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1

EDUC 523 Challenges in Urban Education:

Diversity

Instructor: Melora Sundt

Office: Waite Phillips Hall room 503

213
-
740
-
2157

sundt@usc.edu


Introduction:


This course is one of the four core courses of the Ed.D. doctoral
program in the Rossier School
of Education. It represents one of the cornerstones of fundamental areas of knowledge
(leadership, accountability, diversity, and learning) critical to well
-
prepared leaders in urban
education settings. These areas were develo
ped through a comprehensive review of the most
current theory and research as well as through an inclusive and wide ranging process of
refinement at the level of program and curriculum development involving stakeholders from a
variety of perspectives.


Fo
cus of the Course:
Some might argue that today’s educational environments present us with
greater diversity than in any other time in US history. Others might say that the challenges facing
our educational system today are essentially the same tensions tha
t it has unsuccessfully
struggled with for the last several hundred years: power, access and equity. The purpose of this
course is to provide students an opportunity to explore those tensions through the range of
dimensions through which diversity is manif
ested among students, faculty and staff in today’s
educational environments. We think of the interaction of diversity with learning as not only
about
the differences that students bring to the learning environment, but also the ways we as
administrators an
d instructors respond to those differences, in the context of policies, systems,
histories, structures and legislation. Participants will examine educational access and equity in
the context of culture, ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, ability, and gen
der by looking at the
inter
-
relationships between divisions of labor, class structures, power relationships, group
marginalization, cultural images, residential patterns, health, family life, employment, education
and values. In addition, we explore aspect
s of diversity as potential assets in designing
educational interventions.

Students will then apply this information to the framing, analysis, and
generation of solutions to contemporary educational problems
.

We think about the goals of this course as ad
dressing specific problems of practice. These
problems of practice center around individuals’ and institutions’ core values as they relate to
diversity, and the difference between what we may aspire to versus what actually happens on
campus. The first prob
lem of practice relates to the disparate outcomes experienced by different
groups as they engage our educational institutions. Some refer to these differences in outcomes
as an achievement gap, but the problem extends beyond achievement. Disparity can be f
ound in
learning outcomes, treatment by others, and access to resources, among others. Some faculty see
these disparities as a moral problem, a social justice problem, not just an outcomes problem. The
problem of practice then becomes not just that we oft
en are not clear about what we value, but
that what gets rewarded, resourced and implemented either does not reflect those values, or has
unintended consequences that are contrary to our values.


2

Our reactions to and interactions with the increasing diver
sity in our educational environments,
among students and the workforce, itself, create a second problem of practice addressed in this
course. Specifically, we (educators and the rest of us, typically) lack an awareness of our
perceptual view point, and the
refore of alternative views. This “tunnel vision” or “hegemony”
can cause us to limit the way we frame and therefore solve a challenge like those presented in the
first problem of practice. Through the experiences, assignments and resources in this course,

we
hope to help each other see what was previously invisible, and reveal and challenge whatever
theories we each have operating so that we may bring the most thorough research
-
based thinking
to the challenges of access, retention and completion. We may no
t always agree on either what
the problem is or what should be done, but as a class we will not think about these challenges at
the end of the course in the same way as we began.

The third and final problem of practice this course addresses is our common d
ifficulty in having
meaningful conversations about difference. If we are to get the best thinking applied to the
challenges our educational institutions face, then we have to get all the information out and be
able to talk about it in ways that keep people

engaged rather than shut them down. As
participants, we have to find ways to stay engaged when the conversations get difficult.
Therefore, this course will address the tools for engagement, by addressing the use of language
and defining terms (and why th
ey matter), sharing perspectives, looking at evidence and theories,
and employing a variety of strategies meant to increase understanding and participation, and then
critiquing them all. How are these tools best used and with whom?

Connection to the other
3 Core Courses:
This course connects easily to the Accountability Core
course in that once we determine our values and implement a course of action, how do we know
if that plan was successful? Similarly, this course complements the Leadership and Learning
Core courses as it will take strong leadership skills and an understanding of diversity to create
more equitable learning environments.


Why a focus on diversity is appropriate in an Ed
.
D
.

program:



The most recent census data indicate that diversity, cou
pled with persistent forms of
segregation, overwhelmingly characterize urban schools, two year college, universities and
communities, but also increasingly the country as a whole.



Academic achievement and later life outcomes continue to show disparate outc
omes across
diverse groups.



There is evidence that learning environments and processes can be more effective if they
account for key aspects of diverse populations


culture, background knowledge, motivation,
language, and related socio
-
historical and soci
o
-
cultural factors.


Audience:
This course is restricted to students enrolled in the Ed
.
D
.

Program. Students’ own
backgrounds, career interests, and personal experiences in schools (K
-
12, Higher Education) and
business or other professional settings are al
l assets in this course.

Students with a variety of goals and interests are welcome in this course.
Different student goals
are accommodated through diverse readings, activities, and exercises where the knowledge
gained is applied to settings that repres
ent the intellectual focus of personal and professional
goals
.



3

COURSE OBJECTIVES:


The general goals of the course are:



To provide students with a conceptual foundation and analytic skills needed to
understand current theoretical approaches to diversity
in urban educational settings; and,
various competing and complimentary theories, propositions, variables, definitions,
research evidence, assumptions, and application to educational practice.




To explore,

develop
and critique
useful strategies for asserti
vely addressing educational
issues related to diverse populations.




To understand the levels at which diversity and responses to diversity occur: individual,
group, institutional and structural.




To strengthen students’ ability to engage, verbally and in w
riting, their professional
communities in considering access to and outcomes from their institutions.


In line with these overall goals:



Each student will get practice writing a statement of a problem, and a synthesis of current
practice and research, abou
t a topic in their specialization related to diversity.



Each student will develop skills in reading and understanding research on diverse learners
and how to apply that research to solving challenging educational problems in urban
settings.



Each studen
t will develop a deeper understanding of people’s experiences with
educational environments and how the meaning they make can vary by the communities
with which one affiliates, and their personal and collective histories with the larger
society.



