Diversity and Your Department

Resources for addressing diversity and inclusion

Tag: Teaching


Amburgy, P. M. (2011). Diversity, Pedagogy, and Visual Culture. Art Education, 64, 6-11. (PDF)

Amburgy discusses how she attempts to move towards an understanding of "representation, ideology, and social privilege" in the construction of her Art Education course. She details numerous assignments that she assigns her students that make them confront the ways that their social position prefigures their understanding of visual representations of different demographics. Many interesting critical resources are cited in the article.

Kraehe, A. (2010). Multicultural Art Education in an Era of Standardized Testing: Changes in Knowledge and Skill for Art Teacher Certification in Texas. Studies in Art Education, 51(2), 162-175. (PDF)

Kraehe argues that it is vital for an arts educator to emphasize a multicultural approach in their classroom, as the arts educator most directly builds the students' conception of a cultural narrative; Kraehe's findings show that certification for art educators reflect a movement towards multiculturalism and contextualization of art within social and historical conditions. This article verifies the notion that systemic processes have begun to recognize multicultural and postcolonial pedagogies and encourages the art educator to continually question the narratives they teach in the classroom.

Shin, R. (2011). Social Justice and Informal Learning: Breaking the Social Comfort Zone and Facilitating Positive Ethnic Interaction. Studies in Art Education: A Journal of Issues and Research in Art Education, 53, 71-87. (PDF)

This article proposes "informal learning" as a way to break students of culturally insensitive practices, such as stereotyping. Shin's methods also employ community involvement as a primary tool. This article would be mainly helpful to professors who are looking for new class projects and assignments.


Harackiewicz, J. M., Canning, E. A., Tibbetts, Y., Giffen, C. J., Blair, S. S., Rouse, D. I., & Hyde, J. S. (2014). Closing the Social Class Achievement Gap for First-Generation Students in Undergraduate Biology. Journal of Educational Psychology, 106(2), 375–389. (PDF)

Although studies frequently address both minority and female students in STEM fields, another demographic, first-generation students, often go underserved and slip through STEM's 'leaky pipeline.' This study shows that simple interventions can help to retain first-generation students by up to 50%.


Popejoy, K., & Asala, K. S. (2013). A Team Approach to Successful Learning: Peer Learning Coaches in Chemistry. Journal of College Science Teaching, 42(3), 18–23. (PDF)

This article looks at why so many students fail and drop out of introductory chemistry courses. It then proposes a method, "Team Approach to Successful Learning", that engages students in peer learning and helps to raise test scores and retention. This article is recommended to any intro science instructor.


Gerdes, E. V. P., & VanDenend Sorge, T. (2015). Building Humans and Dances: Exploring Cultural Relevancy as Teaching Artists. Journal of Dance Education, 15(2), 72-76. (PDF)

While this article focuses on the logistical intricacies of teaching dance to elementary school-aged children, there is relevant information about the "student authority" within dance classes. The authors advocate for dance instruction that reflects the cultural realities of the student. Employed in a college-level dance class, this practice could provide dynamic collaborations between professor and student.

Kerr-Berry, J., Clemente, K., & Risner, D. (2008). The Politics of Gender in Dance Pedagogy. Journal of Dance Education, 8(3), 94-101. (PDF)

In Risner's short article, he focuses on how his own gendered identity affects the classroom environment in his dance classes. He proposes methods of student-directed teaching that decenter his own primacy in the classroom; these pedagogies are similar to conference-based classes that Reed espouses.

McCarthy-Brown, N. (2009). The Need for Culturally Relevant Dance Education. Journal of Dance Education, 9(4), 120-125. (PDF)

McCarthy-Brown also focuses on the need for dance teachers to listen to their students and allow the student to negotiate their own cultural lineages and realities within the dance studio, instead of functioning as a "gatekeeper" for the appropriate kinds of dances. McCarthy-Brown's experience as a person of color helps to show that no person is above harmful discrimination, and every instructor must regularly self-assess.


Risner, D., & Stinson, S. W. (2010). Moving Social Justice: Challenges, Fears and Possibilities in Dance Education. International Journal of Education & the Arts, 11(6), 1-26. (PDF)

This collaboration is a holistic view of the problems facing multiculturalistic inclusivity in dance education programs across the United States. This would be helpful to professors who want to self-examine their own teaching methods to see if they are as inclusive they intend to be.

