Multicultural education is an integral part of the learning process for university students. According to research, the idea of multicultural education has a positive effect on the development and strengthening of interpersonal relationships between representatives of different cultures. The inclusion of multicultural education in the curriculum of technical universities is highly effective in various aspects of life: cultural, creative, scientific, and social. The reduction of stereotypes and prejudices through direct contact and interactions between representatives of different cultures is due to the formation of multicultural competence. The multicultural education perspective recognizes cultural pluralism as the ideal and healthy state in any productive society and promotes equality between existing cultural groups. This principle allows the perspective of multicultural education to go beyond the pedagogy of equality as the only way to confront problems. The assimilation constituent of multicultural education lies in the fact that the transformation and combination of microcultures with the preservation of customs and traditions occurs in order to form multicultural society. The implementation of multicultural education in the curriculum of higher educational institutions is one of the significant steps in the development of social equality and interpersonal relations. The purpose of the paper is to explain the importance and feasibility of introducing multicultural education in the process of teaching students of higher educational institutions and to show the application of the multicultural education model for establishing strong intercultural ties, preserving multicultural values and forming student competence in relation to other cultures.
Multiculturalism in higher education curriculum is teaching and learning that is based on the principles of democratic values that promote cultural pluralism. In other words, it represents the achievement of equality in curriculum and developments, which is based on a comprehension of ethnic peculiarities of various cultures. The main goal of multicultural education is to change the structure of institutions in order for students belonging to different racial, ethnic, linguistic and cultural groups to have equal rights (Vasilyeva, Samigullina, Danilova, 2020).
In the 21st century, the student must be culturally sensitive and capable of honoring multicultural values. At present, the suppression of microcultures and inequality between people in society are the result of the polyculturalism assimilation. Therefore, like never before, there is a real need to expand multicultural education in order to eradicate inequality which has mainly focused on the pedagogy of equality as a means of correcting inequality between people in society, while other aspects of human development and values have been ignored.
Currently, the need to include a global perspective, in which cultural pluralism is recognized as an ideal and healthy state in any productive society, is acutely felt (Mukhtasarova, Safin, 2020). Owing to the rapidly growing interconnections between all countries of the world, especially when we face global problems, the field of multicultural education must be expanded to comprise democratic values, cultural pluralism in culturally diverse societies, national and global interdependence.
A global perspective of multicultural education allows promoting these values, as well as facilitating the equality between all cultural groups in society, the latter has especially become acute since the era of assimilation of multicultural education. The global perspective of multicultural education enables people to develop respect and appreciation of the world various cultures (Samigullina et al., 2020).
Currently, the need to include a global perspective, in which cultural pluralism is recognized as an ideal and healthy state in any productive society, is acutely felt. Owing to the rapidly growing interconnections between all countries of the world, especially when we face global problems, the field of multicultural education must be expanded to comprise democratic values, cultural pluralism in culturally diverse societies, national and global interdependence (Polyakov, 2018). A global perspective of multicultural education allows promoting these values, as well as facilitating the equality between all cultural groups in society, the latter has especially become acute since the era of assimilation of multicultural education. The global perspective of multicultural education enables people to develop respect and appreciation of the world various cultures.
The introduction of multiculturalism in the learning process is aimed at achieving fair and equal educational opportunities for all students including socially and economically disadvantaged and ethnic minorities in microcultures (Zaylalova, Zaylalov, 2020). Fair pedagogy requires educators to develop a comprehension of the various learning styles that students obtain from their cultural upbringing so that educators could use alternative instructional strategies to help students learn crucial concepts, principles, facts, and generalizations in different content areas and academic disciplines.
Educators should develop pedagogical knowledge, skills and experience in order to enable them to adapt alternative teaching methods or modify instructional strategies in culturally diverse classrooms. Fair pedagogy must provide the highest standards of academic excellence among all students. There is also a need to change the classroom and out-of-class climate so that learners from all cultural groups would be able to achieve academic success.
