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Equity-Minded Best Practices

Inform Your Racial Equity Work With Best Practice Information

Equity resources curated by the REJI membership. Information useful for equity practitioners is constantly being curated and updated. Check out the summaries provided for resources to inform your equity innovations.

Personalized Growth for Racial Equity

Self to Systems: Leading for Race Equity Impact

Source: ProInspire REJI Application: This Leadership Model is a tool to support individuals and organizations with core commitments, corresponding practices, and reflection questions that can create and sustain racially equitable experiences and outcomes within the social sector.  Learn about the Windows of Leadership, Areas of Advancing Race Equity, and Core Commitments to build shared language and highlight the many ways that all leaders – across identities, roles, issue areas, and organizations – can interrupt inequities, namely race inequity, through their leadership in the social sector.

Why Race? Understanding The Importance Of Foregrounding Race And Ethnicity In Achieving Equity On College Campuses

Source: Ching, C.D. (2013). Center for Urban Education.  REJI Application: This resource provides insights and strategies. It also features a vignette between a college president and a Center for Urban Education Equity Scorecard™ team member, highlighting the conversations that can occur between higher education practitioners.

Diversity Toolkit: A Guide to Discussing Identity, Power and Privilege

Source: The MSW@USC, the online Master of Social Work program at the University of Southern California. REJI Application: This toolkit is intended for faculty, group facilitator, and student affairs personnel that work with underserved populations. Training of this kind can provide historical context about the politics of identity and the dynamics of power and privilege or help build greater self-awareness. Activity instructions provided along with definitions and context.

Core Concepts of Racial Equity

Source: Center for Urban Education. REJI Application: This resources provides definitions to establish common knowledge of terminology associated with racial equity.

Race Equity and Inclusion Action Guide: Embracing Equity: 7 Steps to Advance and Embed Race Equity and Inclusion Within Your Organization.

Source: The Annie E. Casey Foundation. (2014). REJI Application: This framework provides definitions, concepts for understanding different dimensions of racism and how to identify and analyze the root causes of racial inequities.

Implicit Racial Bias Test

Source: Harvard. REJI Application: Self-guided learning and reflection about bias and disparities.

Implicit Bias in Action (Video)

Source: Center for Urban Education Youtube. REJI Application: Supplemental learning and reflection about bias in action.

Strategies to Address and Heal Racialized Trauma

Transforming Higher Education through Organizational Meditation: A Story of the Executive Learning Series on Equity & Empowerment

Source: Balajee, S. and Todd, J. (2018). Metropolitan Universities Vol. 29 No. 1. REJI Application: Insight on racial equity strategies that focus on ways to integrate holistic health, spirit-based practice, mindfulness, and other practices of decolonization to deconstruct transactional practices.

White Teachers Need Anti-Racism Therapy

Source: Love, B. L. (2020). Education Week.  REJI Application: Provides insights to data on educator’s quality of work life; the importance of healing and emotional support for educators; and makes a connection the emotions that come up when issues of race and racism come up.

Restoring to Wholeness: Racial Healing for Ourselves, Our Relationships, and Our Communities

Source:  W.K. Kellogg Foundation. (2017) REJI Application:  Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation (TRHT) is a comprehensive, multi-year national and community-based process to bring about transformational and sustainable change. Through TRHT, partners address the historic and contemporary effects of racism in their communities and institutions. Implementation Guidebook and resources cane be downloaded.

Shared Equity Leadership

Equity by Design

Source: Minnesota State University. REJI Application: The Equity by Design methodology is a tool to help campuses realize Minnesota State’s Equity 2030 goal of academic equity.

Diversity and Equity Strategic Planning Toolkit: Minnesota State Colleges and Universities

Source: Minnesota State University. REJI Application: This toolkit is intended for campus diversity officers, diversity councils, as well as college and university presidents and outlines how to facilitate effective strategic diversity planning to include ways to conduct Needs Assessment, draft a complete diversity evaluation and implementation plan, and develop strategic diversity practices and leadership within the system.

