A Note from Michael J. Lawler, MSW, PhD

Review Article Opportunity from CYF and APA

I am writing to inform you about an opportunity to contribute a brief review article to CYF NEWS, a bi-annual newsletter produced by the Committee on Children, Youth, and Families (CYF), which is a standing committee of the American Psychological Association (APA). I will be serving as a guest editor of the special issue, which will focus on the Well-being of American Indian Children, Families, and Communities. The special issue will review programs and practices that address the social, emotional, spiritual, and health needs of American Indian children, families, and communities.

CYF NEWS is a widely disseminated newsletter (here is a link to past issues of CYF news: http://www.apa.org/pi/families/resources/newsletter/issues.aspx). The audience includes academic researchers, clinical practitioners, policy makers, funding agency representatives, federal lobbyists at APA, and representatives at NIJ, OJJDP, NSF, and NICHD. All have interest in child, youth, and/or family topics and issues in the field. Thus, CYF NEWS contributions have the potential to shape dialogue, policy, and possible future funding directions that can affect the lives of children, youth, and families. It is imperative that contributions to CYF NEWS are well-grounded in scientific research and evidence-based findings.

Details and submission requirements are as follows:

1. Submissions are limited to 1500 words. This word limit does NOT include references or brief author bios, and amounts to about 6 pages.
2. The deadline for submission is August 10th, 2017
3. Co-authors are welcome (including graduate and postdoctoral students)
4. Pictures and brief bios are published with the articles and are due shortly after articles are submitted
5. CYF NEWS is not a peer reviewed journal. I will serve as the guest editor, and will solicit help reviewing contributions as needed
6. The issue will be published in October 2017

  1. Between 3-4 contributions will be included

    If you would like to submit an article, please contact me. We can discuss your proposed submission to ensure it will be tailored appropriately and in the most effective manner possible. I can be reached at michael.lawler@usd.edu

Fond du Lac Publishes Thunderbird Review Anthology

Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College (FDLTCC) has published the fifth edition of its literary anthology, the Thunderbird Review. The 100-page book features writing and art from FDLTCC students as well as residents of northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin communities.

*Read more here.

Evaluation Book Reviewed by Teachers College Record

new book picA review of Dr. Stafford’s book with a chapter by Dr. Bowman, Continuing the Journey to Reposition Culture and Cultural Context in Evaluation Theory and Practice, was published in the prestigious Teachers College Record.

Teachers College Record, Date Published: June 22, 2016
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 21288, Date Accessed: 7/1/2016 9:06:14 AM

http://www.tcrecord.org/Content.asp?ContentID=21288

Continuing the Journey to Reposition Culture and Cultural Context in Evaluation Theory and Practice

reviewed by Dhani Shah — June 22, 2016

Title: Continuing the Journey to Reposition Culture and Cultural Context in Evaluation Theory and Practice
Author(s): Stafford Hood, Rodney Hopson & Henry Frierson
Publisher: Information Age Publishing, Charlotte
ISBN: 1623969352, Pages: 404, Year: 2014
Search for book at Amazon.com

Stafford Hood, Rodney Hopson, and Henry Frierson’s edited book, Continuing the Journey to Reposition Culture and Cultural Context in Evaluation Theory and Practice, advocates that cultural, racial, and ethnic diversity is one of the most salient features of contemporary society. Hence, they believe it is the right time for Culturally Responsive Evaluation (CRE), “evaluations and assessments that embody cognitive, cultural, and interdisciplinary diversity that are actively responsive to culturally diverse communities and their academic performance goals” (p. xiii). The focus of CRE is studying the context, history, and culture of an evaluated program and its participants and includes Indigenous communities in decision making throughout the evaluation. Thus, CRE is a theoretical, conceptual, and inherently political evaluation model that brings culture to the forefront in evaluation theory and practice. CRE emphasizes evaluation practice, which aims to achieve social justice and “address human bias through inclusion, relationships, and an orientation to context” (p. 180). Generally, human bias is based on our values, relationships, decisions, context, and culture and it can undermine the validity of evaluation processes. CRE keeps in mind the cultural beliefs, practices, norms, and values of any specific culture in which an evaluation is being implemented.

