Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion:


The goals of my pedagogy include: 1) promoting a flourishing of life on earth and 2) supporting students as they develop lives of meaning, value, and success (sensu Hart 2014). The first goal is attended to by the course subject (i.e., dendrology) and an emphasis on a nested model of sustainability, with ecology as a basis for social and economic systems. The second goal is attended to by using the best practices of culturally-inclusive teaching, a research-supported approach that facilitates learning for all students (“Inclusive Teaching” n.d.; Saunders and Kardia 1997). Key elements of this approach include:

  • Collaboration. Collaboration allows us to incorporate multiple perspectives and helps students understand how individual perspectives influence knowledge construction (Saunders and Kardia 1997). Moreover, it encourages student discussion and provides a means for peer instruction, which has been shown to increase student success in the classroom (Tien, Roth, and Kampmeier 2002; Rivard and Straw 2000; Tessier 2004, 2007; Anderson, Mitchell, and Osgood 2005; Armstrong, Chang, and Brickman 2007; Lasry, Mazur, and Watkins 2008; Armbruster et al. 2009)
  • Frequent Quizzing. Frequent retrieval practice (i.e., quizzing) helps  ensure student success (Eddy and Hogan 2014). Frequent retrieval practice is both a tenant of culturally-inclusive learning (Eddy and Hogan 2014)and improved student learning (Lang 2016).

I also use other culturally-inclusive pedagogical practices including active learning activities (O’Sullivan and Copper 2003; Freeman et al. 2007), meaningful local activities (Adams et al. 2008), and concept mapping (Fonseca and Extremina 2004; Yarden, Marbach-Ad, and Gershoni 2004; Olson and Riordan 2012).

To get a more complete understanding of what practices guide my pedagogy, please check out “How to Create a Culturally Inclusive Syllabus & Course“, a guide I created with input from NSOE graduate students in summer 2020 and to which I continue to add.


Bibliography on Pedagogy        

Adams, Jennifer, Bal Chandra Luitel, Emilia Afonso, and Peter Charles Taylor. 2008. “A Cogenerative Inquiry Using Postcolonial Theory to Envisage Culturally Inclusive Science Education.” Cultural Studies of Science Education 3 (4): 999. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11422-008-9130-0.

Anderson, W. L., S. M. Mitchell, and M. P. Osgood. 2005. “Comparison of Student Performance in Cooperative Learning and Traditional Lecture-Based Biochemistry Classes.” Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education : A Bimonthly Publication of the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 33 (6): 387–93. https://doi.org/10.1002/bmb.2005.49403306387.

Armbruster, Peter, Maya Patel, Erika Johnson, and Martha Weiss. 2009. “Active Learning and Student-Centered Pedagogy Improve Student Attitudes and Performance in Introductory Biology.” CBE Life Sciences Education 8 (3): 203–13. https://doi.org/10.1187/cbe.09-03-0025.

Armstrong, Norris, Shu-Mei Chang, and Marguerite Brickman. 2007. “Cooperative Learning in Industrial-Sized Biology Classes.” CBE— Life Sciences Education 6 (2): 163–71. https://doi.org/10.1187/cbe.06-11-0200.

Eddy, Sarah L., and Kelly A. Hogan. 2014. “Getting Under the Hood: How and for Whom Does Increasing Course Structure Work?” CBE Life Sciences Education 13 (3): 453–68. https://doi.org/10.1187/cbe.14-03-0050.


Freeman, Scott, Eileen O’Connor, John W. Parks, Matthew Cunningham, David Hurley, David Haak, Clarissa Dirks, and Mary Pat Wenderoth. 2007. “Prescribed Active Learning Increases Performance in Introductory Biology.” CBE Life Sciences Education 6 (2): 132–39. https://doi.org/10.1187/cbe.06-09-0194.

Hart, Tobin. 2014. The Integrative Mind: Transformative Education for a World on Fire. Lanham, Maryland, USA.

“Inclusive Teaching.” n.d. Elon University. Accessed February 28, 2019. https://www.elon.edu/u/academics/catl/inclusiveteaching/.

Lang, James M. 2016. Small Teaching: Everyday Lessons from the Science of Learning. San Francisco, California, USA: Jossey-Bass.

Lasry, Nathaniel, Eric Mazur, and Jessica Watkins. 2008. “Peer Instruction: From Harvard to the Two-Year College.” American Journal of Physics 76 (11): 1066–69. https://doi.org/10.1119/1.2978182.

Olson, Steve, and Donna Gerardi Riordan. 2012. Engage to Excel: Producing One Million Additional College Graduates with Degrees in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. Report to the President. Executive Office of the President. https://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED541511.

O’Sullivan, Daniel W., and Christine L. Copper. 2003. “Evaluating Active Learning: A New Initiative for a General Chemistry Curriculum.” Journal of College Science Teaching 32 (7): 448–52.

Rivard, L. P., and S. B. Straw. 2000. “The Effect of Talk and Writing on Learning Science: An Exploratory Study.” Science Education 84: 566–93.

Saunders, Shari, and Diana Kardia. 1997. “Creating Inclusive College Classrooms.” University of Michigan Center for Research on Learning and Teaching. 1997. http://www.crlt.umich.edu/gsis/p3_1.

Tessier, Jack. 2004. “Using Peer Teaching to Promote Learning in Biology.” Journal of College Science Teaching, 16–19.

———. 2007. “Small-Group Peer Teaching in an Introductory Biology Classroom.” Journal of College Science Teaching 36 (4): 64–69.

Tien, Lydia T., Vicki Roth, and J.A. Kampmeier. 2002. “Implementation of a Peer-Led Team Learning Instructional Approach in an Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Course.” Journal of Research in Science Teaching 39 (7): 606–32. https://doi.org/10.1002/tea.10038.

Yarden, Hagit, Gili Marbach-Ad, and Jonathan M Gershoni. 2004. “Using the Concept Map Technique in Teaching Introductory Cell Biology to College Freshmen.” Bioscene: Journal of College Biology 30 (1): 3–13.