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Building Consensus: Bakhtinian Dialogue in the College Classroom

Journal: International Journal of Humanities & Applied Social Sciences (IJHASS) (Vol.1, No. 3)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 16-29

Keywords : Bakhtin; Contructivist Theory; Cooperative Learning; Dialogue; Multiculturalism;

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The demographics of the United States are changing. As of 2007, 1 out of every 7 citizens was born outside of the United States (Aud, et. al., 2010). This, as well as the growing number of international students who choose to attend American universities, is helping to change the face of our college campuses, and often, instructors find themselves unsure about how best to serve this diverse group of learners.We envision this as the last opportunity to instill, in them, the knowledge and tools they will need for professional and personal success. Instead, this microcosm represents the first of their future encounters. The global economy points to a need for individuals who won’t just function in an environment of eclecticism but thrive there, and to enact the positive changes that will benefit a global community. Meanwhile, colleges and universities are faced with ever-increasing pressure to improve student outcomes, retention, perseverance, and completion (Zepke & Leach, 2005; Astin, 1999). Student engagement impacts on these outcomes (Astin, 1999; Pascarella & Terenzini, 2005; Kuh, 2009). Actively engaged students learn more and better (Park, 2003). This essay focuses on how student dialogue engages all students, initiates higher level thinking, including problem-solving, and transforms seemingly unrelated individuals into a cohesive cohort of learners who appreciate the diversity surrounding them.

Last modified: 2016-07-12 20:38:38