Complexity and Transformative Learning: A Review of the Principal and Teacher Preparation Literature on Race


by Rachel Roegman, Joni Kolman, A. Lin Goodwin & Brooke Soles - 2021

Background: Racial inequities are a persistent reality in K–12 schools in the United States. There is a need for consensus and coordination between principals and teachers if they are to address the harm of racial inequities in education. Yet, despite this need and the interdependence of teachers and principals in schools, their preparation is profoundly distinct.

Purpose: Although teacher and principal preparation practice and research are distinct, addressing racial inequities in K–12 students’ schooling experiences is central to the work within both professional arenas. In this literature review, we bring together these bodies of literature as we think about ways that preparation supports principals and teachers in developing skills, knowledge, and dispositions to counter racial inequities in their schools. We focus our review around one central question: In what ways does the teacher and principal preparation literature address candidates’ transformative learning around race?

Research Design: This review focuses on peer-reviewed literature on race within teacher and principal preparation published between 2001 and 2018. We reviewed studies here that are: (1) empirical, (2) focused on principal or teacher preparation, (3) focused on preparing candidates around issues related to race or racial inequity, (4) published between 2001 and 2018, and (5) based in the United States. We ultimately identified 79 articles, 24 related to principal preparation and 55 related to teacher preparation. We drew on critical transformative learning theory to guide our analyses.

Findings: Overall, we identified more commonalities between the two literatures than differences. Our review suggests that race is understood in three main ways: in terms of “difference,” “power,” and “racism.” Race-as-difference focuses on differences between individuals related to race or culture. Race-as-power emphasizes that these differences result from systemic oppressions. Race-as-racism centers racism and/or white supremacy. This review reveals complexities of transformative learning across three areas: how candidates’ backgrounds inform their learning; how clinical experiences present opportunities and constraints for learning; and how emotions influence learning.

Recommendations: Preparation programs must educate teachers and principals about race-as-racism. Candidates need to come to understand the role of systemic racism in society and in schooling, beyond understanding individual differences. Critically, teacher and principal preparation faculties must work together across courses and experiences. Finally, there is a need for those who educate educators to receive preparation for this role.

Racial inequities are a persistent reality in K–12 schools in the United States. Students of color have lower graduation rates (Zamani-Gallaher et al., 2014) and standardized test scores (Milner, 2012). Compared with their white peers, they consistently are provided less access to advanced coursework (Tyson, 2011; U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 2018), are more likely to be suspended or expelled (Morris, 2016; Skiba et al., 2014), and are more likely to be labeled as having a disability (Artiles & Kozleski, 2016; Blanchett, 2009). Across a range of measures, students of color experience negative school cultures and climates; they are underserved and disproportionately impacted by systemic racism masked as color-neutral, meritocratic policies and practices (Kohli et al., 2017). Like students of color, educators of color experience similar levels of racism, marginalization, and cultural violation, facing “everyday racism,” microaggressions (Kohli et al., 2017), disrespect, and devaluing (Griffin & Tackie, 2016) in their schools and districts.


There is a need for consensus and coordination if principals and teachers are to address the harm of racial inequities in education. Yet, despite this need and the interdependence of teachers and principals in schools, their preparation is profoundly distinct. Teacher preparation and principal preparation are generally two separate processes, with limited interaction among faculty, candidates, and field-based educators. Often housed in different departments within colleges of education, presenting at different conferences, and writing for different journals, teacher preparation faculty and principal preparation faculty rarely collaborate on teaching or research. We posit that when school stakeholders come together, they are better positioned to dismantle inequitable schooling contexts and create racially equitable practices and policies.


PURPOSE AND FRAMING QUESTION


In this literature review, we bring together these bodies of work as we think about ways that preparation supports principals and teachers in developing skills, knowledge, and dispositions to create more equitable school experiences for students of color. Through this review, we examine what is known about how teacher and principal preparation address race focusing around one central question: In what ways does the teacher and principal preparation literature address candidates’ transformative learning around race? We look to places where the two bodies of literature converge and where they diverge, considering specifically how different conceptualizations of race shape this work and the implications for preparation program design.


CONCEPTUALIZING RACE


We begin with our own understandings of race and how those influence our review of the literature. Race is a social construct, with no basis in biology (Mukhopadhyay et al., 2014; Omni & Winant, 1994), that plays a major role in determining children’s educational pathways (Ladson-Billings, 1998). Race extends beyond surface differences such as skin color; race is “given meaning and significance in specific historical, political and social contexts” (Brown et al., 2017, p. 454). As a social construct, race in the United States “is the primary criterion used to classify individuals…classifications [that] have become social and psychological boundaries that influence where one lives, the quality and context of one’s schooling, one’s earning ability, and one’s access to social and health institutions and services” (Carter & Goodwin, 1994, p. 293). Consequently, racialized identities are manufactured and assigned to pathologize, demonize, and marginalize people of color, and simultaneously privilege whiteness.


We inductively developed our own schema to categorize how the studies seem to conceptualize race. Our reading of the literature suggests that race is understood in three main ways: in terms of “difference,” “power,” and “racism.” Note that these are not derived from researchers’ explicit definitions, in part because researchers rarely define race explicitly, but from our attention to their language choices (Table 1) and how race is taken up in their study design and findings.


Table 1 -Different Conceptualizations of Race


Category

Focus

Key Words and Phrases

Difference

Demographic differences between students, teachers, and/or principals

Cultural competence

Diversity

Multiculturalism

Cultural responsiveness

Power

Structural and systemic inequalities

Social justice

Equity

Critical consciousness

Institutional challenges

Power dynamics

Power imbalance

Access

Dominant ideologies

Racism

Race as a central, defining feature of all aspects of education and educator preparation

Whiteness

Critical race theory

Critical whiteness studies

White privilege

White supremacy

Antiracism

Institutional and cultural racism


Race-as-Difference


In studies that conceptualize race-as-difference, the researchers examine how teacher and principal preparation efforts prepare educators to work with students who are different from them; that is, race is positioned as one of many ways in which individuals may be similar or different. It is one facet of human diversity. Much of this work is framed within discussions of diversity that revolve around social and cultural differences between individuals in a pluralistic society (McLaughlin, 1992). For example, Akiba (2011) discusses the “major responsibility” of “educating pre-service teachers to develop multicultural awareness, knowledge, and skills for teaching diverse students” (p. 659), noting differences in ethnicity, language, racial background, socioeconomic status, religion, gender, and country of origin. In Bell, Horn, and Roxas’s (2007) examination of service learning and preservice teachers’ understandings of diversity, they similarly note “race, class, gender, disability, language, and sexual orientation” (p. 124) as salient aspects of diversity of which preservice teachers need to be aware, with the goal that they attain a pedagogical understanding of “differences among individuals and groups” and the ways that these differences have “consequences for teaching and learning” (p. 124).


Race-as-Power


Articles that conceptualize race-as-power emphasize that the differences that make up student diversity are the result of “the historical and current realities of discrimination and exclusion in American and other societies” (Nieto & Bode, 1992, p. xiv) and draw on ideas from critical multicultural education and social justice education. Kemp-Graham (2015), for example, focuses on principal candidates’ learning of social justice leadership, defined as principals who “make use of issues of race, class, gender, disability, sexual orientation and other historically and currently marginalized conditions in the US central to their advocacy, leadership, practice and vision to ensure the academic success of all students” (p. 104). Similarly, Ritchie, An, Cone, and Bullock (2013) examine how teacher preparation supports candidates in working toward social change, and understand social justice education “as important for all members and groups in a society, we also appreciate the importance of the local-global relationship and how local issues are situated in a global sociopolitical and economic context” (p. 65). As with race-as-difference, these researchers do not focus specifically on race or racism; and similar to race-as-racism, described next, these researchers position difference within systems of oppression.


Race-as-Racism


In articles that conceptualize race-as-racism, researchers investigate racism and/or white supremacy specifically as a critical aspect of U.S. society that has dramatic and inequitable consequences for individuals of color. This conceptualization is aligned to central ideas from critical race theory and critical whiteness perspectives on schooling (Jupp et al., 2016) and, drawing generally on critical race theory, these scholars attend to race explicitly to address racial inequities in schooling (e.g., DeCuir & Dixson, 2004; López, 2003; Parker & Villalpando, 2007). For example, Diem, Carpenter, and Lewis-Durham (2018) examine preparation of antiracist school leaders who are “racially conscious” and “model practices focused on the purposeful addressing of social, political, and educational oppression” resulting from racism (p. 6). Hines (2014, 2016), likewise, considers racial identity development, examining how white preservice principals engage in topics such as white privilege and white fragility and what this means for their leadership practice.


THEORETICAL FRAMING: TRANSFORMATIVE LEARNING


Regardless of their conceptualizations, these studies largely consider how teacher and principal preparation serve as sites for transformative learning around race. By transformative learning we mean learning that requires candidates to identify, examine, change, and act on their newfound learnings related to race. In so doing, we draw on critical adult learning theories that highlight the opportunities and barriers for teacher and principal candidates’ learning about race and schooling (Merriam et al., 2007). Finding roots in multiculturalism, critical race theory, Afrocentric theory, sociocultural theory, Black feminist theory, and postmodernism, critical adult education attends to issues of race, power, social justice, history, and oppression (hooks, 1994; Merriam et al., 2007; Sealy-Ruiz, 2010; Tisdell, 2006).


Critical adult education literature suggests that shifting principal and teacher candidates’ existing viewpoints and practices around race is challenging in part because their learning is situated within the breadth of racialized experiences they bring to preparation programs (Knowles, 1980; Solórzano & Yosso, 2001; Villegas, 2007). For white individuals, learning around race is challenging because it often leads to discomfort as they grapple with their race-based privileges (DiAngelo, 2011; Jarvis, 1987; Raths, 2001; Villegas, 2007). Yet, if candidates enter preparation programs with color-neutral ideologies, programs must address these barriers to equitable teaching and leadership (Crowley, 2016; Rubie-Davies, 2008; Sue, 2010).


In contrast to informational learning, the intended outcome of transformative learning is fundamental change in actions informed by perspective and belief changes (Brookfield, 1995; Liu & Milman, 2010; Merriam et al., 2007; Mezirow & Associates, 2000). We attend to three central aspects of transformative learning theory—experience, critical reflection, and dialogue—as a means of examining how the literature on teacher and principal candidates’ perspectives, beliefs, and actions related to race are transformed through preparation.


EXPERIENCE, CRITICAL REFLECTION, AND DIALOGUE


Transformative learning theory positions experience as central to changing beliefs and actions (Brookfield, 1995; Fenwick, 2003; Jarvis, 1987; Kolb & Kolb, 2005; Mezirow & Associates, 2000). For teacher and principal candidates, opportunities to be exposed to new ideas and realities about race are abundant through student teaching and administrator internships, as well as out-of-school settings. Although candidates engage in these types of experiences, it is important to note that not all experiences are inherently transformative (Imel, 1998), and experiences can be mis-educative (Dewey, 1938/1997); merely being in a certain type of school does not guarantee that candidates will learn racially equitable practices. When examining the role of experience within the reviewed literature, we focused on the ways in which the experiential learning opportunities provided through teacher and principal preparation shape candidates’ perspectives, beliefs, and actions related to racial equity.