Pedagogy in the 21st century appears as a sphere of competing and diverse concepts with contemporary science-intensive technologies, information products, and qualified specialists. Pedagogy is increasingly focused on the assertion of the personal principle in a human being within tolerance formation at establishing interethnic relations in the multicultural collective of a technical university. One of the priority pedagogical issues is the multicultural approach in social education. A multicultural approach can be a tool for overcoming the crisis of upbringing and education, contributing to the harmonization of relations between representatives of various civilizations and cultures (Nieto, 2017).
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of the paper is to study the role of multicultural education and develop a methodology for introducing multiculturalism into the higher education curriculum for ensuring maximum efficiency of intercultural interaction. It is possible to make a big breakthrough in national research in all areas of knowledge-intensive industries by studying and applying given methods of multicultural integration. This, in turn, can solve many issues, ranging from interethnic conflicts and misunderstandings, lack of equal opportunities for the implementation of any socially beneficial idea, ending with many others, possibly much more global ones. It is worth drawing attention to the fact that given methods and strategies can be refined and improved, which would significantly enhance their benefits for society and increase interest in the material under consideration. The study of multiculturalism is the first and key step for further development in this area.
We have identified various countries with diverse historical, ethnic and cultural peculiarities. The experience of each country is of great significance for comprehending the general world order in the field of introducing multiculturalism into interdependent spheres of social order. However, effective policy of multicultural implementation is not carried out everywhere, therefore, the experience of more advanced countries and individual international institutions can positively influence the creation of healthy multicultural relationships in places where they are weakly expressed.
Multiculturalism is a trend of recent centuries, which allows increasing the effectiveness of each individual, and giving all its participants equal opportunities in the educational and professional spheres of society (Au, 2017).
When preparing this material, we were guided by both an analytically sound approach and the study of the practical constituent of the multicultural interaction problem in the university educational environment. We believe that intercultural integration in the academic environment should not be separated from social interethnic tendencies, because everything that happens in the public sphere directly or indirectly affects all educational processes. We have studied not only the example of the academic environment of Russian universities, but also foreign educational institutions. Based on this, we have made conclusions about some aspects of multicultural interaction.
There is a clear need for solving issues related to improving the multicultural environment in the contemporary world; but a much deeper problem lies in its background, namely, intercultural social relations (Gabdrakhmanova, Samigullina, Izmaylova, 2020). The formation of a "healthy" educational environment, where multicultural processes and communication are fruitful, is complicated in a country where misunderstanding and conflicts between two completely different cultural ideas take place. It is required to put an end to conflicts between two or more cultural parties in given situation before introducing the method of multicultural interaction in the educational environment. It seems to be difficult, because students, like the rest people of all nations, are subject to stereotypical beliefs that interfere with common interests. Nevertheless, given goal is achievable; the practice of many states demonstrates this. Therefore, when speaking about a multicultural educational environment, we must take into account the factor of interethnic sentiments. It is necessary to consider examples of multicultural interaction of the most successful countries and educational institutions. The multicultural approach is more or less present in educational practice in many countries of the world. Such states can be divided into the following categories:
- with historically long and deep national and cultural differences (Singapore, Mexico);
- integrated multicultural processes due to the inclusion of colonial territories (Great Britain, France, Holland);
- became such as a result of voluntary or involuntary resettlement (USA, Canada, Switzerland).
The key factor in the development of multicultural education of technical university students is pedagogical support and bilingual education. The vector of given directions lies in the plane of creating special educational programs based on the allocation of multicultural values as a true constituent of contemporary higher education. Pedagogical support of students is carried out using the mechanisms of pedagogical work and involves linguistic, socio-communicative and parental support (Yusupov, 2020).
Discussion with parents of students belonging to an ethnic minority is necessary to introduce their children to the general educational environment. Taking responsibility for their control and education, as well as helping children in learning about the structure and peculiarities of indigenous culture and language are fundamental factors of creating the successful multicultural environment in any public sphere.
