Tonda Liggett, associate professor and ESOL program director at Marylhurst, published an article about culturally responsive pedagogy in teacher practicum supervision in the national journal Teaching Education in March 2017.
Tonda Liggett, along with co-authors Dyan Watson and Linda Griffen, explored the role of university supervisors in preparing teachers to work with culturally and linguistically diverse students in their article titled, Language use and racial redirect in the educational landscape of “just good teaching.”
The authors state that one key individual is uniquely positioned to reinforce and connect coursework with classroom practice during the teacher candidate’s practicum experience: the university supervisor. Their research focused on these supervisors and their understandings of culturally responsive pedagogy. Through interviews, field notes and classroom observations, Dr. Liggett and her co-authors examined language (words and phrases) that the supervisors used to talk about race and culture in relation to culturally responsive pedagogy.
Their findings indicate a tendency to redirect conversations about race and culture to topics that they were more versed on, such as teaching to the whole child or addressing the needs of the individual student. They gave a name to this linguistic move: the racial redirect. This “racial redirect” emerged in language that (1) simplified the meaning of culturally responsive pedagogy and (2) made culturally responsive pedagogy seem like an unexpected or chance event in teaching.
Tonda Liggett educates tomorrow’s teachers in Marylhurst University’s M.A. in Teaching and Master of Education programs. She also serves as director of ESOL programs. Her areas of expertise include English language education, critical multicultural education, and teacher identity.