Self-Affirmation Exercises Found To Boost Some Achievement
The academic achievement of African American and Hispanic students continues to trail that of their White peers. The concept of “stereotype threat” is one of many contributors to explaining these achievement gaps and offers an avenue to intervene and narrow them.
UW–Madison education professor Geoffrey Borman says this phenomenon undermines the performance of negatively stereotyped persons, such as African Americans and Hispanics in all academic subjects, or women in mathematics. Students who are aware that they belong to a group perceived to perform poorly academically often fear behaving in a way that fits the negative cultural image associated with a group stereotype.
This fear is largely unconscious, but it elicits anxiety and other counterproductive responses that can interfere with students’ thinking and performance on standardized tests.
Underperformance due to stereotype threat may lead students to alter their career aspirations. It may challenge their sense of belonging in school. It may lead them to “protectively dis-identify” from academics.
Underperformance due to stereotype threat may lead students to alter their career aspirations. It may challenge their sense of belonging in school. It may lead them to “protectively dis-identify” from academics. Read more.
WIDA Goes Global with Summer Academy for International Schools
From Afghanistan to Zambia, international schools are reconsidering their approach to teaching English language learners, and many are looking to tap into WIDA’s expertise.
The 2014 WIDA International Summer Academy, which took place July 14-18 in Madison, Wisconsin, was WIDA’s first professional development academy specifically for international schools. The workshop was designed for teachers to learn how WIDA standards and assessments can meet the needs of English language learners (ELLs) in international schools.
“There is an increased recognition of the role of academic language development and the growing population of ELLs in English-medium schools worldwide,” WIDA Associate Director Elizabeth Cranley said. “The academy is a first attempt to reach some of these educators to share our resources and experience. It is also an opportunity to learn from them about their contexts and how WIDA might better help them meet the needs of their ELLs."
Historically, international schools have offered high standards of education to expatriates from various countries living in locations around the globe. Recently, many international schools have begun to enroll more children from their host countries. These students are attracted to international schools for various reasons, including the opportunity to learn English, according to Ruslana Westerlund, an English Language Development Specialist and International Development Team Lead for WIDA. Read more.