Presentation Details

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The Eleventh International Literacy and Education Research Network Conference on Learning

Beyond “Brown vs. Board” and the Blockade: Dialogue across Social Knowledge Networks

Beverly Bickel, David Truscello.

How do students use dialogue to develop new knowledge and social networks to overcome segregation in the US and decades of the US blockade of Cuba? Two collaborative inquiry projects will be discussed that investigated the centrality of dialogue and reflection to developing transformative social knowledge networks. Presenters will focus on common themes, narratives of students, and a sample of inquiry-based materials, for example the social capital portfolio and sources of knowledge survey.

The first research project was conducted face-to-face and on-line with community college students in the US focusing on investigating and planning to develop students’ social capital networks. Using Freire’s praxis of reflection and action, students achieved critical consciousness regarding the notion that “who you know greatly influences what you will learn.”

The second project focused on the development of transformational international knowledge when, to bridge the blockade, US students engaged in on-line dialogue with Cuban students as a critical source of knowledge to support the US students’ inquiry into Cuban-US relations and an exploration of Cuban music as expressive culture.

Common themes include: the centrality of dialogue for developing consensus and negotiating multiple validity claims; how segregation and isolation result in parochialism, isolationism and narrow-banded knowledge; and inquiry projects as critical epistemology, social action projects with undergraduate students in public higher education institutions.


Beverly Bickel  (United States)
English Language Center
University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Beverly Bickel is the Director of the English Language Center at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) and a doctoral candidate in Language, Literacy and Culture at UMBC where she is conducting research on the social construction of cross-cultural and transformative knowledge using CMC technologies. She has worked with teachers and students on peer-to-peer collaborative cultural and linguistic learning projects in K-12 and higher education settings. She has also worked with novice and experienced teachers in the US and internationally on learning with technology.

David Truscello  (United States)

  • Social Knowledge Networks
  • Transformational Knowledge
  • Critical Epistemology
  • Who You Know is What You Know
  • On-line Dialogue
  • Dialogue for Consensus

(60 min. Workshop, English)