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Multicultural Education





Classroom Syllabus

EDU 303

Multicultural Education



3 Credit Hours

Effective: January, 2005







Required Text:  Diaz, C. (2001). Multicultural education in the 21st century. New York: Addison-Wesley Longman.

Optional Text:  Tiedt, P., & Tiedt, I. (2002). Multicultural teaching: A handbook of activities, information, and resources (6th ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon.

Washington State Commission on Student Learning. (2002). Essential academic learning requirements: Technical manual. Olympia, WA: Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction.


Access to a personal computer and the Internet is required. All written assignments must be word-processed.



Copyright 2002-2005 by City University

EDU 303

Multicultural Education


This document provides an overview of the course foundation elements, assignments, schedules, and activities. For information about general City University policies, please see the City University catalog. If you have additional questions about the course, please contact your instructor.


Notification to Students with Disabilities

If you are a student with a disability and you require course adaptations or accommodations, please contact the Affirmative Action Coordinator in the Disability Resource Office as soon as possible. You may also contact your instructor or advisor for assistance.


Scholastic Honesty

Students are responsible for understanding City University’s policy on Scholastic Honesty and are required to adhere to its standards in meeting all course requirements. Violations of the policy include, among other practices:

  1. Cheating;
  2. Plagiarizing;
  3. Submitting substantially the same work for two different courses without prior permission from the instructors;
  4. Collaborating on assignments without prior permission of the instructor;
  5. Submitting papers written wholly or partly by someone else;
  6. Helping someone else commit an act of scholastic dishonesty.


Common violations are copying from someone else’s test paper, using unauthorized books or notes during a test, and using previously published material without clear citations to identify the source. Cases of suspected scholastic dishonesty are referred to the University Scholastic Honesty Board, which can apply a variety of penalties ranging in severity, including assigning a zero grade for the course, suspension, and dismissal from the University. In cases of suspected violations, a paper may be submitted to an online service that checks the content of the paper against a database of source material. The submitted paper may be added to a permanent archive.


For more complete information, students should read the section on Scholastic Honesty (under the heading of Student Rights and Responsibilities) in the University catalog, available in print or online at When in doubt about applications to a particular course or situation, students should ask the instructor for guidance.


Course Description

This course is an introduction to the diversity of the American school population and the concepts, theories, and strategies that constitute multicultural education. Participants explore how children from diverse backgrounds construct knowledge within the contexts of their own sociocultural backgrounds, and how such diversity affects how they are perceived in the classroom. Such issues as equity, race, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status, language, disability, and other special circumstances are explored within this constructivist framework.  Based on course content and new knowledge, course participants develop perspectives on diversity and a frame of reference for providing equitable opportunities for all students to learn and succeed in schools and society. 


Overview of Course Activities and Grading


This course utilizes as variety of methods and activities to accommodate participants’ differing learning styles. These activities include: inquiry and class discussions, use of computer technology, small group activities, lesson planning, micro-teaching, and critical thinking activities.  You are expected to inquire, reflect, and be actively engaged in constructing new knowledge.


The grade you receive for the course will be derived using City University’s decimal grading system, based on the following:




Attendance and Participation


Reflective Papers (two equally weighted)


Culture Report


Micro-Teaching Lesson






Please see the current City University catalog or consult your instructor for guidance in determining your decimal grade.


Work Quality


Writing clear and error-free English is a priority, as are clear explanations.  Projects and papers must be word-processed.  Please use a spell-checker and accurate proof-reading to ensure that work is error-free.  Please use a 10- or 12-point font and either 1.5 or double spacing.  Margins should be at least one inch on all sides of the page.  Use only one side of the paper.  Use APA standards for documentation and/or presentation.


Explanation of Assignments and Grading


Attendance and Participation


Class attendance and participation are integral components of this course.  Class participation expands the participant’s knowledge and ability to implement strategies learned in the course.  Thus, it is essential that you attend class, read the materials assigned, and participate actively in class activities or discussions. You cannot earn participation points or receive credit for in-class activities if you are absent.  Class participation points cannot be made up.  All assignments must be submitted on time for full credit.  As a prospective teacher, you are expected to demonstrate a commitment to professionalism through regular attendance and participation.  In addition, this course is a foundation course, and the concepts acquired here will carry over to other courses.


