Power Point Combating Homogeneity Among Education Majors


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Power Point Combating Homogeneity Among Education Majors

  1. 1. Combating Homogeneity Among Education Majors: Understanding World Religions to Teach in Culturally Diverse Classrooms Presented by Brandy B. Stark Florida Communication Association Conference October 12, 2007
  2. 2. Introduction <ul><li>How many religious symbols do you recognize? </li></ul>
  3. 3. Introduction Christian Cross    Jewish Star of David    Hindu Aumkar Sikh Khanda Bahá'i Star   Jain Ahimsa Symbol. Islamic Star and Crescent Shinto Torii Buddhist Wheel of Dharma (Center)
  4. 4. Introduction <ul><li>Note that the past two decades have shown an unusually high immigration rate in United States. </li></ul><ul><li>As new populations settle in America, religious diversity is becoming more common in both culture and in classrooms across the nation. </li></ul><ul><li>Imagine being in a classroom with students of equally diverse religious backgrounds. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Introduction <ul><ul><li>States with highest immigration rates at present are Florida, California, New York, and Texas. </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Florida Population
  7. 7. Florida Population
  8. 8. Florida Populations: Jewish
  9. 9. Florida Population: Catholic
  10. 10. Florida Population: Muslim
  11. 11. Terms <ul><li>Cultural Diversity: (As defined by the Global Biodiversity Strategy, 2006): A variety of multiformity of human structures, belief systems and strategies for adapting to situations in different parts of the world. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Primary diversity: Factors that do not change or cannot be controlled (age, ethnicity, gender, birthplace, etc.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Secondary diversity: Factors subject to change (educational background, work experience, geographic location, marital status, income, and religious beliefs). </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Terms <ul><li>Religion: An organization and institutional group experienced with accepted faiths and beliefs. Individuals affiliated with a religion have a particular set of beliefs, behaviors and understanding of how one should behave in the world (Henderson, 2000). </li></ul>
  13. 13. Introduction <ul><ul><li>Why is it important to study religion? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Religious affiliation and ethnicity affect one another. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Philosophies and practices of religions are recognized as the basis to the establishment of society, law, governance, and education. </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Value of Religious Knowledge <ul><ul><li>Religions play a significant role in history and society (America: Bill of Rights). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Understanding religion promotes cross-cultural understanding that is necessary for diplomacy and inter-personal interaction in the modern world. </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Value of Religious Knowledge <ul><li>Preservice education students currently enrolled in educational programs will graduate to classrooms with continually diversifying student populations. </li></ul><ul><li>It is important to prepare them for teaching in a culture concerned with spirituality and religion. </li></ul><ul><li>Why? Religions not only have an impact on classrooms but also extracurricular and recreation activities associated with schools and campus life (Henderson, 2000). </li></ul>
  16. 16. Statement of the Problem <ul><li>Due to the issues of the United States’ policy that separates church from state, most public and many private higher educational institutes list classes relating to religion as either “elective” or as a part of a group that fulfills the Humanities requirement for an undergraduate degree. </li></ul><ul><li>A required World Religions study is lacking from most education majors’ programs. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Statement of the Problem <ul><li>As the world continues to evolve and expand into a global context, creating rising waves of immigration into America as well as shifting religious paradigms, educators can ill afford to enter a classroom without a basic working knowledge of current world religions. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Statement of Problem <ul><li>Homogenization of teachers: The majority of students predicted to enter educational programs will come from the white middle class. </li></ul><ul><li>Most will have limited or no experience with persons of different ethnic or racial backgrounds (Causey, Thomas & Armento, 1999). </li></ul>
  19. 19. Homogenized Teachers <ul><li>Preservice education majors often encounter first contact with cultural diversity in higher educational institutions. </li></ul><ul><li>Yet, there remains a cultural isolation among the students in the teacher educaton programs, which can lead to barriers in working with a diverse classroom setting (Causey, Thomas & Armento). </li></ul>