Ensure students are learning: Equity minded principles for department chairs to engage faculty

Source: Andrews, K. E. & Welton, A. D. (2020). Center for Community College Student Engagement & Office of Community College Research and Leadership. REJI Application: Reflection and action steps by department chairs as front-line leaders advancing equity work.

Shared Equity Leadership Toolkit

Source: American Council on Education. REJI Application: The American Council on Education toolkit accompanies the report Shared Equity Leadership Making Equity Everybody’s Work, and enables leaders to reflect on their personal journey toward a critical consciousness. Download additional reports on emotional labor, capacity building and leading for equity.

Racially Equitable Student Success

Guide to Equity and Antiracism for Educators

Source: Nichols, H. (2022). Edutopia.  REJI Application: Faculty resources for lesson plans, videos, and other free accessible resources.

Practical Strategies for Advancing Racial Equity in Online Career and Technical Education

Source: Solosi, I., Briggs, A., Spaulding, S. (2023). Urban Wire. REJI Application: Exploration of inequities for students of color enrolled in online education with strategies for community college and technical education that offer a transfer pathway to four-year colleges.

Racial and Ethnic Equity Gaps in Postsecondary Career and Technical Education: Considerations for Online Learning

Source: Anderson, T., Briggs, A., Spaulding, S., Zamani-Gallaher, E.; Lopez, Lopez, D. (2021). Urban Institute. REJI Application: This brief describes equity gaps for students of color in Career Technical Education programs and offers a framework for improving outcomes at the course, program, and institutional levels. Recommendations on how to infuse equity consciousness, disaggregating and examining data, and examining student technology access.

Advancing Digital Equity for All: Community-Based Recommendations for Developing Effective Digital Equity Plans to Close the Digital Divide and Enable Technology-Empowered Learning

Source: Cardona, M.A. (2022). US Department of Education. REJI Application: Case studies, data and strategies are offered to understand equity gaps to essential technology and learning tools in communities of color and low-income communities.

Getting Started for Equity -- A Guide for Academic Department Leaders

Source: Gable, T., Holiday, T., O’Sullivan, P., Sims, J.J. (2021). Every Learner Everywhere. REJI Application: Provides insights for department chairs on best practices for data-collection and teaching practices for educational equity.

The time is now: systemic changes to increase African Americans with bachelor's degrees in physics and astronomy

Source: American Institute of Physics. REJI Application: Evidence-based strategies on inclusive strategies for racial equity in STEM. The recommendations emphasize the Faculty role in fostering a sense of belonging. Leadership and structures.

Dear White Teachers: You Can't Love Your Black Students If You Don't Know Them

Source: Love, B.L. (2019). Education Week. REJI Application: Insight and reflection on how to engage in race-conscious practices.

Equity-minded Inquiry Series – Syllabus Review Guide

Source: Robers, M.T. Center for Urban Education. REJI Application: A inquiry tool for promoting racial and ethnic equity and equity-minded practice.

Raising The Graduation Rates of Low-Income College Students

Source: Muraskin, L., Lee, J., Wilner, A. and Swail, W.S. (2004). The Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education.    REJI Application: This report presents the findings of a study designed by the Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education to identify the institutional characteristics, practices, and policies that might account for differences in retention and graduation rates among colleges and universities that serve high concentrations of low-income students.

Beyond coming out: New insights about GLBQ college students of color

Source: Strayhorn, T.L., Johnson, R.M., Henderson, T.S., & Tillman-Kelly, D.L. (2015). Center for Higher Education Enterprise, The Ohio State University. REJI Application:  This report highlights 8 years of data regarding the experiences of LGBTQIA students of Color from 50 participants at over 20 public and private universities in the United States. The report provides comprehensive set of recommendations for campus administrators, faculty, policymakers, LGBTQIA students and allies to support student success of LGBTQIA students.

