Chandralekha Singh receives Diversity in Curriculum award
Among five other faculty members, Chandralekha Singh was honored on Nov. 19 at the third annual Provost’s Diversity in the Curriculum awards, which recognizes faculty who have taught a modified course or revised curricula to strengthen diversity and inclusion, resulting in changes of impact.
“There’s a wealth of literature which suggests that serious engagement in diversity in the curriculum, connected with classroom and outside the classroom experiences positively affects students’ awareness and attitudes toward diversity,” said Paula Davis, assistant vice chancellor for health sciences diversity in the School of Health Sciences, in her keynote speech. One study, she said, showed that exposure to ethnic studies translates into positive personal growth, sense of purpose, recognition of racism and participation in volunteer activities.
“I’m very fond of saying that when it comes to diversity and inclusion, unless you act with intent, you have done nothing,” she said. “Each and every one of the faculty being honored here today have taken intentional steps to focus on diversity and inclusion in their courses, knowing the value it holds for their students.”
The three faculty members from the Dietrich School of Arts & Sciences were together recognized for incorporating into introductory courses a new “belonging intervention,” which resulted in improved grades for all students. Using a random assignment of classrooms to enable assessment, the intervention aimed to address gender and racial gaps; it is now part of the standard curriculum in the classes in which it was introduced.
“The intervention has had a measurable impact and, anecdotally, has received glowing praise from instructors and students who receive it,” Charles Perfetti, director of the Learning Research and Development Center said in @Pitt. “It is truly an effective means to boost equity and inclusion at Pitt.”
The Discipline-Based Science Education Research Center, or dB-SERC, has many excellent resources to share with both faculty and students in STEM, learn more here and congratulations to Dr. Singh!
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Written by Susan Jones