Who We Are
The Multicultural Pedagogy Research Group was formed in 2006 with the intent to develop knowledge about multicultural teaching among ourselves, investigating such themes as inclusive teaching, curriculum transformation and facilitating difficult dialogues, among others. We are an interdisciplinary team of faculty, staff, and graduate students interested in multicultural teaching from both a practice and research perspective. We are open to new members who share our interests.
We conduct interdisciplinary research on multicultural teaching and disseminate our findings in order to impact the teaching of others. Our efforts have earned us the 2010 Joseph Taylor Excellence in Diversity Award from Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis.
Leslie Ashburn-Nardo is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis. She graduated with honors from Wake Forest University, earning a B.A. in psychology and went on to earn an M.A. in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, and a Ph.D. in experimental psychology from the University of Kentucky, where she specialized in social psychology.
Dr. Ashburn-Nardo has published numerous articles and chapters in the areas of stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination; prejudice reduction; and stigma. She has presented her work on these topics at local, national, and international conferences. Dr. Ashburn-Nardo's research and teaching endeavors have been funded by a variety of internal and external sources, including the National Science Foundation; and recognized with several awards, including a 2009 Society for the Teaching of Psychology Honorary Membership for Infusing Diversity into Teaching, a 2012 IUPUI Chancellor's Diversity Scholar Award, and a 2013 IUPUI Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Multicultural Teaching. Click here to view Dr. Ashburn-Nardo's page.
Silvia Bigatti is an Associate Professor in the Department of Public Health. Dr. Bigatti graduated from the Joint Program in Clinical Psychology between University of California San Diego and San Diego State University. Her degree is in Clinical Psychology with a Behavioral Medicine specialization. She completed her clinical internship at Yale University School of Medicine. Since obtaining her degree, Dr. Bigatti has been an academician and researcher, with over 30 peer-reviewed publications and well over 100 research presentations at local, national, and international scientific conferences. She has received both internal and external funding for her research endeavors. Her service to the profession includes serving as reviewer for numerous scientific journals, the National Institute of Health, and the Department of Defense. Her general area of research is coping with chronic illness, health disparities, and stress. Click here to view Dr. Bigatti’s page.
Stephanie Boys earned a joint JD/MSW from Indiana University, and a PhD in Social Work and Political Science from the University of Michigan. She is an Assistant Professor of Social Work and an Adjunct Professor of Law at Indiana University. She teaches a range of courses in research, policy, and leadership at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Her research agenda combines legal studies with the substantive areas of juvenile justice, capital punishment, and welfare policy implementation. She also runs an interdisciplinary civil law clinic for law and social work students who serve low income clients in Indianapolis She can be contacted at ude[dot]anaidni[at]syobs.
Dr. Khadija Khaja, grew up in Africa, but has worked in Canada and the United States. She received her B.A., B.S.W., and M.S.W. degrees from Canada, and her PhD. in the United States. Her interests include international social work practice and curriculum development, Islamic social service delivery, impact of terrorism on Muslim communities, refugees, peace building, ethnographic qualitative research, female circumcision, ritual practices, cultural competency, child welfare, children of war, human rights, international curriculum development, women’s health and rights, cultural competency, multicultural teaching pedagogy, and teaching clinical practice using technology.
She serves on the Council of External Relations - Global Commission of Social Work for the North American Council of Social Work Educators. Her work has been presented in numerous countries around the world. She can be contacted at ude[dot]iupui[at]ajahkk.
Gina Sánchez Gibau is Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis. She earned an M.A. in Latin American Studies from the University of California at Los Angeles and a Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Texas at Austin, specializing in the African Diaspora. Her research interests include race and ethnicity, identity, migration, and gender studies. She conducted fieldwork on identity formation among Cape Verdeans in Boston, Massachusetts. She has presented at numerous conferences in the US and abroad and has published chapters in edited volumes and articles in Cimboa: Journal of Cape Verdean Letters, Arts, and Studies, Transforming Anthropology, Identities,and The Western Journal of Black Studies.
Dr. Gibau served as chair of the Multicultural Teaching Community of Practice during its first two years of existence (2006-2008). Her interests in multicultural teaching and education stems from her ongoing research and her participation in various affinity councils, such as the Latino Faculty and Staff Council, on which she currently serves as co-chair and the Black Faculty and Staff Council.
Her past service activities related to improving the university and campus climate for diversity have included serving as a review committee member for the President’s University Diversity Initiative, a search committee member for the Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and a member of the Indiana University Campus Diversity Portfolio Self-Study and Review Process committee. Click here to view Dr. Gibau’s page.
Kathleen S. Grove, MA, JD has been the Director of the IUPUI Office for Women since 2004 and is an associate faculty member in the Women's Studies Program of the IU School of Liberal Arts where she teaches "Advancing Women in Leadership". She has also taught "Women and the Law" and "Women's Rights around the World".
As Director of the Office for Women, she serves the IUPUI campus by promoting and building an inclusive and equitable environment where both women and men can succeed. From 2008-2010 she served as co-chair of the Multicultural Teaching Community of Practice which won the IUPUI 2010 Joseph T. Taylor Award for Excellence in Diversity. In November 2011 she was the recipient of the Outstanding Achievement Award from the National Women's Studies Association Women's Center Committee. Her research interests include domestic and international women's leadership, feminist jurisprudence and multicultural teaching.
Kathleen holds a J.D. degree from the Indiana University McKinney School of Law at Indianapolis and a Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy from Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis. Her Bachelor of Science degree in Speech is from Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. She maintains two professional licenses in the state of Indiana, one as an attorney and one as a marriage and family therapist.
Jennifer Thorington Springer is an Associate Professor of English at IUPUI specializing in Caribbean and African American Literatures as well as Africana and Women's Studies. Her own "border-crossings" and personal background as a transnational subject (African Caribbean immigrant) directly influences her commitment to cultural diversity and inclusiveness. Her research, teaching, and service activities are synergistic and contribute to the university's overall diversity and multicultural initiatives with a focus on community outreach. Professor Springer is an active member of the Multicultural Research and Pedagogy Group (formerly the Multicultural Teaching Community of Practice). She was the recipient of the 2006 IUPUI Outstanding Woman Leader Award, the 2010 Joseph T. Taylor Excellence in Diversity Award (individual and group award), the 2011 Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Multicultural Teaching, three time recipient of the Trustees Teaching Award, member of FACET, and received an Outstanding Mentor/Motivator Award in 2010. Click here to view Dr. Springer's page.
Dawn Whitehead is the Director of Curriculum Internationalization at Indiana University Purdue University-Indianapolis and is an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the IU School of Education. Dr. Whitehead earned a M.S. in International and Comparative Education and a Ph. D. in Education Policy Studies with a concentration in International and Comparative Education and African Studies at Indiana University-Bloomington.
Dr. Whitehead has conducted extensive fieldwork on issues of teacher education and quality, and retention in Ghana, and she is the program director for the Cross Cultural Education in Ghana program. She is also the program director for two service learning programs for the IUPUI Honors College in Kenya and Costa Rica. Dr. Whitehead has conducted research, engaged in grant activities, and taught in Indonesia Kenya, Mexico, and Thailand, and she has conducted research related to the impact of international service learning on undergraduate students. She has also engaged in internationalization efforts through collaborative and interdisciplinary international programs and research and teaching courses with colleagues from around the world. Her research interests include intersections of multicultural education and internationalization, educational issues in Ghana and across the African Diaspora, and international service learning. Dr. Whitehead also teaches in a Themed Learning Community centered on international studies. Click here to view Dr. Whitehead's page.