Culturally Relevant Pedagogy in Engineering: Examining How Who We Are Informs How We Teach

Title: Culturally Relevant Pedagogy in Engineering: Examining How Who We Are Informs How We Teach

When: December 10, 2021 2:30 – 4:00 PM (Eastern Time)

Video Recording:


Slides: link

Facilitators:  Dr. James Holly, Jr., Dr. Avneet Hira, Dr. Homero Murzi, Dr. Brooke Coley


Engineering educators should consider how cultural identity mediates the formation of engineering identity. This workshop will help engineering educators examine their instructional practices and how their teaching is informed by their cultural identity. This self-reflection will help instructors better utilize the cultural capital students possess to enhance engineering learning and identity.

Learning objectives

At  the conclusion of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  1.  Apply principles of critical self-reflection to their pedagogy
  2.  Identify the tenets of Culturally Relevant Pedagogy
  3. Locate sociopolitical considerations embedded in their course content and assessment procedures



James Holly, Jr.

Dr. James Holly, Jr. is a Detroiter, educator, and researcher focused on counteracting anti-Black racism in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education. He currently participates in the training of STEM educators that want to build up the strengths of urban Black students. He has a bachelor’s degree from Tuskegee University and master’s degree from Michigan State University, both in Mechanical Engineering, which inspired his pursuit of a doctorate in Engineering Education from Purdue University. His desires to transform the way engineering is presented to Black youth, so that it is empowering and helps them address the everyday multidimensional problems they experience in their communities. His research explores how to teach the STEM disciplines with a justice mindset, the process of helping aspiring science and mathematics teachers learn engineering, and how the personal stories of Black people with STEM degrees can inform equitable STEM education. LinkedInTwitter


Avneet Hira

Dr. Avneet Hira is an educator, researcher, maker, and aerospace engineer. She is an Assistant Professor of Engineering at Boston College. She received her PhD in Engineering Education and MS in Aerospace Engineering from Purdue University, and BE in Aeronautical Engineering from Punjab Engineering College. Her scholarship is motivated by the fundamental question of how engineering and technology can support people in living well in an increasingly engineered world. Her research focuses on affordances of technology, humanistic design, and engineering epistemology to promote purpose and connection in engineering education. In her work, she partners with students and educators (middle school to undergraduate), youth and their families, community organizations, artisans, makers, designers, and technologists. Currently, she is part of a team setting up the Human-Centered Engineering program at Boston College. Twitter


Homero Murzi

Dr. Homero Murzi leads the Engineering Competencies, Learning, and Inclusive Practices for Success (ECLIPS) Lab. He holds degrees in Industrial Engineering (BS, MS), Master of Business Administration (MBA) and in Engineering Education (PhD). Homero has 15 years of international experience in industry and academia. His research is on inclusive pedagogical practices, industry-driven competency development, global engineering education, and understanding barriers Latinx and Native Americans have in engineering. He has been recognized as a Diggs Teaching Scholar, a Graduate Academy for Teaching Excellence Fellow, a Diversity Scholar, a Fulbright Scholar and was inducted in the Bouchet Honor Society. Homero holds honorary positions at the University of Queensland in Australia and the University of Los Andes in Venezuela. Homero works to develop effective culturally relevant learning environments that promote sustainable competencies engineering students require to succeed in the workforce.  Twitter

Brooke Coley

Brooke C. Coley, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor in Engineering at the Polytechnic School of the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University. She is also Principal Investigator of the Shifting Perceptions, Attitudes and Cultures in Engineering (SPACE) Lab, which aspires to elevate the experiences of marginalized populations, dismantle systemic injustices, and transform the way inclusion is cultivated in engineering through the implementation of novel technologies and methodologies in engineering education. Her active NSF-supported research focuses on three specific areas: the role of identity-related professional organizations in Black engineering student success (NSF# 1828659), factors impacting trajectory decisions of engineering students from underrepresented groups at community colleges (NSF# 173316) and creating pathways to engineering education research for engineering undergraduates (NSF# 2051156).  Lab