General (Mathematics and Natural Sciences)

Bricker, L. A., Reeve, S., & Bell, P. (2014). "She Has to Drink Blood of the Snake": Culture and prior knowledge in science|health education. International Journal of Science Education, 36(9), 1457–1475. (PDF)

In this study, Bricker et al. advocate for science education that engages with students' cultural background and prior knowledge. This would aid in retaining students that may otherwise find science excludes them. While this study focuses on elementary-aged students, it continues to be important at every level of education.

Diekman, A. B., Weisgram, E. S., & Belanger, A. L. (2015). New Routes to Recruiting and Retaining Women in STEM: Policy Implications of a Communal Goal Congruity Perspective. Social Issues and Policy Review, 9(1), 52–88. (PDF)

This study examines the gender disparity in STEM fields through the context that STEM often values individual over communal achievement. The study argues that women value community-oriented goals, and STEM education can better include women by reorienting towards communal goals.

General (The Arts)

Engdahl, E. (2012). The East Bay Center for the Performing Arts: A Model for Community-Based Multicultural Arts Education. Multicultural Education(2), 43-48. (PDF)

This article provides a portrait and history of the East Bay Center, which provides arts-based education to students of low-income families. It describes the Center's guiding goals, which allow them to engage with and enrich a richly multicultural community. Although this article focuses on education for pre-college students, the goals in the second half of the article also apply to arts education at a collegiate level.


Schwieger, F., Gros, E., & Barberan, L. (2010). Lessons from the Culturally Diverse Classroom: Intellectual Challenges and Opportunities of Teaching in the American University. College Teaching, 58(4), 148-155. (PDF)

In this essay, Schwieger et al. argue against the idea that diversity is a nuisance, something that must be forced into each classroom; instead, they see diversity as the necessary mechanism for high quality education. Each of the authors offer stories of their experiences in a global classroom, and many types of professor might find helpful information throughout this essay.



Linguistic Society of America. (1996, 1996). The LSA Guidelines for Nonsexist Usage. LSA Bulletin. Retrieved April 15, 2015, from http://www.linguisticsociety.org/resource/lsa-guidelines-nonsexist-usage

In this article, the LSA outlines specific rules for how to avoid the use of sexist language. While this is specifically aimed at the examples used by linguistics professors in class, these rules could find usage in the general classroom and the greater world as well. The guidelines are older than most articles included in this bibliography, but they are still used by the society and therefore remain pertinent. This is recommended for all professors.

Tags: Gender

Macaulay, M., & Brice, C. (1997). Don't Touch My Projectile: Gender Bias and Stereotyping in Syntactic Examples. Language, 73, 798-825. (PDF)

This study largely verifies the necessity of the LSA Guidelines for Nonsexist Usage by examining syntax textbooks and showing that examples are overwhelmingly male and haven't improved in the past twenty five years. This article would be primarily useful to professors that need to see specific and thorough examples of how sexist language permeates into the classroom and textbook.


Anyiwo, U. M. (2014). Outside/In: Using Vampires to Explore Diversity and Alienation in a College Classroom. In L. A. Nevárez & S. George (Eds.), The Vampire Goes to College: Essays on Teaching with the Undead (pp. 45-55). Jefferson, NC: McFarland. (PDF)

This essay gives an in-depth look into a course that introduces students to the ideas of racial identity through the "back door" of genre fiction. The students depicted by Anyiwo may strike Reed professors as more resistant to discussions privilege and racism than the average Reed student may be, but there are helpful tips to be found in this work as to how one can introduce these potentially fraught ideas into a classroom.

Barst, J. M. (2013). Pedagogical Approaches to Diversity in the English Classroom: A Case Study of Global Feminist Literature. Pedagogy: Critical Approaches to Teaching Literature, Language, Composition, and Culture, 13(1), 149-157. (PDF)

Barst advocates for a class discussion of diversity early on in the class, so every student can develop a fruitful definition of diversity that goes beyond "lip service." She also believes that the professor should ground every text in cultural and historical contexts before the students read the text, and develop discussion-based activities and assignments that continually refine students' ideas of diversity using the texts in question.

Zitzer-Comfort, C. (2008). Teaching Native American Literature: Inviting Students to See the World through Indigenous Lenses. Pedagogy: Critical Approaches to Teaching Literature, Language, Composition, and Culture, 8(1), 160-170. (PDF)

This article discusses how to best approach minority literatures that students may not be as familiar with compared to other majority (i.e. American, British) or well-known minority literatures (i.e. African-American). Zitzer-Comfort offers several practical tools that work to dismantle previous misconceptions of the minority and build a more nuanced view of the culture. This is recommended for any professor who wants to discuss a minority that they feel is still clouded by misinformation.

