Institute for Urban and Minority Education
Teachers College, Columbia University
Teachers College
Columbia University

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A Historic Evening at the Inaugural Edmund Gordon Lecture

On October 10th, IUME, in co-sponsorship with the Program in History and Education, hosted Professor Charles M. Payne who delivered the Inaugural Edmund Gordon Address at Teachers College in honor of IUME Founder and legendary figure Dr. Edmund Gordon. The address entitled, “Whatever Happened to the Negro Question? Educational Discourse and the Lost Question of Race”, drew a standing-room-only audience of nearly 200 to Milbank Chapel and helped illustrate how historical understanding is crucial for thinking about contemporary school improvement. In his address, Dr. Payne presented a broad critique of the educational community’s modern perceptions and attitudes towards school achievement, poverty, and race.

Click here to view the lecture on the IUME YouTube channel and here for pictures.

Introducing the "Educating Harlem" Lecture Series

In collaboration with the Program in History and Education at Teachers College as well as the Center on History and Education, IUME is excited to announce its participation in the new "Educating Harlem" lecture series, which is part of a larger initiative to better explore the forces that shaped education in Harlem.

On March 27th, the first "Educating Harlem" lecture took place at Teachers College in front of a packed room in Russell Hall, where Dr. Martha Biondi -- Professor of Education at Northwestern University -- spoke about her research on youth revolutions at City College in the 1960s. Our next speaker will be Dr. Khalil Muhammad, who is currently the Director of the Schomburg Center for Research and Black Culture. For more information about the Education Harlem initiative, click here.

Subcribe to the new IUME Newsletter!

In October, IUME redesigned its monthly newsletter in a way that not only increases dissemination, but most importantly, better shares all the events and news with the world. The newsletter is available in PDF format, but also available via hard copy at the IUME office at Teachers College. Make sure to subscribe to the newsletter and e-mail list on the bottom right-hand side of this IUME homepage.

For more information and to download/view past IUME newsletters, click here.

Learn More About IUME's Literacy Teachers Initiative (LTI) Project

 IUME was excited to announce the launch of the Literacy Teachers Initiative (LTI) Project in spring, 2012. Since then, we have partnered with dynamic elementary and middle school teachers from Harlem and Brooklyn in an effort to collaboratively work toward finding increased pedagogical methods for students. The LTI Project is led by Dr. Jodene Morrell of Teachers College. We have grown in number and ideas each year, received competitive research grants, presented at Teachers College and state, national, and international conferences, and written for publication.

Check out our LTI page for more information and check out the biographies of the Teacher Fellows here!

Learn More about the Youth Historians in Harlem Program!

The Youth Historians in Harlem (YHH) project, sponsored by IUME, is a new critical approach to teaching history in urban schools in Harlem, focusing on empowering minority youth through their own cultural experiences, involving students in the practice of "doing" history through guided projects, programs, and participatory action research. YHH seeks to increase students' interest in history through innovative and engaging pedagogical approaches that help them become historians, researching the rich historical past of ‘their’ Harlem community. While YHIH seeks to advance the historical knowledge of education in Harlem, above all, our project seeks to make history relevant to urban students and help increase academic achievement. To learn more about this exciting project, visit the official website here.

Getting Real III Public Videoconference Series Recap

This past fall over the span of 16 weeks, IUME partnered with the University of Wisconsin-Madison and New York University Hip-Hop Education Center to launch an innovative online seminar series called Getting Real III. Seminal scholars and leaders in the growing field of Hip-Hop studies focused their attention on how Hip-Hop culture, culturally relevant pedagogy and youth participatory action research can successfully be used to close the education gap in America's public schools.

This online public videoconference series was highly successful. The final four lectures were at Teachers College, and can be viewed in full HERE -- so check them out! The TC speakers featured Professor Chris Emdin, Professor Ernest Morrell, Jen Johnson, and Sam Seidel with Dave "TC" Ellis. (Original lineup here.)

Recapping the Final IUME Colloquia of 2012 on "Ill Literacies"

IUME's last Colloquia at the Gordon Campus was spearheaded by two dynamic scholars--Crystal Belle and Jamila Lyiscott--who are both Research Fellows at IUME and Ph.D. students in English Education. Both Crystal and Jamila, versed in spoken word and literacy experts in the making, discussed critical issues in literacy as it applies to democracy and freedom inside schools. We had a full house at the Gordon Campus, and it was a wonderful way to reflect on 2012 with critical discussion and passionate performances from both Crystal and Jamila.

The Colloquium is viewable in full on our YouTube channel and also don't forget to view our photo gallery, too! (For original information and details, click here.)


Subscribe to our IUME YouTube Channel!

Have you visited the official IUME YouTube page recently? Want to learn more about IUME? Make sure to stop by our YouTube page here and watch a few of our videos and subscribe!. Not only do we keep a collection of IUME events and Colloquia, but our video team prepares short clips on critical research. The most recent Beyond Bullying presentation is now available, as is our December Colloquium and other great clips that should be shared!

In our increasingly digital and mutlimodal era, we believe strongly in collaborative educational content, so make sure to check back often and subscribe to your channel.


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Publications > Books & Articles

Books & Articles

IUME is proud of endorse a number of books that reflect the core values of IUME as well as share the works of current Director Ernest Morrell and Director Emeritus Edmund W. Gordon.

For a .PDF list of the most recent articles by Dr. Morrell and Dr. Gordon, click here.

