Carlie Tartakov, Education, (515) 294-0669
Cathy Curtis, Education, (515) 294-8175
Kevin Brown, News Service, (515) 294-8986


AMES, Iowa -- For Iowa State University students looking for a mid-term course, "Dialogues On Diversity," an experimental, one-credit course being re-established by Carlie Tartakov, assistant professor of curriculum and instruction in the College of Education, offers a strong option.

The course, University Studies 150X, is not listed in the current class catalogue. However, with a limited menu of mid-term courses offered, the course provides an excellent bridge for students interested in learning more about other cultures, ideas, and their own responses to new experiences, said Tartakov.

Recent incidents against people of color, homosexuals and religious groups in this country and across the world indicate that more forums for encouraging respect and understanding between and among various cultural groups is a real necessity, said Tartakov.

The classes start the second half of the semester and will run for 8 weeks. Each group of 20 students will meet one day a week for two hours starting right after midterm on Oct. 18.

Class dates are Mondays, 1:10 p.m. – 3 p.m. and 3:10 p.m. – 5 p.m.; Tuesday, 1:10 p.m. – 3 p.m. and 3:10 p.m. – 5 p.m.; and Wednesday, 1:10 p.m. – 3 p.m.

Topics to be covered in the course are: Building a community; becoming an ally; developing a racial/ethnic identity; enhancing your multicultural awareness; stepping outside of your comfort zone; gender and sexual orientation; becoming a change agent for diversity; and individual/institutional responsibilities.

The course offers a safe environment for students to dialogue with other students, faculty and staff about diverse issues that impact them daily, said Tartakov. It is open to students in any major. Lectures, role-play, case study and small group discussions will all be used in the course.

"Participants in this course will engage in open and honest dialogue, introspection and ‘active learning’ to form a continuous learning community," Tartakov said.

The course was first created in 1994 by Suzanne Hendrich, associate professor of food science and human nutrition and associate dean for undergraduate programs and educational technology in the College of Family and Consumer Sciences.

John Taylor, Ph.D. student in Higher Education, worked with Tartakov during the summer to revise and plan the revamped course. Nicole Guard joined the team to assist with planning this fall. Former graduate student Chad Cardini worked with Tartakov on establishing a course web site at http://www.public.iastate.edu/~training_info/dialogues.html.

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