As most people understand, the well-known definition of culture is the system of shared beliefs, values, customs, behaviors, and artifacts that members of society use to cope with their world and with one another, and they are transmitted from generation to generation though learning. In other words, it embraces the uniqueness of a group of people. At the same time, multicultural education is a process that covers all aspects of school practices, policies, and organizations to ensure the highest levels of academic achievement for all students. It helps students to develop a positive concept by providing knowledge about the histories, cultures, and contributions of diverse groups. Multicultural education advocates that students’ life history and experiences should be placed at the center of the teaching and learning process.
Multicultural education presents different dimensions in transforming society. The main goal of multicultural education is to reform schools, colleges, and universities so that students from diverse racial, ethnic, and social-class groups will experience educational equality. Experts suggest five powerful dimensions to share the different aspects in multicultural education. These dimensions are content integration, the knowledge construction process, prejudice reduction, an equity pedagogy, and empowering school culture and social culture (Banks, 2019). Content integration relates to the extent to which teachers use examples and content from a variety of cultures and groups to illustrate key concepts, principles, generalizations, and theories in their subject area. The knowledge construction process relates to the extent to which teachers help students to understand, investigate, and determine how the implicit cultural frames of references, perspectives, and biases influence the ways of knowledge. In the prejudice reduction dimension, teachers help students develop more positive attitudes toward different racial and ethnic groups. Prejudice reduction also indicates that schools can help students develop more positive intergroup attitudes and beliefs. Equity pedagogy is when teachers modify their teaching in ways that will facilitate the academic achievement of students from diverse racial, cultural, gender, and social-class groups. Empowering school culture and social structure promotes gender, racial, and social-class equality (Banks, 2019).
There’s no doubt, culture and organization of academic institutions must be restructured in a collaborative process that involves all academic and administrative members working as a team. To accomplish this vision, educators must be multiculturally literate and capable of including families and communities to create an environment that is supportive of multiple perspectives, experiences, and democracy. Multicultural education attempts to offer all students an equal educational opportunity encouraging students to visualize society in the interest of social justice!
Banks, J (2019). An Introduction of Multicultural Education. Pearson.