This thesis examined the potential literacy practices, of students who self-identify as multiracial, that occur in the composition classroom within higher education. Because literacy by nature is contextualized and ideological it is important that we understand how identity plays a crucial role in literacy practices. Race is a social construct that has influences on identity as well as the literacy narratives of students in higher education, and although there has been research on literacy as it relates to monoracial students there is a lack of scholarship on what it means for a student to identify with more than one race in higher education and how this identity influences their literacy practices. This thesis employs both New Literacy Studies and Critical Race Theory as a lens to identify how space is, or is not, created for the multifaceted identities of multiracial students to come forth. In order to identify how space is created for multiracial students I collected course syllabi and major assignments utilized in second semester composition courses at the Universtiy of Central Florida I also conducted interviews with three students who self-identify as multiracial. I found that although space is created for multiracial student agency within the composition classroom this is problematized by the existence of multiracial microaggressions. I argue that multiracial microaggressions are an allusion to systemic racism in institutions of higher education; they are an example of how institutions of higher education can continue to perpetuate disparities even though they seek to promote diversity and inclusion. In order to continue to move towards inclusion, instructors need to know more about multiracial student experiences and the implications of these experiences within the composition classroom.
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Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Writing and Rhetoric
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Campus-only Access)
Rechsteiner, Anjelica, "Considering Multiracial Student Identity and Literacy Practices in Higher Education" (2020). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2020-. 402.
Restricted to the UCF community until December 2025; it will then be open access.