Critical reflection is another key component of transformative learning (Au, 2017; Brookfield, 2000; Liu & Milman, 2010; Mezirow, 2000). This form of reflection moves beyond navel-gazing and is “a process of constantly analyzing, questioning, and critiquing established assumptions of oneself, schools, and the society about teaching and learning, and the social and political implications of schooling” (Liu, 2015, p. 10). This echoes Brookfield’s (1995) and Mezirow’s (2000) sentiments that the result of critical reflection in transformative learning should be actions informed by these new understandings and aligns with Freire’s (1970) notion of conscientizaçao (critical consciousness). When thinking about critical reflection in the teacher and principal preparation literature, we considered opportunities that elicit candidates’ reflections on themselves, their learning, and/or their experiences. We sought to understand what the studies tell us about the role that critical reflection plays in changing beliefs, perspectives, and actions related to racial inequity.


Dialogue around race in critical adult education is also often seen as a catalyst for transformative learning (Brookfield, 2014; Friere, 1970). The research shows that the experiences of discussing race in adult education spaces are often fraught (Baumgartner & Johnson-Bailey, 2008; Brookfield, 2014; Johnson-Bailey, 2002; Kong, 2010) and complicated by the emotions that individuals bring to the discussions (Baumgartner & Johnson-Bailey, 2008; Manglitz et al., 2014). In examining dialogue in the literature on teacher and principal preparation around race, we focused on what the research reveals about the ways in which conversations contribute to changes in perspectives, beliefs, and actions related to racial equity.


Critical adult education highlights how experiences, critical reflection, and dialogue shape transformative learning. In examining the literature on teacher and principal preparation, we considered the challenges of advancing racial equity and the ways that preparation can serve as a catalyst or a barrier to candidate learning. In so doing, we considered how both literatures address candidates’ transformative learning around race.


REVIEW METHODOLOGY AND LITERATURE SELECTION


This review focuses on peer-reviewed, empirical literature on race within teacher and principal preparation published between 2001 and 2018. Although we acknowledge the large body of teacher preparation research produced on this topic during the 1990s (e.g., Melnick & Zeichner, 1997; Sleeter, 1991), we choose this period to demarcate the time since the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), which had the stated purpose of ensuring that students from all demographic backgrounds receive the same high-quality education. Similarly, principal preparation literature shows an expanded interest in issues of equity and diversity since the early 2000s, ushered in, in part, by NCLB’s mandates (e.g., Davis et al., 2005; Hess & Kelly, 2007; Larson & Murtadha, 2002). This time period is also marked by increased global mobility and attention to racial equity in U.S. K–12 schooling (Pew Research Center, 2015; Sugarman, 2017).


Literature was selected for review through a series of searches that began with electronic databases (i.e., Education Full Text, ERIC, EBSCO, JSTOR, Google Scholar) as well as the Sage and Taylor & Francis education journal databases. We used keyword combinations that specifically name race (e.g., racism, racial equity) as well other words or phrases that scholars use to discuss race (e.g., diversity, social justice, or culture), and preparation (teacher or principal). Following, we examined peer-reviewed educational leadership and teacher preparation journals to identify any articles that did not emerge in our database searches, particularly newly published articles.


We review studies here that are: (1) empirical, (2) focused on principal or teacher preparation, (3) focused on preparing candidates around issues related to race or racial inequity, (4) published between 2001 and 2018, and (5) based in the United States. We exclude research that centers on in-service teachers and principals, studies that focus specifically on faculty experiences, those that examine only syllabi, as well as purely conceptual papers. We ultimately identified 79 articles, 24 related to principal preparation and 55 related to teacher preparation.


Each article was read separately by the authors of this paper, notating the researchers’ conceptualization of race and key information; we each concluded with a summary of the degree to which the study reports transformational learning. We attended to key aspects of critical transformative learning theory including the following: racialized experiences candidates bring to the program, discomfort or emotions, changing perspectives, changing actions, experiences in coursework, clinical experiences, reflection, and dialogue.


OUR POSITIONALITY


We purposefully structured our authorship team to include two faculty members who work within teacher preparation and two within principal preparation. All of us are former K–12 teachers, one is a former principal, and we are all current or former preparation faculty who engage questions of race and racism in our teaching and scholarship. As white and Asian American, as immigrants and United States born, as Jewish, as queer, we engage this literature from our individual and collective standpoints.


We are aware of the ease with which faculty with full-time university appointments can be critical of teachers and principals in schools. We thus focus our review on examining how the two bodies of research are engaged with each other, and not on the candidates who are the participants in the research. We acknowledge that who we are as antiracist reviewers has direct relevance to the direction and substance of this review, and who we are is multiple, intersecting, and evolving. Thus, we position ourselves as both works in progress and seekers of understanding who bring only partial knowing.


FINDINGS: TRANSFORMATIVE LEARNING AROUND RACE IN PRINCIPAL AND TEACHER PREPARATION


Overall, we identified more commonalities between the two bodies of literature than we had anticipated. Although each set of articles does discuss a small number of discrete practices, significant overlap exists between both sets of articles in relation to researchers’ framing of how preparation programs engage candidates in transformative learning related to race. Our explorations of the literature reveal the complexity of transforming candidates’ perspectives and actions across three areas: how candidates’ backgrounds inform their learning, how clinical experiences present opportunities and constraints for learning, and how emotions in dialogue influence learning.


TRANSFORMATIVE LEARNING OF CANDIDATES INFORMED BY THEIR RACIAL BACKGROUNDS


Candidates are not blank slates (Jacobs et al., 2013). Candidates bring to preparation their own set of experiences, assumptions, and knowledge of race, and this influences what they learn through their programs. A number of studies in both teacher and principal preparation discuss ways that candidates’ race, racialized experiences, and racial identity inform transformative learning (Amos, 2010; Bloom et al., 2015; Boske, 2010, 2015; Brand & Glasson, 2004; Case & Hemmings, 2005; Diem & Carpenter, 2013; Durham-Barnes, 2015; Garmon, 2004; Genao, 2016; Gooden & O’Doherty, 2015; Groff & Peters, 2012; Guerra et al., 2013; Hernandez & Marshall, 2009; Jacobs et al., 2013; Kohli, 2009; Kumar & Hamer, 2013; Kyles & Olafson, 2008; Rivera Maulucci, 2013). Many studies report that the majority of white candidates enter programs with limited experiences with people of different racial backgrounds (Baldwin et al., 2007; Bloom et al., 2015; Brand & Glasson, 2004; Lee, 2011; Whipp, 2013) and with deficit views about people of color (Baldwin et al., 2007; Boske, 2015; Cho & DeCastro-Ambrosetti, 2005; Hill-Jackson, 2007; Kumar & Hamer, 2013; Lambeth & Smith, 2016; Peters et al., 2016; Seidl & Friend, 2002; Ukpokodu, 2004; Weisman & Garza, 2002). As a result, the research suggests that when white candidates and candidates of color complete the same preparation activities or readings, they learn different things (Boske, 2010; Brand & Glasson, 2004; Chang et al., 2011; Diem & Carpenter, 2013; Gooden & O’Doherty, 2015; Guerra et al., 2013; Hernandez & Marshall, 2009; Jacobs et al., 2013; Milner, 2006; Sperandio & LaPier, 2009; Whipp, 2013). For example, Chang, Anagnostopous, and Omae (2011) found in their quantitative study that white preservice teachers became more aware of their biases than did candidates of color after engaging in service learning in racially diverse spaces. Sperandio and LaPier (2009) report that principal candidates of color were more interested in leadership positions in majority-minority schools than white candidates after examining how parents and teachers treat individuals based on race and gender in schools. However, it should be noted that for some quantitative survey studies with small sample sizes and small numbers of participants of color, researchers report very few or no significant differences between white candidates and candidates of color (Cicchelli & Cho, 2007; Kemp-Graham, 2015).


In considering candidates’ backgrounds, two concerning patterns emerge within both teacher and principal preparation: the difficulty in overcoming whiteness for white candidates, and the realization of the intractability of racism for candidates of color. Several studies report that whiteness is a hindrance to transformative learning because it prevents white candidates from engaging in critical self-reflection and often leads to stereotypes being reinforced instead of challenged (Amos, 2010; Case & Hemmings, 2005; Galman et al., 2010; Hines, 2016; Lambeth & Smith, 2016; Marx, 2004; Matias et al., 2014; Peters et al., 2016; Picower, 2009). One study (Guerra et al., 2013) also concludes that whiteness is a hindrance to persistence; when faced with similar race-based challenges in their clinical experiences, white students did not persist whereas candidates of color attempted to overcome or circumvent the challenges they faced.


Also, alarmingly, a small number of studies find that coursework and clinical experiences have a negative impact on candidates of color. Candidates of color report their white classmates to be frustrating, if not racist (e.g., Amos, 2010; Boske, 2010; Kohli, 2009). One study notes that principal candidates of color had painful experiences in their clinical placements when they became privy to the racist beliefs of the other teachers (Jacobs et al., 2013). Similarly, Boske (2010) reports that principal preparation confirmed the worst fears of candidates of color—that the system is indeed racist, perhaps insurmountably so, and they ended the program feeling more marginalized than when they entered. Racist experiences in their preparation programs reinforce that racism is endemic, which may be part of the reason candidates of color do not enroll in preparation programs (Kohli, 2009).


A number of these studies also report heterogeneity within racial groups, finding that candidates from the same racial or ethnic background have different experiences, beliefs, and degrees of criticality about racism and structural inequalities within K–12 education (Diem & Carpenter, 2013; Durden et al., 2016; Weisman & Hansen, 2008). This resonates with Jackson and Knight-Manuel’s (2019) finding that even though teacher candidates may share a similar racial or ethnic background, they do not necessarily share the same sociopolitical consciousness. Thus, even as many studies report that white candidates and candidates of color have different responses to the same activities, it is important to remember that not all candidates of the same racial group will, by default, have the same response.


These studies overall suggest candidates of color learn about race during their preparation in different ways than white candidates, and that often this learning is emotionally or psychologically harmful. Thus, the research overall indicates that when preparation programs, courses, or activities aim to encourage transformative learning around race, attention must be paid to candidate backgrounds and racialized experiences. Indeed, several researchers ultimately call for differentiation in preparation pedagogy for white candidates and for candidates of color (Genao, 2016; Guerra et al., 2013).


