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In Search of Authentic Infrastructure: An AI Imperative

Ken Coopwood Sr.

A recent article published in Diverse: Issues In Higher Education mentioned faculty concern about the impact of artificial intelligence on higher education. The problem wasn’t about AI, as it is more popularly known. It was about the degree to which “intelligence” can be authenticated within the scope of the Eurocentric framework and without knowledge of students’ sense of contributions and achievements of people worldwide who look like them. This article, written by Dr. William B. Harvey, a nationally recognized scholar and academic leader, ultimately posits that limiting students’ access to the truth about themselves and historical realities is unacceptable. If institutions continue this pattern, baseline criteria for "inclusive excellence" within all campus program content will also remain unacceptable.Istockphoto 1452604857 612x612

Institutions must examine the bowels of their infrastructures to advance student, staff, and faculty development from “artificial” to “authentic.” This means there should be a search for policies, traditions, staples, and curriculums that deprive constituents of global knowledge and stifle behaviors and innovation that atone and integrate. The search itself must be authentic, meaning that a neutrally scrutinizing instrument must be employed to identify narrowly defined behaviors that represent “smoking guns” regarding why “things get done that way round here” and what are the “powers that be” behind the guns.

The Diverse Organizational Impact and Transformation (DOIT) certification survey ushers in this kind of scrutiny. It is a tool that utilizes transformative statement-response scenarios to gain perspective for in-depth infrastructural analyses. The instrument addresses the core components of institution life. Specifically, it delves into program content protocols, a sub-component of its Institutional Climate pillar, which identifies areas of skewed, i.e., “artificial” frameworks, that serve to limit an institution’s mission and everyday experience to values held by the majority group. For example, how people are onboarded to the workplace should entail an extraction of language and content that alludes to the superiority of any group or creed. Similarly, opportunities for engagement should be constructed with criteria that identify the resulting educational, social, and personal development values. If you don’t look with intentionality, it’s easy to say, “If it ain’t broke, it doesn’t need fixing.” The DOIT survey helps reveal infrastructural components that can be developed for global benefit and features primarily for authentic infrastructure's symbolic accomplishment.

Significant discoveries await campus leaders and their broader constituency when efforts are made to define inclusive excellence by gauging the degree to which subjects previously less examined, like homophobia, racism, and caste systems, influence how people receive and react to a more globalized and authentic educational infrastructure. The DOIT survey leads the thought life towards these revelations and connects each behavior discovered with a frequency (culture) that depicts the plight for transformative diversity leadership and education.

Jeffrey Robinson, the Who We Are Project founder, spoke candidly during his recent visit to the Central Community College in Charlotte, North Carolina. “The fight will be vicious when you know the time for your narrative is ending.” These words indicate that other stories that include the emotional, psychological, and historical presence of diverse others are imminent and discovery by discovery, indisputable. Therefore, institutions should be compelled to dig into the crevices of their infrastructures with tools such as the DOIT survey. The new narratives arriving daily will be met with less resistive force when artificial instructions, divisional philosophies, unit metrics, behavioral mechanics, and historical myths are unearthed, examined, and refined to reflect the making of an authentic approach to inclusive excellence.   




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