Each stud
ent will become familiar with strategies and pedagogies for
engaging (work)
groups in discussions that involve looking at difference, while tackling problems related
to inequities in educational outcomes and experiences.


In addition to these above general

goals, students will be able to demonstrate knowledge and
understanding of:


1.

Key analytical constructs (such as race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, SES) and
how their individual and combined effects impact, and can be appropriated, to inform
inst
ruction, assessment, and leadership.

2.

How perceptions of difference contribute to disparate educational opportunities and work
environments.

3.

How they communicate values, intentionally and unintentionally, to communities through
their choices in instructiona
l practice, program and policy implementation, and resource
distribution.


4

4.

How to query data to ask the right question, and get the information they need to fully
answer that question.

5.

The multiple implications of the demographic shifts in the nation’s cens
us.

6.

Institutional, structural, and policy changes

and strategies

that could move educational
environments toward more equitable outcomes for all students and employees.


GENERAL REQUIREMENTS:



Attendance
: Each student enrolled in this course is required to
attend
all

class meetings.
If you find it absolutely necessary to be absent from class because of illness or an
emergency, you are responsible to master
all

information discussed during your absence.
Do not ask the instructor to repeat important informatio
n

identify a classmate who will
help you. All absences must be due to illness or an emergency.




Reading
: Students enrolled in this course are required to read
all

current assignments and
complete all other exercises and projects required for each lesson
BEFORE each class
meeting where the lesson will be discussed. A course “reader” containing assignments
and readings will be available
electronically

before the course begins.




Class Participation
: Small group discussions will occur at every class meeting a
nd
students are expected to participate fully in them. Students are also encouraged to
develop and use conceptual skills, ask questions and participate in planned and
impromptu discussions so long as the discussion forwards the purpose of the class.


GRADI
NG:

The final course grade will be computed from the assignments listed below, weighted in your
favor (e.g. if your score is one point or one percent below a cut off, you will receive the higher
grade) and will be determined according to the following sca
le:

Below 80% B
-

or less; B = 80
-

84%; B+ = 85
-

89%; A
-

= 90
-

94%; A = 95
-

100%

Late papers will receive a 1/3 letter grade reduction (e.g. from A to A
-
)


Assignment Percentage of Total Grade




Responses to prompts:

6
0 points total (
3

x 20)



Class parti
cipation
:

60 points total (
12 X 5
)



Question for the session (done in small group): 60 points total (12 x 5)



Leading class discussion (group presentation) 60 points



Statement of the problem for final paper: 40 points



Outline of literature review section f
or final paper: 40 points



Final paper : 100 points



TOTAL =
42
0 points


DISCUSSION AGREEMENT:

By participating in this graduate
-
level seminar class, you are agreeing to abide by ground rules
for discussion


5

1.

Promote an environment conducive to learning. If s
omething did not make sense,
ask about it because it is likely that others feel the same.

2.

Respect differences of culture, nationality, values, opinion and style

3.

Welcome disagreement and explanations because they provide opportunities to
learn.

4.

Seek to und
erstand first before trying to be understood.

5.

Encourage participation. Everyone has something to contribute.

6.

Promote clear communication:



Be specific



Give examples



Ask questions

7.

Speak for yourself. Let others speak for themselves.

8.

Help achieve today's cl
ass goals in the time available:



Add to what has already been said



Be conscious of time and
do not monopolize discussions


ASSIGNMENTS:



Response to Prompt
: Write an original double
-
spaced three to five page response to the
prompt. The entry must incorpora
te at least one reading from each session
/unit

(3 articles
minimum, in other words) into the response. Responses must be posted on the
Discussion Board for Blackboard by Monday, 5 p.m
.

before

the class meeting for which
the readings are assigned for discu
ssion. Each response (there are 3) is worth 20 points.

o

Response to Prompt #1: How does the community understand “the achievement
gap”? How do the trends in their responses align with the research literature?
To
construct your response to this prompt, pla
n on canvassing your friends and
neighbors, asking them in an informal interview what they think achievement gap
is, and how they understand it (what do they think is causing it?). Synthesize their
responses into the 3
-
5 page response. By “synthesize” we m
ean look for patterns


points of agreement and disagreement. We will discuss your responses in unit
3.

o

Response to Prompt #2: Describe an experience during which you became
conscious of an awareness of race


that you were of one race and others were of

different races? How might you understand that experience based on the readings
about identity, race/ethnicity and power?
We will discuss your responses in unit 6.

o

Response to Prompt #3: Conduct 3
,

30 minute observations of a school or college
campus.
Ma
ke sure you observe three different settings such as a c
lassroom

(with
permission), a p
ublic eating space
, an o
utdoor space. What do you notice about
relationships around gender, sexual orientation or ability or language. What
values are being communicated
? Where is power situated? How is what you are

observing connected to the readings for th
e

course and the section?
We will
discuss your responses in unit 9.


Note that as with all papers in the Ed.D. program, you need to follow APA format. Use
your observa
tion and interview notes as data, and cite appropriately.


6




Leading class discussions
. The topic of diversity is far broader than those covered by the
formal materials for the course. Therefore, we will divide the class into small teams, each
with the task
of taking maximum one hour of class time to brief the group on a strategy
related to improving the learning and/or working environment around issues of diversity.
No individual presentations, please as we don’t have enough time. Each group will be
respons
ible for providing the group with at least one key article, facilitating a discussion,
and engaging the class in a learning experience
for one hour
.


The team is expected to
address:

o

What

is

the problem your presentation addresses

o

Why is it supposed to

work (conceptual framework)

o

How does it work
?

o

How would you assess it?
(Has it already been assessed


if so, with what result?)


Any relevant reading from the course should be incorporated into the presentation.
This
presentation
is intended as a learnin
g experience, not a fully polished presentation.
Presentations will occur during Units 9, 10, 11 and 12.




