From "They" Science to "Our" Science: Hip Hop Epistemology in STEAM Education
Dolberry, Maurice Ellis
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From “They” Science to “Our” Science: Hip Hop Epistemology in STEAM Education By Maurice E Dolberry University of Washington Chair of Supervisory Committee: Professor Geneva Gay College of Education Keywords: hip hop; science; math; critical race theory; epistemology; pedagogy Hip hop has moved from being considered a type of music into being understood as a culture in which a prominent type of music originates. Hip hop culture has a philosophy and epistemological constructs as well. This study analyzed those constructs to determine how conceptions of science factor in hip hop worldviews. Pedagogical models in culturally responsive teaching and Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) education were also examined to discern their philosophical connections with hip hop culture. These connections were used to create two theoretical models. The first one, Hip Hop Science, described how scientific thought functions in hip hop culture. The second model, Hip Hop STEAM Pedagogy, proposes how hip hop culture can inform STEAM teaching practices. The study began by using Critical Race Theory to create a theoretical framework proposing how the two theoretical models could be derived from the philosophical and pedagogical concepts. Content analysis and narrative inquiry were used to analyze data collected from scholarly texts, hip hop songs, and interviews with hip hop-responsive educators. The data from these sources were used initially to assess the adequacy of the proposed theoretical framework, and subsequently to improve its viability. Four overlapping themes emerged from the data analyses, including hip hop-resistance to formal education; how hip hop culture informs pedagogical practice in hip hop-responsive classrooms; conceptions of knowledge and reality that shape how hip hoppers conduct scientific inquiry; and hip hop-based philosophies of effective teaching for hip hoppers as a marginalized cultural group. The findings indicate that there are unique connections between hip hop epistemology, sciencemindedness, and pedagogical practices in STEAM education. The revised theoretical framework clarified the nature of these connections, and supported claims from prior research that hip hop culture provides viable sites of engagement for STEAM educators. It concluded with suggestions for future research that further explicates hip hop epistemology and Hip Hop STEAM Pedagogy.
- Education - Seattle