Understanding the Characteristics and Specific Needs of Adult Learners

For decades, scholars have emphasized the vital interconnection between education and democracy. Political Science professor, Richard Guarasci (2018) calls the United States’ college system an “anchor” of democratic values and initiatives, where learning is a critical component for stability and engagement. Cultural critic and professor Henry Giroux (2019) calls on higher education to produce “civic courage, expand the radical imagination, and nurture individual and social agency” (p.1). John Dewey (2011), a foundational contributor to the field of Adult Education, emphasized how education is always at the forefront of producing informed, capable, engaged citizens that constitute thriving communities.

One does not need to read much further to understand how adult learning contexts can positively impact individuals and communities. However, it is not uncommon for those of us who teach in these contexts to do so without having had formal training in adult learning theory. How is the adult learning context unique and different than others? What are the specific needs of this community and strategies that best benefit learners?

CONTEXTUAL DIFFERENCES

For children, school is a socializing institution where identity is being created and formed and they are still developing cognitively and physically. Being a student is a main activity in children’s lives, and their teacher/parent/caretaker guides them throughout this process. The field of pedagogy addresses the needs of this group.  In contrast, adult learners already have an established and developed identity that is closely tied to their larger social roles and community. Being a student is one aspect of who that learner is, on top of being a parent/caretaker, household provider, civic citizen, employee, chauffeur, friend, etc. Therefore, educator-facilitators must consider some of the fundamental assumptions of andragogy when addressing the AL environment.

A BIT ABOUT ANDRAGOGY

Given the differences between child and adult learning contexts, it is vital to address andragogical considerations. Adults have an eagerness and readiness to learn; they have a reservoir of experiences that can inform and/stifle their learning experiences; and they desire to make practical connections to new knowledge and information.

Growing Enrollment: Adult learners have been given the title of “non-traditional” students in our education system. However, this notion is being challenged given the data showing 42% of CCC students are adult learners aged 25 or over (1,006,351 of 2,381,806 students) (Shasta College Attainment and Innovation Lab for Equity and Success Center for California Community Colleges, 2021). It is also projected that the number of high school graduates will begin to decline from 2024 through the early 2030s (State of California Department of Finance, 2021). And add the fact that Baby Boomers will increasingly leave the workforce over the coming years, opening the door for opportunities and the credentials needed to obtain those opportunities, then we can easily see a reality where we will have a growing number of adult learners in our classrooms. With this population projected to hold a significant share of our classroom space, we need to consider andragogy, as well as the institutional policies and practices that impact the academic success of these students.

Completion and Success: Persistence and achievement gaps are present for this population in general, with national data showing completion rates that are 18% lower for those 24 and up compared to younger students. This is an equity issue as over half of adult learners are people of color, and in California, half of the 6.8 million adult learners with a high school diploma but no college degree are people of color (California Competes, 2020). We need to improve outcomes in order to help increase educational attainment, employment opportunities, and earning potential of adult learners, especially people of color 25 and up, in our communities.

INEFFECTIVE PRACTICES

However, despite advances in the field and data that demonstrate the need to readjust practices and policies, there are still practices that stifle the unique characteristics and needs of adult learners, including older foundational learning theories, such as behaviorist, cognitivist, social cognitivist, and humanist approaches. This is not to say these approaches cannot add value to learning, but they all fall short in addressing the sociocultural contexts in which adult learners are living. Additionally, they reflect archaic assumptions about the way adults learn, which sharply contrast with current neuroscience perspectives and contemporary critical learning theories.

SO…WHERE SHOULD WE FOCUS?

We must remind ourselves that learning is not stagnant, but reflective of the time period of the learner. Merriam and Baumgartner (2020) discuss how learning priorities reflect the needs of a culture at a given time, as demonstrated throughout history. For instance, in colonial America, education heavily emphasized religious imperatives and the importance of reading biblical material. In contrast, post-Revolutionary War education emphasized civic responsibility that focused instead on politics, science, and philosophy. Merriam and Baumgartner mention that more contemporary adult needs are shaped by implications of changing demographics, globalization, and technology. Other scholars also address the imperative that adult learning contexts address structures of power and privilege (Brookfield, 2014); neoliberal agendas (Giroux, 2019); and revisionist histories (Hornig & Sambile, 2019); and are sensitive to the needs of adult learners of color and other systems-impacted learners.