Question for the session:
You will work in small groups to conquer the reading for the
course. We will talk about ways to use a group to master all th
e material. One outcome of
working in your small group is that you should bring a question for the class to consider,
one per group, one per unit, based on the readings. The question should help the class
make sense of the articles as they apply to your wo
rk, and/or help engage us in a
discussion that can clarify our understanding of the articles. Due at the start of each unit.




Final Paper: Statement of the Problem, Outline and Paper
. You are responsible for
writing a final paper, due on the last day of cl
ass, however, I have broken up the
assignment into smaller steps which you will submit according to the schedule, below.
The purpose of the paper is to take a problem in education (any level) that has an issue
related to diversity at its core. You job is t
o describe, in a compelling, research
-
based
way, what we know about the problem (the literature review), and what we still don’t
know, making the case for additional research or a rethinking (for example for a policy).
You could be writing about the interv
entions being used for a particular issue, or the
policies being used


anything with practical applications.


The key components for the final paper are broken up below into individual, successive
assignments. The goal is to introduce you to the style and

format of papers that will be
expected throughout the program. These pieces consist of:


a)

Statement of the problem
: You will select one specific topic for the paper. The first
assignment due is the opening of your paper: make the case that there is a pro
blem
(what evidence would you use?), and that it is sufficiently compelling (significant


how would you demonstrate that?) that we need to be thinking about it. The
statement should be about 2
-
3 double spaced pages, with a clear statement of the
problem u
sually appearing no later than the bottom of the second page. Statement is
due
at the start of Unit 5 (September 12
th
)

via the Blackboard Drop Box. Please be

7

sure you have had at least one class member review your paper for clarity prior to
submitting it
to me. (5% of total grade)

b)

Review of the literature
: Once you

have

established a clear statement of the
problem, you need to review what we already know about the issue from the research
literature. Scour the library, sort the studies into general themes,

and review what
you

have

found with an eye towards, do we already know the answer to the
question? (If so, why raise the issue?) If we do

not
, why not (for example, studies
may have used samples that are not representative of the student population you
work with). In the final paper, your review will be about 10 pages long, but for the
intermediate assignment, you need to
turn in an outline

stating how you

will

open
the discussion, the major themes/headings and related studies (to the extent you can
loc
ate them by the deadline), and how you think you

will

close the section, by
Unit
8 (September 26)

to the BlackBoard drop box. Note: I will make every effort to
return feedback on your statement of the problem, electronically, prior to
September
18th

so th
at you can incorporate that feedback into your thinking about the outline.
(10% of total grade)

c)

The final paper
, which will include your revised statement of the problem, flesh out
your literature review incorporating my feedback, and add in a recommendat
ions
section addressing “what should we do next, based on your assessment of the
literature,” is
due the last day of class
, electronically to the Blackboard drop box
(100 points). The final paper should be

14
-
15 double
-
spaced pages, (plus the title
page,
abstract, and references). Use regular 12 point font, standard APA 1 inch
margins top, bottom, left and right. Please follow this format carefully. You will
develop skill in combining and reviewing considerable material in a concise manner.
(25% of tot
al grade)


GRADING:


Class Discussion/Participation
:

A
-

contributes regularly to discussion, comments illustrate that materials were read and others’
views were considered; balances own contributions with access for others


does not dominate
nor sit sile
ntly.

B


contributes irregularly, often interpretations are groundless and do not relate to discussion
questions; dominates discussion with little regard for the views of others.

C


often comments illustrate the student has not read materials; dominates
discussion, does not
listen to others.

F
-

no contribution


Grading Criteria for papers

Grades will be assigned based upon the following criteria.


"A" Paper:

The principal characteristic of the "A" paper is its rich content, "meaty," "dense,"
"packed."

The information delivered is such that one feels significantly taught by the author,
sentence after sentence, paragraph after paragraph. The "A" paper is also marked by stylistic
finesse: the title and opening paragraph are engaging; the transitions ar
e artful; the phrasing is
tight, fresh, and highly specific; the sentence structure is varied; the tone enhances the purposes

8

of the paper. It is completely free from grammatical or typographical errors. Finally, the "A"
paper, because of its careful orga
nization and development, imparts a feeling of wholeness and
unusual clarity. Not surprisingly, then, it leaves the reader feeling bright, thoroughly satisfied,
and eager to reread the piece. An "A" paper clearly takes a stand and argues and defends that

stand so as to completely persuade the reader, without leaving dangling questions and
unexplored avenues of discussion. It is complete unto itself.


"B" Paper:
It is significantly more than competent. Besides being almost free of mechanical
errors, the

"B" paper delivers substantial information, that is, substantial in quantity, interest and
value. Its specific points are logically ordered, well developed, and unified around a clear
organizing principle that is apparent early in the paper. The opening

paragraph draws the reader
in; the closing paragraph is both conclusive and thematically related to the opening. The
transitions between paragraphs are for the most part smooth, the sentence structures pleasingly
varied. The diction of the "B" paper is
typically more concise and precise than that found in the
"C" paper. Occasionally, it even shows distinctiveness, i.e. finesse and memorability. On the
whole, then, a "B" paper makes the reading experience a pleasurable one, for it offers substantial
inf
ormation with few distractions. It establishes a stand on an issue, and for the most part,
clarifies and defends that stand, leaving few unanswered questions and unexplored angles. It is
relatively successful in convincing the reader.


"C" Paper:
It is
generally competent; it meets the assignment, has few mechanical errors, and is
reasonably well organized and developed. However, its information seems thin and
commonplace. One reason for this is that the ideas are technically cast in the form of vague
generalities; generalities that prompt the confused reader to ask marginally: "In every case?"
"Exactly how large?" "Why?" "But how many?" Stylistically, the "C" paper has little to draw
the reader in; the final paragraphs are often bumpy; the sentenc
es, besides being a bit choppy,
tend to follow a predictable (hence monotonous) subject
-
verb
-
object order; and the diction is
occasionally marred by unconscious repetitions, redundancy, and imprecision. The "C" paper,
while it gets the job done, lacks bot
h imagination and intellectual rigor, and hence does not invite
a rereading. It attempts to establish a stand on an issue, but achieves only average success. It
leaves many ideas dangling and opens as many doors for further questions as it closes. It is

not
very successful in convincing the reader.


