ERG SES H 02, Intercultural Education
This paper provides an initial analysis of the data from a case study of how one university has started to address the issue of diversity from an indigenous perspective and develop the intercultural competence of all staff and students. The analysis highlights the demands, barriers and conducive aspects for change and development in both meeting the needs of the indigenous people (Māori) and preparing all graduates to be equipped to be active and productive contributors to their national and global communities (University of Canterbury, 2017, para 1).
There are four key attributes of the university’s graduate profile. To ensure students have the opportunities to learn these attributes, a team of central administrative leaders, including the author, have been undertaking curriculum audits across the institution. These audits have allowed the team to identify existing strengths where Māori knowledge and culturally responsive pedagogy is already integrated, and identify areas for further development.
The purpose of the research study is to identify and analyse the processes that have been adopted by staff to introduce an intercultural approach to the preparationof graduates and the necessity and drivers for those changes within tertiary education. In this presentation I will describe both the process in developing this vision and how we undertook the audit, and then share results of the change process by highlighting a case study of one initial teacher education programme at the university. The participants are staff who work in pre-service teacher education at the university.
New Zealand’s Ministry of Education results shows that the education of Māori within the state system has produced inequitable outcomes for too many years (Education Counts, 2018. Significantly fewer Māori attained level 2 or equivalent on the New Zealand secondary assessments, when compared with their Asian and European/Pākehā peers. Yet, the attainment of an upper secondary school qualification is linked to labour force status and incomes. In 2011, New Zealanders with no qualifications had an unemployment rate 48% higher than those whose highest qualification was a school qualification (OECD, 2013). With the indigenous population predicted to rise there is interest in lifting the educational achievement of Māori in order to help raise the overall performance of the New Zealand education system, and enable students to make positive contributions to their communities.
For New Zealand’s tertiary educational institutions to meet their treaty responsibilities and the government's priorities they, like many twenty first century organisations, must respond to those priorities and pressures to ensure their on-going viability. This view is supported by Fullan and Scott (2009) who note that there is wide range of change forces both external and local, confronting universities. MacDonald and Joughin (2009) also acknowledge the important influence of the wider external context in which universities operate and suggest that 'change' has becomes ever present within higher education. Furthermore, MacDonald (2010) also suggests that many who are responsible for the change see it in a linear way rather than observing that within universities there are a set of complex relationships and individuals who work often in an autonomous way; this interaction and adaption leads to the idea of self-organisation and the opportunity for emergence towards a common goal (Jansen, Cammock & Conner, 2011).
As pressure mounts they suggest that universities need to redefine themselves in order to respond effectively to the context of today (Jansen, Cammock & Conner, 2011) and change from within. This will require skillful and effective change leaders at all levels of the university to come to grips with both the content and the process of change.
This paper presents the initial findings of my work as one of the change leaders in implementing bicultural understanding and experiences in an initial teacher education programme in New Zealand. In New Zealand the indigenizing of education is premised on the Treaty of Waitangi, the founding partnership document of the nation signed in 1840. The intention of the treaty as advanced by Matiaha Tiramorehu was that the “white skin would be made just equal with the dark skin” (as cited in Ngāi Tahu, 2005, section 1, Te Kereme).Therefore biculturalism means the understanding of the values and norms of each partner, being at ease in either culture, and ensuring power sharing in decision making processes at all political and organizational levels (S. Macfarlane 2012, 32). While the context of our work focuses on bicultural competence, I believe these skills, attitudes and knowledge support those of intercultural competence outlined by Deardorff (2006) and Howard-Hamilton, Richardson and Shuford (1998). For teacher educators, this means ensuring they have a strong sense of self-awareness and of intercultural competency and culturally responsive practice (Caena & Margiotta, 2010; Pecek, Macura-Milovanovic & Vujisic-Živkovic, 2014) so they can assist the next generation of teachers in developing these dispositions and skills. All our work is grounded by socio-cultural theory which acknowledges the existence of multiple knowledges grounded in cultural and historical contexts (Vygotsky, 1978). This perspective also enables us to critique and challenge educational practices that have traditionally privileged Western knowledge and marginalized Māori knowledge. The audit has enabled us to critique the current practices in an initial teacher education programme, and to validate existing practice and identify new frameworks and learning contexts within this case study. Scholz and Tietje (2002) describe embedded case studies as a starting point and end point and within it is the comprehension of the case as a whole in its real world context. Embedded case studies are focussed on more than one unit/ object of analysis and typically utilise more than just qualitative analysis and can allow for the synthesis of both qualitative and quantitative data (Scholz & Tietje, 2002, Yin, 2009). The wide range of evidence is often investigated in subunits, which focus on different aspects of the case, and allows for a more detailed level of inquiry. An embedded case study design allows for a descriptive approach to be taken and the features, context and process of an experience to be outlined.