WHAT WORKS?

In consideration of the factors listed above, what approach actually works in order to address both the needs of adult learners while being sensitive to the sociocultural contexts in which we find ourselves? A review of the current literature indicates that a constructivist approach is imperative in creating adult learning spaces that address these multiple needs and concerns. A constructivist approach acknowledges multiple perspectives in various contexts and considers the fluidity of knowledge in relation to time, environment, culture, and positionality, among other factors (Merriam & Bierema, 2014). This means that rather than viewing knowledge as fixed, or the brain as a thing to be “used,” or the classroom as a clean slate where all learners have equal access and the freedom to participate, rather, a constructivist view acknowledges that knowledge is dynamic, the brain is to be “changed,” and the classroom is a complex space riddled with structures of power and privilege that can create barriers and stifle learning.

Within the framework of constructivism, the scholarship shows that learning must be inquiry-based. It must involve reflective practice, and it has to implement community building strategies. Ultimately, the goal is to create disorienting dilemmas or situations that create transformative learning opportunities that empower learners by asking them to utilize their experience, critically examine their knowledge frameworks, and build their communicative skills to engage in ways that positively impact them and their communities.

Potential Questions

  1. Considering some of the theoretical approaches mentioned above, which does your practice reflect? Has it changed over time? How?
  2. Does your practice reflect any aspect of constructivism as mentioned in the last paragraph? If so, can you provide an example?

References

Brookfield, S. D. (2013). Powerful techniques for teaching adults. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.  

California Competes. (2020). Credit for prior learning: Leveraging past learning to close present-day equity gaps. Retrieved from: https://californiacompetes.org/assets/general-files/CACompetes_CPL-Brief_Final_8_11.pdf.

Dewey, J. (2011). Democracy and education. Digireads.com Publishing.

Giroux, H. A. (2019). Authoritarianism and the challenge of higher education in the age of Trump. Action, Criticism & Theory for Music Education, 18(1), 6–25.

Guarasci, R. (2018). Anchoring democracy: The civic imperative for higher education. Liberal Education, 104(1), 26-33.

Hornig, B. L., & Sambile, A. F. (2019). Addressing hxstorical amnesia: Proactively combating hxstorical amnesia as a means of healing in higher education. Vermont Connection, 40(1), 98–104.

Merriam, S. B., &. Baumgartner, L. M. (2020). Learning in adulthood: A comprehensive guide. 4rth ed. Hoboken, NJ: Jossey-Bass.

Merriam, S. B., & Bierema, L. L. (2014). Adult learning: Linking theory and practice. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. 

Shasta College Attainment and Innovation Lab for Equity and Success Center for California Community Colleges. (2021). Improving equity and completion: An adult learner toolkit for California community colleges. California Community Colleges. Vision Resource Center. Retrieved from: https://visionresourcecenter.cccco.edu/.

State of California Department of Finance, (2021). California public K-12 graded enrollment and high school graduate projections by county — 2021 series. Retrieved from: https://dof.ca.gov/forecasting/demographics/public-k-12-graded-enrollment/.

Addressing Hot Moments in the Classroom through Democratic Participation Strategies

THE IMPORTANCE OF DISCUSSION IN HIGHER EDUCATION

Critical thinking and discussion are important parts of the higher education classroom, let alone important skills for a thriving democracy. Adult education theorist John Dewey (2011) describes the necessity for challenging discussion as a democratic imperative. Discussion is a fundamental strategy for developing a critical consciousness and promoting an educated citizenry that is capable of making effective decisions in a democratic society.