"D" Paper:

Its treatment and development of the subject are as yet rudimentary. While
organization is present, it is neither clear nor effective. Sentences are frequently awkward,
ambiguous, and marred by
serious mechanical errors. Evidence of careful proofreading, if any,
is scanty. The whole piece, in fact, often gives the impression of having been conceived and
written in haste. Or, the paper, while of standard writing, missed the assignment completel
y by
achieving something other than requested such as presenting a summary of an article rather than
an analysis and opinion derived from the article.


"F" Paper:
Its treatment of the subject is superficial; its theme lacks discernible organization; its
p
rose is garbled or stylistically primitive. Mechanical errors are frequent. In short, the ideas,
organization, and style fall far below what is acceptable graduate level writing.



9

Two principal criteria will be used in determining your course grade. The

first is the quality of
your contributions in class, i.e., leading class, comments in class, and regular attendance in class.
The second criterion is the quality of the understanding, organization, conceptualization and
thoroughness of your written assign
ments.


INCOMPLETES:

The University policy on Incompletes (IN) is as follows (from the USC Catalogue):

Incomplete: work not completed because of documented illness or some other emergency
occurring after the twelfth week of the semester. Arrangements fo
r the incomplete and its
removal must be initiated by the student and agreed to by the instructor prior to the final
examination… Student requests for the mark of IN before the twelfth week of the
semester will be denied… If an incomplete is assigned as th
e student’s grade, the
instructor will specify to the student and the department the work remaining to be done,
the procedures for its completion, the grade in the course to date, and the weight to be
assigned to work remaining to be done when computing th
e final grade… A student may
remove the IN only by completing the work not finished
as a result of illness or
emergency

(emphasis added)… One calendar year is allowed to remove the mark of IN
in courses numbered 500 and higher. If the IN is not removed wi
thin the designated time
limit, the course is considered “lapsed” and the grade is changed to an IX. Lapsed
incompletes count as “F” grades at USC.

In the event the instructor approves an incomplete,
a written record will be completed which
details what
is required for course completion and a projected schedule of completion
.


A Word About Academic Integrity:

SCampus, the USC student guidebook contains the Student Conduct Code and information on
Academic Integrity. It is the student’s responsibility to
be familiar with and abide by these
guidelines, which are found at
http://www.usc.edu/student
-
affairs/SJACS/do
cs/GradIntegrity.pdf
. A summary of behaviors violating University
standards can be also found at:
http://www.usc.edu/dept/publications/SCAMPUS/gov/behavior.html

.


STUDENTS WITH
DISABILITIES:

Any student requesting academic accommodations based on a disability is required to register
with Disability Services and Programs (DSP) each semester. A letter of verification for approved
accommodations can be obtained from DSP. Please be
sure the letter is delivered to the instructor
as early in the semester as possible. DSP is open 8:30 a.m.
-

5:00 p.m. (California time), Monday
through Friday. The phone number for DSP is (213) 740
-
7766.


SUGGESTIONS FOR COURSE AND INSTRUCTOR IMPROVEMENT:

There are at least three ways to contribute to improving this course:

1)

I will ask for your feedback at the end of each session (a “one minute log”)


this is your
chance to tell me what wasn’t clear, or what you would like more of. I may respond to you
ind
ividually, or I may raise an issue with the class if that seems appropriate.


10

2)

You may on occasion receive an anonymous evaluation form after a class meeting
. These
forms are initiated by the Ed
.
D
.

office. You are encouraged to suggest ways to improve the
c
ourse. We do not promise to implement your advice, but we promise to consider it
carefully. Please be candid on the forms. If you are having a problem and/or want changes,
please write suggestions. If you enjoy a feature of the course and want it preserv
ed, say so
on the form.

3)

You may also speak directly to me if you have concerns, comments or questions.

4)

You will be asked to complete an anonymous assessment of the course during the final
course meeting. This assessment is completed for every course, eve
ry semester, and we use
your feedback to improve the quality of our courses and our instruction. I hope you will
participate when the time comes!

Students’ suggestions have resulted in improvements in this class.



11

COURSE OUTLINE AND UNIT DESCRIPTION

& CLA
SS MEETING TIMES


Primary Challenge: Achievement Gaps


UNIT 1 INTRODUCTION TO THE COURSE
.
Diversity: what is it?


We’ll begin by reviewing the purpose and structure of the course and its related assignments.
Next, we will launch into a discussion of basic

terms.



Activit
y
: What do you know? What have you heard?



Learning Goals:

1.

Define broadly the constructs of diversity, equity, access, retention and equity.

2.

Understand basic uses of data to begin answering questions about diversity, including the
importance of consulting disaggregated school and workplace data.


Reading Due
:



Bennett, C. (2001). Genres of research in multicultural education.
Review of


Educational Research, 71
(2), 171
-
217.



Gurin, P., Dey, E. L., Hurtado, S., & Gurin, G. (2002).

Diversity and higher education:
Theory and impact on educational outcomes.
Harvard Educational Review, 72
(3), 330
-
366.



Garcia, G. (2002). Chapter 1 (Introduction). In
Student Cultural Diversity:
Understanding and Meeting the Challenge

(3
rd

ed.), Boston,

MA: Houghton Mifflin, 3
-
39.


Assignment due:



Normally your question for the session from your small group would be due, but we
haven’t assigned the groups yet, so you get a “pass.” Bring any questions you have
about the reading with you, however.


Questio
ns to consider:

1.

When you use the term, “diversity” to what are you referring?

2.

Often the metrics of a
ccess
,
retention

and
equity

are used in discussions about diversity
--

what are they?

3.

Why do people care about “diversity”? What about the topic is import
ant to you?

4.

How would we know

if educational outcomes were equitable
?

5.

What challenges come to mind for you when you consider the topic of “diversity at my
job”?


