Title

An Assignment Policy and Student Academic Performance: Lessons Learned from Students’ Narratives

First Presenter's Institution

Georgia Southern University

Second Presenter's Institution

N/A

Third Presenter's Institution

N/A

Fourth Presenter's Institution

N/A

Fifth Presenter's Institution

N/A

Location

Poster Session (Harborside)

Strand #1

Academic Achievement & School Leadership

Relevance

This presentation is relevant to Academic Achievement strand because it emphasizes on differentiated instruction based on students’ cultural deficit in accordance with the fact that African-American students are more likely to experience multidimensional poverty than their white counterparts (Reeves, Rodrigue, & Kneebone, 2016). Shana Lin’s stories revealed the extent to which an unexamined policy that is honored by history may unfold in an unexpected way, in particular, becoming a primary factor in their discontinuation of education.

Brief Program Description

This study examines personal experiences of an African-American student to uncover why students of different races perform differently in my courses. This presentation discuss that cultural deficit (Ladson-Billings, 2006; Yosso, 2006) may contribute to the student’s academic struggles.

Summary

Although there is an abundance of research that highlights the importance of the inclusion of culture in the curriculum as a means of developing positive attitudes among racial and ethnic minorities (Chan, 2010, 2006; Cummins, 1996; Igoa, 1995; Wong-Fillmore, 1991), there is a lack of research about how classroom policy should consider the fact that minority group members are different because their culture is deficient in important ways from the dominant majority group (Ladson-Billings,2006; Yosso, 2006) in the university context. In this study, I examined the experiences of an African-American student, Shana Lin (a pseudonym), and connected her stories to my stories of classroom policymaking in the higher education landscape through the interaction of student and professor narratives, stories of interwoven lives (Clandinin et al., 2006). It presents an African-American student’s story to explore the ways in which her cultural deficit and her pursuit of continuing education intersected as she attempted to complete her degree plan to seek a second career. It employs a narrative inquiry approach with an emphasis on stories that address the experiences of two parties: students and a professor.

Exploring the multitude of stressors of schooling for African-American students that influenced students’ academic success and failure using narrative inquiry is a means of acknowledging the hidden factors of students’ failure and the need for guidance about how best to develop classroom policies and how to provide personalized support as professors as well as the overall institution to prepare our African-American students to complete college.

This knowledge informs the transformative work of professors as they attempt to meet the needs of their African-American student populations. Although there is no consideration of students’ family background, health, and psychological issues in current classroom policy, teachers need to understand and meet the academic, psychological, and cultural deficit of their African-American students. In this way, knowledge gained from this study has implications for professors and instructors working in diverse university contexts, professional development for new and seasoned faculty members, policy development for diverse student populations, and college retention and graduation.

Evidence

In an empirical, narrative inquiry method, I drew on narrative accounts of an African-American student attending a Southern U.S. four-year university, and on autobiographic, reflective notions of a professor to guide this work. Narrative inquiry, used in this study, is a type of qualitative research based on the premise that “humans make sense of their lives through story” (Hatch, 2002, p. 28). As narrative inquirer, I learned about Shana Lin’s stories of experience (Connelly & Clandinin, 1988) using a variety of narrative approaches including participant observation, document collection through ongoing conversational interview with key participants, and the writing of extensive field notes and journals (Clandinin & Connelly, 1994, 2000; Clandinin et al., 2006) to explore the interwoven meanings of Shana Lin, her classmates, and my life.

Format

Individual Presentation

Biographical Sketch

Dr. Jackie Kim has rich experiences in teaching pre-service teachers and working with Georgia teachers through the Teacher Quality Grant and other statewide grants. She possesses first-hand knowledge and experience in effectively integrating research-based instruction throughout the teaching and learning process. Dr. Kim’s areas of expertise are in narrative inquiry and curriculum and instruction.

Keyword Descriptors

Cultural Deficit, Academic Performance, Social Justice, Multicultural Education

Presentation Year

2019

Start Date

3-5-2019 4:00 PM

End Date

3-5-2019 5:30 PM

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Mar 5th, 4:00 PM Mar 5th, 5:30 PM

An Assignment Policy and Student Academic Performance: Lessons Learned from Students’ Narratives

Poster Session (Harborside)

This study examines personal experiences of an African-American student to uncover why students of different races perform differently in my courses. This presentation discuss that cultural deficit (Ladson-Billings, 2006; Yosso, 2006) may contribute to the student’s academic struggles.