Steven Brookfield (2013) details the way discussion should reflect democratic values in the higher education classroom. He defines a democratic classroom in three specific ways: (1) It is a space where multiple voices and perspectives are always included, and participation occurs in ways that do not always privilege euro-centric ideals, such as speech. (2) Learners are directly involved in the decision-making processes, which allows them a certain level of power and control over their own learning process. (3) Unfamiliar perspectives that often challenge dominant perspectives are constantly incorporated into the discussion.

Enacting democratic principles is a rigorous learning process that is always a “partially functioning ideal,” and discussion is a vital way that this process thrives (Brookfield, 2014, p. 123).

COMMON ROADBLOCKS OF EFFECTIVE DISCUSSION

However, for many reasons, discussions can lead to more problems than to enlightenment. For instance, most people may lack skills that allow them to communicate effectively, to resolve conflict, or to view the subtle nuances of social situations in order to address those situations in ways that acknowledge the needs of others who are different from them.

Additionally, given the highly polarized political environment in the country in the last 4-5 years, students, particularly those with privileged identities, are more resistant to discussions that include diverse perspectives (Cabrera et al.). Specifically, this is referring to white students, as the scholarship documents many white students’ assumptions that America is a post-racial society, and success is a result of hard work and merit (Delano-Orarian & Parks, 2015). These assumptions can make an instructor want to avoid challenging topics altogether to avoid uncomfortable situations.

Also, there is the ongoing conundrum of reconciling notions of “freedom” and “democracy.” In other words, as Brookfield describes, living in a society with other citizens requires that we “acknowledge their presence and adjust our lives accordingly” (2014, p. 125). For many, it is a challenge to promote individual rights and “freedom” (however this is freely defined), all within a context that should seek the welfare and benefit of the larger group.

OTHER ISSUES

Finally, as instructors, Brookfield details how we often make the following assumptions…

  • “Discussions are Free & Open Conversations”
    • We often assume that classroom conversation is “open” and “free,” a “safe space” to express one’s feelings and experiences. In contrast, the classroom is the very place where structures of power and privilege manifest. As Tatum et al. (2013) state, the classroom is merely the microcosm of the larger society, and therefore, it is riddled with social hierarchies that allow some voices to dominate, while others are silenced. This silencing is not always explicit, but expressed through subtle methods, for instance, through microaggressions. Additionally, because discussion is often directly connected to one’s participation grade in the class, it can become a highly competitive atmosphere that can focus less on genuine inquiry, and more on a battle for the students to demonstrate how smart they are, or what Brookfield refers to as “intellectual besting.”
  • “Discussion Is a Democratic Process in Which Diverse Voices Are Included”
    • The field of Adult Education is ever changing, yet higher education still shares a foundation with ideologies rooted in imperialism, colonization, and white supremacy (Cabrera et al., 2016; Museus et al., 2015). With this in mind, it is misinformed to think that hierarchies of privilege and power contextualized within notions of identity, particularly race, do not continue to manifest in the classroom, affecting the ways, for instance, that students of color feel comfortable or encouraged to participate (or do not). For instance, studies have shown that African-American students tend to enter college with the idea that they do not belong in the academic atmosphere and feel like outsiders among other students who are more likely to assimilate (Dancy, 2014; Ford & Moore, 2013).
  • “All Students Are Equipped to Participate”
    • Not all students are equipped to (or want to) participate in the competitive “one-upmanship” that discussions can represent. Also, not all learners possess the cultural capital to participate in ways that allow them to feel confident or compete with other dominating voices that do. Brookfield defines cultural capital as having abilities, such as a varied vocabulary, confidence and ease in public speaking situations, and an assumption that one’s commentary belongs in that context, is valued, and will be listened to. This cultural capital, or lack thereof, is emphasized as significant for determining the academic success of certain groups of students, such as black males (Brooms, 2018; Brooms et al., 2015).
  • “The Instructor is Part of the Respectful, Democratic Process”
    • In assuming that an instructor has the best intentions to tease out important concepts and perspectives in a discussion, Brookfield reminds us that the situation is still a panoptical illusion, referring to Foucault’s (1977) point that the “judges of normality are everywhere,” or more specifically, as they are established by the instructor. As the facilitator of the discussion, we set the tone and establish norms within that speaking context, and students are often looking for verbal or non-verbal cues that their participation is in alignment with those expectations. Seeking to “please” the instructor in this way can encourage a more competitive atmosphere of who has the most cultural capital to compete, and it can also distract from genuine and critical inquiry.
    • One last point with this assumption is that often as a facilitator, instructors ask questions to ignite good discussion without giving student sufficient time to think about a response. Students who are able may respond quickly so as not to appear stupid, which can prevent deeper thinking and critical reflection. As Brookfield emphasizes, “good questions needs time for a response” (2013, p. 67).

