Paul Joseph Stengel | Communication, Media and Learning Technologies Design | Mathematics Science and Technology

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Communication, Media & Learning Technologies Design

In the Department of Mathematics, Science & Technology

The Use of Peer-Assessment and Self-Reflection in a Blog to Intentionally Develop Cultural Knowledge Attunement

Paul Joseph Stengel, Ed.M. Communication and Education

Among the objectives of the undergraduate Spanish language program at a large university is developing sensitivity toward target cultures under study. Existing pedagogical models embedded in the culture of the Spanish department create a tension between the goals to teach students core content knowledge, and the skills needed to attune personal cultural competence through community research projects. This Ed.M. integrative project investigates the issues related to a traditional curriculum of social efficiency (Shephard, 2000) and proposes a method to integrated a culturally responsive teaching approach (Harper & Hurtado, 2007) into the classroom. Research by Eloa & Oskoz, (2008) has demonstrated growth in cultural competency among undergraduate students associated with study abroad programs, which provides a promising approach for this proposed study. This paper sets out to propose an experimental study to see if construction of a final cultural competency project in a Spanish language course is improved by the implementation of a blog with prompts that promote self-regulated knowledge attunement. Improvements will be measured through a mixed methods approach to judge student attunement of knowledge types tied to a set of department required cultural competency components.

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