TRANSFORMATIVE LEARNING IN CLINICAL EXPERIENCES


As adult learning theories posit (Dewey, 1938; Imel, 1998), not all experiences lead to transformative learning nor lead in the direction of racial equity even when designed with that purpose. The clinical experiences examined through this review are ones where candidates spent time in K–12 schools or communities and the researchers considered those experiences through a racial lens. In the literature on teacher preparation, these experiences include those attached to coursework (e.g., practicum, service learning) as well as the more intensive “student teaching” experience during which candidates engage in the practices of teaching in a concentrated way in a classroom under the supervision of a cooperating teacher. Principal candidates, on the other hand, often have an internship where they complete several tasks under the supervision of their current principal in a K–12 school; many preparation courses require engaging in tasks, such as data analysis, at their current school sites. Although several studies find that clinical experiences are catalysts for transforming perspectives, others report that they serve as sites for reproducing racism or leave candidates unable to enact equity-oriented actions.


Clinical Experiences Supporting Transformative Learning


The research reviewed suggests that clinical experiences can support the transformation of equity-oriented beliefs. Exposure to “diverse” clinical experiences was found to support candidates in dispelling stereotypes about students of color (Akiba, 2011; Amatea et al., 2012; Bloom et al., 2015; Ukpokodu, 2004), in part by making visible how racist schools can be (Hernandez & Marshall, 2017; Kohli, 2009; Picower, 2013; Wiggins et al., 2007). They also provided opportunities for candidates to interact with students from different racial backgrounds (Akiba, 2011; Lambeth & Smith, 2016; Miller & Mikulec, 2014), increasing their comfort-level in racially diverse school settings (Peters et al., 2016; Ukpokudu, 2004) and allowing candidates to see teaching and leadership strategies working with students of color (Athanases & Martin, 2006; Barakat et al., 2012; Figueiredo-Brown et al., 2015; Kumar & Lauermann, 2018; Rivera Maulucci, 2013; Ukpokudu, 2004). Moreover, researchers found that clinical experiences with Black and Latinx students provide candidates with experiences that push back against prior negative beliefs about students of color (Akiba, 2011; Athanases & Martin, 2006; Barakat et al., 2012; Jacobs et al., 2013; Mensah, 2009; Seidl & Friend, 2002; Ukpokodu, 2004; Weisman & Hansen, 2008).


Although the majority of the studies examine candidates’ placements in school-based clinical experiences, several studies explore learning in out-of-school contexts (Amatea et al., 2012; Baldwin et al., 2007; Bell et al., 2007; Boske, 2012; Chang et al., 2011). Baldwin and colleagues (2007), for example, examine community-based service learning experiences for undergraduate teacher candidates. These researchers found that service learning positively shifts candidates’ perspectives and beliefs about “diverse” settings and students. Specific experiences, including those where candidates were not in the role as expert, were reported as developing more nuanced understandings of diversity (Bell et al., 2007). Learning from service learning experiences was also shaped by the mentoring within those spaces (Chang et al., 2011).


Clinical experiences outside of schools, such as the “educational plunge” described by Hernandez and Marshall (2009), are not unique to teacher preparation. This study examines principal candidates tasked with having an experience of their choosing in a marginalized community. Although some candidates embraced the discomfort of the experience and put themselves into situations where their beliefs and perspectives were challenged, others did not. The researchers conclude that learning from such experiences can reshape perspectives, but it depends upon candidates’ willingness to engage in discomfort and the kind of plunge they choose.


Clinical Experiences as a Barrier to Transformative Learning


The empirical evidence also highlights how clinical experiences can be mis-educative and a barrier to transformative learning around race. Indeed, several researchers found that clinical experiences perpetuate othering, reinforce stereotypes, and further reinforce “savior-positioning” by candidates (Barnes, 2006; Brand & Glasson, 2004; Cross, 2003; Farnsworth, 2010; Groff & Peters, 2012; Groulx, 2001; Kumar & Hamer, 2013). For example, Groulx (2001) found that urban clinical experiences reinforced candidates’ negative views of schools and neighborhoods, including heightening their concerns around safety, lack of parent support, and violence, as opposed to shifting their perspective and beliefs in a positive direction. Cross (2003, 2005), similarly, found that clinical experiences often reinforced teacher candidates’ negative stereotypes about Black and Latinx students and did little to foster competence with teaching racially diverse students. Moreover, she describes a voyeuristic effect wherein white candidates see their clinical experiences as an opportunity to focus their gaze on students, as opposed to using their new knowledge to develop positive educational experiences for students, making the experiences educative in a problematic direction. Both Kyles and Olafson (2008) and Cross (2003) assert that although clinical experiences may provide opportunities for candidates to grapple with their beliefs, they do not necessarily equate to a greater commitment to equity-oriented education or changes in behavior.


In addition, several studies describe the limited opportunities for candidates to actually enact equity-oriented practices learned in coursework, even when desired (Barakat et al., 2012; Genao, 2016; Gooden et al., 2018; Jacobs et al., 2013; Lee, 2011). One study notes that several focus group participants “were quite frustrated because they had not been given the opportunity to share what they had learned in regards to social justice, diversity and cultural competence in their schools” (Barakat et al., 2012, p. 252). Another reports that candidates were expected to enact their supervisor’s vision, regardless of its alignment to the antiracist vision advocated by the preparation program and many of the candidates themselves (Gooden et al., 2018). Thus, even when clinical experiences or coursework shift beliefs, candidates may struggle to translate theory to practice due to contextual constraints.


Summary


The research suggesting that clinical experiences support the transformation of candidates’ beliefs and perspectives around racial equity rarely finds that all candidates achieve the desired outcomes. Indeed, within individual studies, researchers generally find some candidates shift in equity-oriented ways whereas others remain steadfast in their color-neutral and racist views of schools and students.


EMOTION-LADEN DIALOGUE AND TRANSFORMATIVE LEARNING


bell hooks (1994) argues that feelings and emotions undergird commitments to eliminate racism. In fact, emotions can be a tool for change when not being used to justify separation, fear, and guilt (Lorde, 1997). Transformative adult learning theorists concur, arguing that emotions, discomfort, and cognitive dissonance are necessary components of a disorienting dilemma (Mezirow & Associates, 2000). Our examination of the literature on principal and teacher preparation reveals the emotion-laden nature of dialogue around racial inequity, a phenomenon previously revealed by other researchers within critical adult education (Baumgartner & Johnson-Bailey, 2008; Manglitz et al., 2014). These emotions include fear, confusion, disappointment, anxiety, anger, shame, guilt, and discomfort. As with clinical experiences, emotions for some candidates facilitate transformation of perspectives whereas, for others, they are a barrier to transformative learning.


Emotions as a Catalyst for Learning


Several studies across both literatures find that emotions can lead to positive change in candidates’ perspectives and/or beliefs about race in schooling (e.g., Athanases & Martin, 2006; Boske, 2015; Brown, 2006; Carpenter & Diem, 2013; Diem et al., 2019; Durham-Barnes, 2015; Gooden & O’Doherty, 2015; Hernandez & Marshall, 2017; Hyland, 2010; Martinez, 2015; Matias & Grosland, 2016; Marx & Pennington, 2003; Picower, 2013; Riley & Solic, 2017; Rivera Maulucci, 2013). The majority of studies that note this positive perspective transformation are ones that analyze candidates’ written or visual self-reflections in response to readings and prompts, where the student is individually in dialogue with the course instructor (Boske, 2015; Brown, 2006; Gooden & O’Doherty, 2015; Hernandez & Marshall, 2009; Martinez, 2015; Matias & Grosland, 2016). For example, Brown (2006) explains that principal candidates’ fear, anger, and guilt, expressed through their journal entries, were often reported as the impetus for shifting perspectives on racism in schooling. The findings from these studies suggest that readings and written/visual assignments can elicit emotions that support candidates’ transformative learning, including acknowledging and addressing their own racist views.


Other studies examine how emotions allow candidates to learn through dialogue alongside their peers (Diem et al., 2019; Hyland, 2010; Marx & Pennington, 2003). For example, Marx and Pennington (2003) describe how disappointment and shame, elicited through in-depth discussions during a course session, led white teacher candidates to reshape their perspectives and beliefs about students of color. Candidates ultimately expressed dismay at the pervasiveness of racist thinking in schooling. Hyland (2010) finds that teacher candidates’ learning was the result of sadness, shame, and anger elicited through both in-class and outside-of-class conversations. In their study, candidates of color and white candidates discussed issues related to racism within and outside of class time, and this seemed to support the white candidates’ changes in perspectives on racism in education. One study (Diem et al., 2019) finds that the emotions that came through in-person dialogue shaped some candidates’ perspectives and beliefs; however, this learning was not universal in that several principal candidates remained resistant to the conversations and unable to shift their views.


Emotions as a Constraint to Learning


Emotions, however, are more commonly found to be a barrier to transformative learning about race (Amos, 2010; Case & Hemmings, 2005; Galman et al., 2010; Groff & Peters, 2012; Matias & Grosland, 2016; Matias et al., 2014; Picower, 2009; Swartz, 2003). Matias and Grosland (2016) suggest that race is such an emotionally fraught topic, particularly for faculty of color to discuss with white teacher candidates, that candidates often need opportunities to “help them emotionally break down Whiteness” (p. 153) prior to engaging in other kinds of learning around race.


Several studies describe fear as a dominant emotion that prevents candidate learning about racial equity. Three articles (Groff & Peters, 2012; Picower, 2009; Swartz, 2003) describe candidates fearing situations involving people of color, making assumptions about students from particular neighborhoods and schools based on racial stereotypes communicated through the media (Swartz, 2003) and through candidates’ families (Groff & Peters, 2012; Picower, 2009; Swartz, 2003). This notion of “difference as dangerous” (Picower, 2009, p. 203) is a prevalent finding throughout these studies. Swartz’s (2003) study concludes, and Groff and Peters (2012) echo, that those who express the most fear change the least in their perspectives on racism in schooling.


Fear is also an emotion that emerges in situations where both white candidates and candidates of color learn together about race in schooling. White candidates in Case and Hemmings’s (2005) study, for instance, describe their hesitancy to discuss race in class for fear of being wrong or inciting anger from their peers of color. Amos (2010), conversely, explores experiences of candidates of color within a multicultural education course. These candidates were similarly fearful of participating in class discussions, feared their voices would be overpowered by the white candidates in the room, feared they would be treated poorly by their peers for agreeing with the “minority” instructor, and feared ostracism in future courses resulting from speaking up in class. In both studies, candidates’ silence and hesitancy are reported as hindering transformative learning.


Preparation faculty also report that fear served as a barrier to setting up transformative learning experiences for candidates. Galman et al. (2010), for example, describe their insufficient push back against racist conversations in their courses because they privileged the comfort of white teacher candidates. This showed up in course evaluations from candidates of color who expressed concern about the implication for students of color when racism is not addressed in courses. The researchers conclude that by creating this comfortable space for their white candidates, transformative learning about race was hindered.


