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Special guest Monika Kovacs joins the international project meeting

27 Mar 2017 - by Michael McGlade

In March 2017, the Stories that Move project team met in Budapest to review feedback from users on testing the online learning tool. We were joined by Monika Kovacs, an associate professor at the Institute of Intercultural Psychology and Education at ELTE University in Budapest.

She took time out of her busy schedule to share her insights, as a social psychologist, on the work of the team and the online Toolbox Against Discrimination.

Monika Kovacs

Helping students approach a difficult and sensitive topic such as discrimination can pose challenges, one of which is being mindful of the various perspectives learners bring to the table. To help our diverse end-user group get the most out of the online learning tool, we have tried to clarify and explain terms such as “discrimination”, “stereotypes”, “racism” and “antisemitism”. Monika reminded the team that discrimination may be active, institutional discrimination, but can also be less obvious, passive discrimination, as seen in avoidance behaviour or low expectations. Similarly, stereotypes come in different forms, not all of which are obviously detrimental. Some can even be self-imposed: commonalities that link members of a societal group and help members feel they belong. Monika reminded us that the work we are doing is important and should not be over-simplified. Further testing and more learner feedback is crucial to ensure we are providing a useful, supportive and empathetic environment, where all learners can make connections with the experiences in the student stories and reflect on how they can make positive changes to reduce discrimination.

 

 

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