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Enid Rosario-Ramos on Schooling and Multicultural Society (EDUC 118)

How does edMINOR coursework help us to understand this historical moment and make this world a better place?


"Scholarship in education has long discussed how schools can be both tools for oppression and liberation. Historically, schools have provided productive and nurturing learning spaces for some children, while ignoring and actively devaluing the lives, experiences, and cultures of others. EDUC 118 – Schooling and Multicultural Society explores this historical legacy and encourages students to consider the implications of educational injustice for teaching and learning processes, while providing opportunities to imagine ways to reform education and strive for justice.

When we heard the news that our campus was closing due to the increase in cases of Covid-19—a public health crisis that continues to severely impact our lives—many of us in education immediately thought about the impact of the pandemic on the lives of children, educators, and families, and about the role that educational institutions would play in it all. As the instructor of EDUC 118, I asked my students to reflect on the educational implications of life during Covid-19. I was impressed, humbled, and in some cases heartbroken by my students’ written reflections. They were able to use what they learned in the course to reflect on the role of schools and educators in our larger society, to consider how historical and systemic injustices were impacting diverse communities across the nation, and to challenge higher education institutions to better serve their students and communities.

The edMINOR provides extensive opportunities and supports for students to deeply think about our society’s goals for educational institutions, to consider the ways in which schools intersect with other social institutions—including law enforcement and the prison industrial complex—and to strongly commit to ensuring that children from all backgrounds receive an education that is caring, intellectually engaging, humanizing, and with an eye to social change."

EDUC 118 – Introduction to Education: Schooling and Multicultural Society
Education affects the lives of everyone in this country. As future professionals, voters, teachers, parents, and leaders, students at the University of Michigan will help shape the quality of life in the United States, and education will matter—a lot. This course will introduce students to the role of education in today’s world. Topics will include the implications for schooling our increasingly diverse population; principles of how kids learn; ways schools facilitate student achievement (or not); and the changing nature of literacy in the information age. In addition to readings and discussions, there will be opportunities for hands-on experience and interactions with K-12 students in schools.

EDUC 118 is an approved course to satisfy the LSA Race and Ethnicity Requirement.