This book is an extension of introductory work on CRE. Back in 2005, the same three editors (Hood, Hopson, and Frierson) published a book titled, The Role of Culture and Cultural Context: A Mandate for Inclusion, the Discovery of Truth, and Understanding in Evaluative Theory and Practice (2005). In the initial version of this book the authors had “reflected the rapidly emerging and frequently contentious discourse on this topic (Culturally Responsive Evaluation) during the early years of this new millennium” (Hood, Hopson, & Frierson, 2015, p. xi).

Continuing the Journey to Reposition Culture is organized into five distinct sections including: a) “CRE Theoretical and Historical Legacies and Extensions,” b) “Evaluators’ Journeys of Introspection and Self-Exploration,” c) “Applications of CRE in Global and Indigenous School Contexts,” d) “Claiming New Territories of CRE: Culturally Specific Methods, Approaches, and Ecologies,” and e) “Epilogue.” In total, 50 experienced contributors have authored 17 chapters within these five book sections. This review treats this text holistically.

The initial chapters are devoted to setting the background for the CRE model which comprises understanding program context, engaging stakeholders, identifying the purpose(s) of evaluation, framing evaluation questions, designing an evaluation, selecting instruments, and collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data. Extending this discussion, the book deliberates the need for a systems approach to CRE practices and suggests using a system evaluation protocol (SEP) framework. System evaluation “refers to the assessment of functions, products, outcomes, and impacts of a system (set of programs, activities, or interventions)” (Trochim et al., 2012, p. 1).

After setting the stage for CRE, the book discusses the concept of validity in CRE; describing that historically validity is defined by dominant groups and has remained a powerful tool for establishing their legitimization. However, as per the Indigenous Evaluation Framework (IEF), validity does not necessarily have the same meaning across different cultural contexts. The authors in Chapter Three argue that although culture-free assessment has long been abandoned, “meaningful inclusion of culture in validation has not consistently followed” (p. 51).

The book includes a thorough discussion about different CRE methods, strategies, and frameworks by giving several examples of evaluation studies in different Indigenous cultural communities across the world. The book dedicates five chapters to CRE practices for MāoriIndigenous communities in Antearoa, New Zealand. The chapter authors also reflect on how a replication of these practices can be conducted for Indigenous communities in the U.S. and elsewhere. These chapters state that engagement and relationship-building rituals have a prime importance in Māori culture and are “grounded in relational trust and acceptance” (p. 95). Therefore, developmental evaluation practice, which is based on the respect of local cultures, their voices, and acknowledgement of cultural strengths, is a favored approach for the evaluation of Māori projects.

Furthermore, the book depicts the Kaupapa Māori (Māori way) paradigm. “Kaupapa Māori evaluation is an assertion of the right of Māori to conduct culturally responsive evaluations that are by, with and for Māori (p. 296). Likewise, Kaupapa Māori relates to a worldview that the Māori people bring to evaluation; it is prescribed in their cultural terms and supports Māori development, societal transformation, and decolonization. Māori evaluators typically have different axiological, ontological, and epistemological foundations than western-oriented evaluators.

In Chapter Ten, authors O’Hara, McNamara, and Harrison share that CRE also has implications for educational assessment methods. Their discussion starts with a study aimed at investigating educational assessment in a multicultural Irish society. The traditional evaluation practices in Irish schools are based on an inflexible model that is exclusive of CRE practices. Irish teachers consider the traditional assessment neither culturally responsive nor sensitive. They share that they are trained as teachers to push students through a public end-of-schooling examination that is predominantly Irish and relates to Irish culture. Every child is assessed on the same model even if he or she comes from a different culture. Therefore, the assessment is not based on the principles of multiculturalism and the Irish system would not serve ethnic minorities in the country very well.