UNIT 2 SEGREGATION/DESEGREGATION/RESEGREGATION. A primer on the
history and intention of race
in schooling


The old saying goes “if we do not learn from the mistakes of the past, we are
destined to repeat

them.” In order to promote future diversity in urban schools, one must first understand what has

12

and hasn’t worked in the past. In other words,

as a society how far have we really come toward
providing equality and opportunity to all? Have we desegregated? How can we as educators and
citizens with the power to vote and influence legislation insure diversity and equality in the
classroom, commun
ity, and workplace?



Learning Goals:

1.

Explain the historical basis for and evolution to present time of and diversity policy in
education.

2.

Analyze some of the equity effects of expanding access to education.

3.

Critically compare and contrast the effectiv
eness of past diversity laws and policies with
current laws and policies.

4.

Understand and explain the concepts and causes surrounding desegregation and re
-
segregation in Urban America.

5.

Explain the economic and political issues connected to past and pres
ent diversity policy.


Assignment due:




Y
our question for the session from your small group
is

due

at the start of the unit.



Readings
due
:




Green, D. O., (2004, April).

Affirmative action, conflict, and the University of

Michigan: An insider’s pers
pective
. Paper presented at the annual meetings of the

American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA.





Kanaiaupuni, S., and Ishibashi, K. (2003). Left behind? The status of Hawaiian students
in Hawai’i Public Schools. PASE report 02
-
03:13, Ka
mehameha Schools, 1
-
36.




Ng, J., Lee, S., & Pak, Y. (2007). Contesting the model minority and perpetual foreigner
stereotypes: A critical review of literature on Asian Americans in education.
Review of
Research in Education, 31
, 95
-
130.




Stephan, W. G. (19
80). "A Brief Overview of School Desegregation." In W. G. Stephan,
and J. R. Feagin. (Eds.),
School Desegregation.

(pp. 3
-
23.), New York: Pleum Press.




Valencia, R., Menchaca, M., and Donato, R. (2002).
Segregation, Desegregation, and
Integration of Chic
ano Students: Old and New Realities. In R. Valencia,

Chicano School
Failure and Success: Past, Present, and Future (
Second Edition), (Ed.), Pp. 83
-
99, 104
-
109.



Optional Readings:



Bickel, R. D. (1998). A brief history of the commitment to inclusion
as a facet of equal
educational opportunity.
New Directions for Student Services
, 83, 3
-
13. (Elaboration)



Bowles, H. & Gintis, S. (1976). The origins of mass public education. In
Schooling in
Capitalist America: Educational Reform and the Contradictions o
f Economic Life.
New
York: Basic Books. (Elaboration)


13



Feagin, J. R. (1980). School desegregation: a political
-
economic perspective. In W. G.
Stephan and J. R. Feagin (Eds.)

School Desegregation

(pp. 25
-
51). New York: Pleum
Press (Elaboration).



Orfield,
Gary and Yun, John (1999).
Resegregation in American Schools.

Civil Rights
Project, Harvard University. (Controversy) see website

http//www.civilrightsproject.
ucla
.edu/research/deseg/reseg_
american_
schools99.p
df



Weiler, J. (1998). Recent changes in deseg
regation: ERIC/CUE Digest Number 133.
ERIC Clearinghouse on Urban Education New York, NY.



Helpful web links:


http://usinfo.state.gov/usa/infousa/laws/majorlaw/civilr19.
htm

(for the Civil Rights Act of


1964)


http://www.civilrightsproject.ucla.edu/




Questions to consider before class as you complete the reading assignment

1.

Who should be included
in policies for diversity and why?

2.

How will we know when diversity policy has been successful? How is success
measured?

3.

Identify and explain the differences and similarities between "equal access" and "equal
opportunity." In your opinion which framew
ork has the most potential and why?

4.

How does one determine the scope of Affirmative Action (i.e., should the policies apply
to gender, sexual orientation, age, socio
-
economic class, etc.)?



UNIT 3 ACHIEVEMENT GAP.


W
hat is it? What do we know about it
?

Some have written that the term “achievement gap” is
problematic. They argue that it signals “test score gap” and frames the issues to highlight short
-
term measurable results, suggesting that schools alone are responsible for the underachievement
of vari
ous groups. In other words, the term puts the focus on outputs to the exclusion of inputs
(Genzuk, personal communication). In this class we will look at the results of your interviews
(Response #1 to a prompt): Next we will look at the role of parents, w
ho are often held
completely responsible for these gaps in test scores. We will also explore the role of poverty and
finally, we will look at the role of instruction, which has been absent in most of the national
dialogue about the achievement gap.




Learning goals:

1.

Be able to distinguish opinions about causes of the achievement gap from research
findings.

2.

Be able to parse out different factors related to inequitable educational outcomes and
distinguish between a factor and an interpretation about t
hat factor (ex: parental
involvement).



Reading due
:



Bensimon, E. (2005).
Closing the Achievement Gap in Higher Education: An
Organizational Learning Perspective
,
New Directions for Higher Education
, No. 131.


14




Blossfeld, H. & Shavit, Y. (1993). Persisting barriers. In Y. Shavit & H. Blossfeld
(Eds.),
Persistent Inequality
. Boulder, CO: Westview Press.




Brooks
-
Gunn, J. & Duncan, G. (1997). The effects of poverty on

children.
The Future
of Children, 7
, 55
-
71. (see also the Gorski article, below).




Holme, J. (2002). Buying homes, buying schools: School choice and the social
construction of school quality.
Harvard Education Review, 72
(2), 177
-
205.


Assignments due
:



Res
ponse to Prompt 1 is due Monday before this session. Post on blackboard.



Y
our question for the session from your small group
is

due

at the start of the unit.



Optional reading
:



Gorski, P. (2008). Peddling poverty for profit: Elements of oppression in

Ruby Payne’s
framework.
Equity & Excellence in Education, 41
(1), 130
-
148.



Questions to consider
:

1.

If we start with a look at test scores, what do they tell us?