The most essential condition is teaching students by means of the languages of those groups whose interaction is expected in the educational environment to create a full-fledged and comfortable multicultural educational environment. There is an educational method, according to which teaching is put into practice in two or more languages. For instance, teaching of smaller ethnic groups can take place in the language of given groups during the first period of study, and then their learning is conducted in the language of native speakers (Danilova, 2018). It assists to overcome many language difficulties, as well as better navigate between students of diverse cultures.
The problems of polyculturalism are solved both within the school system and the framework of continuous upbringing and education. Primarily, multicultural education has affected students of general education levels. Besides, the comprehension of the need for its fundamental implementation is growing at the level of higher education (Fahrutdinova, Fahrutdinov, Yusupov, 2016). One of the conditions for multiculturalism in higher education is the consideration of racial and ethnic diversity and differences in the composition of students. There is a goal of overcoming barriers that hinder the standard communication and development of students from various ethnic and cultural groups, and establishment of humane relations between them as a significant condition for the mankind progress. The ideology of ethnocentrism, nationalism and racism poses a considerable danger to multicultural education. In the United States, the concept of “polyculturalism” was initially used in the context of racial separatism and ethnocentrism and had a negative meaning (Lawyer, 2018).
The states that emerged on the territory of the post-Soviet space after the USSR decay faced the problem of integrating multiculturalism into pedagogical solutions. The formation of two diametrically opposed approaches was a consequence: the first approach represents respect for the cultural and educational interests of peoples; the second is based on nationalism.
Cultural features of Russia allow being a guide between our and other countries of diverse cultural reference points. It should also be taken into account that Russian experience in the field of multicultural education is invaluable, since a huge number of peoples and ethnic communities simultaneously live and develop in it (Zailalov, Zailalova, 2020). This means that resources and opportunities are required in accordance with their cultural and social tendencies, and they could form the personality development, as well as educational and professional success for each nationality. Therefore, multicultural processes in Russia are mainly focused on three fundamental sources: Russian, national and common to all mankind. There are pronounced tendencies for the preservation of cultural values in Russia, since each representative of any ethnic group retains and transfers knowledge about cultural peculiarities and native language to subsequent generations throughout their lives. Similar system of multicultural education clearly correlates with world views being an integral part and bringing a lot of new knowledge about multicultural development. Given tendencies need to be protected and improved, since the ideal structure of the multicultural educational and professional spheres can only be formed in this way.
The analysis outcome is the fact that multiculturalism does not include a specific factor, but a combination of various methods and techniques. Many educational institutions apply certain measures so that every participant in the educational system feels like a part of a general picture. These or those measures are efficient to varying degrees. Experience shows that measures to create a multicultural environment make the educational sphere the most functioning, because each cultural and ethnic side is able to share experiences for the society development and improvement. Every participant can learn the cultural, linguistic and social peculiarities of other ethnic groups. The importance of introducing multicultural education into the curriculum is due to the desire of maintaining interethnic communication among students. The cultural environment wealth depends on the region, particular atmosphere, which either promotes or hinders the development of cultural environment. Certain living conditions of the community, ways of organizing activities are formed in each region, and its attitude is formed according to the needs of culture and education spheres, and many other characteristics.
Multiculturalism is a mass phenomenon based on a tolerant attitude, mutual respect and equal opportunities for every participant. The phenomenon is quite developed in advanced countries. Every technology needs continuous improvement including multiculturalism. The above mentioned examples can be a good experience for states with a discriminatory approach in the educational and professional sphere. This is a valuable experience that can solve many problems of interethnic relations, which, in turn, will lead to significant development in other areas, from the public and social sphere to science-intensive industries. Multicultural integration of leading international institutions provides invaluable impression about the order of building interethnic interaction. It is possible to talk about the prosperity of the system, constantly improving it.
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31 March 2022
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Vasilyeva, E. R., Gilyazetdinov, R. A., & Mardanov, R. F. (2022). Role Of Multicultural Education In Institutions Of Higher Learning: Global Perspective. In I. Savchenko (Ed.), Freedom and Responsibility in Pivotal Times, vol 125. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 1054-1059). European Publisher. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2022.03.125