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Diversity of Schools and Society

I.     Course Prefix/Number: EDN 180

       Course Name: Diversity of Schools and Society

       Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite


III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course explores how schooling is shaped by the social contexts in which it occurs, particularly in multicultural and global contexts.  Students investigate aspects of their own cultural identity and biases alongside comparative explorations of various culturally distinct groups in the United States and globally.   

IV.   Learning Objectives

Standards and indicators listed below are addressed at an introductory knowledge level.

A.    Illinois Professional Teaching Standards (IPTS)

Knowledge Objectives
• Understands how students’ learning is influenced by individual experiences, talents, and prior learning, as well as language, culture, family, and community values. (IPTS: 3C)
• Understands personal cultural perspectives and biases and their effects on one’s teaching. (IPTS: 3F)
• Understands how cultural and gender differences can affect communication in the classroom. (IPTS: 7B)

• Demonstrates positive regard for the culture, religion, gender, sexual orientation, varying abilities of individual students and their families. (IPTS: 3N)
• Demonstrates positive regard for the culture, religion, gender, and sexual orientation of individual students and their families. (IPTS: 11P)

B.    Illinois Common Core (CC) Standards for All Special Educators

Knowledge: The competent special education teacher understands:
• Variations in beliefs, traditions, and values across cultures within society and the effects of the relationship among child, family and schooling. (CC1C)
• Effects of the cultural and environmental milieu of the child and the family on behavior and learning. (CC2L)
• Strategies for preparing individuals to live harmoniously and productively in a multi-class, multiethnic, multicultural, and multinational world. (CC5A)
• How cultural and gender differences affect communication. (CC6B)
• Factors that promote effective communication and collaboration with individuals, parents, families, and school and community personnel in a culturally responsive program. (CC7A)
• Personal and cultural biases and differences that affect one's teaching and interactions with others. (CC8A)
• demonstrates positive regard for the culture, religion, gender, and sexual orientation of individual students and their families. (CC8G)

C.    Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) Common Core Knowledge and Skills

• Historical points of view and contribution of culturally diverse groups.
• Impact of the dominant culture on shaping schools and the individuals who study and work in them. (CEC1K9)
• Potential impact of differences in values, languages, and customs that can exist between the home and school. (CEC1K10)
• Variations in beliefs, traditions, and values across and within cultures and their effects on relationships among individuals with exceptional learning needs, family, and schooling. (CEC3K3)
• Cultural perspectives influencing the relationships among families, schools, and communities as related to instruction. (CEC3K4)
• Strategies for preparing individuals to live harmoniously and productively in a culturally diverse world. (CEC5K7)
• Ways to create learning environments that allow individuals to retain and appreciate their own and each other’s respective language and cultural heritage.
• Ways specific cultures are negatively stereotyped. (CEC5K9)
• Strategies used by diverse populations to cope with a legacy of former and continuing racism. (CEC5K10)
• Characteristics of one’s own culture and use of language and the ways in which these can differ from other cultures and uses of languages. (CEC6K2)
• Ways of behaving and communicating among cultures that can lead to misinterpretation and misunderstanding. (CEC6K3)
• Personal cultural biases and differences that affect one’s teaching. (CEC9K1)
• Prepare individuals to exhibit self-enhancing behavior in response to societal attitudes and actions. (CEC7S14)
• Demonstrate sensitivity for the culture, language, religion, gender, disability, socio-economic status, and sexual orientation of individuals. (CEC9S6)

V.    Academic Integrity

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.
Details of the Code of Academic Conduct can be found in the Student Handbook.

VI.   Sequence of Topics

A.    Diversity in the Classroom
1.    Culture
a.    Characteristics of Culture
b.    Manifestations of Culture
c.    Ethnocentrism
d.    Cultural Relativism


2.    Pluralism in Society
a.    The Dominant Culture
b.    Cultural Pluralism
c.    Cultural Borders
d.    Biculturalism and Multiculturalism
e.    Microcultural Groups
B.    Socio-economic Diversity
1.    Socio-economic Status
a.    Income
b.    Occupation
c.    Education
d.    Geographic Location
2.    Interaction of Socio-economic Status with Race and Ethnicity, Gender, and Age
a.    Race and Ethnic Inequality
b.    Gender Inequality
c.    Age Inequality
3.    Educational Implications
a.    Teacher Expectations and Tracking
b.    Curriculum for Equality
c.    Financial Support for Schools
C.    Ethnicity and Race
1.    Ethnic and Racial Diversity
2.    Ethnic and Racial Groups
a.    Ethnic Groups
b.    Racial Groups
3.    Intergroup Relations
a.    Prejudice and Discrimination
b.    Racism
4.    Educational Implications
a.    Ethnic Differences
b.    Curriculum Approaches
c.    Student Achievement and Assessment
D.    Gender
1.    Gender and Society/Culture
2.    Gender Identity
a.    Impact of Perceived Differences
b.    Stereotyping of Gender Roles
3.    Sexism and Gender Discrimination
a.    Jobs and Wages
b.    Sexual Orientation
c.    Sexual Harassment
4.    Interaction of Gender with Ethnicity, Class, and Religion

5.    Educational Implications
a.    Learning Styles and Gender
b.    Participation in Science, Mathematics, and Technology
c.    Nondiscrimination and Title IX
E.    Religion
1.    Religion and Culture
2.    Religious Pluralism in the United States
3.    Educational Implications
a.    Censorship
b.    Classroom Implications
F.    Language
1.    Language and Culture
2.    Language Differences
a.    Sign Language
b.    Bilingualism
3.    Dialect Differences
a.    Dialects
b.    Bi-dialecticism
c.    Standard English
d.    Perspectives on Black English
e.    Dialects and Education
4.    Second Language Acquisition
a.    Role of First Language in Second Language
b.    Acquisition
c.    Language Proficiency
5.    Educational Implications
a.    Language and Educational Assessment
b.    Bilingual Education
c.    English as a Second Language
d.    Nonverbal Communications in the Classroom
G.    Age
1.    Age and Culture
2.    Educational Implications
a.    Critical Issues in Childhood
b.    Critical Issues in Adolescence
c.    Adulthood
H.    Exceptionality
1.    Exceptionality and Society
2.    Educational Implications
a.    Disproportionate Placements in Special Education
b.    Normalization
c.    Achievement and Assessment