Math, Statistics & Computer Science

Charleston, L. J., George, P. L., Jackson, J. F. L., Berhanu, J., & Amechi, M. H. (2014). Navigating underrepresented STEM spaces: Experiences of Black women in U.S. computing science higher education programs who actualize success. Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, 7(3), 166–176. (PDF)

This article focuses on the intersectionality of race and gender in the computing field. Charleston et al. argue that both instructors and students must constantly examine and reconfigure their own prejudices.

Whittaker, J. A., & Montgomery, B. L. (2012). Cultivating Diversity and Competency in STEM: Challenges and Remedies for Removing Virtual Barriers to Constructing Diverse Higher Education Communities of Success. The Journal of Undergraduate Neuroscience Education, 11, A44-A51. (PDF)

This study examines why there is a large divide between the success of minority students in Historically Black Colleges and majority colleges. Whittaker and Montgomery recommend programs to help minority students succeed based on efforts that have been successful. This is an even-handed overview and recommended for all readers.


Kinzer, J. (2014). Students Speak: Diversity in the Pedagogical Practices of Music in Higher Education. CMS Forums, 54.

This article features contributions from ten post-secondary music students on how to increase diversity in the music classroom. The short piece is composed of many different smaller sections that all look at the issues of music education diversity in different ways.

Quaglia, B. W. (2015). Planning for Student Variability: Universal Design for Learning in the Music Theory Classroom and Curriculum. Music Theory Online, 21(1). (PDF)

In this article, Quaglia proposes Universal Design for Learning as an effective way to be inclusive of students with disabilities while bettering the classroom environment for all students as a whole. This article is best suited for professors who would be open to adapting to a whole new method of teaching.


Burns, K. A. (2014). Minimizing and Managing Microaggressions in the Philosophy Classroom. Teaching Philosophy, 37(2), 131-152. (PDF)

This essay offers a working definition of the term 'microaggression,' and shows how they can make their way into the classroom. From there, Burns illustrates the impact of microaggressions and gives tips on how to minimize their appearance. This is essential reading for professors that need to familiarize themselves with the concept and improve their classroom environment.

Norlock, K. J. (2012). Gender perception as a habit of moral perception: Implications for philosophical methodology and introductory curriculum. Journal of Social Philosophy, 43, 347-362. (PDF)

Norlock ponders why so many female-gendered people drop out of philosophy courses after introductory courses, as opposed to farther down the pipeline. One common reason that inclusivity activists cite is that there is a lack of women on the syllabus for these intro courses. Norlock is remarkably even-handed in her analysis of these issues, humanizing both the advocates for inclusivity and their opponents. This is recommended for intro course instructors.


Götschel, H. (2014). No Space for Girliness in Physics: Understanding and Overcoming the Masculinity of Physics. Cultural Studies of Science Education, 9(2), 531–537. (PDF)

In this study, Götschel shifts attention from the struggle of women in physics to the struggle of the feminine in physics. She argues that in order to 'pass' in the world of physics, women (and feminine boys) must deny their girliness, and she argues that physics needs to work towards a greater acceptance of "the other," and not an assimilation thereof. This is a nuanced view, and recommended for all instructors.

Kreutzer, K., & Boudreaux, A. (2012). Preliminary Investigation of Instructor Effects on Gender Gap in Introductory Physics. Physical Review Special Topics - Physics Education Research, 8(1). (PDF)

This study examines the gender inequity inside a physics classroom to discover why men typically do better than females. This article is primarily valuable because it offers a succinct list of five things that any professor can do to increase gender equity in their classroom, including "cultivate optimistic student-teacher relationships" and "practice nonjudgmental responsiveness."

Political Science

Auerbach, Arthur H. "Teaching Diversity: Using a Multifaceted Approach to Engage Students." PS: Political Science & Politics 45, Issue 3 (July 2012): 516-520. (PDF)

The author of this article details the content and methods he used to teach a political science course on diversity in society. He used inclusive methods in his pedagogy and brought in non-traditional sources to show a variety of perspectives. While this article is based on a political science course, the methods used are applicable to most disciplines.