IMPLEMENTING A DEMOCRATIC FRAMEWORK AS A FOUNDATION

So, how can we facilitate discussions that accomplish the following tenets of democracy and appropriately handle classrooms that might normally generate “hot moments” or conflict? Brookfield outlines important aspects of democratic conversations along with specific criteria that might produce more fruitful conversations:

Students must have opportunities:

  • For structured silence to reflect and think deeply, aside from typical Eurocentric patterns of communication, such as speech.
  • To have power and control over their own learning process, including content and materials
  • To be heard – by participating in multiple ways
  • To hear the varied voices of others in order to develop empathy for others’ experiences that are different from their own and recognize that they live within systems of power and privilege to which they both contribute and relate.
  • To learn about and challenge dominant ideologies that they contribute to and/or are affected by, such as white supremacy, patriarchy, ableism, classism, racism, sexism, ageism, homophobia, eurocentrism, etc.
  • To contribute, consider, and value the voices and experiences of others and take these voices and experiences into account during important decision-making processes.

QUESTIONS

  1. What kind of misguided assumptions might you make about discussions in the classroom?
  2. Considering the list of criteria above these questions, how might you incorporate 1-2 of them in your in-class discussions?

Sources

Brookfield, S. D. (2013). Powerful techniques for teaching adults. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.  

Brooms, D. R. (2018). Exploring Black male initiative programs: Potential and possibilities for supporting Black male success in college. Journal of Negro Education87(1), 59–72.

Brooms, D. R., Goodman, J., & Clark, J. (2015). “We need more of this”: Engaging Black men on college campuses. College Student Affairs Journal33(1), 106–123.

Cabrera, N. L., Franklin, J. D., & Watson, J. S. (2016). Whiteness in higher education: The invisible missing link in diversity and racial analyses. ASHE Higher Education Report42(6), 7–125.

Dancy, T. E. (2014). (Un)Doing hegemony in education: Disrupting school-to-prison pipelines for Black males. Equity & Excellence in Education, 47(4), 476-493.

Delano-Oriaran, O. O., & Parks, M. W. (2015). One black, one white. Multicultural Education, 22(3/4), 15-19. 

Dewey, J. (2011). Democracy and education. Digireads.com Publishing.

Ford, D. Y., & Moore, J. L. (2013). Understanding and reversing underachievement, low achievement, and achievement gaps among high-ability African American males in urban school contexts. The Urban Review, 45(4), 399-415

Foucault, M. (1977). Discipline and punish: The birth of the prison. (A. Sheridan, Trans.) New York, NY: Vintage. (Original work published in 1975).

Museus, S. D., Ledesma, M. C., & Parker, T. L. (2015). Introduction. ASHE Higher Education Report, 42(1), 1–112.

Addressing Student Resistance to Discourses of Diversity

**Due to the nature of the topic, we felt that it was important to cite from scholarly work completed within the last 6-8 years. Additionally, it is important to keep in mind that this is a discussion about classroom dynamics, which does not supersede the vital significance of acknowledging resistance within macro-levels of an institution, namely, resistance among faculty, administration, staff, and other stakeholders.

