Boston College has announced that it will partner with DiversityEdu—a research-based online program that promotes diversity and inclusion by teaching students skills in addressing unconscious biases and stereotypical thinking—to offer a diversity learning module to all undergraduates this coming academic year.
University administrators decided to launch DiversityEdu after discussions with student leaders in the wake of several racially charged incidents that occurred on campus during the fall semester.
Administrators at Virginia Tech, one of the first universities to adapt the module, praised it as a powerful tool for promoting diversity and an inclusive campus culture by teaching students how to manage assumptions, recognize stereotypes and proactively assess the impact of their communications, choices and decisions.
The module is composed of open-ended questions, knowledge tests and diversity-related information. Its topics include defining diversity inclusively; engaging comfortably with difference; managing assumptions; searching for similarities; and understanding the effects of stereotypical thinking.
Vice President for Student Affairs Barb Jones said that she sees DiversityEdu providing an invaluable resource to the University community by offering a common knowledge and skill base for all students, as well as touch points for further discussion about diversity and inclusion.
“We are pleased to be able to introduce this tool to all of our undergraduate students,” said Jones. “We hope DiversityEdu will be just the beginning of many conversations around diversity and inclusion. We continue to encourage students to take advantage of other programs such as ‘Mosaic’ and ‘The Campus of Difference’ to build their knowledge and understanding.”
Director of Institutional Diversity Patricia Lowe said that DiversityEdu will be launched this summer and students will receive an email with instructions and deadlines for completing the module. The online program, she said, takes approximately 40 minutes to complete and can be taken in segments. It can be accessed 24 hours a day.
“In support of Boston College and its mission to advance and sustain an organizational culture and climate that welcomes and values diversity, we are introducing DiversityEdu to provide an opportunity for students to actively and intentionally broaden their understanding and awareness of the diverse experiences and perspectives that we all bring as members of the Boston College community,” said Lowe.
“DiversityEdu is just one resource that we hope will serve to foster engaging dialogue that continues to move inclusive excellence forward at Boston College.”
University Communications | May 14, 2018