Other emotions, such as guilt and anger, are also described as barriers to learning about racial inequity in schooling. Several researchers assert that guilt stemming from white privilege led to resistance to learning about race in schooling (Hines, 2016; Picower, 2009; Matias et al., 2014). In Matias et al.’s (2014) study, for example, white teacher candidates are described as angry and resentful when reminded throughout the course that they need to understand race to be effective in the classroom, with one student stating they were sick of being told “over and over” about the importance of race in education.


Summary


As with the findings on transformative learning from clinical experiences, the literature reveals that emotions can be both catalyst and barrier to transformational learning. Overall, this literature argues that emotions are a hurdle to transformative learning, particularly when white candidates, candidates of color, and faculty of color are in dialogue together around racial inequity. Strong facilitation and support by faculty is a necessity to support candidates in moving from emotional response to transformative learning.


CONCEPTUALIZING RACE AND TRANSFORMATIVE LEARNING


We now consider how the different conceptualizations of race as difference, power, or racism inform the research on teacher and principal preparation. Although the patterns we identify did not hold entirely across the board, they are very clear: overall, studies that conceptualize race-as-difference are more likely to report positive findings around transformative learning within teacher and principal preparation. Conversely, those that conceptualize race-as-power and race-as-racism are more likely to report mixed or negative findings. That is, the research shows that it is easier to shift beliefs or knowledge about cultural difference between different racial groups than to understand schools as racialized institutions and develop skills to create systemic change.


Studies that conceptualize race-as-difference found the most positive outcomes for white candidates, but all studies that look at candidates’ race identified specific areas of concern—disinterest in a racially diverse site placement (race-as-difference), inability to move beyond discomfort (race-as-power), or advancing white supremacy (race-as-racism). For candidates of color, although articles reported some transformative learning in terms of increased knowledge, self-reflection, and critical consciousness, many ended their courses and programs silenced.


Race-as-Difference


The 32 articles that conceptualize race-as-difference (25 on teacher preparation and 7 on principal preparation) position teacher and principal preparation as sites for transformative learning. These researchers generally find that preparation leads to white candidates becoming aware of the languages, cultures, histories, and beliefs of students and families with different backgrounds (e.g., Bell et al., 2007; Cicchelli & Cho; Mensah, 2009; Ukpokodu, 2004). They also report that clinical experiences do a good job of expanding candidates’ knowledge of cultural diversity and beliefs about students different from them (e.g., Akiba, 2011; Barnes, 2006). In particular, service learning experiences are described as increasing candidates’ commitments to work in culturally diverse settings or with culturally diverse students, and may give them positive opportunities to practice what they are learning (e.g., Athanases & Martin, 2006; Chang et al., 2011; Kumar & Hamer, 2013). When faculty have explicit commitments to cultural diversity throughout a preparation program, instead of within one course, research considered these gains to be especially promising (Akiba, 2011; Kumar & Hamer, 2013; Ukpokodu, 2004). Only two of the 20 studies (Brand & Glasson, 2004; Lee & Hemer-Patnode, 2010) that looked at clinical experiences from a race-as-difference conceptualization reported an overall lack of transformative learning.


Race-as-Power


Transformation, from this conceptualization, involves candidates seeing how schools and classrooms are structured in ways that perpetuate privilege—privileges that many candidates may themselves have and may be reluctant to acknowledge—and to also act on that knowledge. The 20 articles (11 on teacher preparation and 10 on principal preparation) conceptualizing race-as-power yield more mixed findings than those examining race-as-difference. Several of the articles report positive findings related to transformation, with both candidates of color and white candidates generally transforming their awareness, understanding, ability, orientation, and/or commitments to addressing issues of power (e.g., Allen et al., 2017; Boske, 2012; Guerra et al., 2013; Sperandio & LaPier, 2009).  


However, this transformative learning from a race-as-power perspective did not emerge uniformly within and across all studies (e.g., Boske, 2015; Brown, 2006; Farnsworth, 2010; Hernandez & Marshall, 2009, 2017; Hyland, 2010; Kemp-Graham, 2015; Rivera Maulucci, 2013; Weisman & Hansen, 2008). For example, the research examining emotions from a race-as-power standpoint suggests that emotions served as self-reflective catalysts for some participants, while creating an awareness barrier for others (Boske, 2015; Brown, 2006; Hernandez & Marshall, 2009, 2017; Martinez, 2015; Rivera Maulucci, 2013). White participants in one study showed positive changes in mindset, but overall were unwilling to move past discomfort and resistance (Martinez, 2015). Likewise, Farnsworth (2010) reports that although candidates increased their level of reflection on their own identity, they were not able to apply how understanding their own identify informed social justice teaching or leadership. Also reporting mixed results, Hyland (2010) found that white candidates expressed increased understandings of racial justice and power whereas candidates of color and some white candidates expressed a lack of empathy and understanding around lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender issues. In contrast, two distinct studies with majority participants of color showed that transformative learning and awareness occurred through self-reflection on candidates’ identities and roles (Boske, 2015; Brown, 2006).


Race-as-Racism


For the majority of the articles that conceptualize race-as-racism (19 from teacher preparation and 8 from principal preparation), candidates’ racialized backgrounds are central to how data were analyzed and how findings were presented. Overall, those focusing on white candidates found that whiteness and a lack of critical self-reflection decreased the likelihood of transformative learning (Amos, 2010; Boske, 2010; Case & Hemmings, 2005; Galman et al., 2010; Groff & Peters, 2012; Hill-Jackson, 2007; Hines, 2016; Kohli, 2009; Marx, 2004; Matias et al., 2014; Peters et al., 2016; Picower, 2009; Seidl & Friend, 2002). Four of these studies further note that candidates’ whiteness prevented transformative learning because candidates often retreated into silence, reinforced white supremacy, demonstrated a lack of critical consciousness, and/or denied their own racist beliefs and practices (Case & Hemmings, 2005; Galman et al., 2010, Hill-Jackson, 2007; Marx, 2004). In contrast, studies that focused on the experiences of candidates of color from a race-as-racism vantage report the deleterious effects of (re)confronting the permanence of racism in schools and society (Amos, 2010; Boske, 2010; Kohli, 2009).


Although several studies that considered clinical experiences in terms of race-as-racism found that candidates developed an awareness of white privilege and the salience of race (Bloom et al., 2015; Gooden et al., 2018; Hines, 2014; Jacobs et al., 2013; Picower, 2013; Seidl & Friend, 2002), others with purposeful samples of white candidates (Groff & Peters, 2012; Peters et al., 2016) found the opposite. For candidates of color, clinical experiences reinforced the permanence of racism (Kohli, 2009), whereas white candidates put up emotional barriers that prevented learning (Marx, 2004).


Articles that conceptualize race-as-racism also consistently found that emotions are a block to learning. Silence, tears, and emotional disengagement, a result of fear, anger, and/or defensiveness, were common occurrences (Amos, 2010; Case & Hemmings, 2005; Diem & Carpenter, 2013; Galman et al., 2010; Hill-Jackson, 2007; Hyland, 2010; Matias, 2014; Picower, 2009). Even with reported gains in knowledge, many candidates’ deficit thinking, color-neutral approaches, and denial of white privilege persisted (Amos, 2010; Case & Hemmings, 2005; Groff & Peters, 2012; Hill-Jackson, 2007; Hines, 2016; Marx, 2004; Matias et al., 2014; Peters et al., 2016; Picower, 2009). Only two articles did not identify emotions as a barrier within this conceptualization (Durham-Barnes, 2015; Picower, 2013).


DIFFERING ROLES, DIFFERING CONCEPTUALIZATIONS?


Almost half of the studies from teacher preparation conceptualized race-as-difference, whereas half from principal preparation conceptualized race-as-racism, a key difference between the two bodies of literature in this review (see Appendix A). This is critical to note because if teachers and principals work together, but think about race in different ways, it may be difficult to create the school culture and climate needed for racial justice. This is a significant finding for institutions of higher education, because it is teacher and principal preparation faculty whose perspectives are paramount in determining preparation curricula.


On the one hand, teachers and principals will do different things in their professional practice, which may be an explanation for this difference in conceptualization. Teachers, for example, focus specifically on the students in their class, and much of the literature looks at how preparation programs can support candidates in seeing each student as a racialized, cultured individual. In contrast, principals focus on the school at large, looking at patterns between and among classes and organizing whole-school professional development and strategic planning—and much of the literature looks at how their programs prepare them through practices such as equity audits and data analysis skills to lead these tasks. Both principals and teachers have different spheres of influence, different responsibilities, and different expectations in schools.


On the other hand, both teachers and principals need to understand how their biases influence their practice and how racism and white supremacy influence students’ individual and collective experiences, and they need a shared sense of urgency and understanding of the problems in order to create schools that can advance racial equity. That will look different in different school contexts, and it will look different from different stakeholder perspectives, but without a shared understanding, it seems unlikely that progress will be made.


It is possible that the differences in this review are a result of many factors, not limited to what is actually occurring in preparation. For example, scholars might use race-as-difference conceptualizations because it is easier to show success; for scholars studying their own institutions or programs, it may be too risky to be critical. Those who do venture into the race-as-racism space, faculty of color especially, often pay a heavy price in terms of backlash, poor student evaluations, tenure challenges, and other reprisals (Amos, 2010; Gutiérrez y Muhs et al., 2012; Museus et al., 2015; Turner et al., 1999; Yancy, 2018a, 2018b). The need to publish is great during the untenured years particularly, and the political climate of the institution may drive the risks individuals are willing to take in rendering their work more neutral.


At the same time, race-as-racism suggests that the conceptualization of race-as-difference is the result of the dominant presence of whiteness in a predominantly middle-class professoriate (White & Murray, 2016) that challenges faculty’s ability to address racial inequity in effective ways. Some scholars attribute this to the racial, cultural, socioeconomic, and epistemological backgrounds of faculty (Chou, 2010; Galman et al., 2010; Goodwin & Chen, 2016; Rios et al., 2007). As a result, topics of race, and especially racism and racial inequity, appear to remain on the sidelines of faculty’s inquiry into their own practice. Many of the courses and programs that were studied did not seem designed “to have their teacher [or leader] candidates—who are predominantly White—feel the burden of race in a way that is self-reflective and conducive to change” (Matias & Grosland, 2016, p. 154). Instead, most focused on unearthing candidates’ incoming understandings of cultural differences considering the demographic imperative resulting in “the mismatch between the increasingly diverse student body and homogenous teaching force” (Yang & Montgomery, 2011, p. 1). There is also evidence that higher education faculty themselves display little understanding or knowledge of issues of race (Goodwin & Chen, 2016; Goodwin et al., 2014; Merryfield, 2000). As a result, talking about race undoubtedly involves “uncomfortable conversations” (Matias & Grosland, 2016, p. 152). Unsurprisingly then, those who teach preservice candidates may feel more comfortable approaching race-as-difference as a broad and more benign concept.


