How Does an Arts and Culture Class That Qualifies as an Undergraduate Multicultural General Education Course Facilitate Greater Self-awareness?
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The call for multicultural awareness is a somewhat recent phenomenon. Institutions of higher education in the United States have developed multicultural general education courses to address rapidly changing demographics, and growing globalization trends in the U.S. Essential outcomes include developing culturally competent citizens. Key questions revolve around how institutions have implemented multicultural courses and whether the approaches actually impact student cultural awareness, or increase cultural competency. There is little evidence that shows a relationship between participating in these undergraduate courses and a greater capacity to engage across cultural differences. One of the cornerstones of cultural competency is the capacity to understand one's own cultural context. Some multicultural education programs implement self-reflective processes to develop increased levels of self-awareness as a foundation for the development of diversity knowledge and cultural competency. This study investigates an approach utilizing arts engagement to foster greater self-awareness as a potential stage in the development of cultural competency.