Examples of Excelencia (What Works)

Source: Excelencia in Education.   REJI Application: Excelencia in Education provides a list of universities recognized for their intentional and culturally relevant evidence-based practices demonstrating success for Latino students.

Supporting Native Students Higher Education Issue Brief

Source: The Hunt Institute REJI Application: This brief highlights data and the current landscape of Native populations in the United States. Learn more about current successful interventions and considerations for future action.

Resources on American Indian and Alaska Native Postsecondary Success

Source: Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education.    REJI Application: As part of the Native-Serving Institutions Initiative, WICHE has compiled a wide variety of resources to help institutions create a culture in which American Indian and Alaska Native students can succeed.

Race Conscious Policy Making

Opportunities Denied: High-Achieving Black and Latino Students Lack Access to Advanced Math

Source: Ed Trust. REJI Application: REJI Application: This brief focuses on the impact of quality high school mathematics instruction and the urgency to better prepare marginalized students in high-level mathematics considering the role that math course-taking plays in admissions decisions and the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent ban on affirmative action in college admission. The report concludes with recommendations that federal and state policymakers can take to address the longstanding, institutional challenges that deny high-achieving Black and Latino students and students from low-income backgrounds access to the higher-level math courses that will put them on a path to achieving their dreams.

A Racial Reckoning: Anti-Asian Racism and Exclusion in Higher Education

Source: Gutierrez, R.A., Le, A. and Teranishi, R.T. (2021). REJI Application: Insight on race-conscious policy and recommendations for higher education institutions to actively combat anti-Asian racism.

Delivering on the Promise of Progress Policy

Source: Hernandez-Hamed, E., Chase, M. and Bensimon, E. M. (2020). Center for Urban Education. REJI Application: This report defines equity-minded leadership, shows findings and provides insight on strategies to align racial equity practices to state-level policies.

A Role for Policymakers in improving the Status of Black Male Students in U.S. Higher Education

Source: Harper, S.R. and Harris III, F. (2012). Penn Race and Equity Center Research. REJI Application:  Insight to best practices that support Black male students using policy and data from the U.S. Department of Education, U.S. Department of Justice, NCAA Federal Graduation Rates Database.

Equity-Minded Student Mattering & Belonging

Structures For Belonging: A Synthesis Of Research On Belonging-Supportive Learning Environments

Source: Healey, K. and Stroman, C. (2021). Research Synthesis. REJI Application: This article draws on research on K-12 and postsecondary school environments and settings that impact student success. Additionally, there is an emphasis on data that on how belonging is related to learning and well-being. Tips and strategies offered.

A socio-ecological perspective on sense of belonging among racially/ethnically minoritized college students: Implications for equity-minded practice and policy

Source: Johnson, R. M. (2022). New Directions for HigherEducation.  REJI Application: This article offers a socio-ecological perspective on sense of belonging that works to mitigate “othering” when creating structures of support for institutionally marginalized groups.

Social-Emotional Learning for Black Students is Ineffective When it is Culture-Blind

Source: Ford, D. (2020) Diverse Issues in Higher Education. REJI Application: Insight on racial equity practices that address racial trauma experienced by Black students.

What Works for Latino Students in Higher Education Compendium

Source: Excelencia in Education. REJI Application: Insight of evidence-based best practices across various universities serving Latine/x students.

Creating Antiracist Spaces Where Black Students Can Breathe and Thrive

Source: Dennis, T. (2020). Diverse Issues in Higher Education. REJI Application: Insight and strategies on student belonging and mattering.

Black Male Student-Athletes and Racial Inequities in NCAA Division I College Sports

Source: Harper, S. R. (2018). USC Race and Equity Center. REJI Application:  Insight by USC Race and Equity Center on Black male student-athletes and racial inequities at 65 universities that comprise the five major NCAA sports conferences.