Reflective Papers


You will complete two reflective papers on topics related to text readings and in-class activities.  After a brief summary of the assigned material, you must carefully consider and critically discuss the following questions:

1)      What important concepts did I learn or discover from this material?

2)      What have I learned about teaching or education from this material?

3)      How may I apply this information to my own classroom practices?

4)      What more would I like to know about this topic/area?


The broad topics for these three papers are: teaching multiculturally, accommodating individual differences, and language diversity. You papers are to be 5-7 pages typed and double spaced.  You must adhere to the work quality standards.


Grading Criteria for Reflective Papers


Clear understanding of major issues involved  expressed in summary


Appropriate synthesis or evaluation of concepts relevant to own practices


Appropriate analysis of applications to own classroom


Appropriate use of terms, concepts, generalizations, examples and applications from texts, lectures, and other course materials


Clear reflection about need for further learning


Application of  APA style, spelling, and grammar







Micro-Teaching Lesson


Individually, or as part of a small group, you will research a specific teaching strategy related to multicultural education and teaching diverse learners.  You will teach your lesson to classmates.  The lesson will be planned following the standard lesson plan format for the BA in Education program.  Topics will pertain to the Washington State Essential Academic Learning Requirements (EALRs) and the customary curriculum of public Washington State elementary schools.  Classmates and the instructor will give presenting students feedback on their lesson and its presentation.  Presenting students must utilize this feedback, together with their personal assessment, to reflect on the success of the lesson.  Summary documents will be submitted to the instructor for evaluation.  These documents include a written copy of the lesson plan (in standard format), summary of the small group feedback with evaluation rubrics, and a personal reflection.  More detailed instructions, along with an evaluation rubric, will be provided by the course instructor.


Grading Criteria for Micro-Teaching Lesson


Implementation of teaching strategy according to research and lesson plan


Effectiveness of accommodation for diverse learners


In-depth description of small group feedback including analysis of evaluation rubrics


In-depth analysis of lesson for effective teacher behaviors, alignment with expected outcomes, strengths, and areas of improvement


Quality assessment of group processes, including leadership and support



Cultural Report 

In groups of two you will create a presentation of a culture of your choice.  The culture can be one of geographic, sociological or economic origins.  In your presentation, you will discuss the basic the religion, belief systems, origins, languages, major points of interest and ways of seeing the world.  Ideally your culture choice should be on that has immigrated to America and is present to some degree in American public schools.  With this in mind you will also discuss how your culture choice has assimilated in to American culture and society and the problems they have faced in this process.  You will also discuss important points that you must consider when instructing students of this culture.  If you select a culture that is not represented in American public schools (as hard as this would be to find…), you are expected to theorize on these issues.  Your talk will be no more than 30 minutes in length including questions.  Handouts will be useful.


Grading Criteria for Cultural



In depth presentation covering the areas specified above


Effective presentation visual aids


Ability to handle questions that require info beyond the talk












Topics and Assignments




April 12




Introductions, expectations, syllabus overview, course requirements

Topic: Educating children in a multicultural society




  April 19

Topic: Teaching multiculturally and individual differences



Diaz, pp 1-70





April 26


Topic: Gender effects and immigrant students


DUE: Reflection Paper #1


Diaz, pp 71-108




May 3


Topic: Language Diversity, multicultural education and special education


Diaz, pp 109-119, 137-170





May 10

Topic: Assessment and diversity, and becoming a cross cultural teacher


Diaz, pp 120-136, 171-225





May 17

Topic:  Micro-teaching

DUE: Reflection Paper #2




May 24


Topic:  Micro-teaching




May 31


Topic:  Cultural Reports






June 7


Topic:  Cultural Experience!

Due:  Core Competency Reflection Paper