- Year 2023
- NSF Noyce Award # 1852735
- First Name Kim
- Last Name Vachon
- Institution University of California, Santa Cruz
- Role/Position Graduate Student Researcher
- Workshop Category Track 4: Noyce Research
- Target Audience Co-PIs, Other Faculty/Staff, Project PIs
- Topics Culturally Relevant Pedagogy, Track 4 Research Results
- Session Length 30 minutes minutes
Workshop participants will: (1) consider methods of developing antiracist pedagogy in Noyce pre-service teachers, (2) consider how teacher preparation may promote and idealize the “woke” perspective, and (3) strategize on how teacher education programs can develop teachers’ cultural competence and racial literacy when they arrive to teacher preparation with limited foundational knowledge of systemic inequality.
This workshop is based on a year-long research project that examines how teacher education may increase teacher retention in high-needs schools by facilitating a racially conscious identity and commitment to antiracist engagement in its STEM teachers. In particular, the project explored the pedagogical practices of teacher educators coupled with the experiences, conceptions, and expressed practices of Noyce scholars. It situates the analysis in both the research on teacher development and on student success and attends to how the disruption of deficit framing, so damaging to student learning, requires pre-service teachers to engage with and negotiate topics of race, racism and privilege. Data collection started in Fall 2021 and continued until Winter 2023. Four Noyce scholars (two math and two science teachers) were recruited to participate in four interviews over the course of their teacher education program and into their first year of teaching.
This workshop considers how to encourage learning environments in teacher preparation and Noyce programs that are best suited to promote cultural competency, racial literacy, and justice for Noyce scholars. This workshop draws on results from a Track 4 year-long study of pre-service Noyce scholars in a social justice-oriented teacher education program. It shares the sense making these emergent stem teachers undertake as they consider antiracist engagement through the lens of their content area. For example, a Noyce scholar interviewed for this study, Leslee, provided a compelling comparison between “woke” spaces vs. STEM spaces, identifying the performativity of being “woke” as being absent in STEM environments. The teacher provided the explanation that people involved in STEM are comfortable approaching an unknown topic with curiosity and an open mind due to their disciplinary training in math or science. This perspective is particularly intriguing given that STEM scholars are often presumed to have an underdeveloped sense of racial and cultural competency given the traditionally race-neutral approach in STEM education, which may lead STEM scholars to have fewer opportunities to engage in discourse on race, racism and equity. This workshop will explore in greater detail how all Noyce scholars interviewed in this study developed conceptualizations of antiracism in the context of their program.