We acknowledge any and all of these reasons are possible, and even with this, we continue to suggest a need for teacher and principal preparation faculty to have shared understandings of race, because their candidates will continue to work together in schools engaging in these challenging conversations. The lack of shared understandings within and across both preparation literatures highlights the lack of coherence between the two stakeholder groups whose work is most likely to impact the daily experiences of K–12 students. The discrepancies in definitions and conceptualizations suggest the need for these two disciplines to combine forces.


These three conceptualizations of race showcase different facets of the work designed to advance racial equity. These conceptualizations draw attention to dissimilar, and sometimes overlapping, facets of race, demonstrating how both pedagogy and systemic-level commitment to action are needed to advance antiracist K–12 preparation and practice. Yet, the different and overlapping conceptualizations of race patently underscore the complexity and challenge of directly addressing racism and racist practices that have not only been part of the very founding of the United States, but also continue to be the invisible yet indelible nucleus of schooling as a social institution. We chose to focus our literature review on race precisely because it is the root of oppression and inequity in the United States; all conversations about perpetuating or dismantling systemic inequity must confront racism and race. Race is one of the most difficult facets of “diversity” or “cultural difference” to address, because of what we have seen in the literature—the associated emotionality (guilt, fear, resistance, shame), the reluctance to “share in the burden of race” (Matias & Grosland, 2016, p. 153), the normalization of whiteness as the standard or starting point, and the relegation of race as merely one of multiple identity markers. Race-as-difference, especially, may be a starting point, but if we stay here, teacher and principal educators ignore the salience and impact of race in K–12 institutions that developed from racist ideologies and undergird K–12 systems.


DISCUSSION


There is the one area of agreement in every study: across the literature in both teacher and principal preparation, we find an overwhelming sense of optimism within discussion and implication sections despite a mixed set of findings overall. Even when negative findings are presented, researchers conclude that transformative learning is possible within current preparation systems. All discussion and implication sections offer suggestions about ways to improve current systems, including attention to specific practices such as racial autobiographies with critical self-reflection, attention to program-wide approaches, and attention to faculty preparation to engage in this type of work. Kohli’s (2009) examination of the reflections of female candidates of color exemplifies this pattern of negative findings with optimistic conclusions. Kohli finds that “racial hierarchies were perpetuated within their own social justice teacher preparation program” (p. 248). Despite these findings, the researcher suggests that “with prompts that encouraged personal reflection, the women in this study shared, healed and gained multicultural perspectives” (p. 259). Beyond this positive effect on these participants, Kohli concludes that teacher preparation can be effective by acknowledging “changing demographics” and having students write “critical race reflections” (p. 249).


Likewise, Hines (2016) also reports negative findings about white principal candidates’ transformative learning. Even as candidates acknowledge that white privilege exists, Hines finds that “white fragility was embedded in preservice principals’ responses...the triggers of individualism, meritocracy, and innocence were also embedded in the responses” (p. 139). Despite white candidates’ inability to apply concepts of white privilege to their clinical experiences, Hines concludes that candidates should “engage in conscious reflections on race” so they “develop a sociocultural consciousness” (p. 143). In so doing, “the white, pre-service principals of this study could use this skill set to engage teachers in authentic discussions about race and privilege…then resolve some of the race-based inequalities…built into schools and classrooms” (p. 144). In other words, more attention to white fragility and white privilege in coursework could lead to the desired antiracist outcomes, despite evidence from their own studies that preparation programs provided safe spaces for white fragility and white privilege.


This overwhelming sense of optimism prevails across studies, methodologies, epistemologies, and disciplines, with researchers believing in preparation as a site of transformative learning. With one more class, a different set of readings, more reflective prompts, or critical self-reflection criteria, these studies suggest candidates can develop the skills, knowledge, and dispositions needed to teach and lead for racial equity. Across the multiple understandings of race within and across the teacher and principal preparation literature, the shared possibility offers a foundation for conversation and collaboration.


It is unsurprising many of the reviewed studies conclude with optimism. First, given that most preparation programs across the United States are silent about race and racism (Milner et al., 2013; Sleeter, 2017; Tillman, 2004; Young & Laible, 2000), those that are not silent demonstrate a level of advocacy that can be seen as an act of social justice. Second, well-intentioned teacher and principal educators who take this step towards justice enact their commitment to change as germane to their engagement in this difficult work. Still, this review offers some broader insights framed by sociopolitical and historical realities that may be helpful to preparation programs.


We recommend locating this within a longer timeframe and trajectory and bringing this context to the consciously knowing surface, racial injustice as de jure versus de facto (Rothstein, 2014).


IMPLICATIONS


Several implications for the preparation of principals and teachers emerge from this review. First, preparation programs must educate teachers and principals about race-as-racism. This includes racism as government policy, and its deliberate and devastating design to advance whites and stifle people of color, particularly African Americans. Residential segregation is one clear example: “Too quickly forgetting twentieth century history, we’ve persuaded ourselves that the residential isolation of low-income black children is only de facto, the accident of economic circumstance, personal preference, and private discrimination” (Rothstein, 2014, p. 1). But far from being accidental, or a matter of social evolution over time, residential isolation has “result[ed] from racially-motivated public policy” (Rothstein, 2014, p. 2), which has been “so systematic and forceful that its effects endure to the present time” (Rothstein, 2017, pp. xiv, viii). Furthermore, these federal- and state-sanctioned policies have manufactured and maintained the income gap between whites and non-whites and ensured the resegregation and educational isolation of Black and Brown children (Browne-Marshall, 2019; U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 2018; U.S. Government Accountability Office, 2016), which has translated into lower quality schools, opportunity gaps, and negative life outcomes (Carter & Darling-Hammond, 2016; Johnson & Nazaryan, 2019). In addition, the intersection of race and other sociocultural factors has resulted in “double segregation” for children of color who are also, for instance, poor (Noguera, 2019) and therefore doubly jeopardized. By understanding, for example, the “racially explicit government policies to segregate our metropolitan areas” (Rothstein, 2017, p. xiv), the systemic nature of racism can be understood as deeply historical, firmly embedded, explicitly contrived, and self-perpetuating. In essence, the examination of racism needs to begin at the beginning, to study the chain of events over time in order to challenge “the colorblind public consensus that prevails in American today…has blinded us to the realities of race in our society and facilitated the emergence of a new caste system” (Alexander, 2012, pp. 11–12).


This brings us to our second recommendation, that the comprehensive examination of racism in America should enable teacher and principal candidates to come to understand racial segregation as “the primary vehicle for racialized social control in the United States” (Alexander, 2012, p. 11). Our review reveals most white candidates enter preparation programs with few experiences with, or little knowledge of, people different from themselves. Many preparation programs try to address this by exposing their students to different racial and cultural groups through clinical experiences, engaging them in reflecting on their identities, interrogating their beliefs and biases, and analyzing racism as systemic and institutional. However, our review also indicated these activities were framed narrowly through the lens of students’ individual histories such that students were not guided to situate themselves within systems of oppression that have resulted in their own racial isolation and consequently their lack of racialized experiences.


Third, it is imperative that teacher and principal preparation faculties work together across courses and experiences. In our review, we see that both teacher and principal preparation faculty seem to share similar goals and activities to engage candidates in a process of (re)examining their “cultural scripts” (Faltis & Valdés, 2016). We also acknowledge the legitimacy of this emphasis given the numerous mentor scholars (e.g., Feiman-Nemser, 2012; Gay, 2018) who call for preparation programs to address beliefs, and the robust body of literature discussed earlier that illuminates the connection between educators’ beliefs and their perceptions of and actions towards minoritized students. However, our review reveals that the narrative surrounding programs’ focus on candidates’ investigating “popular problematic narratives” (Faltis & Valdés, 2016, p. 570) about racialized learners was repeated across many studies, particularly the narrative of transformation. We are struck by the positive transformative power assigned by preparation faculty to brief and isolated experiences. Not only were experiences usually contained within individual courses, but we also find that programs were siloed and separate. Consequently, research narratives typically were about single courses or programs that did not appear to progress to action; they remained at levels of exploration or reflection with each story of learning about race being presumably reset anew at the beginning of each offering of a course or cohort experience.


Our conclusion is supported by other researchers who indicate candidate preparation for racial justice remains at the level of reflection and recommendation and falls short of actual practice (Cochran-Smith et al., 2016; Mills & Ballantyne, 2014; Sleeter, 2017). Clearly, if the preparation of teacher and principal candidates for racial justice does not progress beyond initial exploration, research on the impact of this preparation is similarly overstated. Teaching about race is complex, controversial, challenging, and benefits from collective, creative, and courageous thinking in continuous practice. We must advance the course narrative beyond the “baseline knowledge and understandings prospective [candidates] bring with them” (Jimenez & Rose, 2010, p. 404); this can only happen if faculty work together to develop a curriculum continuum that progresses in depth and substance, and there is “more collaboration among teacher (principal) education researchers and scholars to link program-level studies” (Faltis & Valdés, 2016, p. 580).


The final implication of this review is connected to the third, but focuses directly on preparation faculty, most of whom are white (Cross, 2005; Haddix, 2016; Ladson-Billings, 2005; Sleeter, 2017). Similar to their preservice students, their experience with or understanding of people racially and culturally different from themselves is limited because they, too, have been raised within a schooling system founded on racism and legally designed to advantage white people. The consequence of “the cultural homogeneity of the teacher education faculty” (Ladson-Billings, 2005, p. 230) is that the “curricular content of teacher education programs tends to reflect White sensibilities” (Sleeter, 2017, p. 158) and that “race is grossly under-theorized in teacher education” (Milner et al., 2013, p. 339). Similar patterns hold for principal preparation. Thus, although “the language of the programs includes social justice and multiculturalism and diversity…the ideology, values and practices are assuredly reinscribing white privilege, power, and racism” (Cross, 2005, p. 266).


There is growing literature on the need for those who educate educators to receive preparation for this role (Cochran-Smith et al., 2020; Goodwin et al., 2014; Selke et al., 2020; White et al., 2020), as well as evidence that preparation faculty lack readiness for their responsibility to prepare candidates for racially just practice (Cross, 2005; Goodwin & Chen, 2016; Goodwin & Darity, 2019; Goodwin et al., 2014; Milner et al., 2013; Sleeter, 2017). It seems that preparation faculty themselves are developing their own racialized identities alongside their students. Moreover, the different conceptualizations of race held by preparation faculty highlight the lack of consensus among faculty of what it means to do racial justice teaching, and that the same activity undergirded by different levels of understanding leads to different outcomes. We see that most faculty steer clear of critical whiteness and racism but focus instead on “how White teacher educators (they) and students can explore others as cultural exotics, the racial other, or the object of study for their academic or professional benefit” (Cross, 2005, p, 265). And, despite much rhetoric about the shortage of candidates of color and efforts to recruit them in larger numbers, the isolation and invisibility of candidates of color in preparation remains a concern because “very little of their experiences and prior knowledge are currently built upon within teacher training...the focus and design of teacher training is for White teacher candidates” (Kohli & Pizzaro, 2016, p. 73; cf. Brown, 2014; Haddix, 2016). This means that white preparation faculty seem mostly to be speaking to students who look like them, using “soft approaches to multiculturalism” (Cross, 2005, p. 266), while side-stepping hard discussions of race, racism, white supremacy, structural inequality, and power. Essentially, faculty in preparation programs are preparing candidates for classrooms they themselves may not have experienced (Chou, 2010; Haddix, 2016; Ladson-Billings, 2005). Ultimately, preparation faculty cannot teach what they do not know and cannot consciously see.


