A Pilot Study on the Efficacy of College Textbook Reading and Multicultural Learning among Undergraduate Psychology Students
Keywords:multicultural training, cross-cultural sensitivity, diversity, college textbook efficacy, psychology course , higher education
Engaging undergraduate students in upper-level psychology coursework that fosters empathy through readings of societal relevance is essential in understanding and respecting the complexity of a multicultural society. The goal of this pilot study was to measure the cultural sensitivity of students who engaged in an instructor-guided, collaborative research proposal on child welfare using a conventional textbook (n=36, Conventional Group [CG]) versus students who engaged in close readings of an unorthodox text covering clinical cases of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) (n=31, Unconventional Group [UG]). We administered an adaption of the Cultural Diversity Assessment Inventory (CDAI) to 67 students enrolled in an ethnically diverse urban university and assessed the following areas: a) creating a multicultural society, b) cultural awareness, and c) cross-cultural communication. Results showed that multicultural awareness was higher in the UG than in the CG, suggesting that course discussions on clinical case studies enhanced the idea of a multicultural society than focusing on hypothesis testing in smaller student research teams. Both groups showed no differences in cultural awareness and cross-cultural communication and agreed that more cross-cultural course work is needed. Pedagogical aspects of course design for a more diverse classroom climate are further discussed.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Billal Abel Atamnia, Arisha Andha, Haydee Soriano, Peri Yuksel
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