All in! Regularising ethnic presence in the curriculum

Project Aims and Activities

Key aims

Decolonisation (or ethnic diversification and inclusion) of the curriculum has received considerable press and has stimulated much debate in university campuses, globally. There is a clear call for a coherent methodology for decolonising the curriculum.

The project will start with a review of the ways that educationalists across the world have undertaken diversification to propose a methodology for systematically improving representation without assuming unlimited knowledge and resources of those trying to decolonise their curriculum. Alongside this, we will audit what we already do, uncovering the implicit and explicit curriculum. In the second year, the main activity will be to work with staff and students to identify examples, authors, readings, and topics to ensure greater visibility of BAME authors and ideas in the mainstream curriculum, including diversifying our expectations in assessments. 

The Department of Philosophy has begun such a review already; Peter Kerr and Emma Foster (University of Birmingham) have undertaken a similar review for gender and, Helen McCabe is undertaking a review of the political philosophy curriculum as part of her PGCHE. 

Planned activities

  • A literature review to inform the conceptual thinking, written papers and presentations
  • Research and develop a working definition of and methodology for the "decolonisation" of politics and philosophy curricula
  • Map existing course literature, classroom narratives, illustrations and teaching and learning practices to ascertain the extent and depth of the diversity of politics and philosophy curricula
  • Facilitate workshops on the project's conceptual themes of decolonisation, the stereotype threat, the effects of decolonisation and stereotyping on BAME attainment gaps and, practical strategies for developing more inclusive curricula
  • Create and maintain an online resource for use by academics to plan, design, develop and deliver more inclusive curricula and teaching and learning strategies

Anticipated outcomes

  • Raise awareness of the stereotype threat and decolonisation across both institutions
  • Close the attainment gap for BAME students in philosophy and politics
  • Close the gap across both institutions in the longer term by identifying and communicating a replicable mechanism for this

Beyond this, the project will enable the incorporation of more BAME authors and themes in the core curricula of philosophy and politics. The online resources and curriculum adjustments will provide a framework to extend the changes beyond the participating departments. As the project unfolds, ongoing peer dialogues and conversations will enable the project team to influence departmental and institutional teaching and learning practices.

All in! Regularising ethnic presence in the curriculum

University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

telephone: +44 (0)115 84 68165