I.    Characteristics of Culturally Responsive Teaching
1.    High Teacher Expectations
2.    Reflecting Culture in Academic Subjects
3.    Student and Teacher Interactions and Communications
4.    Parent and Teacher Interactions and Communications
J.    Education in a Changing World: Current Issues and the Future
1.    Current Issues
2.    Looking to the Future

VII.  Methods of Instruction

The course will include lecture when necessary to clarify initial content; however, more generally this course will consist of student presentations, class discussions, and group work.

Course may be taught as face-to-face, media-based, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

Students are expected to have completed the assigned readings and/or other assignments BEFORE coming to class.  In addition, you are expected to participate in the group work and writing assignments assigned as part of the class session. In many instances we will be referring to the textbook in class, so please bring your book with you to every class session.

All work is due on time.  Late work will not be accepted without prior consultation with the instructor.

This course relies on the student’s ability to read and understand college-level text material.  Students will be required to write for this class the equivalent of 12-15 typed pages of material that will be graded.  This writing may take the form of a research or term paper, summaries of journal articles, and/or a series of shorter, analytical papers.

This course also relies on the student’s ability to use technology, such as e-mail, Internet search engines, library databases and presentation software.  All students must have a functioning e-mail address for this class.  Please see me if you need to schedule a technology instruction session with me during my office hours.

Students are expected to submit college-level writing that is free from typographical, spelling, and grammatical errors. All written work should be typed, doubled-spaced, using 10 or 12 point normal fonts (Arial, Times New Roman), and have 1-inch top and bottom margins, and 1.25-inch left and right margins.

In order to create a safe and healthy learning environment for all students in the class, it is important that you treat your fellow students and your instructor with respect and consideration.  Disruptive and/or disrespectful behavior can result in removal from the class and possible dismissal from the college.

Cell phones, beepers, and other disruptive communication devices are not allowed to be on during class.  Please remember to turn them off when entering the room.

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

Varies by instructor.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

Class Participation
All students are expected to attend scheduled classes. Students are allowed three excused absences for two-day-a week classes and two excused absences for one-day-a-week classes. Each additional absence will result in a loss of fifty points from your grade. Students must contact the instructor prior to the absence (or call in / e-mail if ill) in order to be excused.

Cultural Biography
You will write a 3-5 page cultural biography that includes family values/language patterns/behaviors of your own culture. The biography must also include your perceptions as to how your cultural values and behaviors can impact student learning and the provision of instruction (include biases).

Multicultural Project
You will be required to construct a project that demonstrates initiative and creativity in incorporating multiculturalism in teaching. Working with a small group, you will demonstrate a lesson on an aspect of diversity and multiculturalism in the United States.

Comparative Education Research Paper
You will study another nation in terms of how its educational systems have handled or are handling diversity. Candidates will write a 5 page paper which includes:
• A profile of the nation in terms of the diversity of its peoples.
• A description of what its educational system does about the diversity both implicitly and explicitly.
• A comparison or contrast of the adopted nation and the USA in terms of diversity and the educational approaches to diversity.
• What it would be like to be a teacher in this country.
• What it would be like to be a student in this country.
• A discussion of what the USA could learn from that nation and why.

You will compile an annotated bibliography of websites on a particular aspect of diversity and multiculturalism in the United States. These will be posted on the class website for all students to review.

Service Learning Project
You will complete a service learning project in a local school. Upon completion, you will write a reflection on your experience in relation to the information presented in the course. Projects can be done individually or in groups.

You will be given guided questions periodically in class to reflect on in a journal. The journal will be due at the end of the course.

A. Evaluation

Group Multicultural Project 100 points
Cultural Biography 100 points
Quizzes (4) 100 points
Comparative Ed. Research Paper 100 points
Webliography 75 points
In-school service learning project 75 points
Journal 50 points
600 points
B. Final Grade

90% - 100% = A
80% - 90% = B
70% - 80% = C
60% - 70% = D
Below 60% = F

XI.   Other Course Information

A.    Attendance at all class meetings is essential for success in this course.  While there is no specific penalty for missing class, the in-class assignments CANNOT be made up.  If you miss class or are late on a day when an in-class assignment is conducted, you will not receive credit for the work you missed.

B.    Papers and projects will not be accepted after the due date. E.    This course contributes to the fulfillment of the Illinois Professional Teaching Standards, Illinois Common Core (CC) Standards for All Special Educators, and Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) Common Core Knowledge and Skills.

IPTS    IL Common Core    CEC Common Core

3C, 3F, 7B

3N, 11P

Assessment/ Artifacts
Group Multicultural Project
Cultural Biography
Comparative Ed. Research Paper
In-school service learning project
Introduced Knowledge:
1C, 2L, 5A, 6B, 7A, 8A, 8G

Assessment/ Artifacts
Group Multicultural Project
Cultural Biography
In-school service learning project

Introduced Knowledge:
1K9, 1K10, 3K3, 3K4, 5K7, 5K8, 5K9, 5K10, 6K2, 6K3, 9K1

7S14, 9S6

Assessment/ Artifacts
Group Multicultural Project
Cultural Biography
Comparative Ed. Research Paper
In-school service learning project

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.