the exploration of certain attitudes (A) are shared.

Abstract

This chapter explores the relationship between higher education leadership and humanizing pedagogy. It is premised on the assumption that higher education leadership, as a social construct, is both a philosophical problem and policy imperative. Yet, the fourth industrial revolution and artificial intelligence (AI) imperatives have far-reaching implications for the “dominant” higher education leadership theory and practice. With this in mind, this chapter advocates for a broader and culturally inclusive understanding of higher education leadership perspectives. Among others, this thesis is that in a developing country context such as South Africa, for example, the dominant approach of higher education leadership should be guided by the Ubuntu principles and humanizing pedagogy. The author argue that the humanizing pedagogy and Ubuntu principles, in a culturally diverse setting of the fourth industrial revolution era and AI, have the prospects of changing the current unacceptable levels of performance and bring change in a larger scale in higher education institutions.

Abstract

The development and progressive refinement of the concept of academic freedom has generally occurred without material participation by the American business school. Whereas the business school looms large as a component of higher education in the twenty-first century, most believe that it is indifferent or perhaps hostile to the concept of academic freedom. For the most part, business school faculty fail to share the liberal political leanings of their colleagues from across the university, and therefore are less likely to find themselves to need academic freedom protection from those who would like to squelch opinions that run contrary to government and establishment elites. This chapter recognizes the fundamental alignment of what is taught in the business school and what business faculty research. However, that does not gainsay prospects for academic freedom protection when such is not the case. The chapter explores public interest dimensions of being a faculty member in a business school and how these might be manifested. Examples of controversial work are offered for each of the major business disciplines.

Abstract

The chapter focuses on humanizing higher education by infusing ethical leadership in the curriculum to improve the public service. Its design is qualitative in nature and literature reviews and document analysis were employed in compiling the chapter. It followed an interpretive paradigm and used Kolb’s Experiential Learning Theory as a lens in understanding humanizing education in higher education. Nowadays ethical leadership is of paramount importance in higher education and in the public service. Ethical leadership should be based on the moral person and on the moral manager. The moral person component focuses on desirable personal qualities of leaders such as being perceived as honest, fair and trustworthy. The moral manager focuses on the leader and uses transactional efforts such as rewards and punishments to reinforce desired behaviors. Soft skills are very important in higher education and should be transferred through coursework. Students need to be supported in all aspects of education including the academic, emotional and social demands in higher education.

Name Index

Pages 197-203
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Subject Index

Pages 205-207
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Cover of Developing and Supporting Multiculturalism and Leadership Development: International Perspectives on Humanizing Higher Education
DOI
10.1108/S2055-3641202030
Publication date
2020-09-23
Book series
Innovations in Higher Education Teaching and Learning
Editors
Series copyright holder
Emerald Publishing Limited
ISBN
978-1-83909-461-3
eISBN
978-1-83909-460-6
Book series ISSN
2055-3641