Georgetown unveils resources to diversify syllabi and foster inclusion in higher ed

Georgetown unveils resources to diversify syllabi and foster inclusion in higher ed

The Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security (GIWPS) launched a new resource portal on diversity, equity and inclusion in international affairs education.

The DEI portal responds to growing demand from American colleges and universities—often pushed by students and alumni this summer—to revisit and enhance commitments to DEI.

The portal includes syllabus guides, research summaries, and a list of DEI strategies and plans from American universities compiled through an initiative led by GIWPS Distinguished Fellow Carla Koppell with support from the Robertson Foundation for Government.

“Increasing the focus on issues of equity and inclusion is essential so that the next generation of leaders can navigate global heterogeneity to foster peace, security and prosperity,” said Koppell. 

Adding Diverse Voices & Perspectives to Syllabi 

To make it easier to include diverse scholarship in syllabi, GIWPS published syllabus guides that identify books and articles by scholars from underrepresented communities.

The guides enable instructors to easily bring a broader range of voices into international courses on topics including: IR theories; conflict and security; human rights; and transnational threats like climate change or global health. 

“This is an important new resource for Georgetown colleagues, and others, to utilize in their efforts to make their courses more inclusive and representative of a broad range of perspectives, not just in international relations, but in a host of international affairs subfields. I look forward to the continued growth of this vitally important effort,” said Scott Taylor, Vice Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, School of Foreign Service.

Academic Research on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

GIWPS also published summaries of research on DEI-related issues in curricula, in campus culture, and in the diversity of the faculty, students and staff.

These annotated bibliographies and key takeaways can be leveraged when creating and implementing DEI strategies. GIWPS compiled links to diversity and inclusion strategies and plans from a range of international affairs and public policy schools for reference.

Pro Tips from Professors

Georgetown students were asked which faculty members stood out as allies for diversity, equity and inclusion, whether because of the material on their syllabi or the way they cultivated a welcoming classroom culture. 

9 of the selected professors from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service and College shared their stories and pro tips for promoting inclusion on the GIWPS blog. 

“I’m a first-generation college graduate,” said Dr. Lahra Smith, Director of the African Studies Program, School of Foreign Service. “I like to reveal myself as a first-generation college grad and start by introducing myself as a human being, as a person, on day one.

“If students are used to being in an environment where all perspectives are accepted and promoted, where women have a voice, where minorities have a voice, they will grow to be citizens of a world where this is normal, not the exception,” said Dr. Marwa Daoudy, Chair in Arab Studies, School of Foreign Service