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Abstract

This action research project describes the methods an African-American female instructor used when introducing biology-related video clips with a multicultural component to predominantly white pre-service elementary students. Studies show that introducing multiculturalism into classrooms is crucial for students and teachers. Multicultural theoretical frameworks that focus on social change arises out of an acknowledgement of achievement disparities prevalent around the world. Students viewed video clips and answered questions regarding their thoughts and views on the information in the clip; including issues relating to race, diversity, and social injustice, nature of science (NOS) and nature of science inquiry (NOSI). Data collection included assessing students’ responses in the worksheets, observations and reflective journaling on the part of the first author. Data analysis involved noting general themes as presented by Creswell (2003). Results showed that students demonstrated an appreciation of diversity and acknowledgment of racial injustice. Students also showed a general understanding of NOS/NOSI concepts with some exceptions. Moral and ethical questions added later in the project showed that students were able to connect information in the clips to their own beliefs effectively. Students also demonstrated knowledge of material presented in the unit lessons by relating them to information in the video clips. Implications for further research involve video clips that discuss physical/mental disabilities, gender issues, and students that use English as a second language.

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