CONCLUDING THOUGHTS


Both fields need to come together to address these persistent problems in addressing race in educator preparation. Racism is a powerful force, and minoritized students continue to be harmed, underserved and miseducated by K–12 schools. Teachers and principals are the individuals who have direct contact with students and shape their everyday schooling experiences. Preparation programs cannot solve the problems of racial inequity embedded within U.S. society. However, given our own overwhelming optimism in the face of complexity and these mixed findings, programs can be a place of potential where future teachers and principals can begin the journey to develop beliefs and practices that advance racial equity.


Notes


1.

Some scholars who write from a multicultural education perspective note a range of enactments of multiculturalism. Grant and Sleeter (2008), for example, identified five approaches for addressing human diversity, ranging from “teaching the exceptional and culturally different” to “social reconstructionist.” When we categorized studies, we drew on these understandings of multiculturalism and looked to see how the scholars operationalized the term. When the focus was more on understanding different cultures, we coded it as race-as-difference. When the focus was on power and social change, we coded it as race-as-power.


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APPENDIX


Characteristics of Literature Reviewed


Authors

TP or PP1

Focus of Study

Topics Addressed

Participants

COR:

D, P, or R2

Conclusions About Occurrences of Transformative Learning

Clinical

Racialized Experiences

Faculty

Emotions

Overall Optimistic

Akiba, M. (2011). Identifying program characteristics for preparing pre-service teachers for diversity. Teachers College Record, 113(3), 658–697.

TP

Diversity course with service learning component (over 30 potential placements)

X

 

X

 

X

243 candidates, 95% white and 5% ethnic minorities

D

Increased positive beliefs about diversity

Allen, J. G., Harper, R. E., & Koschoreck, J. W. (2017). Social justice and school leadership preparation: Can we shift beliefs, values, and commitments? International Journal of Educational Leadership Preparation, 12(1), n1.

PP

Course focused on social justice

    

X

112 candidates (no demographics provided)

P

Increased positive shifts in dispositions related to leadership for social justice

Amatea, E. S., Cholewa, B., & Mixon, K. A. (2012). Influencing preservice teachers’ attitudes about working with low-income and/or ethnic minority families. Urban Education, 47(4), 801–834.

TP

Course on family involvement with embedded field experiences

X

   

X

138 candidates, 105 white, 10 Black, 8 Asian/Pacific Islander, 12 Latino, 1 biracial

D

Decreased stereotyping and deficit views, and increased confidence in family-centric practices

Amos, Y. T. (2010). “They don't want to get it!”: Interaction between minority and white pre-service teachers in a multicultural education class. Multicultural Education, 17(4), 31–37.

TP

Multicultural education course

 

X

X

X

X

4 candidates, 1 Native American, 1 Korean, 1 Mexican American, and 1 bi-ethnic

R

Whiteness prevented transformative learning for white candidates, who effectively silenced candidates of color

Athanases, S. Z., & Martin, K. J. (2006). Learning to advocate for educational equity in a teacher credential program. Teaching and Teacher Education22(6), 627–646.

TP

Entire program

X

  

X

X

38 program graduates, about two thirds white and one third teachers of color

D

Increased knowledge of language acquisition and commitment to advocate for emergent bilingual students

Baldwin, S. C., Buchanan, A. M., & Rudisill, M. E. (2007). What teacher candidates learned about diversity, social justice, and themselves from service-learning experiences. Journal of Teacher Education58(4), 315–327.

TP

Service learning (either tutoring or mentoring)

X

X

  

X

41 candidates, 38 white, 2 African American, 1 Latina

D

Increased interest in teaching in racially diverse schools and with students of color

Barakat, M., Reames, E., & Kensler, L. A. (2012). Preparing culturally competent instructional leaders. In C. Gerstl-Pepil & J. A. Aiken (Eds.), Social justice leadership for a global world (pp. 241–260). Information Age.

PP

Entire program

X

   

X

14 program graduates, race unstated

D

Increased knowledge of culturally relevant strategies and knowledge of cultural differences, but no change in motivation to work with students from different cultures and no change in behavior related to cross-cultural interactions

Barakat, M., Reames, E., & Kensler, L. A. (2019). Leadership preparation programs: Preparing culturally competent educational leaders. Journal of Research on Leadership Education, 14(3), 212–235.

PP

16 programs

X

   

X

251 candidates, 176 white, 36 African American, 10 Hispanic

D

Increased cultural competence, but no change in terms of cultural skills

Barnes, C. J. (2006). Preparing preservice teachers to teach in a culturally responsive way. Negro Educational Review57(1–2), 85–100.

TP

Reading methods class and structured field experience teaching reading to two students

X

   

X

24 candidates, 5 racial minority group members, 7 international students

D

Increased reflection, knowledge of culturally responsive teaching, cultural competence, and teaching behaviors

Bell, C. A., Horn, B. R., & Roxas, K. C. (2007). We know it’s service, but what are they learning? Preservice teachers’ understandings of diversity. Equity & Excellence in Education40(2), 123–133.

TP

Diversity course with required service learning component (either tutoring or mentoring)

X

 

X

 

X

48 candidates, predominately white

D

Increased candidates’ understandings of diversity, but reinforced stereotypes; no evidence of understandings of systemic inequities

Bloom, D. S., Peters, T., Margolin, M., & Fragnoli, K. (2015). Are my students like me? The path to color-blindness and white racial identity development. Education and Urban Society47(5), 555–575.

TP

Student teaching (either majority white or majority minority placement)

X

X

  

X

133 candidates, all white

R

Increased awareness of white privilege and perceptions of working with students of color

Boske, C. A. (2010). “I wonder if they had ever seen a Black man before?” Grappling with issues of race and racism in our own backyard. Journal of Research on Leadership Education5(7), 248–275.

PP

Entire program

 

X

X

 

X

12 candidates, 7 Black, 2 Latina, 1 multiracial, 2 white

R

Confirmed worst fears of candidates of color

Boske, C. (2012). Standing still is no longer an option: Understanding how to prepare school leaders to interrupt oppressive practices. In C. Boske & S. Diem (Eds.), Global leadership for social justice: Taking it from the field to practice (pp. 159–172). Emerald Group.

PP

Course on leading for social justice with various site-based assignments

X

 

X

 

X

72 candidates, 53 white, 7 Black, 6 Asian, 6 Middle Eastern

P

Increased critical consciousness, self-transformation, and action

Boske, C. (2015). Preparing school leaders to interrupt racism at various levels in educational systems. International Journal of Multicultural Education, 17(1), 121–142.

PP

Course on leading for social justice with various site-based assignments

 

X

X

X

X

98 candidates, 22 Black, 8 Latinx, 10 Middle Eastern, 1 Eastern Indian, 5 Asian, 1 biracial, 51 white

P

Shifted candidates’ self-positioning from “savior” to “oppressor” to “change agent”

Brand, B. R., & Glasson, G. E. (2004). Crossing cultural borders into science teaching: Early life experiences, racial and ethnic identities, and beliefs about diversity. Journal of Research in Science Teaching: The Official Journal of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching, 41(2), 119–141.

TP

Entire program

X

X

  

X

3 candidates, 1 Asian, 1 African American, and 1 white

D

Minimal influence of program on candidates’ prior beliefs about diversity and teaching

Brown, K. M. (2006). Leadership for social justice and equity: Evaluating a transformative framework and andragogy. Educational Administration Quarterly42(5), 700–745.

PP

Course with alternative, transformative andragogy

 

X

 

X

X

40 candidates, 17 white, 20 Black, 1 Asian, 2 “other”

P

Increased awareness, acknowledgement of inequities, and commitment to social justice practice

Carpenter, B. W., & Diem, S. (2013). Talking race: Facilitating critical conversations in educational leadership preparation programs. Journal of School Leadership23(6), 902–931.

PP

Faculty reflecting on critical conversations in their classrooms

  

X

X

X

6 faculty members, 4 white, 2 African American

R

Faculty are willing to engage in critical conversations with candidates that can prepare them to lead diverse communities

Case, K. A., & Hemmings, A. (2005). Distancing strategies: White women preservice teachers and antiracist curriculum. Urban Education40(6), 606–626.

TP

Antiracist teacher education course

 

X

 

X

X

53 candidates, 48 white, 5 Black

R

White candidates retreated into silence in discussing race

Chang, S. P., Anagnostopoulos, D., & Omae, H. (2011). The multidimensionality of multicultural service learning: The variable effects of social identity, context and pedagogy on pre-service teachers’ learning. Teaching and Teacher Education27(7), 1078–1089.

TP

Multicultural education course with service learning component (over 20 potential placements)

X

X

X

 

X

212 candidates, 187 white, 4 Black, 5 Asian, 1 Hispanic/Latino American, 15 biracial or multiracial

D

Increased awareness of cultural bias, understanding of social inequality, and commitment to teaching students of color, with specific differences resulting from a range of variables, including candidate race and gender and placement site

Cho, G., & DeCastro-Ambrosetti, D. (2005). Is ignorance bliss? Pre-service teachers’ attitudes toward multicultural education. The High School Journal89(2), 24–28.

TP

Multicultural education

course

 

X

  

X

18 candidates, race unstated but implied predominately white

D

Increased awareness and appreciation of other cultures, but candidates reported limited self-efficacy in teaching students of color; deficit thinking unchanged

Cicchelli, T., & Cho, S. J. (2007). Teacher multicultural attitudes: Intern/teaching fellows in New York City. Education and Urban Society39(3), 370–381.

TP

Entire program

X

X

  

X

61 candidates, 41 white, 20 culturally diverse

D

Increased knowledge of and attitude toward multiculturalism, with different challenges for white candidates and candidates of color

Cross, B. E. (2003). Learning or unlearning racism: Transferring teacher education curriculum to classroom practices. Theory into Practice42(3), 203–209.

TP

Entire program

X

   

X

12 graduates, 11 white, 1 Asian

D

Graduates exhibited superficial understandings of teaching for diversity

Diem, S., & Carpenter, B. W. (2013). Examining race-related silences: Interrogating the education of tomorrow’s educational leaders. Journal of Research on Leadership Education8(1), 56–76.

PP

Entire program

 

X

 

X

X

4 candidates, 2 white, 2 Latinx

D

Increased ability to recognize racism and see oneself as a raced being

Diem, S., Carpenter, B. W., & Lewis-Durham, T. (2019). Preparing antiracist school leaders in a school choice context. Urban Education, 54(5), 706–731.