The case study research that informs this paper is ongoing. As such, my initial findings are tentative and emerging with respect the processes that have been adopted by staff to introduce an intercultural approach to the preparation of graduates and the necessity and drivers for those changes within tertiary education. The audit documentation of the practice within the programme shows that throughout individual courses there is Māori knowledge and culturally responsive being delivered and utilised. However, further investigation is required to assess if there is coherency across the programme and consistency of delivery across staff. The next stage of my research will be to interview staff about how they go about learning new knowledge focused on Māori culture, language and values, and what are the drivers to do so? What are the lecturer’s stories of bicultural change? Why have they made changes to their practices? How have they made changes? What have been supports and challenges in their work? Leading change within a large organization to positively embrace diversity in order to support equitable educational opportunities and outcomes is a complex enterprise, but of critical concern for quality teacher education and tertiary education in general. I acknowledge that universities are by necessity shaped by and responsive to the particular social and policy context in which they occur (Caena & Margiotta 2010). Nevertheless, by documenting and critically analyzing our inclusion of indigenous knowledge I seek to highlight for other change leaders the affordances and constraints that such experiences offer to develop intercultural competence as the foundation for culturally responsive practice and the process utilized to do so.
Caena, F., & Margiotta, U. (2010). European teacher education: A fractal perspective tackling complexity. European Educational Research Journal, 9(3), 317-331. Deardorff, D. K., (2006) Identification and assessment of intercultural competence as a student outcome of internationalization. Journal of Studies in International Education, 10(3), 241-266. DOI: 10.1177/1028315306287002 Education Counts (2017). School leavers with NCEA level 2 or above https://www.educationcounts.govt.nz/.../education.../school_leavers_with_ncea_level_... Fullan, M., & Scott, G. (2009). Turnaround leadership for higher education. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Howard-Hamilton, M. F., Richardson, B. J., & Shuford, B. (1998). Promoting multicultural education: A holistic approach. College Student Affairs Journal, 18(1), 5. Jansen, C. Cammock, P. & Conner, L. (2011). Leadership for emergence: Exploring organisations through a living system lens. Leading and Managing. 17(1). 59-74. Macdonald, R. & Joughin, G. (2009).What does it take to improve assessment in support of learning? In G. Joughin (Ed.) Assessment, learning and judgement in higher education. Netherlands: Springer. Macfarlane, S. 2012. “In Pursuit of Culturally Responsive Evidence-based Special Education Pathways in Aotearoa New Zealand: Whaia ki te ara tika.” PhD diss., University of Canterbury, Christchurch, NZ. Ngāi Tahu (Producer). (2005). Te Papa [video] New Zealand: Tahu Productions. OECD. (2017). Education at a Glance . OECD Indicators. OECD Publishing. www.oecd.org › Directorate for Education and Skills Pecek, M., Macura-Milovanovic, S., & Vujisic-Živkovic, N., (2014). The Cultural Responsiveness of Teacher Candidates Towards Roma Pupils in Serbia and Slovenia – Case Studies. Journal of Education for Teaching: International Research and Pedagogy, 40(4), 359-376. Scholz, R W & Tietje O (2002) Embedded Case Study Methods: Integrating Quantitative and Qualitative knowledge Thousand Oaks CA: SAGE Yin, R.K (2009). Case study research: design and methods. (4th ed.). Thousand Oaks. CA: SAGE.
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