The effect of multicultural literature on the cultural awareness and sensitivity of freshmen-literature students.
Committee ChairAriew, Robert A.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThis study quantitatively and qualitatively examined the effect of multicultural literature, discussed and explored in an open, multiculturally-aware environment, on the cultural awareness and sensitivity of 121 University of Arizona English 102 (Freshmen literature) students, 66 of whom followed a rhetoric based text and curriculum, and 65 of whom followed a multicultural text and curriculum. The quantitative measures included (1) The Cross-Cultural Adaptability Inventory (CCAI), used to measure potential for cross-cultural effectiveness and the traits that comprise it--emotional resilience, flexibility/openness, perceptual acuity and personal autonomy, and (2) ten critical incidents used to measure "open-mindedness." The qualitative measures included (3) an analysis of student explanations as to what happened in the critical incidents, and (4) a self-evaluation to determine whether the students felt that their cultural awareness and sensitivity had improved over the semester, and whether they felt that their text played a role in this change. Quantitative results showed no difference between the two groups except for their levels of potential for cross-cultural effectiveness and personal autonomy, however qualitative results showed a substantial difference between the two groups, suggesting that when students read, discuss and explore multicultural literature, they not only appear to be more open-minded, culturally aware and sensitive, but they also feel themselves to have these traits.
Degree ProgramSecond Language Acquisition and Teaching