DIVERSITY DISCOURSES

Diversity discourses in college courses have positive benefits for learners (Cabrera et al., 2016), for instance, by providing a space for multiple perspectives to be heard, mitigating bias, and building a critical consciousness so learners are more apt to understand their role in systemic oppression and prejudice and create larger, positive societal change within their communities (Mthethwa-Sommers, 2010). However, in the college classroom, these critically impactful discourses are often stifled due to resistance. Here are some examples of resistant discourse (taken from the literature and faculty experiences):

  • “Your success depends on how much effort you put into things, not your race. If I need money, I go out and get a job – not free handouts.”
  • “Why do we have to keep talking about race? White people also face discrimination in their own way.” 
  • “Why are we focusing on only black people? All lives matter.”
  •  “Oh ya, of course Professor X has to harp on race; he’s black.”
  •  “I don’t really see color. Everyone is the same.”
  •  “Minorities are just too sensitive.”
  • “Maybe they should make better choices and spend more time in the library than on the ball court.”

WHAT IS RESISTANCE?

Resistance is synonymous with the words “battle” or “struggle” or “refusal.” In the context of higher education, resistance can be characterized as the refusal to acknowledge/examine/change dynamics of structures of power, present at the macro-levels of society, that function to oppress and create barriers for marginalized identities within that institution (Cabrera et al., 2016).

How Does Systemic Prejudice Manifest in Higher Education Classrooms?

Throughout its history, the systemic oppression and racist ideologies of the U.S. are closely linked to the exploitation of communities of color by a white majority and the barriers and exclusions of people of color within educational contexts (Museaus et al., 2015). This has been specifically related to adult learning contexts in higher education.

Higher education was originally designed by and for privileged identities, specifically elite white males who would be future leaders of the country (Museaus et al., 2015). Thus, policies that reinforce the preservation of elite interests still remain in higher education in a modern context (Cabrera et al., 2016), particularly since the majority of elites in the U.S. are overwhelmingly white (Museaus et al., 2015). Scholars have outlined historical patterns of effort to preserve such interests through policies that served to prevent barriers to the participation of communities of color in higher education contexts through covert segregation and testing policies. Click here to learn more about these policies.

In contemporary culture, structures of power and oppression manifest in higher education in these ways:

  • The growing neoliberal, market-driven shifts in higher education focus on the individual’s market value versus the development of critical consciousness and value of diversity and sharing multiple voices (Hornig & Sambile, 2019; Guarasci, 2019).
  • A lack of representation of faculty of color in the classroom and particular backlash for faculty of color when teaching discourses of diversity (Delano-Orarian & Parks, 2015; Vianden, 2019).
  • The growing cost of education with financial options that disproportionately impact underrepresented students and their families (Museus et al., 2015).
  • The notion of stereotype threat, where students of color are often made to feel that they are inept in academic endeavors, which is a force that threatens students’ performance in standardized testing (Steele, 2011). Colleges and universities have only recently begun to implement “multiple measures” policies.

Are There Any Other Key Factors That Contribute to Resistance?

Structures of Whiteness

In addition to the historical and contemporary issues of systemic prejudice in higher education, it would be remiss to exclude discourses of whiteness as a silent power structure that is inextricably rooted in its foundations (Cabrera et al., 2016). One way whiteness currently functions in higher education is through what Hornig and Sambile (2019) referred to as “revisionist histories” that decenter oppressed voices in academia and make central the narratives of those in power. One central narrative that has made its way into higher education contexts stems from a national narrative to “Make America Great Again,” (Giroux, 2019). However, scholars questioned at what point America was “great” for marginalized citizens, let alone marginalized students in higher education, where oppression, isolation, invisibility, and stereotypes are well documented as affecting the higher education experience for marginalized and underrepresented students (Cabrera et al., 2016; Giroux, 2019; Guarasci, 2018; Museaus et al., 2015). This mantra is also closely linked with the “All Lives Matter” movement, a backlash to the Black Lives Matter movement, which is meant to highlight systemic brutality towards the Black community in the U.S.

How Does Resistance Manifest in the Classroom?

It is important to consider ways that constructs of whiteness both occupy and actively structure and re-structure higher education environments in the classroom. In this context, whiteness and white privilege in higher education is prevalent in the specific ways that white students often interact and react to discourses of diversity. It is well documented that those in white culture often assume America is a post-racial society, and success is achievable through hard work and merit (Delano-Orarian & Parks, 2015). In higher education, as well as a larger American context, white individuals often react to notions of prejudice in ways that dismiss, devalue, or outright reject that prejudice occurs (Cabrera et al., 2016).

