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Curricular and pedagogical practices and Ethiopian immigrant students
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Education.
2012 (English)In: Research Papers in Education, ISSN 0267-1522, E-ISSN 1470-1146, Vol. 27, no 3, 319-342 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper explores cultural inclusion - the extent to which schools accommodate the needs and experiences of minority cultural groups to make the schools equally welcoming - and optimal learning places for all children, specifically through the curricular and pedagogical practices which contributed to the secondary school experiences of Ethiopian-Australian students in Melbourne, Australia. The study utilised a qualitative methodology, using interviews as a major data collection tool, and employed secondary school students, their teachers and parents as informants for the study. A total of 59 participants were interviewed. After the transcription and coding of the interview data, thematic analysis was used. Findings within the Australian context were compared with Ethiopian educational histories and practices to explain how students, parents and teachers felt the Ethio-Australian students were being culturally acknowledged and included within school practices where cultural acknowledgement referred to understanding and appreciating cultural diversity. The findings indicated that on a general policy level, schools were acknowledging students' cultural backgrounds; however, at the classroom level, it was very much dependent upon the individual teacher. Participants believed that the curriculum failed to consider the students' home culture at all levels. Mismatches between Ethiopian students' expectations and excepted pedagogical practices within their new learning contexts were also evident. Most students were found to be more comfortable copying lessons down from the board, reading comprehension questions, working independently, in pair or in small groups, and wanted to get comments as a correction response for their work. However, the majority of the students were not comfortable with large group and whole-class discussions, conversation and speaking in front of class. The findings indicated a need for greater curriculum and pedagogical consideration for immigrant students such as these at the classroom level.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 27, no 3, 319-342 p.
Keyword [en]
curriculum, inclusive education, immigration, pedagogy, school experience
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-57400DOI: 10.1080/02671522.2010.514358ISI: 000305641000004OAI: diva2:541250
Available from: 2012-07-16 Created: 2012-07-16 Last updated: 2012-07-16Bibliographically approved

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