2.

How does the community understand the “achievement gap”?

3.

How do the trends in their re
sponses align with the research literature?

4.

What role do instruction and parent involvement play in the achievement gap?


For weekends: Statement of the problem due in the in
-
between weekend.



Lens
es

for Understanding Diversity I


UNIT 4 POWER.



In
this class we will discuss the constructs of o
ppression
,

targets/non targets,
and
racism vs.
prejudice
. We will look at some premises about power, in particular how power appears at the
individual, group, institutional and system
-
wide levels. Finally, we w
ill explore the use of
simulations as tools for encouraging deeper understanding about the dynamics of power.

a.

Individual
-
group
-
institution
-
system (Aspen slides)


Activit
y
: Star Power or Target/Non
-
target



Learning Goals:

1.

Understand some of the bas
ic axioms of power and be able to identify them when they
appear in operation in present events.

2.

Be able to use the construct of power as a lens for the analysis of situations involving
tensions around difference.

3.

Identify examples of power in operation a
t the individual, group, institutional and system
levels.


15



Reading due
:



Domhoff,
G
. (200
5
).
Studying Power
. Web essay located at
http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesame
rica/theory/studying_power.html




Race and ethnicity tables. (2000,

August 30)
The Chronicle of Higher Education
Almanac
2000
-
2001, pp. 20, 24, 25, 30, 32, 35, 36.



Bensimon, E. (2004). The diversity scorecard: a learning approach to institutional
chang
e.
Change
, Jan/Feb.



Carnoy, M. & Levin, H. (1985).
Schooling and Work in the Democratic State
.
Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 144


176.

Assignment due:




Y
our question for the session from your small group
is

due

at the start of the unit.




Questions to consider:

1.

How does power interact with identity and our understanding of difference?

2.

Where is power located?

3.

How is
power

used
, and by whom
?



UNIT 5 IDENTITY.


To understand diversity and individuals’ and groups’ interactions with
it, we need to understand
some of the basic theories about identity construction. We will review several of the key
theories, looking for commonalities and connections to experiences we have had with issues of
race, sexual orientation, gender, etc.


Activ
ities: Step Forward, Step Back


Learning goals:

1.

Understand basic theories of identity development, and the ways in which these theories
are in flux.

2.

Understand how one’s sense of self can vary with context.

3.

Combine your understanding of power with that of

identity development to describe the
constructs of “target/non
-
target” and how we might use those constructs to facilitate
greater understanding among groups where a power differential is operating.


Assignments due
:



Your Statement of the Problem is due
this session. Post on blackboard.



Your question for the session from your small group is due at the start of the unit.


Reading Due
:



Chavez, A., and Guido
-
DiBrito, F. (1999). Racial and ethnic identity development.
New Directions for Adult and Continuing E
ducation,

No. 84, 39
-
47.




Reynolds
, A. & Pope, R. (1991). The complexities of diversity: Exploring multiple
oppressions.
Journal of Counseling and Development, 70
(1), 174
-
80.



16


Questions to consider
:

1.

What goes in to a person
’s

or group’s sense of iden
tity?

2.

How do others define one’s identity? Why?

3.

In what ways does power interact with one’s identity?



UNIT 6 RACE AND ETHNICITY.


Race is a dominant variable in our understanding of diversity.
Often conversations about
“diversity” are really convers
ations about race. Sometimes people use the term “ethnicity” when
they mean “race.” So what is race, and how is it different from ethnicity? How do people
develop a sense of “race” related to difference? We will use your papers in response to Prompt
#2
(
Describe an experience during which you became conscious of an awareness of race


that
you were of one race and others were of different races? How might you understand that
experience based on the readings about identity, race/ethnicity and power?
) and
the readings
below to jump start our discussion about race, ethnicity, educational institutions and learning
outcomes.



Activit
y
: Do the Right Thing



Learning goals
:

1.

Articulate the difference in what “race” and “ethnicity” refer to.

2.

Be able to expla
in Ogbu’s and Simons’ notions of voluntary and involuntary minorities.

3.

Be able to use racial identity development theory as one lens for interpreting interactions
between groups of different races.



Assignments due
:



Response to Prompt 2 is due Monday

before this session. Post on blackboard.



Y
our question for the session from your small group
is

due

at the start of the unit.



Reading Due
:



Cornell, S. & Hartman, D. (2007).
Ethnicity and race: Making identities in a changing
world.

Thousand Oaks, C
A: Pine Forge Press, 1


40.



Ogbu, j. & Simons, H. (1998). Voluntary and involuntary minorities: A cultural
-
ecological theory of school performance and some implications for education.
Anthropology & Education Quarterly, 29
(2), 155
-
188.



Van Ausdale, D. & F
eagin, J. (2001). Chapter 3: Play groups and racial
-
ethnic matters. In
The First R: How Children Learn Race and Racism
. New York: Rowman & Littlefield,
Publishers, 95
-
128.



Helms, J. (1997). Toward a model of white racial identity development. In K. Arnold
& I.
King (Eds.).
College Student Development and Academic Life: Psychological,
Intellectual and Moral Issues
. New York: Garland Publishers.



Questions to consider
:

1.

To what extent are our reactions to situations with others of different races the res
ult of
learning vs biology (being human)?


17

2.

How universal across groups is the developmental progression that creates a sense of
racial identity?

3.

What is hegemony, and how does it relate to the course so far?


For weekends: Outline of lit review due during
the off weekend.



Lenses, Part
II


UNIT 7 ABILITY.


In this class we look at the notion of ability, and the various ways educational institutions
respond to students with differing levels of ability. We look at constructs such as “gifted,”
“disabled” an
d “special education” and traditional strategies such as “accommodation,”
“mainstreaming” and “pull outs.”


Films: Gattaca, In the Company of Men


Learning goals
:

1.

Describe what is typically meant by the labels “gifted,” “special education” and “lea
rning
disability” and discuss strategies and challenges involved in categorizing students in this
way.

2.