Case, K. A. (2011). The class interview: Student engagement in courses covering sensitive topics. Psychology Learning & Teaching, 10(1), 52-56. (PDF)

This short article describes activities that psychology classes can partake in during the first day of classes in order to loosen up and prepare students for tackling more sensitive topics. This article is especially recommended for professors teaching intro or lower level classes.

Domenech Rodríguez, M. M., & Bates, S. C. (2012). Aspiring to ethical treatment of diverse student populations. In R. E. Landrum, M. A. McCarthy, R. E. Landrum, & M. A. McCarthy (Eds.), Teaching ethically: Challenges and opportunities. (pp. 101-111). Washington, DC, US: American Psychological Association. (PDF)

In this article, Domenech Rodríguez and Bates look at the challenges facing a teacher who wants to keep with the APA guidelines on diversity. They highlight the two ways an instructor can most successfully keep diversity a part of their courses: by making it a part of the course content, and by managing classroom discussion. This article is recommended for instructors who don't know where to start researching practical applications of diversity.

Gharib, A., & Phillips, W. (2012). Assigning culture: An example of a cross-cultural assignment for teaching introductory psychology. Psychology Learning & Teaching, 11(3), 428-432. (PDF)

In this study, Gharib and Phillips advocate assigning books that discuss cross-cultural applications of psychology to foster a greater appreciation of multiculturalism in students. This is recommended for psychology professors building their syllabi.

McCarthy, M. A., & Landrum, R. E. (2013). Treating students as early-career professionals: The ethics of teaching. In D. S. Dunn, R. A. R. Gurung, K. Z. Naufel, J. H. Wilson, D. S. Dunn, R. A. R. Gurung, K. Z. Naufel, & J. H. Wilson (Eds.), Controversy in the psychology classroom: Using hot topics to foster critical thinking. (pp. 35-45). Washington, DC, US: American Psychological Association. (PDF)

This document is an extremely useful step-by-step guide to successfully incorporating discussions of diversity into the classroom. It details such practices as writing a diversity mission statement for your course and discussing openly how tests are graded. This is recommended for all professors.

Pickren, W. E., & Burchett, C. (2014). Making psychology inclusive: A history of education and training for diversity in American psychology. In F. T. L. Leong, L. Comas-Díaz, G. C. Nagayama Hall, V. C. McLoyd & J. E. Trimble(Eds.), APA handbook of multicultural psychology, Vol. 2: Applications and training. (pp. 3-18). Washington, DC, US: American Psychological Association. (PDF)

The first half of this article traces the ways in which discussions of diversity have appeared in the field of psychology over the past hundred years or so. In the second part of the article, Pickren and Burchett discuss how to best train students and professors to be ethically minded in the realm of diversity. This article is recommended for professors who are interested in some historical background of diversity and need some starting points to introducing multiculturalism into their classroom.

Sánchez, O., Chism, N. F. D. P., Serafini, K., & Judd, T. (2012). Empowering culturally diverse students within a collaborative learning community: A student perspective. Psychology Learning & Teaching, 11(3), 406-412. (PDF)

In this article, Sánchez et al. offer four simple suggestions for professors to follow in order to empower minority students in their classroom. They then explicate each suggestion in understandable terms. This article is helpful not only for professors just starting their engagement with diversity, but also those who have worked towards inclusivity for a while.


Andraos, M. E. (2012). Engaging Diversity in Teaching Religion and Theology: An Intercultural, De-Colonial Epistemic Perspective. Teaching Theology & Religion, 15(1), 3-15. (PDF)

Andraos provides a primer on colonialism, decolonization, and how those two concepts affect learning and the classroom environment. They offer practical applications of decolonization in a Religion classroom. This article is best for professors unfamiliar with postcolonial studies and how to incorporate them into coursework and class discussion.

Coleman, M. A. (2007). Transforming to Teach: Teaching Religion to Today's Black College Student. Teaching Theology & Religion, 10(2), 95-100. (PDF)

This essay examines the ways in which postmodern pedagogies are received (and rejected) by black students in religion classes. In some ways, this work may feel reductive to Reed professors, as Coleman struggles to introduce a classroom style that is already firmly established at Reed, but there are some generally useful lesson ideas to be found in this short piece.

DeTemple, J. (2012). Home Is My Area Code: Thinking about, Teaching, and Learning Globalization in Introductory World Religions Classes. Teaching Theology & Religion, 15(1), 61-71. (PDF)

This article examines the benefits and challenges of discussing globalization within the context of an intro religion course. Although the students in DeTemple's class may have had more problems grasping the ideas of globalization than the average Reed class would, the article still provides potentially helpful insight into managing the varying worldviews that come together in an intro religion course.