Specifically, white students “recreate” white privilege in everyday action or lack thereof (Cabrera et al. 2016). These actions may manifest through silence, anger, invalidation of oppressed voices (Museaus et al., 2015; Tharp, 2015), and body language (Delano-Oriaran & Parks, 2015). Also, microaggressions can be directed at other students (Cabrera et al., 2016) or faculty of color (Museaus et al., 2015; Vianden, 2018), particularly women of color and specifically by white males in the classroom (Cabrera et al., 2016). Resistance is more common among white male students as this demographic is more often associated with inappropriate and disruptive behavior in higher education contexts, such as harassment and discrimination (Harper & Harris, 2010; Vianden, 2018).  Wagner (2015) emphasized that white males are least interested in diversity education because it conflicts with their intense socialization to embody characteristics of hegemonic masculinity that assert power, dominance, and control, preventing them from appearing weak or ignorant (Wagner, 2015; Vianden, 2018). These qualities are often in direct conflict with diversity education, which asks learners to cultivate cultural humility and develop certain degrees of vulnerability (Wagner, 2015).

What Strategies Have Been Successful in Addressing Resistance?

Best Practices – Content & Methodologies

In emphasizing diversity in education, scholars examined various strategies. These are just a few found in the literature:

  • Emphasizing the inclusion of content that asked students to confront their own positionality through hearing experiences from multiple voices and positionalities in society, which is an element of content incorporation that can be effective in mitigating resistance to diversity discourses (Canlas et al., 2015; Delano-Orarian & Parks, 2015).
  • Introducing the concept of white privilege through works from white authors who reflected the students’ own racial positionality.
  • Focusing content on learners with privileged identities through coverage of concepts such as positionality and privilege, particularly white privilege (Delano-Orarian & Parks, 2015). 
  • Decentering whiteness and emphasizing systematic oppression by incorporating content that examined racial constructs and the historical basis for group relations in the United States (Cabrera et al., 2016; Giroux, 2019; Hornig & Sambile, 2019).  
  • Emphasizing content that focused on macro-concepts of oppression (i.e. inequality, unemployment, and economic decline.)
  • Using a constructivist approach to cultivate a critical consciousness in adult learners because it emphasized active engagement and inquiry through examination of multiple contexts of power and privilege (Merriam & Bierema, 2014). Students do not merely accept facts and information in the classroom, but rather, construct knowledge through this active engagement and examination (Dewey, 2011; Swan et al., 2019).
  • Employing inquiry-based learning techniques to encourage ownership of knowledge construction, and facilitate higher order thinking skills (Mthethwa-Sommers, 2010; Swart, 2017). When done through a scaffold approach (Swan et al., 2019), students are provided with a clear, systematic pathway that emphasizes that decision-making processes should be based on rational, evidence-based inquiry rather than mere feeling or baseless opinions (Giroux, 2019). This is particularly vital in higher education, where larger national narratives normalize raw, emotion-based arguments and incentivize decision-making processes, particularly in dealing with social justice issues that affect marginalized communities (Giroux, 2019; Guarasci, 2018).
  • Promoting community building. Bettez and Hytten (2013) discussed social justice inquiry both as a process and a goal that should cause the learner to re-think the concept of democracy in an effort to move towards community-based thinking. This shift from an individual to a more collective-based focus allows learners to consider power structures inherent in society and in their personal lives and contemplate their own power and agency within those structures (Bettez & Hytten, 2013).
  • Emphasizing strategic dialogue. Dewey (2011) emphasized the vital role of critical dialogue in educational contexts in building a critical consciousness through exchanging ideas, listening to multiple perspectives, and building mutual interests. Smele et al. (2017) discussed how dissent during these discourses needed to be met with levels of discomfort. They encouraged situations where course dynamics included “risky” conversations in which privilege and assumptions about knowledge were “checked” or “called out.” Other ways dialogue has been incorporated are through active questioning (Rosen et al., 2017); critical questioning (Bettez & Hytten, 2013); and emotion-based responses connected with radical listening (Hornig & Sambile, 2019).
  • Promoting sharing, particularly in online discussions, which helped change the instructor/student power structure, as well as encourage marginalized voices to convey the lived realities of their experiences in ways that the instructor could not. Sharing also has been found to increase trust and cultivate empathy for others’ experiences, as well as create opportunities for critical thinking (Rosen et al., 2017).