The Art of Critical Pedagogy:The Possibilities of Moving from Theory to Practice in Urban Schools (Peter Lang) by Ernest Morrell and Jeffrey M. Duncan-Andrade
Editorial Review from Amazon.com
Critical pedagogyThis book furthers the discussion concerning critical pedagogy and its practical applications for urban contexts. It addresses two looming, yet under-explored questions that have emerged with the ascendancy of critical pedagogy in the educational discourse: (1) What does critical pedagogy look like in work with urban youth? and (2) How can a systematic investigation of critical work enacted in urban contexts simultaneously draw upon and push the core tenets of critical pedagogy? Addressing the tensions inherent in enacting critical pedagogy —between working to disrupt and to successfully navigate oppressive institutionalized structures, and between the practice of critical pedagogy and the current standards-driven climate—The Art of Critical Pedagogy seeks to generate authentic internal and external dialogues among educators in search of texts that offer guidance for teaching for a more socially just world.


Critical Literacy and Urban Youth: Pedagogies of Access, Dissent, and Liberation (Routledge)
by Ernest Morrell

Editorial Review from Amazon.com
Morrell book“Critical Literacy and Urban Youth” offers an interrogation of critical theory developed from the author’s work with young people in classrooms, neighborhoods, and institutions of power. Through cases, an articulated process, and a theory of literacy education and social change, Morrell extends the conversation among literacy educators about what constitutes critical literacy while also examining implications for practice in secondary and postsecondary American educational contexts. This book is distinguished by its weaving together of theory and practice. Morrell begins by arguing for a broader definition of the “critical” in critical literacy - one that encapsulates the entire Western philosophical tradition as well as several important “Othered” traditions ranging from postcolonialism to the African-American tradition.Next, he looks at four cases of critical literacy pedagogy with urban youth: teaching popular culture in a high school English classroom; conducting community-based critical research; engaging in cyber-activism; and doing critical media literacy education. Lastly, he returns to theory, first considering two areas of critical literacy pedagogy that are still relatively unexplored: the importance of critical reading and writing in constituting and reconstituting the self, and critical writing that is not just about coming to a critical understanding of the world but that plays an explicit and self-referential role in changing the world. Morrell concludes by outlining a grounded theory of critical literacy pedagogy and considering its implications for literacy research, teacher education, classroom practice, and advocacy work for social change.

Linking Literacy and Popular Culture: Finding Connections for Future Learning by Ernest Morrell
Editorial Review from Amazon.com
Linking literacyMorrell’s book is profoundly important for teachers, teacher educators, and those who are interested in issues of 21st literacy acquisition more generally. What separates Morrell’s work from so much of the other pieces in this field is that they are emergent out of literacy instruction that he is actually doing himself. Much of what passes for literacy theory and urban educational theory more generally is profound on paper and passe in practice. This happens in large part because teachers struggle to understand what it means for them in their day to day practice and urban teacher educators struggle to help them with this challenge. Much can be said about why this is the case, but Morrell’s book helps us to begin to understand how to circumvent this shortcoming in the field of literacy development.




Becoming Critical Researchers by Ernest Morrell
Book Review from Amazon.com
Becoming critical researchersBecoming Critical Researchers analyzes the findings of a two-year ethnographic study of the apprenticeship of urban youth as critical researchers of popular culture. Drawing on new literacy studies, critical pedagogy, and sociocultural learning theory, this book documents the changes in student participation within a critical research-focused community of practice. These changes include the acquisition and development of academic and critical literacies and the resulting translations of these literacies into increased academic performance, greater access to college, and commitment to social action. This book inserts critical and postmodern theory into the conception and evaluation of classroom practice and its findings suggest that programs centering on the lived experiences of teens can indeed achieve the goals of critical education, while also promoting academic achievement in urban schools.


Paths to Success: Beating the Odds in American Society by Charles Harrington and Susan K. Boardman
Book Review from Amazon.com
An excellent exploratory study that examines the lives of one hundred Americans who achieved success in their careers. In studying this upwardly mobile population, the authors examine the factors that led to this achievement and, in the reporting, they allow the reader to have a rare glimpse of at least one population that 'beats the odds.' Whether children of poverty with uneducated parents or those from middle-class homes and educated parents, the stories of the 'Pathmakers' make for fascinating reading.
--Yolanda T. Moses, President, City College of New York




Education and Justice: A View From the Back of the Bus by Edmund W. Gordon
Book Review from Amazon.com
This collection of essays reflects the author's commitment to improving the effectiveness of education and advancing the practice of democracy. All essays are introduced with commentaries in which Edmund Gordon contextualizes and explains the continuing relevance of the issues.







Affirmative Development: Cultivating Academic Ability edited by Edmund W. Gordon and Beatrice L. Bridgeall
Book Review from Amazon.com
Affirmative Development makes the case theoretically for deliberate intervention to develop academic ability for students not naturally disposed to develop such ability by the conditions under which they live. The book includes discussions of intellective competence and intellective character as products of the development of academic ability and reviews of the research evidence for the feasibility and morality of such action.






Supplementary Education: The Hidden Curriculum of High Academic Achievement
Book Review from Amazon.com
This book makes the case and lays the conceptual foundation for the significance of supplementary education in reducing the academic achievement gap between majority students and students of color. It further elaborates on the idea of supplementary education, which is based on the assumption that high academic achievement is closely associated with exposure to family and community-based activities and learning experiences that occur outside of school in support of academic learning.


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