EDU310 Issues in Diversity and World Cultures

for U1T 2012

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Mission Statement: Park University provides access to a quality higher education experience that prepares a diverse community of learners to think critically, communicate effectively, demonstrate a global perspective and engage in lifelong learning and service to others.

School For Education Mission Statement
The School for Education at Park University, an institution committed to diversity and best practice, prepares educators to be effective school professionals, reflective change agents, and advocates for equity and excellence for all learners.

Vision Statement: Park University, a pioneering institution of higher learning since 1875, will provide leadership in quality, innovative education for a diversity of learners who will excel in their professional and personal service to the global community.

School For Education Vision Statement
The School for Education at Park University is to be known as a leader in the preparation of educators who will address the needs, challenges, and possibilities of the 21st century.

Park University School for Education  Conceptual Framework


EDU 310 Issues in Diversity and WorldCultures


U1T 2012 DL


Penn, Patricia W.


Adjunct Faculty


PhD Curriculum and Instruction
MEd Reading Education
BA English Education

Office Location


Office Hours

online - see virtual office

Daytime Phone



Semester Dates

June 4 - July 29, 2012

Class Days

Monday - Sunday (12:01 a.m. - 11:59 p.m.)

Class Time


Credit Hours



Required Texts:

Fadiman, A. (1997). The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down. New York: Farrar, Strauss & Giroux. ISBN: 0374525641

Ladson-Billings, G. (2009). The Dreamkeepers: Successful Teachers of African American Children. 2nd Edition. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. ISBN: 0470408154

Recommended Text:

Gollnick, Donna M., & Chinn, Philip C. Multicultural Education in a Pluralistic Society. 8th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education, Inc.  

ISBN: 9780136138990
ISBN 10: 0136138993

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:

Required for Education Majors (all Education candidates, certification and non-certification tracks):

All Park University School for Education candidates seeking a degree in Education (certification and non-certification tracks) must purchase Foliotek, the School for Education’s electronic portfolio system. As purchasing and accessing Foliotek is a multi-step process, please follow these instructions: 

1.      Decide the Contract Period and fee for which you will be paying. Minimally, you must purchase a contract which extends to the year you expect to graduate; however, some students purchase a contract extending one year beyond graduation. 

 Contract Period    

 Contract Fee

Per Student (Prepaid)

Cost Breakdown

Per Student, Per Year

 1 year



 2 years



 3 years



 4 years



 5 years



6 years



2.     Send an email to Carol Williams ( with the following information:

·      Your Name

·      The Contract Period you wish to purchase

·      Your student identification number
  • Note: Students on a non-certification early chilhood track, Teaching Young Children or Early Childhood and Leadership, need to request purchase of the NAEYE portfolio).

3.      Within a few days, you will receive from Foliotek an email with online purchasing information. Upon receipt of this email, purchase your Foliotek contract.

4.      Upon receipt of your payment, you will receive your login information. You must then send a final email to Carol Williams (, requesting she provide your current education professors and an academic advisor (list them) access to view your portfolio. It is imperative you complete this final step!!

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FAQ's for Online Students - You might find the answer to your questions here.

Course Description:
EDU310 (MLL) Issues in Diversity & World Culture: This course deals with issues of, equity and justice in education including gender, race, class, age, and non native English speakers while emphasizing the cultural diversity found in schools. Students will be exposed to educational situations that exemplify diversity, while reflecting on and grappling with such difficult subjects as religion, cultural competence, ethnocentricity, sexual orientation, and white privilege. Students are expected to engage in deep reflection and critical analysis of society and the impact of diversity in the school setting. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:
The facilitator’s educational philosophy is based on constructivism and socio-cultural theories. We will learn together with, about, and from each other through interacting in our discussions, as well as through relating to course materials.  Although I serve as a guide, each student is ultimately responsible for his or her own learning. I  encourage an active and honest exploration of ideas, issues, including controversial ideas. My expectation is that facilitator and learner will actively engage in respectful sharing of ideas and beliefs and maintain an open mind in an atmosphere promoting diversity.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Analyze discrimination in American society
  2. Discuss and relate citizenship to the self and identity needs of all students.
  3. Identify one's own areas of bias and work to address them.
  4. Critique the history, culture, political positioning and power relationships of diverse groups.
  5. Discuss and write about the culture and history of diverse groups and the academic, social, and emotional needs of students belonging to those groups
  6. Model the power of education in addressing issues of class, race and gender.

Core Assessment:

Class Assessment:

Student learning will be assessed through class introductions, final paper, online discussions and readings, written analysis and discussion of two assigned books, one quiz, journal entries, and two student-developed handouts, as well as a final exam.

Online Discussion:

Most weeks, you will take part in two weekly, threaded discussions. It is your responsibility to carefully read and reflect on each discussion topic, which may be a question or internet activity, may involve additional research, or may require that you reflect on assigned articles or readings. Upon reflection, you must post an opinion or reaction to the topic. In order for you to take an active part in the entire discussion, and in order for your classmates to benefit from your perspective on each topic, this initial reflection must be posted no later than Wednesday at midnight of each week. After you have posted an initial reaction (usually a paragraph in length), you must then read your classmates’ responses, adding additional thoughts or commentary two to three times (note: read each thread carefully! Some discussions only require 2 responses while others require 3) by Sunday at midnight of each week. If your posts do not demonstrate understanding and adequate reflection, I will assign partial credit.
World Culture & World Religion Handouts:

In weeks 5 and 6 you will create two handouts on a world culture and a world religion. A template for the handout will be provided and each must be uploaded to the appropriately labeled dro box or threaded discussion in weeks 5 or 6 by Sunday at midnight of the week it is due. The E-Entries for weeks 6 and 7 involve information on world cultures and religions as provided by your classmates. Therefore, it is crucial you take time in weeks 5, 6, and 7 to read all submitted handouts.


