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Ed Webb

The Progressive Stack and Standing for Inclusive Teaching - The Tattooed Professor - 2 views

  • There are two fundamental truths about Inclusive Pedagogy: it is an eminently desirable set of practices for teaching in higher ed, and it is an eminently difficult set of practices for teaching in higher ed
  • Put simply, the Progressive Stack is a method of ensuring that voices that are often submerged, discounted, or excluded from traditional classroom discussions get a chance to be heard
  • There are personal, cultural, learning, and social reasons people don’t speak up in class.  Students of color and women of all races, introverts, the non-conventional thinkers, those from poor previous educational backgrounds, returning or “nontraditional students,” and those from cultures where speaking out is considered rude not participatory are all likely to be silent in a class where collaboration by difference is not structured as a principle of pedagogy and organization and design.   Who loses?  Everyone.  Arguments that are smart and valuable and can change a whole conversation get lost in silence and, sometimes, shame.  When that happens, we don’t really have discussion or collaboration.  We have group think–and that is why we all lose.
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  • Taking “stack” just means keeping a list of people who wish to participate—offer a question or comment—during the Q & A. Rather than anxiously waving your hand around and wondering if you’ll be called on, if you would like to participate, signal to me in some way (a gesture, a dance move, a traditional hand-in-the-air, meaningful eye contact, etc.) and I will add you to the list. However, we’re not just going to take stack, we are going to take progressive stack in an effort to foreground voices that are typically silenced in dominant culture. According to Justine and Zoë, two self-identified transwomen who were active in the movement, progressive stack means that “if you self-identify as trans, queer, a person of color, female, or as a member of any marginalized group you’re given priority on the list of people who want to speak – the stack. The most oppressed get to speak first.” As I take stack, I will also do my best to bump marginalized voices and those who haven’t yet had a chance to participate to the top.
  • As with any tool that confronts the effects of privilege and power head-on, the Progressive Stack makes some people uncomfortable
  • In a complete social and historical vacuum, level-playing-field equality is an excellent proposition. But in the actual lived world of our history, experiences, and interactions the idea of treating everyone uniformly “regardless of gender” or without “seeing color” simply strengthens already-entrenched inequalities
  • As the increasing number of targeted online harassment campaigns has shown us, once a concept or issue has traveled through the right-wing Outrage-Distortion Complex, there is little hope of reclaiming rational discussion. It’s been permanently stained. One might dismiss the frothing lamentations of white-genocide-via-classroom-pedagogy that bubble up from a subreddit, but the insidious trope of “reverse racism” has put its thumb on the scale enough to have distorted the conversation around the Progressive Stack
  • because the Progressive Stack calls attention to existing structures of inequality by replacing them with another structure entirely, it forces those of us who identify as white (and, particularly, male) to confront the ways in which we have been complicit in maintaining inequality
  • When you’re accustomed to privilege, even the suggestion of equality will feel like oppression
  • google “progressive stack.” Almost every result you get will take you to the fever swamps of right-wing Reddit and warmed-over piles of gamergate droppings. The common denominator is that “Progressive Stack” is simply anti-white “racism” dressed in fancy intellectual clothes
  • Giving up power, it turns out, is hard for some people. Especially when that power has been historically-constructed to be so pervasive as to render it unquestioned and indeed unseen in its hegemonic sway. Pierre Bourdieu calls this symbolic power: “For symbolic power is that invisible power which can be exercised only with the complicity of those who do not want to know that they are subject to it or even that they themselves exercise it”
  • It means there will be times when people who are not accustomed to their identity being a source of discomfort and exclusion will have to learn–in a managed and intentional space–what that feels like.
  • there will be friction and messiness and uncomfortable adjustments, because any education worth the name involves friction and messiness and uncomfortable adjustments
Ed Webb

More Colleges Are Asking Scholars for Diversity Statements. Here's What You Need to Kno... - 0 views

  • diversity statements tend to be more useful to search committees when institutions provide a definition of diversity and explicit expectations for what should go into the statement.
  • reframing the prompt to focus more on fixing systemic discrimination in academe. Candidates would submit a reflection on the history of their discipline. That would necessarily include discussion of equity and diversity, he said. And it would make clear that departments are grappling with the question of what needs to be done to change their respective disciplines.
  • Plenty of scholars, like Flier, the former Harvard dean, would rather do away with the statements altogether. "The more the expectations become influenced by critical race theory and related concepts, and the more they are used to hold back or reject faculty who fail to echo the latest expectations, whatever they might be," Flier wrote in an email, "the greater the chance for damage to academic credibility, and the opportunity to erect politically tinged litmus tests."
Martin Burrett

Personalised Learning - Is it achievable? - 0 views

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    "A fascinating discussion which looked at how it is possible to achieve personalised learning within classrooms at all levels. It was evident that the term 'Personalised Learning' had a different meaning to different people from different settings. Although 'official' definitions were offered, the ambiguity still remains. Is it really possible to personalise the curriculum for 30 individuals within a classroom envirnoment? Even more of a challenge to secondary colleagues who are faced with cohorts from different year groups within the same day - being faced with over 100 individual pupils within any day?"
Martin Burrett

Schools key to successful integration of child refugees - 0 views

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    "Schools can provide the ideal environment to improve integration and reduce the difficulties faced by refugee children in Western asylum countries, according to a new study from psychologists at City, University of London. The research, which involved speaking to refugees who had arrived in England and Denmark as children, highlights that schools can provide safe and stable setting where refugee children can develop meaningful and constructive connections to peers, teachers and other professionals, as well as being a place in which discrimination, racism and stigmatisation can be actively countered."
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