Describe challenges facing students in K
-
16 who are the subject of these differences, and
institutional responses.


Assignment due:




Y
our question for th
e session from your small group
is

due

at the start of the unit.


Reading due
:



Connor, D. & Baglieri, S. (2009). Tipping the Scales: Disability studies asks “How
much diversity can you take?” In S. Steinberg (Ed).
Diversity and multiculturalism: a
reader
.
New York: Peter Lang Publishing, Inc.



Ford, D. & Grantham, T. (2003). Providing access for culturally diverse gifted
students: From deficit to dynamic thinking.
Theory into Practice, 42
(3), 217
-
225.



Harry, B. & Anderson, M. (1994). The disproportionate pla
cement of African
American males in special education programs: A critique of the process.
The Journal
of Negro Education, 63
(4), 602
-
619.



Horn, L. & Berktold, J. (1999).
Students with disabilities in post
-
secondary
education: A profile of preparation, par
ticipation and outcomes. NCES 1999
-
187.

Washington, DC: US Department of Education National Center for Education
Statistics.



Optional reading
:



Spellings, M. & Monroe, S. (2007).
Students with disabilities preparing for post
-


secondary educati
on: Know your rights and responsibilities
. Washington, DC:


US Department of Education.
http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/transition.html


18


Questions to consider:

1.

How do our dis
cussions about the concept of “normal” so far in the course (for
example, the role that power and language play in shaping our views of normal)
help us understand the notion of “disability” or “giftedness”?

2.

How do you define equitable learning conditions/o
utcomes for students with
different abilities?

3.

How well does your own institution address the needs of students with different
abilities?


UNIT 8 LANGUAGE MINORITIES



To say there is an achievement gap between English Language Learners (ELLs) and non
-
E
LLs,
when tested in English
, is to restate the obvious, but tells us little about their long term
achievement. Anecdotally, we can say with some confidence that ELLS experience many of the
academic difficulties that other language minority groups do. But t
here is little hard data to rely
on. While English proficiency tests are more meaningful than academic assessments in English,
they are still not helpful since ELLs vary considerably in their initial level of English and in their
pace of acquisition. And w
hat is the relationship between SES, ELL status and academic
outcomes?


Educators’ misunderstandings about language acquisition and second language learning have had
a negative influence on academic achievement for language minority students.

New theories
on
language acquisition and second language learning provide new insights for school practices and
hold potential for improving academic achievement for presently underserved student
populations. These new theories have led to new trends in research and ne
w frameworks for
classroom practices
.



Learning goals
:

1.

Describe trends in the research on bilingual education.

2.

Explain the relationship between language acquisition and academic achievement.

3.

Identify and provide an analysis of demographic factors tha
t influence schooling for
students from diverse cultural, linguistic, and experiential backgrounds.

4.

Describe the challenges faced by language minority students and their
instructors

when students enter
an institution

with limited English proficiency.


Assi
gnments due
:



Your outline of the literature review is due this session. Post on blackboard.



Y
our question for the session from your small group
is

due

at the start of the unit.


Reading due
:



Darling
-
Hammond, L. (2007). The flat earth and education: How Ame
rica’s
commitment to equity will determine our future.
Educational Researcher, 36
(6), 318
-
334.


19



Lucas, T., Villegas, A. & Freedson
-
Gonzalez, M. (2008). Linguistically responsive
teacher education: preparing classroom teachers to teach English language learn
ers.
Journal of Teacher Education, 59
(4), 361
-
373.



Tierney, W. (2006). Mushutu and Juan: A tale of two students. In W. Tierney & J.
Colyar (Eds).
Urban high school students and the challenge of access: Many routes,
difficult paths.

New York: Peter Lang, 13
-
36.


Questions to consider:

1.

Why is it so important to some communities that English be the only language for
business, instruction, etc?

2.

What is the relationship between language proficiency and test performance?

3.

What does the research say is optimal for

facilitating learning for English
language learners? Do the approaches change depending on the age of the learner
(i.e., child vs adult)?

4.

What kind of diversity is there among English language learners? Why does
language become the defining characteristic
?


UNIT 9 GENDER AND SEXUAL ORIENTATION


In this class we cover a lot of ground, looking at the intersection of three constructs: sex, gender
identity and expression and sexual orientation, and their relationship to the construct of
“normal.” In partic
ular we look at how students’ experience (at all levels) of these constructs
interacts with institutions’ expectations, producing disparate learning. We will discuss the
results of
the
observations you conducted to create your Paper 3.


Films:
Transgener
ation
, Killing Us Softly, or Tough Guise

Activities: “Coming Out” Stars



Learning goals
:

1.

Distinguish between sex, gender identity and expression and sexual orientation as
constructs.

2.

Identify how particular positions within each of these constructs
are valued over others in
educational environments, and the impact that valuing can have on learning outcomes for
some students.


Assignments due
:



Response to Prompt 3 is due Monday before this session. Post on blackboard.



Class presentations begin this se
ssion.



Y
our question for the session from your small group
is

due

at the start of the unit.


Reading Due
:



Ginorio, A., & Huston, M. (2002). Characteristics of communities affecting
participation/success.
Jossey
-
Bass Reader on Gender in Education.

San Franc
isco,
CA: Jossey
-
Bass, 543


583 (meta
-
analysis of intersection of gender and race on
Latinas success in school).


20



Hubbard, L. & Datnow, A. (2000). A gendered look at educational reform.
Gender
and Education, 12
(1), 115
-
129.



Katz, J. (date). Constructing an
d critiquing sexual categories: The invention of
heterosexuality. 50
-
61.



Kindlon, D. & Thompson, M. (2002). Thorns among roses: The struggle of young
boys in early education.

Jossey
-
Bass Reader on Gender in Education.

San Francisco,
CA: Jossey
-
Bass, 153
-
182.



Meyer, E. (2007). “But I’m not gay”: What straight teachers need to know about
queer theory. In M. Rodriguez & W. Pinar (Eds).
Queering straight teachers:
discourse and identity in education
. New York: Peter Lang Publishing, Inc., 15


32.