PP

Entire program

   

X

X

16 candidates, 8 white, 3 multiracial, 5 Black

R

Increased embracing of antiracist orientation, but candidates suggested their peers did not have similar growth

Durden, T., Dooley, C. M., & Truscott, D. (2016). Race still matters: Preparing culturally relevant teachers. Race Ethnicity and Education19(5), 1003–1024.

TP

Entire program

 

X

 

X

X

2 Black candidates

R

Increased knowledge of culturally responsive pedagogy, dependent on candidates’ prior experiences and backgrounds

Durham-Barnes, J. E. (2015). Engaging preservice teachers in critical dialogues on race. SAGE Open, 5(1), 2158244015572505.

TP

Viewing a documentary, The Color of Fear, in a course on diversity and racism in educating

 

X

 

X

X

21 candidates, 3 Black and 18 white

R

Slightly increased belief that race was important/very important topic; positive discussions were connected to racially diverse viewing groups; existence of shame and lack of cultural awareness by white candidates

Enterline, S., Cochran-Smith, M., Ludlow, L. H., & Mitescu, E. (2008). Learning to teach for social justice: Measuring change in the beliefs of teacher candidates. The New Educator4(4), 267–290.

TP

Entire program

    

X

500 (estimate) candidates and graduates, race unstated

P

More complex social justice beliefs related to structural and societal inequities

Farnsworth, V. (2010). Conceptualizing identity, learning and social justice in community-based learning. Teaching and Teacher Education26(7), 1481–1489.

TP

Field seminar with community-based learning components (some assigned and some self-directed)

X

   

X

4 white candidates

P

Increased engagement with one’s own identity, but identity work did not automatically inform candidates’ teaching or social justice practices

Figueiredo-Brown, R., Ringler, M. C., & James, M. (2015). Strengthening a principal preparation internship by focusing on diversity issues. International Journal of Educational Leadership Preparation, 10(2), 36–52.

PP

Internship and monthly internship seminars

X

   

X

58 candidates (no demographics provided)

D

Increased acceptance of diversity; increased awareness of dimensions of diversity; increased knowledge of strategies to help students “embrace their own diversity”

Galman, S., Pica-Smith, C., & Rosenberger, C. (2010). Aggressive and tender navigations: Teacher educators confront whiteness in their practice. Journal of Teacher Education, 61(3), 225–236.

TP

Faculty reflecting on antiracist pedagogy

 

X

X

X

X

3 white faculty, 5 candidates of color, 4 graduates of color

R

Faculty engaged in practices that perpetuated and reinforced white supremacy

Garmon, M. A. (2004). Changing preservice teachers’ attitudes/beliefs about diversity: What are the critical factors? Journal of Teacher Education55(3), 201–213.

TP

Entire program

 

X

 

X

X

1 white candidate

D

Increased knowledge of social justice in education, reliant on prior experiences and dispositions

Genao, S. (2016). Culturally responsive pedagogy: Reflections on mentoring by educational leadership candidates. Issues in Educational Research26(3), 431.

PP

Field experience mentoring teacher candidates

X

X

X

 

X

6 candidates of color

D

Increased knowledge of culturally responsive pedagogy

Gooden, M. A., Davis, B. W., Spikes, D. D., Hall, D. L., & Lee, L. (2018). Leaders changing how they act by changing how they think: Applying principles of an anti-racist principal preparation program. Teachers College Record120(14), 1–26.

PP

Entire program

X

   

X

8 candidates, 5 white, 3 Latinx

R

Increased understanding of salience of race, positive race-related beliefs, and commitment to antiracist action

Gooden, M. A., & O’Doherty, A. (2015). Do you see what I see? Fostering aspiring leaders’ racial awareness. Urban Education50(2), 225–255.

PP

Entire program

 

X

 

X

X

12 candidates, 8 white, 2 biracial, 2 Black

R

Increased awareness and recognition of race, privilege, and power, with different pathways for white candidates and candidates of color

Groff, C. A., & Peters, T. (2012). “I don’t see color”: The impact of field placements on preservice teachers’ white racial identity development. Journal of Educational and Developmental Psychology2(2), 1.

TP

Field experiences connected to a methods course (either majority white or majority minority placement)

X

X

 

X

X

92 white candidates

R

Limited awareness of racial issues (for candidates in majority white settings) and increased white guilt and distancing of self from students (for candidates in majority minority settings)

Groulx, J. G. (2001). Changing preservice teacher perceptions of minority schools. Urban Education, 36(1), 60–92.

TP

Field experiences related to certification area (varying student demographics and length of time)

X

X

  

X

29 white candidates

D

Increased interest in teaching students of color

Guerra, P. L., Nelson, S. W., Jacobs, J., & Yamamura, E. (2013). Developing educational leaders for social justice: Programmatic elements that work or need improvement. Education Research & Perspectives, 40(1), 124–149.

PP

Entire program

X

X

X

 

X

12 graduates, 2 African American, 5 Latinx, 5 white

P

Increased understanding of social justice, desire to make change, and knowledge of strategies

Hernandez, F., & Marshall, J. M. (2009). “Where I came from, where I am now, and where I’d like to be”: Aspiring administrators reflect on issues related to equity, diversity, and social justice. Journal of School Leadership19(3), 299–333.

PP

Foundations course

 

X

X

X

X

15 candidates, 14 white, 1 African American

P

Candidates unwilling to get past discomfort

Hernandez, F., & Marshall, J. (2017). Auditing inequity: Teaching aspiring administrators to be social justice leaders. Education and Urban Society, 49(2), 203–228.

PP

Course on “diverse learning needs” at end of an entire program with embedded clinical activities

X

  

X

X

10 candidates, 9 white and 1 person of color

P

Increased knowledge of an “achievement gap” and development of plans to address it; variable increases in self-reflection and sensitivity to student needs

Hill-Jackson, V. (2007). Wrestling whiteness: Three stages of shifting multicultural perspectives among white pre-service teachers. Multicultural Perspectives9(2), 29–35.

TP

Multicultural education course

 

X

 

X

X

94 white candidates

R

Candidates had lack of critical consciousness

Hines III, M. T. (2014). White pre-service principals’ perceptions of white privilege as a barrier to cultural proficiency. Focus on Colleges, Universities, and Schools, 8(1), 1–12.

PP

Course on cultural proficiency for school leaders

X

 

X

 

X

6 white candidates

R

Increased understanding of white privilege

Hines III, M. T. (2016). The embeddedness of white fragility within white pre-service principals’ reflections on white privilege. Critical Questions in Education7(2), 130–145.

PP

Course on cultural proficiency for school leaders

 

X

 

X

X

6 white candidates

R

Candidates minimized impact of white privilege on schooling, though they displayed increased acknowledgement of white privilege

Hyland, N. E. (2010). Intersections of race and sexuality in a teacher education course. Teaching Education21(4), 385–401.

TP

Foundations class in urban education and the education of historically marginalized student populations

   

X

X

24 candidates, 11 African American, 11 white, 2 Latina

P

Increased understandings of race (for white candidates), but mixed understandings of LGBT issues in K–12 education

Hyland, N. E., & Noffke, S. E. (2005). Understanding diversity through social and community inquiry: An action-research study. Journal of Teacher Education56(4), 367–381.

TP

Elementary social studies methods course, taught from a social justice framework, with community-based activities

  

X

X

X

198 candidates, 181 white, 7 African American, 5 East Asian, 5 Latina

D

Increased respect for, knowledge of, and relationships with members of historically marginalized communities, but cultural voyeurism was reified

Jacobs, J., Yamamura, E., Guerra, P. L., & Nelson, S. W. (2013). Emerging leaders for social justice: Negotiating the journey through action research. Journal of School Leadership23(1), 91–121.

PP

Action research project (candidate has free choice to design the inquiry)

X

X

X

 

X

12 candidates, 5 Latinx, 5 white, 2 African American

R

Increased equity orientation, with different pathways for white candidates and candidates of color

Jones, K. D., & Ringler, M. C. (2017). Increasing principal preparation candidates’ awareness of biases in educational environments. International Journal of Educational Leadership Preparation12(1), n1.

PP

Study of diversity topics alongside principal internship

    

X

53 candidates, 46 white, 5 Black, 2 Hispanic

D

Increased self-awareness of bias and ability to observe bias

Kemp-Graham, K. Y. (2015). Missed opportunities: Preparing aspiring school leaders for bold social justice school leadership needed for 21st century schools. International Journal of Educational Leadership Preparation10(1), 99–129.

PP

Entire program

 

X

  

X

106 graduates, 63 white, 33 Black, 7 Hispanic, 2 American Indian, 1 Hawaiian

P

Low scores on understandings of oppression, patterns of discrimination, and inequities (no data on understandings at start of the program)

Kohli, R. (2009). Critical race reflections: Valuing the experiences of teachers of color in teacher education. Race Ethnicity and Education12(2), 235–251.

TP

Entire program

X

X

  

X

12 candidates of color

R

Racist experiences in the program reinforced permanence of racism

Kumar, R., & Hamer, L. (2013). Preservice teachers’ attitudes and beliefs toward student diversity and proposed instructional practices: A sequential design study. Journal of Teacher Education64(2), 162–177.

TP

Entire program

X

X

  

X

784 candidates, 651 white, 41 African American, 35 other ethnic groups, 57 unstated

D

Increased positive attitudes toward diversity, decreased bias, and increased commitment to adaptive practices; however, scores were highest after coursework, and then lowered after student teaching

Kumar, R., & Lauermann, F. (2018). Cultural beliefs and instructional intentions: Do experiences in teacher education institutions matter? American Educational Research Journal55(3), 419–452.

TP

Entire program (cross-sectional)

X

   

X

2,129 candidates, 1,830 white, 236 people of color

D

More positive instructional beliefs were related to the number of courses candidates had taken

Kyles, C. R., & Olafson, L. (2008). Uncovering preservice teachers’ beliefs about diversity through reflective writing. Urban Education, 43(5), 500–518.

TP

Urban and culturally diverse

practicum accompanied with reflective writing assignments

X

X

X

 

X

15 candidates whose demographics “matched the emerging trend of a monocultural teaching force” (p. 507)

D

No change in self-efficacy for teaching diverse learners; most candidates unable to go beyond simplistic self-reflection, and some resistant to self-reflection

Lambeth, D. T., & Smith, A. M. (2016). Pre-service teachers’ perceptions of culturally responsive teacher preparation. The Journal of Negro Education, 85(1), 46–58.

TP

Entire program (cross-sectional)

X

X

  

X

21 white candidates

D

Increased belief in importance of relating to racially diverse students, but minimal change in ability to act on this belief

Lee, Y. A. (2011). What does teaching for social justice mean to teacher candidates? Professional Educator, 35(2), 1–20.

