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ERIC Number: ED512967
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 201
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1092-5525-6
Authentic Diversity: A Case Study on College Students' Engagement with Diversity Competencies in an Integrative Studies Degree Program
Saunders, Kimberly
ProQuest LLC, D.A. Dissertation, George Mason University
This qualitative study provided a lens into the context of a senior capstone experience in an Integrative Studies degree program. The primary aim of this case study was to explore the use of capstone portfolio pedagogy as a reflection tool to demonstrate how students engage with authentic diversity competencies in an Integrative Studies degree program. In this study, diversity competency refers to the process of acquiring authentic diversity awareness, knowledge, and skills for the expressed purpose of preparing to function effectively in a diverse environment with respect and civility. Perspectives and academic experiences of ten interviewed undergraduate seniors, four graduation portfolio submitters (undergraduate seniors), and five interviewed professors within a single unit of study served as the primary data collection source to gain greater understanding of the themes derived from two investigative research questions: (1) How are the educational benefits of diversity and the competencies that foster it understood by students? (2) How is diversity defined, communicated, and implemented in student development and learning experiences? Findings revealed that evidence of students' engagement with diversity competencies in an Integrative Studies environment was positively influenced by eight factors: (a) diverse student interaction, (b) reflection-based teaching and learning practices, (c) experiential learning opportunities, (d) structured and shared curricular vocabulary, (e) integrative pedagogy, (f) enhanced self-awareness, (g) an interchange of diverse perspectives, and (h) portfolio-based assessment. Ultimately, these insights served as the impetus behind the creation of a mnemonic model that illustrates the core elements of authentic diversity and a diagram of the diversity competency cycle. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A