Stein, N.
(2002). Bullying as sexual harassment in elementary schools.
Jossey
-
Bass
Reader on Gender in Education.

San Francisco, CA: Jossey
-
Bass, 409


428.


Questions to consider:

1.

How does the concept of hegemony relate to our discussion of gender identity and
sexu
al orientation?

2.

What messages do you see being sent in your own institution about “normal” and
“gender identity”


for students and for educators?

3.

How do we determine what is best for students in areas like these, in which some
communities have very deeply

felt and opposing views?



APPLICATIONS/STRATEGIES FOR EDUCATIONAL
INSTITUTIONS AS WORKPLACES AND AS LEARNING
ENVIRONMENTS.


UNIT 10. RETENTION, SUCCESS AND CULTURAL CAPITAL: THE IMPACT OF
THE INDIVIDUAL.


What can one person do? More than you might thi
nk. We will discuss the concept of social
capital. We will look at examples of formal and informal mentoring as a means of transforming
educational outcomes for students. What strategies at the individual level show promise?


Activities: Archie Bunker’s Ne
ighborhood


Learning goals:

1.

Understand and be able to explain what social capital is and where the term comes
from.

2.

Understand why some educators see great value in incorporating the learner’s culture
into the learning process.



Reading Due
:



Stanton
-
Sal
azar, Ricardo D. (1997). A social capital framework for understanding
the socialization of racial minority youth.
Harvard Educational Review,

67
(1) 1
-
40.



Hernandez, J. (2000). Understanding the retention of Latino college students.


21

Journal of College S
tudent Development, 41
(6), 575
-
588.



Lipka, J. (1991). Toward a culturally based pedagogy: A case study of one Yup’ik
Eskimo teacher.
Anthropology and Education Quarterly, 22
(3), 203
-
223.


Assignments due:



Class presentations continue this session.



Y
our que
stion for the session from your small group
is

due

at the start of the unit.



Questions to consider:

1.

Realistically, and based on the research, what might be some ways an individual can
make a difference for a learner?

2.

What is meant by “missionary w
ork” in diversity parlance?

3.


How do individuals sustain a commitment to changing their role in contributing to
educational outcomes in the face of little support?

4.

How does one’s sense of identity interact with how one understands equity?

5.

Bourdieu and othe
rs have maintained that cultural capital is used by dominant groups to
maintain their privilege and power in society. How do they say this happens?


UNIT 11. GROUP STRATEGIES.


What do we know about the impact of organized programs on altering educationa
l outcomes?
We will discuss examples of group
-
level programs attempting to create more equitable learning
outcomes for students, talk about where they often fail, and develop criteria for creating and
sustaining successful programs.


Learning goals:

1.

Unders
tand some of the characteristics of programs that create improved learning
outcomes.

2.

Identify curricular and/or organizational elements associated with sustainable and
effective intervention programs.


Reading Due
:



Swanson, M., Mehan, H., & Hubbard, L. (1
995). The AVID classroom: A system of
academic and social supports for low
-
achieving students. In J. Oakes & K. Quartz
(Eds.),
Creating new educational communities: Schools and classrooms where all
children can be smart.

National Society for the Study of E
ducation.



Stone, S., Engel, M., Nagaoka, J., & Roderick, M. (2005). Getting it the second time
around: Student classroom experience in the Chicago’s
Summer Bridge

program.
Teachers College Record
. 107(5), 935
-
957.



Mattingly, D., Prislin, R., McKenzie, T.
, Rodriguez, J., & Kayzar, B. (2002).
Evaluating evaluations: The case of parent involvement programs.
Review of
Educational Research.

72(4), 549
-
576.



Manset, G. & Semmel, M. (1997). Are inclusive programs for students with mild
disabilities effective? A
comparative review of model programs
. The Journal of
Special Education
. 31(2), 155
-
180.



22

Assignments due:



Class presentations continue this session.



Y
our question for the session from your small group
is

due

at the start of the unit.



Questions to co
nsider:

1.

If there are so many “interventions” out there, why are we not seeing greater results?

2.

How does a school’s socio
-
cultural and organizational context influence the
effectiveness of a research
-
based intervention program? Should we conceptualize the
c
ontext as a contributor or barrier to the effectiveness of an intervention program?
Why or why not?

3.

Is it desirable to implement interventions uniformly across schools? Why or why not?

4.

How do you know if an intervention is effective? What are the measure
s for success?


UNIT 12. INSTITUTIONAL EFFORTS TO FACILITATE CHANGE.


What obligation does the institution have for insuring equitable learning experiences/outcomes?
We will close the course by looking at the institution’s responsibility for its students
, and look at
creating educational equity from a management or leadership perspective.



Learning goals
:

1.

Understand factors that contribute to and hinder institution
-
wide reform efforts.



Reading Due
:



Tierney, W. (1992). An anthropo
logical analysis of student participation in college.
The Journal of Higher Education, 63
(6), 603


618.



Barth, P., et al. (1999). Dispelling the myth: High poverty schools exceeding
expectations. Washington, DC: The Education Trust. (
http://www.edtrust.org
)



Community College League of California (2000). Achieving the diversity
commitment: A policy and resource paper of the California Community College
Trustees. Sacramento, CA: Community College League of California.
http://www.ccleague.org/pubs/policy/diversity.pdf



Assignments due
:



Your final paper is due this session. Post on blackboard.



Class presentations finish this session.



Y
our question for the sess
ion from your small group
is

due

at the start of the unit.


Optional reading
:

1.

Lencioni, P. (2006).
The Five Dysfunctions of a Team
. Wylie, TX: Wylie
Publishing.


a.

Final paper due.



Questions to consider:

1.

What criteria are used to judge the succe
ss or failure of institutional reform? How
well do those criteria align with values we want?


23

2.

What characterizes successful institutional
-
level reform (for creating equitable
educational outcomes)?

3.

What role does leadership play in creating institution
-
base
d reform


leadership that
looks like what? And does what?