November 9 Provost’s Lecture: The Science of a Diverse Community

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Stereotype Threat and Identity Threat: The Science of a Diverse Community

Claude Steele

Claude M. Steele is an American social psychologist and Professor of Psychology at UC Berkeley. He is best known for his work on stereotype threat and its application to minority student academic performance. His earlier work dealt with research on the self (e.g., self-image, self-affirmation) as well as the role of self-regulation in addictive behaviors. In 2010, he released his book, Whistling Vivaldi and Other Clues to How Stereotypes Affect Us, summarizing years of research on stereotype threat and the underperformance of minority students in higher education. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Sciences, the National Science Board, the National Academy of Education, and the American Philosophical Society. He has served in several major academic leadership positions as the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost at UC Berkeley, the I. James Quillen Dean for the School of Education at Stanford University, and as the 21st Provost of Columbia University. Past roles also include serving as the President of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, President of the Western Psychological Association, a member of the Board of Directors American Psychological Society.

Abstract: Drawing on stereotype threat and social identity threat research, this talk will address the whywhat and how of diverse learning communities: why they are important, a working hypothesis about what is critical to their success and what research reveals about how to achieve that success. The talk’s practical aim is to identify features of diverse learning communities — schools, universities and academic disciplines — that while good for all students, are especially helpful for minority students generally, and for women in STEM fields. The talk will also explore the psychological significance of community and its role in learning.    

This Provost’s Lecture, co-sponsored by the Division of Undergraduate Education, will be held on Thursday, November 9, at 11 am, in the Charles B. Wang Center Theater.

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