College of Education Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

6-2018

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

College of Education, Doctoral Program

First Advisor

Hall, Horace

Second Advisor

Gardner, Joseph

Third Advisor

Cole, Cynthia

Abstract

Dropout rates, suspensions, and expulsions have increased—among urban schools for quite some time. Yet, the number of unmotivated and disengaged culturally diverse students in urban learning environments is steadily increasing. There is a growing number of white female novice teachers who are entering the field of urban education and many prospective/novice teachers overall that are feeling unprepared to reach culturally diverse urban youth. This dissertation by no means suggests that people of other races and cultures cannot teach culturally diverse students in urban learning environments, but it does suggest that those who enter the field of urban education should be taught from a curriculum that is multicultural in its approach, focus, and adequately prepares preservice teachers to be effective urban educators to the population that they serve, urban youth. To better meet the needs of students of color in urban learning environments, a redesign of teacher education curriculum that includes a strategic and effective multicultural approach and other recommendations from teacher educators, novice teachers, and preservice teachers is needed to better prepare future urban educators for culturally diverse urban youth. The purpose of this study is to help stakeholders, administrators, academic and other communities, and educators alike to acknowledge and recognize that we all must rethink or reimagine education, and discover solutions that will work towards the academic success of all students especially urban youth. One solution that is proposed in this research study is to redesign teacher curriculum with a more multicultural context and focus to better prepare preservice teachers for urban youth of color.

This qualitative study uses CRT lenses to examine data, which create a cultural context of importance to help solidify its significance to immediate and permanent change in teacher training and effectiveness. The scope from which the study is conducted is that of my own academic journey. All of my experience, as both a student and educator of color, guide this research. The results are in some cases both diverse and similar, but all connect to the idea that a redesign of curriculum for prospective teachers is necessary in order to adequately prepare and effectively teach in urban learning environments. It was concluded that a redesign of curriculum is necessary of teacher education programs, and the redesign needs to include a more diverse, extended, qualified, and vigorous field experience. In addition, terms such as urban and cultural competency should be redefined to include a more appropriate and current connectedness of the world and that in some way connects to the view in today’s society. Recommendations mentioned in the study are that of further research addressing how to influence teacher educators to embrace the redesign of teacher education programs to include a more multicultural focus, evaluation tools to determine teacher effectiveness, recruitment of prospective teachers of color, adding, changing, or be more explicit in meanings of words when it comes to being prepared to teach urban youth, effective transformation of teacher education programs, increasing teacher retention, and redesigning quality field experiences.

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