LePeau, L. (2007). Queer(y)ing Religion and Spirituality: Reflections from Difficult Dialogues Exploring Religion, Spirituality, and Homosexuality. College Student Affairs Journal, 26(2), 186-192. (PDF)

In this piece, LePeau examines the results of combining religion and sexuality in a highly personal classroom atmosphere. LePeau offers up several practical suggestions for how to deal with these sensitive topics within an emotionally fraught college classroom; this article is primarily helpful for any professor finding themselves navigating a similar atmosphere.

Locklin, R. B., Tiemeier, T., & Vento, J. M. (2012). Teaching World Religions without Teaching "World Religions". Teaching Theology & Religion, 15(2), 159-181. (PDF)

This work offers three separate essays that attempt to show how a professor can go about teaching a pluralistic religion class without falling into the problematic pratfalls of "world religions" courses that critics have recently lambasted. This work is helpful for any religion professor who is looking for tips on how to remain sensitive to how their classroom is run.

Neal, L. S. (2013). From Classroom to Controversy: Conflict in the Teaching of Religion. Teaching Theology & Religion, 16(1), 66-75. (PDF)

In this article, Neal examines the way a certain project they assigned in a religion class caused conflict throughout campus, and how conflict can be both productive and harmful to the classroom environment. This highly pertinent article addresses many of the subjects broached by trigger warnings from a different angle. This is recommended for all professors.


Moore, H. A., Acosta, K., Perry, G. and Edwards, C. (2010), SPLITTING THE ACADEMY: The Emotions of Intersectionality at Work. The Sociological Quarterly, 51 (PDF)

Investigates who teaches diversity courses at a research university. This article may be of interest to new faculty who are transitioning from working and studying at RI institutions to working at Reed. In addition, this article presents the different dimensions involved in teaching diversity-focused courses, which are often very demanding in terms of time and emotional investment.

Packard, Josh. "The Impact of Racial Diversity in the Classroom Activating the Sociological Imagination." Teaching Sociology 41, no. 2 (2013): 144–58. http://www.asanet.org/journals/TS/Apr13TSFeature.pdf

The author "examined student journals in order to understand how race influenced the ways students engaged with course material." His findings suggested that Black students were more likely than white students "to find connections between course material and daily life, a central task of the sociological imagination." Packard breaks his findings down into categories showing the types of content that students engaged with and in what ways. This research could be used to inform the type of content professors choose to spur specific discussions.



Bowles, N. (2005). Why Devise? Why Now? "Houston, We Have a Problem.". Theatre Topics, 15(1), 15-21. (PDF)

This article emphasizes the importance of diversity and inclusion in the creation of devised or collaborative theatre. This would be helpful for professors thinking of including devised theatre on their curriculum.

Cherne, B. (2013). Empathy as a Diversity Teaching Tool: A Performance-Based Class in Multicultural Dramatic Literature. Theatre Topics, 23(1), 69-81. (PDF)

This article explores the utility of performance in breaking down negative cultural perceptions and harmful "Othering" effects of minority students. It argues that the performance of theatrical texts outside of the western canon, done sensitively, can lead to a more rich and empathetic understanding between students of varied backgrounds.

O'Brien, C., Kroner, C., & Placier, P. (2015). Deaf Culture and Academic Culture: Cultivating Understanding Across Cultural and Linguistic Boundaries. Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, 8(2), 104-119. (PDF)

This highly theoretical work examines an experimental teaching experience that exposed students to Deaf Culture through the methodology of the Theatre of the Oppressed. This allowed the students to express and discuss misconceptions they have with Deaf people and gain further insight into life as a differently-abled person. This study would be helpful to any Theatre professor who is interested in teaching, discussing, or directing works that include Deaf and differently-abled characters.


Mitchell, D. (2008). I Thought Composition Was about Commas and Quotes, not Queers: Diversity and Campus Change at a Rural Two-Year College. Composition Studies, 36(2), 23-50. (PDF)

The type of college being discussed in this article is incredibly different from the type of institution that Reed College is. That being said, the goals of Mitchell's teaching philosophy, "to facilitate improvement in student writing while also broadening their range of cultural experiences in order to better foster diversity, making room on campus for difference —different subjectivities, different ideas, and different expectations," is a goal that can continue to be developed even at a place such as Reed.