Indigenous Perspectives on Native Student Challenges in Higher Education

Source: Zape-tah-hol-ah Minthorn, R. (2020). Higher Education Today Blog.  REJI Application: Aside from Indigenizing high impact practices, below are recommendations for what should be foundational praxis for institutions to support their Indigenous students, faculty, and staff.

Obtaining and Using Racially Equitable Data

Racial Equity Impact Assessment

Source: Race Forward REJI Application: A Racial Equity Impact Assessment (REIA) is a systematic examination of how different racial and ethnic groups will likely be affected by a proposed action or decision. Sample questions provided.

A new decade for assessment: Embedding equity into assessment praxis (Occasional Paper No. 42)

Source: Montenegro, E., & Jankowski, N. A. (2020, January). University of Illinois and Indiana University, National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA). REJI Application: This occasional paper explores what equitable assessment is and is not; the challenges and barriers to equitable assessment work; where the decade ahead may lead; and next steps in the conversation on equity and assessment.

Bringing Accountability to Life: How Savvy Data Users find the “Actionable N” to Improve Equity and Sustainability in Higher Education.

Source: Dowd, A. C., Witham, K., Hanson, D., Ching, C. D., Liera, R., & Fernandez, M. C. (2018). American Council on Education. REJI Application:  Insights on how to find the “actionable N” by making fine-grained, disaggregated data available for regular use.

Confronting Equity Issues on Campus: Implementing the Equity Scorecard in Theory and Practice

Source: Bensimon, E. M., & Malcom, L. E. (2012). Stylus Publishing. REJI Application:  The Equity Scorecard model differs significantly from traditional approaches to effecting change by creating institutional teams to examine and discuss internal data about student outcomes, disaggregated by race and ethnicity.

Knowing our Students: Understanding of Our Students Guide Book

Source: Achieving the Dream. REJI Application: Insight of evidence-based data collection to understand the needs and changing demographics of students. Each section provides tips, tools, and guidelines on how to use data in decision-making.

Examining Critical Theory as a Framework to Advance Equity Through Student Affairs Assessment

Source: Heiser, C.A., Prince, K. and Levy J.D. (2017) Journal of Student Affairs Inquiry. REJI Application: Insight on critical theory and evidence-based racial equity assessment practices.

Office of Community College’s Research and Leadership Equity-Centered Comprehensive Needs Assessment Toolkit

Source: McCambly, H.N., Aguilar-Smith, St., Felix, E.R., Hu, X., and Dubois Baber, L. (2023). Community College Review. REJI Application: Insight to evidence-based racial equity assessment practices at Community colleges.

Using Student-Centered Design to Build an Inclusive Strategic Planning Process

Source: Achieving the Dream. REJI Application: Case-studies that provide evidence-based strategic planning process using data collection and racial equity practices.

A New Decade for Assessment: Embedding Equity into Assessment Praxis

Source: Montenegro, E. and Jankowski, N.A. (2020). National Institute for Learning Outcomes and Assessment. REJI Application: Guide for equitable and culturally responsive approaches to assessment.

Racially Equitable Senior Leadership

Toward Culturally Sustaining Governance in Higher Education: Best practices of Theory, Research and Practice

Source: Rall, R.M., Morgan, D.L., and Commodore, F. (Winter 2020). Journal of Education Human Resources. Volume 38. REJI Application: The authors reflect on the development of culturally sustaining governance (CSG) and the ways it can be applied in higher education.

Getting the Board Involved: Challenges and Opportunities for Equity at the Highest Level of University Governance

Source: Rall, R.M. (2021) USC Rossier Pullias Center for Higher Education. REJI Application: Toolkit offers strategies and actionable recommendations for Board action and guided questions for Board discussions.

Whiteness Rules: Racial Exclusion in Becoming an American College President

Source: Bensimon, and Associates. (2022). College Futures.  REJI Application: The article illustrates how racialization happens in college presidential searches in public higher education institutions. The companion toolkit, Tools to Redesign Presidential Search for Racial Equity, offers context and concrete steps that higher education institutions can take to reduce bias and improve equity and inclusion within their presidential search processes and open the door to more diverse leadership.