You are expected to complete 1 quiz used as a point of discussion or as part of a lesson. Therefore, you will not be graded on the number of correct answers you receive. Rather, quizzes must be completed in order to fully participate in class discussion.


E-Entries are short essays to be completed in weeks 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, & 7. In order to receive full credit for each of the 6 E-Entries, you must respond to all of their components. There is no minimum length requirement for these assignments; however, you must articulate your thoughts clearly enough to demonstrate your synthesis of each week’s course material. E-Entries MUST be submitted into the appropriate DROP BOX. Emailed and paper submissions will not be accepted. In addition, PLEASE do not submit your E-Entries as attachments! Simply type your submission directly into the Comment Box within the appropriate drop box.

Book Reviews/Analyses:

The purpose of these analyses is that you demonstrate you have read and reflected on the material, and that you are able to apply information gained to your particular field (for example, students who intend to become teachers must analyze the course material as it applies to the field of education). Each book review must be submitted as an attachment in its appropriate drop box, NOT emailed to the professor.


Proctored Exam:

Every student enrolled in an online course at Park University must complete an exam in a proctored setting. The core assessment in this course is a “final paper” and the proctored exam is a “personal essay;” essentially, this course requires 2 finals. Although informal in format, the proctored exam must exhibit an ability to synthesize the semester’s course material. It is your responsibility to submit the proper application for your proctor and arrange for this exam to be taken in the 8th week of the course. Per Park’s policy on proctored exams, students who do not complete the proctored exam process will receive a failing grade in the course.

Core Assessment:

As do all courses at Park, this course includes a core assessment that measures the learning outcomes listed above.   The core assessment for this course is a paper/essay accounting for 25% of the total grade. The topic of your paper, guidelines, and grading rubrics are provided for you on the course site.







Threaded Discussions
15 @ 7 pts each



Final Paper



6 @ 12 pts each
Peer Review   

Book Review #1



Book Review #2



Proctored Exam



Handouts (2)



World Cultures Handout

7.5% (37pts)

World Religions Handout

7.5% (37pts)




Grading Scale:

90%-100% = A

80%-89% = B

70%-79% = C

60%-69% = D

Below 60% = F

Note:  Partial percentages are rounded to the nearest whole percentage.

Late Submission of Course Materials:
I do not accept late work with the exception of a verifiable emergency, which requires appropriate verification/supporting documentation as requested by the instructor. Because of the amount of work required for this class, I highly recommend you tackle each assignment as soon as it is assigned or posted, allowing time for any technological “glitches” that might arise. Computer or internet issues are NOT considered valid reasons for late submissions. All assignments will be submitted through the course website.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

Group and class discussions are a crucial component of our class. In addition, bear in mind that honest, open talk about race and other issues of diversity is difficult and emotional. In order for these conversations to be as productive as possible, you are expected to be respectful and tolerant of one another, non-judgmental, open to your colleagues' ideas and perspectives, ready to talk about given topics in a professional manner, and willing to respect colleagues’ privacy by not sharing class discussions with people outside of our community of learners.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:



Assignments due
Wednesday at Midnight

Assignments Due
Sunday at Midnight

Week 1

Introduction to the Course
How We Identify
What’s in a Name

Activity 1 – Race & Sorting
Discussion #1 – Initial Post
Discussion #2 – Initial Post
Quiz 1 – Awareness

Discussion #1 – Posts 2 & 3
Discussion #2 – 
Posts 2 & 3 
E-Entry #1
Introductions (Located under the “Course Home” tab)

Week 2

Racism & Privilege

Discussion #3 – Initial Post
Discussion #4 – Initial Post

Discussion #3 –  Posts 2 & 3 
Discussion #4 – 
Posts 2 & 3 
E-Entry #2

Week 3

Racism & Privilege

Discussion #5 – Initial Post
Discussion #6 – Initial Post

Discussion #5 –  Posts 2 & 3 
Discussion #6 – 
Posts 2 & 3 
E-Entry #3

Week 4

Class, SES, & Achievement

Discussion #7 – Initial Post
Discussion #8 – Initial Post

Discussion #7 –  Posts 2 & 3 
Discussion #8 – 
Posts 2 & 3 
Ladson-Billings Book Analysis
E-Entry #4

Week 5

Religion & America’s Schools
Religious Diversity

Discussion #7 – Initial Post
Discussion #8 – Initial Post

World Religion Handout

Discussion #9 – Posts 2, 3, & 4
Discussion #10 – Posts 2, 3, & 4
E-Entry #5

Week 6

World Cultures and Newcomers

Discussion #11 – Initial Post (Thursday)
Discussion #12 – Initial Post

World Cultures Handout

Discussion #11 –  Posts 2 & 3 
Discussion #12 – 
Posts 2 & 3 

Fadiman Book Analysis

Week 7

Our Students who are LGBTQ

Discussion #13 – Initial Post
Discussion #14 – Initial Post

Discussion #13 – Posts 2 & 3 
Discussion #14 – 
Posts 2 & 3 
E-Entry #7

Week 8


Discussion #15 – Initial Post

Discussion #15–  Posts 2 & 3 
Final Essay Exam
Proctored Exam

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life. Park University students and faculty members are encouraged to take advantage of the University resources available for learning about academic honesty ( or Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 93

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. from Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 93

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.
ONLINE NOTE: Students must participate in an academically related activity on a weekly basis in order to be marked present in an online class. Examples of academically-related activities include but are not limited to: contributing to an online discussion, completing a quiz or exam, completing an assignment, initiating contact with a faculty member to ask a course related question, or using any of the learning management system tools.

Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 96

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: .

Additional Information:



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Last Updated:5/13/2012 8:10:54 PM