Diversifying the curriculum: Understanding students’ approaches to reading lists and developing student curator roles

Kelly Stockdale*, Biddy Casselden, Rowan Sweeny

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle

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This article reports on findings of two small projects aimed at decolonising reading lists and the wider curriculum at Northumbria University. The projects were funded by an internal Educational Quality Enhancement Fund (EQEF) and involved the collaboration of Criminology, and Computer and Information Sciences (CIS) departments, running concurrently. They assumed that reading lists are a fundamental part of the curriculum, and therefore a crucial tool for helping to ensure a diversity of voices in the literature that we share with our students. The first project focused on decolonising the CIS and Criminology curriculum by working with students to understand how they view their readings lists. Online focus groups with students were run, utilising Stockdale and Sweeney’s (2019) intersectionality matrix as a tool to help generate discussion and facilitate student perspectives on the diversity of their reading. The second project recruited two student curators from the CIS and Criminology departments to strengthen and develop areas of the curriculum where marginalised voices were less well represented. These projects were not without
challenges, particularly during the time of a global pandemic. There were some
common themes and also interesting differences between the two subject areas which we consider. This article will share our research findings, discuss challenges faced, and talk through some of the practical steps taken which we hope will be of benefit for those working to decolonise their curriculum.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages4
Specialist publicationEducational Developments
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2021


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