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Creating a Respectful Classroom Environment

“In our class: 1) everyone is allowed to feel they can work and learn in a safe and caring environment; 2) everyone learns about, understands, appreciates, and respects varied races, classes, genders, physical and mental abilities, and sexualities; 3) everyone matters; 4) all individuals are to be respected and treated with dignity and civility; and 5) everyone shares the responsibility for making our class, and the Academy, a positive and better place to live, work, and learn.”


Each Academic Program Has a Part in Teaching Diversity

As the student body becomes increasingly diverse, it’s important to have faculty incorporate multicultural design into their courses regardless of discipline. Although it may not seem that all disciplines lend themselves to including multiculturalism as a learning goal, consider how Christine Stanley and Mathew Ouellett frame the issue.


Strategies for Creating a More Inclusive Classroom

“I don’t really have any diversity issues in my class because all of my students are white.”

“I have a lot of content to cover, so there’s really no time to address multiculturalism.”

Diversity, once largely centered on race and ethnicity, has evolved over the years to include a broad range of personal attributes, experiences, and backgrounds, each interlocking to create one’s social identity.


How Much Multimedia Should You Add to PowerPoint Slides When Teaching Online?

PowerPoint is versatile in allowing us to add multimedia (graphics, sound, audio, video, text, animation, etc.) to our presentations for keeping online students’ rapt attention. But how much multimedia should you add? In answering this question, I find that taking into consideration students’ learning styles and cultural/international backgrounds can help to lessen the risk of using too much or too little multimedia in your online PPTs.


Report Outlines Practices That Have Strengthened STEM Offerings at Minority-Serving Institutions

A critical component to building an American workforce with 21st century skills through science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) undergraduate education is already being demonstrated successfully at several minority-serving institutions (MSIs)—Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), and Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs). During the past three years, MSIs continue to take steps that help to further improve America’s global competitiveness and increase equity, especially among minority students, in STEM education.


Stop Me If You’ve Heard This One: The Benefits of Humor in the Classroom

The contribution that humor makes to student learning is well established in research. It is not that humor causes learning; rather, it helps to create conditions conducive to learning. It helps learners relax, alleviates stress, and often makes it easier for students and teachers to connect personally. The presence of humor in a classroom can


Ethnicity and Social Presence in Online Courses

Social presence, “the degree to which a medium is perceived as representing the presence of communication participants,” is an important factor in students’ learning and satisfaction. With online learning reaching across cultures, Judy Teng, educational technologist at the College of Saint Rose, studied how ethnicity affects student perceptions of social presence.


Top 10 Tips for Addressing Sensitive Topics and Maintaining Civility in the Classroom

1. Create a classroom environment that from the first day sets ground rules for discussion and makes it clear that all students are included in the work of the class. Make sure you make all students feel connected to each other, the class, and the topic, and establish strong expectations about the content and manner of communication.


Retaining Faculty of Color

Most higher education institutions include language in their mission statements about the importance of diversity, but they often fall short when it comes to retaining faculty of color, says Christine A. Stanley, executive associate dean of faculty affairs at Texas A&M University, and editor of Faculty of Color: Teaching in Predominantly White Colleges and Universities (Anker Publishing, April 2006).


Incorporating Diversity-related Materials into the Curriculum

Incorporating material that addresses diversity issues in classes has positive effects on a number of learning outcomes. The success of efforts to make curricula more diverse depends to a large degree on faculty willingness to incorporate these materials because control of the curriculum remains in faculty hands—both collectively, in terms of course and program approval processes, and individually, in terms of daily decisions about what to teach.


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