  20. 20. Combating Homogeneity <ul><li>Therefore, education majors planning to teach in the classroom can be exposed to the fundamentals of religions through the use of a World Religions course. </li></ul>
  21. 21. World Religions Course <ul><li>A basic World Religions course on the undergraduate college level studies the academic nature of religions: histories, traditions, philosophies and cultural connections to religions. </li></ul><ul><li>A course typically encompasses Primal/Tribal beliefs, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Confucianism/Taoism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Other religions and topics may also be covered. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Combating Homogeneity <ul><li>Douglas (2000) asserts that the study of religion is essential to the understanding of the nation and the world. </li></ul><ul><li>A study by Hay (2001) reports that the more educators understand about religions, the more they can know about the world. </li></ul><ul><li>Educators who know more about religion build a stronger professionalism regarding student interaction. </li></ul>
  23. 23. Conclusion <ul><li>As a World Religions instructor, I educate the students who will become the future of America and the world. </li></ul><ul><li>I see how the class allows students to look beyond themselves into the worlds and perceptions of others. </li></ul>
  24. 24. Conclusion <ul><li>My objective is to not only establish cultural diversity as part of a requirement for undergraduate and graduate education majors. </li></ul><ul><li>My goal is to teach cultural diversity as a part of a normative curriculum in order to promote a higher understanding of the wonder of humanity for future generations. </li></ul>
  25. 25. Conclusion <ul><li>It is my hope that as the world continues to experience the changes associated with globalization my students are better prepared to move into a world of cultural diversity. </li></ul>
  26. 26. Conclusion <ul><li>The world religions have many differences, but it is my understanding that they promote the same common values: the right of human dignity, the importance of education, and to treat others as one would wish to be treated. </li></ul>
  27. 27. Resources <ul><li>Adherents. com. Sept. 6, 2002. “Major Religions of the World Ranked by Number of Adherents,” Retrieved Oct. 6, 2006 from </li></ul><ul><li>http://www. Sundays. com/Major_Religions_Ranked_by_Size. html . </li></ul><ul><li>American Religious Identification Survey. (2001). Retrieved on November 25, 2006 from http://www.gc.cuny.edu/faculty/research_briefs.aris/key_findings. htm. </li></ul><ul><li>Causey, V. , Thomas, C, & Armento, B. (1999). “Cultural diversity is basically a foreign term to me: the challenges of diversity for preservice teacher education. ” Teaching and Teacher Education . Vol. 16. 33-45. </li></ul><ul><li>“ Education as transformation: A national project on religious pluralism, spirituality and higher education. ” (1998). Retrieved on November 25, 2006 from http://www.wellesley.edu/RelLife/transoformation/edu-ngoverview.html. </li></ul><ul><li>Graham, K. (2007) “Back on campus, ready to listen,” St. Petersburg Times. 3B. </li></ul><ul><li>Guion, L. (2005). “An Overview of Diversity. ” Document number FCS9217, Family Youth and Community Services Department, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences University of Florida. </li></ul>
  28. 28. Resources <ul><li>Harrison M, Beyer, J. (1991)  Organization Science, Vol. 2, No. 2 (May). 149 – 169. </li></ul><ul><li>Henderson, K. A. (2001). “World Religions, spirituality, and experiential education”. Journal of Experiential Education , v. 23 (3). 128 – 34. </li></ul><ul><li>Kazanjian, V. “Religious Identity and Intellectual Development: Foraging Powerful Learning Communities. ” Diversity Digest. Retrieved November 23, 2006 from http://www. diversityweb . rg /Digest/SP99/religious. html . </li></ul><ul><li>Lottes, I. and Kilinoff, P. (1994). “The Impact of College Experience on Political and social Attitudes. ” Sex Roles: A journal of research . Volume 31, (Numbers 1-2) 31-54. </li></ul><ul><li>Mossley, D and Tomalin, E. “Supporting Cultural And Religious Diversity”. Last updated Sept.19, 2005. Retrieved November 25, 2006 from http://prs.heacademy.ac.uk/archives/oldsite/diversity/index.html </li></ul><ul><li>Portugal, L. (2007)  “Diversity leadership in higher education”, Academic Leadership Vol 4 (3), 31-45. </li></ul>
  29. 29. Resources <ul><li>“ Religion and Ethnicity. ” (2006). American Religious Identification Questionnaire. Retrieved November 25, 2006 from http://www. gc . cuny . edu /faculty/research_briefs/ aris /religion_ethnicity. htm . </li></ul><ul><li>U. S. Census Bureau. Florida Quick Facts. Retrieved November 25, 2006 from http://www.census.gov/population/www/cen2000/atas.html. </li></ul>