Board Responsibility for Equitable Student Success

Source: Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges. REJI Application: AGB offers definitions, guides, and leadership principles that support the transformation of board roles, processes, and business models that address barriers to student success using an equity lens.

Equity-Minded Hiring and Retention Practices

Equity-Minded Principles for Presidential Searches in Higher Education

Source: Burmicky, J; McClure, K. R., Gonzales, J. and McCoy, C.J. (2023). American Council on Education. REJI Application: This research brief introduces five equity-minded principles for conducting presidential searches.

Faculty Diversity and Student Success go Hand in Hand: So why are Faculty so White?

Source: The Education Trust (2022). REJI Application: This document provides a scholarly overview of how faculty diversity supports the success of all students, tools to aid in equity-minded searches and a report card for public institutions around this issue.

The Invisible Checklist: Ascension Implications for Women of Color Leaders

Source: Gray, A.L. (2023). American Council on Education. REJI Application: This brief article shares about the intersectional oppressions experienced by women of color who apply for presidencies.

Implementing Meaningful Measures To Hire, Retain, And Cultivate Diverse Talent In Higher Education

Source: Mendez, D. (2021). National Association of Colleges and Employers. REJI Application: This document is a very quick read and offers helpful tools and suggestions for equity-minded HR practices.

Faculty Hiring Does Not Have to Be Explicitly Racist to Reproduce Racial Inequity

Source:  Liera, R. (2023). USC Race and Equity Center. REJI Application: This article examines faculty hiring practices and racial equity in the California Community College System.  Examples of racial bias manifest and actionable ideas and recommendations provided.

Supporting BIPOC Staff

Source: Coalition for Diversity & Inclusion in Scholarly Communications (2021).  REJI Application: This toolkit offers reading and videos focused on strategies to retain employees of color.

Equity-Minded Approaches to Teaching and Learning

Honoring Indigenous Ways of Knowing in Community College Programs

Source: Lumina Foundation REJI Application: This report is focused on Native communities in northern rural Wisconsin and Nicolet Area Technical College. The goal was to create a curriculum and grant credit for prior knowledge in Native culture, governance, history, and language towards a technical certificate and associate degree. Native pedagogy and ways, and curriculum was developed by Indigenous leaders and members of area tribes with the support of college faculty and staff.

Ensure Students Are Learning: Asset-Based, Equity-Minded Approaches to Teaching and Learning

Source: Zamani-Gallaher, E. M. (2020, Issue Brief 1). Office of Community College Research and Leadership & the Center for Community College Student Engagement. (2020). REJI Application: This brief focuses on foundational knowledge and includes shared vocabulary and common language around building an equity-minded, asset-based instructional culture of teaching and learning.

Centering Equity-Mindedness in Syllabus Construction

Source: Keist, J. A., and Dyer-Barr, R. (2020, Issue Brief 2). Office of Community College Research and Leadership & the Center for Community College Student Engagement REJI Application: This brief focuses on the importance of designing an equity-minded syllabus.

Equity-minded approaches for cultivating student engagement in the classroom

Source: Georges, Jr., C. T., and Rockey, M. (2020, Issue Brief 4). Office of Community College Research and Leadership & the Center for Community College Student Engagement. REJI Application: This brief centers on practices identified in the Guided Pathways Model and reflections on pedagogical practices that are central to becoming equity-minded educators.

Toward a Theory of Culturally Relevant Pedagogy

Source: Ladson-Billings, G. (1995). American Educational Research Journal, 32(3), 465-491. REJI Application:  Reflections on the pedagogical practices of eight exemplary teachers of African-American students as a way to define and recognize culturally relevant pedagogy.

Members of the Racial Equity and Justice Institute are encouraged to share resources that they believe will benefit higher education’s ongoing work for equity-minded institutional transformation. To do so, download this form, complete and send back to who will post to REJI website.

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