Questions

  1. Considering the problem of resistance, in what ways might you still have room to grow, learn, and adapt in order to address issues of resistance?
  2. Choose a strategy of addressing resistance that is listed from the bullet points above that you have never used or considered before. Describe how you could potentially implement that strategy specifically in order to address student resistance to diversity discourse.
  3. In what specific ways might resistance to change manifest outside of the classroom in higher education?

REFERENCES

Bettez, S., & Hytten, K. (2013). Community building in social justice work: A critical approach. Educational Studies49(1), 45–66.

Cabrera, N. L., Franklin, J. D., & Watson, J. S. (2016). Whiteness in higher education: The invisible missing link in diversity and racial analyses. ASHE Higher Education Report42(6), 7–125.

Canlas, M., Argenal, A., & Bajaj, M. (2015). Teaching human rights from below: Towards solidarity, resistance and social justice. Radical Teacher, (103), 38–46.

Delano-Oriaran, O. O., & Parks, M. W. (2015). One black, one white. Multicultural Education22(3/4), 15-19.

Dewey, J. (2011). Democracy and education. Digireads.com Publishing.

Guarasci, R. (2018). Anchoring democracy: The civic imperative for higher education. Liberal Education, 104(1), 26-33.

Giroux, H. A. (2019). Authoritarianism and the challenge of higher education in the age of Trump. Action, Criticism & Theory for Music Education, 18(1), 6–25.

Harper, S. R., & Harris, F., III. (2010). College men and masculinities: Theory, research, and implications for practice. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Hornig, B. L., & Sambile, A. F. (2019). Addressing hxstorical amnesia: Proactively combating hxstorical amnesia as a means of healing in higher education. Vermont Connection40(1), 98–104.

Merriam, S. B., & Bierema, L. L. (2014). Adult learning: Linking theory and practice. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Mthethwa-Sommers, S. (2010). Inquiry based method: A case study to reduce levels of resistance. International Journal of Teaching & Learning in Higher Education22(1), 55–63.

Museus, S. D., Ledesma, M. C., & Parker, T. L. (2015). Introduction. ASHE Higher Education Report, 42(1), 1–112.

Rosen, D., McCall, J., & Goodkind, S. (2017). Teaching critical self-reflection through the lens of cultural humility: An assignment in a social work diversity course. Social Work Education36(3), 289–298.

Smele, S., Siew-Sarju, R., Chou, E., Breton, P., & Bernhardt, N. (2017). Doing feminist difference differently: Intersectional pedagogical practices in the context of the neoliberal diversity regime. Teaching in Higher Education22(6), 690–704.

Steele, C. (2011). Whistling Vivaldi: How stereotypes affect us and what we can do. New York, NY: Norton & Company.

Swan, A. K., Sleeter, N. M., & Schrum, K. (2019). Teaching hidden history: A case study of dialogic scaffolding in a hybrid graduate course. International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching & Learning13(1), 1–28.

Swart, R. (2017). Critical thinking instruction and technology enhanced learning from the student perspective: A mixed methods research study. Nurse Education in Practice, 23, 30-39. doi:10.1016/j.nepr.2017.02.003

Vianden, J. (2018). “In all honesty, you don’t learn much”: White college men’s perceptions of diversity courses and instructors. International Journal of Teaching & Learning in Higher Education30(3), 465–476.

Wagner, R. (2015). College Men and Masculinity: Implications for Diversity Education. Equity & Excellence in Education, 48(3), 473–488.