Walk the Talk: Supporting the Equity Journey of the Online Higher Education Institutions

Streamed Session Equity and Inclusion

Brief Abstract

This is a session about the virtual multi-pronged approach to help faculty move from a discussion of equity to the implementation of equity practices in the learning environment to positively impact student retention and success. How does gamification and other interventions used to support the personal journeys of faculty and staff impact not only their values but also the learning environment?


Extended Abstract

The purpose of the study was to examine the process by which faculty and staff move from the discussion of equity to the implementation of equity practices in the learning environment. Students need higher education institutions (hei’s) to see all their identifiers in the classroom and during their interactions. HEIs that can understand marginalized students' racialized experiences, resiliency, and persistence will demonstrate the cultural competency, cultural humility, and culturally responsive teaching practices these students need. Furthermore, developing a faculty and staff with this skill set supports the 21st-century skills our global students will need to be global leaders (Khan & Forshaw, 2017).  For faculty and staff to see the complete student, they must examine their personal stories, biases, and practices while assessing the impact each could have on the institution's equity work. Leaders in higher education are hiring consultants, reading books, and conducting professional development to meet their initial goals. However, it remains to be seen if this is the most effective way to help faculty become more culturally responsive and equity-centered. In fact, after experiencing several lecture-style trainings and book studies, the researchers were curious if a combination of learning experiences could ignite the action needed to move equity forward. They sought to explore, what is the ignitor for movement from talk to action? What is an effective way to help faculty and staff become more culturally responsive and equity-centered in both talk and action?  

Khan, N., & Forshaw, T. (2017). New Skills Now: Inclusion in the Digital Economy.