This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Pre-service teachers and student responses to a culturally relevant curriculum




Gibson, Gary

Type of Degree



Health and Human Performance


Teacher candidates may not be receiving the appropriate training needed to succeed in today's culturally diverse schools. This research placed teacher candidates into a lab setting consisting of culturally diverse students and asked them to facilitate a culturally relevant pedagogy. Teacher candidates taught one unit of multi-activity games and another of non-traditional African Stepping. The purposes of this study were to examine responses and communicated attitudes of secondary school students and teacher candidates to: (1)an intercultural curriculum, and(2)a traditional multi-activity physical education curriculum. One-hundred thirteen scondary school students and twelve teacher candidates participated in this research. Teacher candidates and school students were surveyed before and after the units of instruction to determine perceptions of the activities. One hundred and forty-four Critical Incidents were recorded daily by the teacher candidates to ascertain what was considered significant for each class period and unit of instruciton. School students were interviewed and their responses were coded for perceptions of the units of instruction. Results indicated a need for teacher candidates to understand and present curriculum relevant to school students'lives. During the stepping unit, teacher candidates indicated less management concerns and focused more on school student learning. School students were motivated to particiapte and class leaders emerged during the stepping. When combined, these results indicate positive school student reponses to the culturally relevant pedagogy and curriculum, and suggest a need for teacher education programs to incorporate multicultural education in preparing teacher candidates to meet instructional needs of diverse school students.