TP

Entire program

X

X

  

X

6 candidates, 5 white, 1 Black

D

Increased learning about social justice, but limited application to teaching

Lee, Y. A., & Hemer-Patnode, L. (2010). Developing teacher candidates’ knowledge, skills, and dispositions to teach diverse students. Journal of Instructional Psychology37(3), 222–235.

TP

Field placements for early and middle childhood candidates in urban or suburban schools

X

   

X

42 white candidates

D

Candidates maintained “power elite” agenda, exhibiting limited understandings of race and teaching for social justice; candidates in one placement group showed stronger awareness of needs of diverse learners

Martinez, M. A. (2015). Engaging aspiring educational leaders in self-reflection regarding race and privilege. Reflective Practice16(6), 765–776.

PP

Course on sociocultural context of education in the United States

  

X

X

X

19 candidates, 15 white, 4 Latinx

P

Positive changes in mindset and increased questioning of schooling; some candidates were resistant

Marx, S. (2004). Regarding whiteness: Exploring and intervening in the effects of white racism in teacher education. Equity & Excellence in Education37(1), 31–43.

TP

Tutoring English language

learners of Mexican origin (field service)

X

X

X

 

X

9 white candidates

R

Emotions led candidates to deny their own racist practices and beliefs, but they were open to talking about race

Marx, S., & Pennington, J. (2003). Pedagogies of critical race theory: Experimentations with white preservice teachers. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education16(1), 91–110.

TP

Student teaching in majority minority school and a course on second language acquisition (two unrelated samples of candidates)

  

X

X

X

12 white candidates

R

Openness and willingness to talk about race, which led to more comfort, fluency, and criticality, but candidates struggled to move past feelings of powerlessness

Matias, C. E., & Grosland, T. J. (2016). Digital storytelling as racial justice; digital hopes for deconstructing whiteness in teacher education. Journal of Teacher Education, 67(2), 152–164.

TP

Digital storytelling in an urban-focused teacher education course

   

X

X

3 white candidates (purposeful sample from 150 assignments)

R

Increased critical-self-revelation that confronted whiteness

Matias, C. E., Viesca, K. M., Garrison-Wade, D. F., Tandon, M., & Galindo, R. (2014). “What is critical whiteness doing in OUR nice field like critical race theory?” Applying CRT and CWS to understand the white imaginations of white teacher candidates. Equity & Excellence in Education47(3), 289–304.

TP

Entire program

 

X

 

X

X

16 candidates, 15 white, 1 unstated

R

Whiteness was engaged and endorsed, reinforcing white candidates’ normative beliefs

Mensah, F. M. (2009). Confronting assumptions, biases, and stereotypes in preservice teachers’ conceptualizations of science teaching through the use of book club. Journal of Research in Science Teaching: The Official Journal of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching, 46(9), 1041–1066.

TP

Book club within an elementary science methods course

X

 

X

 

X

23 candidates, wide range of self-identified racial/ethnic identities

D

Increased critical, reflective inquiry and ideological change in assumptions and beliefs about science, diversity, and equity

Miller, P. C., & Mikulec, E. A. (2014). Pre-service teachers confronting issues of diversity through a radical field experience. Multicultural Education21(2), 18–24.



TP

Field experience in charter school with majority LGBT student population and alternative structures and policies

X

   

X

60 candidates, 58 white, 2 nonwhite

D

Increased comfort and confidence in interacting with youth of color and increased understanding of school as unsafe for some students, but little impact on expanding candidates’ concepts of what schooling can look like

Milner, H. R. (2006). Preservice teachers’ learning about cultural and racial diversity: Implications for urban education. Urban Education41(4), 343–375.

TP

Course on cultural and racial diversity concurrent with field experience

X

X

X

X

X

14 candidates, 13 white, 1 Asian

D

Increased understandings of self as raced human being with raced history

Pattee, D. K., & Guidice, T. L. (2011). Preparing socially conscious teachers: A SoTL study of teacher education students responses to seven scenarios. MountainRise, 6(3), 1–22.

TP

Course that addressed diversity (three different courses)

    

X

167 candidates, 1 African American, 2 American Indian, 112 European American, 1 Latino, 43 “other,” 9 preferred not to answer

D

Increased awareness of homophobia and racism and need to act to address these

Peters, T., Margolin, M., Fragnoli, K., & Bloom, D. (2016). What’s race got to do with it?: Preservice teachers and white racial identity. Current Issues in Education19(1), 1–23.

TP

Student teaching in majority minority school

X

X

  

X

75 white candidates

R

Increased confidence in working with diverse students (qualitative data), but decreased awareness of racial issues (quantitative data) and maintenance of color-neutral attitudes (quantitative and qualitative data)

Picower, B. (2009). The unexamined whiteness of teaching: How white teachers maintain and enact dominant racial ideologies. Race Ethnicity and Education12(2), 197–215.

TP

Course on multicultural education

 

X

 

X

X

8 white candidates

R

White candidates maintained hegemonic, racist views of people of color and were resistant to multicultural perspectives.

Picower, B. (2013). You can’t change what you don’t see: Developing new teachers’ political understanding of education. Journal of Transformative Education, 11(3), 170–189.

TP

Social justice and curriculum design course with field experiences

X

  

X

X

13 residents, 9 white and 4 people of color

R

Increased awareness of political nature of education, of systemic inequalities, and of their need to learn more

Pollock, M., Deckman, S., Mira, M., & Shalaby, C. (2010). “But what can I do?”: Three necessary tensions in teaching teachers about race. Journal of Teacher Education61(3), 211–224.

TP

Race-oriented teacher education course

  

X

 

X

51 candidates, 29 white, 7 African American, 3 Asian American, 1 “other,” and 11 chose not to identify (note that two opted out of the study)

R

Increased self-efficacy to teach students of color for candidates who wrestled with series of tensions related to race and teaching; for candidates who wanted concrete actions and best practices instead of wrestling with tensions, no change in self-efficacy

Riley, K., & Solic, K. (2017). “Change happens beyond the comfort zone”: Bringing undergraduate teacher-candidates into activist teacher communities. Journal of Teacher Education, 68(2), 179–192.

TP

Fellowship connecting candidates with activist teacher communities

   

X

X

6 candidates, all white, and 1 noncandidate, African American

P

Increased empathy and critical questions, and decreased stereotypes toward urban students

Ritchie, S., An, S., Cone, N., & Bullock, P. (2013). Teacher education for social change: Transforming a content methods course block. Current Issues in Comparative Education15(2), 63–83.

TP

Content methods courses with social justice dimensions (four different courses)

    

X

16 candidates, 13 European American/White, one African American/Black, one Asian/Pacific Islander, one African American/Black and Asian/Pacific Islander

P

Increased agency and excitement to teach for social justice, with anticipation of needing time, professional development, and support to engage in social justice teaching; some candidates had trouble applying a critical lens to lesson planning

Rivera Maulucci, M. S. (2013). Emotions and positional identity in becoming a social justice science teacher: Nicole’s story. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 50(4), 453–478.

TP

Teaching methods course and associated practicum

X

X

 

X

X

1 African American, Caribbean candidate

P

Ambivalence toward critical pedagogy and multicultural education in a high poverty, urban school

Seidl, B., & Friend, G. (2002). Leaving authority at the door: Equal-status community-based experiences and the preparation of teachers for diverse classrooms. Teaching and Teacher Education18(4), 421–433.

TP

Cross-cultural, equal-status internship

X

X

 

X

X

Approximately 90 candidates, majority white

R

Decentering of cultural authority and increased understanding of need for cultural responsiveness for candidates who developed relationships with African American adults; not all candidates experienced this decentering

Sperandio, J., & LaPier, A. (2009). Confronting issues of gender and ethnicity: Women’s experiences as aspiring urban principals. Journal of Research on Leadership Education, 4(4), 67–95.

PP

Entire program

X

X

  

X

15 candidates, 5 white, 3 Hispanic, 7 African American

P

Increased ability to analyze issues through a social justice lens

Swartz, E. (2003). Teaching white preservice teachers: Pedagogy for change. Urban Education38(3), 255–278.

TP

Social foundations classroom

 

X

X

X

X

Unstated, one class, 95% white

R

Increased critical thinking, producing new knowledge, and continuous learning

Trent, S. C., & Dixon, D. J. (2004). “My eyes were opened”: Tracing the conceptual change of pre-service teachers in a special education/multicultural education course. Teacher Education and Special Education27(2), 119–133.

TP

Introductory special education

course with a multicultural component

  

X

 

X

26 candidates, 24 white, 1 Asian, 1 African American

P

Expanded understandings of multiculturalism

Ukpokodu, O. N. (2004). The impact of shadowing culturally different students on preservice teachers’ disposition toward diversity. Multicultural Education12(2), 19–28.

TP

Shadowing a student from “an ethnic group,” who was U.S.-born, naturalized, or permanent resident

X

X

 

X

X

45 candidates, 39 white, 4 African American, 2 Latinx

D

Increased ability to break down stereotypes, develop empathy, and learn new content; however, candidates did not want to teach in majority minority schools

Weisman, E. M., & Garza, S. A. (2002). Preservice teacher attitudes toward diversity: Can one class make a difference? Equity & Excellence in Education35(1), 28–34.

TP

Multicultural education course

 

X

  

X

158 candidates, 93 white, 43 Latinx, 19 Asian American, 3 African American

P

Increased orientation to diversity, but candidates developed only surface-level understandings of diversity and sociocultural realities of students of color

Weisman, E. M., & Hansen, L. E. (2008). Student teaching in urban and suburban schools: Perspectives of Latino preservice teachers. Urban Education43(6), 653–670.

TP

Student teaching in two different placements, one of which was a bilingual setting in an urban school with a predominately Latinx population

X

X

  

X

10 Latinx candidates

P

Increased commitment to teaching Latinx students, but lack of learning around structural inequities and lack of development of critical consciousness

Whipp, J. L. (2013). Developing socially just teachers: The interaction of experiences before, during, and after teacher preparation in beginning urban teachers. Journal of Teacher Education64(5), 454–467.

TP

Entire program

 

X

X

 

X

12 graduates, 11 white, 1 African American

P

Evidence of critical social justice teaching of first-year teachers for those who had cross-cultural experiences prior to entering the program; mixed in terms of more narrow social justice teaching as “caring” for remaining participants

Wiggins, R. A., Follo, E. J., & Eberly, M. B. (2007). The impact of a field immersion program on pre-service teachers’ attitudes toward teaching in culturally diverse classrooms. Teaching and Teacher Education, 23(5), 653–663.

TP

Long-term field placement

at a culturally diverse urban elementary school alongside course on meeting needs of students with diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds

X

   

X

47 candidates, 46 white, 1 African American

D

Development of culturally responsive practice


Notes


1.

  TP = Teacher preparation; PP = Principal preparation


2.

  COR = Conceptualization of race; D = Difference; P = Power; R = Racism




Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 123 Number 8, 2021, p. -
https://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 23782, Date Accessed: 10/27/2021 8:55:43 AM

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