Proposal Title

Diversity Portfolio Attitudes and Beliefs about Diversity

Track

Research Proposal / Assessment of Student Learning

Proposal Abstract

The purpose of this research was to determine the effects the Diversity Portfolio on student attitudes and beliefs about diversity. The Diversity Portfolio was designed to provide educational experiences to students in an undergraduate teacher education program that promote their knowledge, skills, and dispositions related to diversity and cultural competency. Students' pre and post results and their reflective essays were analyzed. Data document growth in students' knowledge and dispositions related to diversity.

Proposal Description

The purpose of our research was to determine the effects the Diversity Portfolio on student attitudes and beliefs about diversity. The Diversity Portfolio, implemented by the Teacher Education Program at Western Carolina University, was designed to provide educational experiences to students in the undergraduate teacher education program that promote their knowledge, skills, and dispositions related to diversity and cultural competency. Through these experiences and the open exchange of ideas that they allow, students can become more reflective thinkers and commit to moving beyond the status quo to address and take action on complex contemporary social issues. The portfolio consists of two Tiers and an optional Diversity Certificate. In Tier I, students attend speaker presentations, workshops, and/or films. This provides the opportunity to gain a greater breadth of knowledge of the diversity they will encounter in schools settings, and personal judgments about the importance and relevance of issues related to diversity in education. In Tier II, students experience a variety of school settings and work with students of different races, ethnicities, abilities, cultural, linguistic, and socio-economic backgrounds. Tier 111 allows students to earn a Diversity Certificate through participation in one or more sustained diversity experiences. To determine the effects of the diversity portfolio, we used quantitate and qualitative methods. To determine the effects of the diversity portfolio on student learning, three years of data that included pre and post measures as well as student reflections were collected. Pre and post measures on the Professional Beliefs about Diversity Scale were compared and a qualitative analysis of student reflections was conducted. Both qualitative and quantitative data indicate student growth in dispositions and attitude toward diversity. Problems and possibilities of the diversity portfolio in terms of its impact on student learning and ability to document student growth will be discussed.

Session Format

Presentation Session

Location

Room 5

Publication Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

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Mar 30th, 3:00 PM Mar 30th, 3:45 PM

Diversity Portfolio Attitudes and Beliefs about Diversity

Room 5

The purpose of this research was to determine the effects the Diversity Portfolio on student attitudes and beliefs about diversity. The Diversity Portfolio was designed to provide educational experiences to students in an undergraduate teacher education program that promote their knowledge, skills, and dispositions related to diversity and cultural competency. Students' pre and post results and their reflective essays were analyzed. Data document growth in students' knowledge and dispositions related to diversity.