Date of Degree
PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)
Curriculum standards in social studies encourage a curriculum that helps students understand how minority groups and women have historically sought access to equality of opportunity through organization and struggle, as well as a curriculum that supports democratic dialogue and mutual understanding among groups from diverse backgrounds. This study investigated how preservice social studies teachers have experienced efforts to help them understand dimensions of diversity and how these dimensions implicate classroom practices. Their pedagogical intentions were explored using educational criticism and connoisseurship, a humanities-based qualitative methodology that describes, interprets, and evaluates the various dimensions of educational experiences. This investigation followed four preservice social studies teachers and their instructors as they shared their encounters with difference and a diversity education course. Their experiences were rendered as written portraits of their intentions for teaching and learning. These portraits revealed themes of "earnest impotence" and structural obstacles that made truly transformative multicultural education difficult to achieve. Recommendations for curricular enhancements that attend to the "commonplaces" of curriculum are suggested.
Copyright 2012 Kathryn Michele Kauper
Kauper, Kathryn Michele. "Portraits of good intentions: diversity education in the commonplaces as experienced by preservice social studies teachers." dissertation, University of Iowa, 2012.