SoTL as a Tool to Combat Racism and Promote Social Justice

How can I empower my students with knowledge and skills to teach against U.S. imperialism, militarism, and white supremacy? How can I create a learning site where my students would deeply engage with difficult knowledge and histories, reconsider the dominant yet oppressive narratives in society, and develop historical and civic agency to end the status quo through their profession as schoolteachers? I have engaged in SoTL to answer these questions and better support my students---elementary preservice teachers---to grow as anti-racist and justice-oriented educators. In the session, I will share what I have learned from my SoTL works and pedagogical conditions that may be beneficial for other educators who strive for anti-racist, anti-oppressive education in college classrooms.

Sohyun An
Sohyun An, Ph.D.

Professor of Social Studies Education
Elementary and Early Childhood Education
Kennesaw State University

Dr. Sohyun An is a professor of social studies education at Kennesaw State University. She received B.S. and M.S. degrees in social studies education from Seoul National University in South Korea, and Ph.D. degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. As a former high school social studies teacher, Dr. An is currently a teacher educator of elementary social studies education. Her teaching and research center on anti-racist curriculum and pedagogy and teaching about Asian American history. Her current project investigates anti-racist pedagogy in elementary classrooms, research funded by the Spencer Foundation. She has also contributed to Smithsonian and PBS curriculum projects regarding Asian American history education. In the wake of COVID-19 pandemic and the upsurge of anti-Asian hate and violence, Dr. An has been interviewed and had her teaching and research cited in many media outlets, including CNN, Time, New York Times, Reuters, and Vox. She is also the recipient of the 2022 Distinguished Professor Award from Kennesaw State University as well as the Distinguished Researcher Award from American Educational Research Association's Research on the Education of Asian and Pacific Americans SIG.