National Institute for Urban School Improvement
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Student Experience

  • Coming to Terms with "Diversity" and "Multiculturalism" in Teacher Education: Learning about Our Students, Changing Our Practice
    Teacher educators addressed negative student responses to a multicultural foundations course by designing an action research study to investigate students' identities, experiences, and beliefs. Analysis of written assignments and focus group discussions uncovered three categories of beliefs about the purposes of schools in relation to cultural diversity.
  • Dealing with Diversity. Ensuring Success for Every Student
    Four essays consider aspects of ensuring that every child can succeed in school. The first, "Appearing Acts: Creating Readers in a High School English Class" (Joan Kernan Cone), explores the self-perceptions of students and uses them to inspire their enthusiasm for reading.
  • Infusion of Multicultural Issues in Curricula: A Student Perspective
    Current or graduated students (n=132) at Colorado State University identified classroom incidents that had strengthened their understanding of multiculturalism. The 155 incidents were sorted into 18 categories of pedagogical techniques and classroom composition or dynamics that promoted multicultural awareness.
  • Nourishing Conversations: Urban Adolescents, Literacy, and Democratic Society
    Explores the implications of literacy instruction aimed at "nourishing conversations" about life experiences in literacy classrooms. Emphasizes the sense that students made of their lives when they were allowed to raise their voices through literacy.
  • Taylor’s Story: Full Inclusion in Her Neighborhood Elementary School
    Content Abstract: Analysis of the experience of a student with severe mental retardation who experienced full inclusion in her neighborhood elementary school revealed that the student’s opportunities for social participation and friendship improved, several adaptive skills were developed, the classroom teacher played a critical role in orchestrating the level of academic inclusion, and transition planning was essential. (Author/JDD) Method Abstract: ”Data from interviews, sociometric measures, videotapes, and field notes were used to present the perspectives of administrators, general and special educators, students and Taylor’s parents.” Quantitative and qualitative research methods utilized.
  • The Color of Teachers, the Color of Students: The Multicultural Classroom Experience
    Examines the experiences of students taking a one-semester race and ethnic relations course taught in three sections, each with a different instructor, one African American, one Mexican American, and one white. Finds that approximately 25 to 40 percent of students expected instructor's race/ethnicity to influence everything but grading.
  • The Experiences of Adult Undergraduate Students--What Shapes Their Learning?
    The Model of College Outcomes for Adults explains why adults might do as well as traditional students, despite limited participation and involvement in traditional residential learning experiences. The model's six components are prior experience and personal biographies; psychosocial and value orientation; adult cognition; life-world environment; college outcomes; and the connecting classroom.
  • Voices of Students in Multicultural Service-Learning Settings
    Journals of 30 college students of child development engaged in community-based service learning in multicultural settings revealed three themes. Students: (1) articulated their own approaches or philosophies regarding racial issues; (2) expressed concerns about specific multicultural or race-related incidents; and (3) discussed the resources they relied on to put their experiences into a larger perspective.