This book is a very serious effort at advocating for the importance, understanding, and application of CRE. Different case studies, descriptions of several projects and programs in several Indigenous communities of New Zealand, the U.S. and other global contexts explain that CRE is one vehicle by which to conduct culture- and context-friendly evaluation practices. The book contains notes and a glossary at the end of several chapters to help the reader understand the context but it does not contain any corresponding exercises.

Continuing the Journey to Reposition Culture and Cultural Context is written using technical and theoretical language and may pose challenges for some readers. Nevertheless, the book is a great in-depth resource for researchers, evaluators, practitioners, students, and teachers who are engaged in anthropological and ethnographic teaching, research, and evaluation. It systematically advocates the case for CRE, its framework, importance, relevance, and applicability in a culturally diverse world.

Reference

Hood, S., Hopson, R., & Frierson, H. (2005). The role of culture and cultural context: A mandate for inclusion, the discovery of truth, and understanding in evaluative theory and practice. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.

Trochim, W., Urban, J. B., Hargraves, M., Hebbard, C., Buckley, J., Archibald, T., Johnson, M.,

& Burgermaster, M. (2012). The guide to the systems evaluation protocol. Ithaca, NY: Cornell Digital Print Services.

Now accepting applications for ANA Panel Reviewers and Chairpersons!

ana_logo_0Greetings!

We are actively recruiting individuals to serve as reviewers and chairpersons for the Administration for Native Americans’ 2016 Objective Panel Review of grant applications. If you are interested in serving on a grant review panel this year, please complete the attached Panel Reviewer Questionnaire and return it to anareviewer@acf.hhs.gov, along with a copy of your current resume (click here to download the latest version of Adobe Reader). You will be notified when we receive the form and if any additional information is required. ANA will select the pool of potential chairpersons and reviewers by March.

If you are selected for the potential pool of panel participants, you will be required to complete approximately three hours of mandatory training in late March or early April. Once the exact dates and times are scheduled, selected reviewers and chairpersons will be notified. Successful completion of this training is a requirement in order to be assigned to a panel review session. Please do not interpret this e-mail as a commitment from ANA for your participation in the review sessions.

For more information and documents on Objective Panel Review, visit the ANA Panel Review webpage.

ANA plans to hold Panel Review during the months of April and May. Listed below are the planned dates and which grants will be reviewed:

Session 1, Friday, April 22 – Friday, May 6, 2016: Native Languages: Esther Martinez Immersion (EMI) and Preservation and Maintenance (P&M), Environmental Regulatory Enhancement (ERE) and Sustainable Employment and Economic Development Strategies (SEEDS)

Session 2Friday, May 13 – Thursday, May 26, 2016: Social and Economic Development Strategies (SEDS), and Social and Economic Development Strategies for Alaska (SEDS Alaska)

Each panel session will be held remotely using an online grant application review system (“ARM”). No travel will be required; however, each participant will be required to have a dedicated phone (land or mobile) line and reliable Internet service. In addition, in consideration of your fellow panel members and ANA staff, you must be available Monday through Friday between the hours of 9:00 AM and 9:00 PM within your local time for the duration of the session.

Serving on a review panel can be professionally rewarding but also an intensive time commitment. Successful reviewers in the past have taken time off from work or arranged their schedules accordingly to prioritize panel review requirements.

ANA listened closely to the comments received from last year’s reviewers and chairpersons and we have worked to implement changes to ensure a successful 2016 Panel Review. We hope you will be a part of this year’s panel review and we look forward to working with you again.

For more information, visit the ANA Panel Review webpage. If you have any questions or problems completing your application, please contact the ANA Help Desk (contact information is below).

Thank you,

The Administration for Native Americans

2016 ANA Objective Panel Review

Help Desk: 1-877-922-9262

ANAReviewer@acf.hhs.gov

 

*This message is an email from ANA