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Entire Class at Columbia Punished for ‘Microaggressive’ Comments

Entire Class at Columbia Punished for ‘Microaggressive’ Comments

“Directly after class, the instructional team met to debrief and plan a response”

Is this what higher education is devolving into? A place where professors are nothing but guardians of political correctness?

Campus Reform reports:

Entire class punished for ‘microaggressive’ comments

A Columbia University professor recently described how an entire class was punished after some students used “microaggressive” language in an online chat.

Matthea Marquart, who teaches online classes for graduate students studying social work, noticed that some students used unspecified “racially microaggressive” language during the live chat of a recent online class.

“Directly after class, the instructional team met to debrief and plan a response,” Marquart wrote in a Jan 4 article for the journal of Ethnic and Cultural Diversity in Social Work which she co-authored with the course’s teaching assistant and an online instructional support staffer.

The response, as Marquart indicated, consisted of punishing the entire class with extra work.

Students were slapped with “two additional readings,” consisting of the seminal 16-page article that popularized the term microaggressions, “Racial Microaggressions in Everyday Life: Implications for Clinical Practice,” and a 21 page essay on the link between “white identity” and “mental health” that was titled “European American (White) Racial Identity Development.”

In an additional discussion post, the students were instructed to come clean about whether they were one of the students who were “active” in the microaggressive chat comments, and to explain what the “experience” of seeing the microaggressive comments was like.

“What have other conversations around identity, race, culture, oppression, and colonization been like for you at our school?” Marquart also asked students, later asking, “what can you contribute that might change the experience of this conversation for yourself?”


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They should all offer a micro-apology. Perhaps they did.

What was the course? If it was a Calculus 1 class, I would say this is insane. But I’m betting it was not a Calculus class. And if it was, just as an example, something like “Racism, Power and Oppression in American History” I would say that anyone stupid enough to take it deserved to be punished.

    stevewhitemd in reply to irv. | January 10, 2018 at 9:48 pm

    Graduate students in social work. Where you have to pledge to the progressive manifesto just to be allowed to graduate.

College must have changed a lot since my day. I don’t think it would ever have occurred to anyone at my alma mater that more course work could be regarded as a punishment. Coursework was what we were there for.

Of course, we weren’t studying “social work”, and maybe things would have been different if we were.

Sounds like the punishment for a micro aggression is a maxi aggression. Anyone who attends a class like this deserves what they get.