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The light in their eyes: creating a multicultural education course for doctoral-level students

The light in their eyes: creating a multicultural education course for doctoral-level students The purpose of this study is to investigate the perceptions of graduate students about the need for a multicultural education course at doctoral level in a mid-sized higher education public institution in Southwest Florida.Design/methodology/approachA qualitative case study method was applied with multiple sources of data collected, including semi-structured interviews, observations and students’ written papers, online discussions and assignments that aimed to prepare educators to teach culturally diverse students and challenge their own perceptions about culture, race and other multicultural education-related topics.FindingsThe findings indicate that, even though the multicultural education course promoted an eye-opening transformational experience for students through their interactions and learning from each other, the students still need further training in multicultural education because of their limited culturally responsive teaching skills.Research limitations/implicationsLimitations of the study are that both the researchers were deeply involved with the material and the class, as the class professor and one of the students, which might have affected the authors’ perception about the students’ journey in learning about multicultural education. The researchers’ dual-role (as researchers and course professor and graduate assistant) might have influenced the participants’ responses, as they knew they were part of a research project. Thus, the participants’ spontaneity in sharing their opinions and beliefs about multicultural education may have been hampered, perhaps responding what the researchers expected rather than with their authentic perspectives on the topics.Practical implicationsThe implications of this study to teachers, educators and practitioners are that it invites the readers to reflect on their academic preparedness to work with culturally diverse students. For policymakers, the study indicates the need for creating standards that aim to examine in-service graduate student teachers about their self-efficacy, readiness and dispositions to work with culturally diverse students.Originality/valueBecause of the limited publications on doctoral students learning multicultural education, the authors’ study offers an important insight into the transformational experience of doctoral students learning multicultural education and the implications for improving graduate courses in multicultural education. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal for Multicultural Education Emerald Publishing

The light in their eyes: creating a multicultural education course for doctoral-level students

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
2053-535X
DOI
10.1108/jme-11-2019-0079
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to investigate the perceptions of graduate students about the need for a multicultural education course at doctoral level in a mid-sized higher education public institution in Southwest Florida.Design/methodology/approachA qualitative case study method was applied with multiple sources of data collected, including semi-structured interviews, observations and students’ written papers, online discussions and assignments that aimed to prepare educators to teach culturally diverse students and challenge their own perceptions about culture, race and other multicultural education-related topics.FindingsThe findings indicate that, even though the multicultural education course promoted an eye-opening transformational experience for students through their interactions and learning from each other, the students still need further training in multicultural education because of their limited culturally responsive teaching skills.Research limitations/implicationsLimitations of the study are that both the researchers were deeply involved with the material and the class, as the class professor and one of the students, which might have affected the authors’ perception about the students’ journey in learning about multicultural education. The researchers’ dual-role (as researchers and course professor and graduate assistant) might have influenced the participants’ responses, as they knew they were part of a research project. Thus, the participants’ spontaneity in sharing their opinions and beliefs about multicultural education may have been hampered, perhaps responding what the researchers expected rather than with their authentic perspectives on the topics.Practical implicationsThe implications of this study to teachers, educators and practitioners are that it invites the readers to reflect on their academic preparedness to work with culturally diverse students. For policymakers, the study indicates the need for creating standards that aim to examine in-service graduate student teachers about their self-efficacy, readiness and dispositions to work with culturally diverse students.Originality/valueBecause of the limited publications on doctoral students learning multicultural education, the authors’ study offers an important insight into the transformational experience of doctoral students learning multicultural education and the implications for improving graduate courses in multicultural education.

Journal

Journal for Multicultural EducationEmerald Publishing

Published: Apr 7, 2020

Keywords: Case study; Multicultural education; Graduate students; Culturally responsive teaching

References