Fostering Creative Compassion in Honors Students Through Culturally Sustaining Pedagogy and Mindfulness
This quasi-experimental, concurrent, mixed method, action research study sought to evaluate how an elective 1-credit course informed by mindfulness and culturally sustaining pedagogy influenced honors students’ academic self-efficacy, self-compassion, and their meaning-making about what it means to be an honors student. Theoretical perspectives and research guiding the study included: academic self-efficacy, culturally sustaining pedagogy, mindfulness, and third space. Drawing from these perspectives, the 9-week Creative Compassion course utilized poetry and rap as a way to enact culturally sustaining pedagogy and also as a vehicle for students to practice mindfulness. Findings from quantitative data from pre- and post- surveys of a treatment and control population, as well as qualitative data (open-ended survey questions, focus groups, and student artifacts) from the treatment population are presented here. This study revealed the following: practices informed by culturally sustaining pedagogy positively impacted students’ mindfulness, these same practices allowed for the creation of a third space within the classroom, and improving student self-compassion should be an increased priority. Additional implications for research and practice are also presented.