Date Thesis Awarded

4-2015

Document Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelors of Arts (BA)

Department

Africana Studies

Advisor

Jeremy Stoddard

Committee Member

Leah Glenn

Committee Member

Jamel Donnor

Abstract

In the United States, there is a substantial gap in achievement and opportunity between African American and White students. For my Honors Thesis project, I seek to identify the characteristics of teachers who are successful with African American students. Using culturally relevant pedagogy as the analytical framework, five teachers were interviewed and observed in order to identify their backgrounds and valuable practices in the classroom. These teachers develop positive relationships with their students, yield high academic achievement in their classrooms, and establish good reputations among African American parents and community members. Through my research, I hope to improve teachers’ practices and teacher preparation programs so that teachers can eliminate the opportunity gap in their classrooms and promote academic success among their African American students.