New Chapter by Dr. Beth Warren Emphasizes Importance of Decolonizing Disciplinary Learning

Dr. Beth Warren, BU Wheelock professor of literacy education and director of the Earl Center for Learning and Innovation, has coauthored a chapter in the Handbook of the Cultural Foundations of Learning (Routledge). In their chapter, “Multiples Ways of Knowing: Re-Imagining Disciplinary Learning,” the authors argue for a critical re-imagining of disciplinary learning and teaching, liberated from the narrow confines of Western ethnocentrism, that cultivates a multiplicity of values, purposes, and arcs of human learning. They ground their argument in examples from science, mathematics and literacy to illuminate what becomes possible educationally when we take the cultural heterogeneity of life and learning seriously in research and practice.

The Handbook of the Cultural Foundations of Learning (edited by Na’ilah Suad Nasir, Carol D. Lee, Roy Pea, and Maxine McKinney de Royston) is a landmark volume that brings together cutting-edge research from many disciplines to reconceptualize learning as fundamentally cultural and unfolding through multiple pathways across everyday settings of life.  As Dr. Warren explains, “The perspectives featured in the handbook offer critical insights into core questions of human learning and the design of learning ecologies that foster educational dignity and possibility.” 

At BU Wheelock, Dr. Warren engages in collaborative, participatory research to design and study expansive learning environments (grades K–12) that disrupt systemic inequities and cultivate thriving.