Columbia Uni. Trains Future Teachers in Feminist and Neo-Marxist Theory

Columbia Uni. Trains Future Teachers in Feminist and Neo-Marxist Theory

A school affiliated with Columbia University trains future teachers in feminist, neo-Marxist and other social justice-oriented theories, according to its 2017 course catalog.

The Teachers College at Columbia offers a variety of courses and programs which teach graduate students to incorporate social justice principles into their future students’ coursework. C&T (Curriculum & Teaching) 6517 Contemporary Curriculum Studies examines “a range of theoretical stances, including neo-Marxist, feminist, post-structuralist, postfoundational, critical race theory, and queer scholarship.”

“One topic that will be pursued in depth is the relationship between curricular knowledges (formal and informal) and student subjectivities/identities” reads another part of the description, a reference to identity politics.

Meanwhile, doctoral students specializing in diversity and equity in education must take C&T 6523 Advanced Seminar in Diversity and Equity. The course will examine concepts like “diversity,” “inclusion,” and “multiculturalism” and will learn to “question, reframe, and interrupt dominant ideologies of schooling.”

“This will entail troubling ideas about whose knowledge counts, and learning from legacies of community struggles for educational equity,” insists the description.

Other courses explore how “ableism” functions in schools, how disability, race and gender interact with “the construct of giftedness,” and how “gender-sensitive curricula” operates in the classroom. Aside from the aforementioned perspectives, students also examine issues from postcolonial, transnational lines of thought.

The Teachers College at Columbia offers two social justice-oriented programs named “Elementary Inclusive Education” and “Secondary Inclusive Education.”

“Our stance is that there is no single truth in education,” claims the former program.

“We require individuals who understand the limitations of fixed formulas and who enjoy reaching out into the unpredictable world created by the diversity and the uniqueness of each child and each group of children.”

“We necessarily interrogate and work to actively challenge the many sociocultural, institutional, bureaucratic, and interpersonal ways in which children and their families experience marginalization and exclusion (e.g., on the basis of race, ethnicity, social class, dis/ability, gender, nationality, sexuality, language, religious [non] affiliation, etc.),” reads the description for the secondary program.

“We simultaneously inquire into how such resistance can be translated into meaningful engagement with existing systems and schooling practices in order to effect change.”

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