Transgressive Learning Communities: Transformative Spaces for Underprivileged, Underserved, and Historically Underrepresented Graduate Students at Their Institutions

  • Leslie E. Drane Indiana University
  • Jordan Y. Lynton Indiana University
  • Yarí E. Cruz-Rios Indiana University
  • Elizabeth Watts Malouchos Indiana University
  • Katherine D. Kearns Indiana University
Keywords: underrepresented minorities, graduate students, learning communities, critical pedagogy, feminist pedagogy

Abstract

In this article, we propose a new vision of educational development that reimagines how graduate instructors are socialized and professionalized in academic settings. We describe a transgressive learning community that empowers graduate instructors with tools to reveal, mitigate, and disrupt oppressive structures in higher education. Our learning community is founded on critical race and feminist conceptualizations of pedagogical inquiry in its design, implementation, and assessment to serve underprivileged, underserved, and historically underrepresented graduate students. We argue that the intersections of marginalized and graduate student identities create distinct experiences of discrimination, marginalization, tokenism, isolation, and impostor syndrome due to a lack of sustained teaching mentorship within the academy. The transgressive learning community model that we propose in this article functions to create spaces of transgressive and transformational pedagogical engagement for graduate students who exist at the intersections of these identities.

Author Biographies

Leslie E. Drane, Indiana University

Leslie E. Drane is an Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Anthropology and a Graduate Student Instructional Consultant for the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning at Indiana University, Bloomington. 

Jordan Y. Lynton, Indiana University

Jordan Y. Lynton is a socio-cultural Ph.D. student in the Department of Anthropology at Indiana University, Bloomington. 

Yarí E. Cruz-Rios, Indiana University

Yarí E. Crus-Rios is a Ph.D. student in the Department of American Studies at Indiana University, Bloomington. 

Elizabeth Watts Malouchos, Indiana University
Elizabeth Watts Malouchos is the Associate Research Scientist at the Glenn A. Black Laboratory of Archaeology and a Ph.D. candidate in the Anthropology Department at Indiana University, Bloomington.
Katherine D. Kearns, Indiana University

Katherine Kearns is lead instructional consultant for Indiana University’s Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning and received a Ph.D. in Ecology from the University of Georgia.

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Published
2019-09-16
How to Cite
Drane, L. E., Lynton, J. Y., Cruz-Rios, Y. E., Watts Malouchos, E., & Kearns, K. D. (2019). Transgressive Learning Communities: Transformative Spaces for Underprivileged, Underserved, and Historically Underrepresented Graduate Students at Their Institutions. Teaching & Learning Inquiry, 7(2), 106-120. https://doi.org/10.20343/teachlearninqu.7.2.7