Tier 1 – Whole Group Instruction
Instructional and design methods in Tier 1 can benefit all individuals. Tier 1 methods are generalized methods designed for individuals who require 0-20% percent of the learning environment to be culturally responsive. In most instances, this includes adjustments to planning, announcements, sense of community, course, and climate within the course ecosystem with very few instructional adjustments. It also may focus on more cultural competency rather than cultural responsiveness.
Tier 1 – Whole Group
All individuals receive cultural responsiveness within whole group considerations. Tier provides opportunities for building cultural competency and decreasing cultural taxation. This occurs through increasing inclusion via course design, planning, and instruction, with little to some differentiation included. This also includes avenues to increase the cultural competency of students and instructors.
In the educational context, Tier 1 instructional and design methods play a pivotal role by offering benefits that extend to all individuals within a learning environment. These methods are characterized as generalized approaches designed to cater to the needs of individuals who require 0-20% of the learning environment to be culturally responsive. Typically, Tier 1 methods involve minimal adjustments to the instructional approach, focusing primarily on planning, announcements, the sense of community, course structure, and the overall climate within the course ecosystem. These adjustments are made with the intention of creating a more inclusive and culturally aware learning environment, albeit with limited modifications to the instructional content itself.
The Tier 1 approach operates within the framework of whole group considerations, ensuring that cultural responsiveness is woven into the fabric of the entire learning community. This tier provides valuable opportunities for building cultural competency and mitigating cultural taxation—the cognitive and emotional toll experienced by individuals from culturally diverse backgrounds when their culture is not adequately represented or acknowledged.
Within the Tier 1 model, there is a concerted effort to increase inclusion through thoughtful course design, planning, and instruction. While there may be some differentiation incorporated, the emphasis is on creating an environment where cultural responsiveness is embedded within the broader educational framework. Furthermore, Tier 1 methods extend beyond the students to encompass instructors as well, recognizing that enhancing cultural competency among educators is integral to fostering a more inclusive and culturally responsive learning environment. In essence, Tier 1 serves as a foundational layer, laying the groundwork for a holistic and culturally aware educational experience that benefits all individuals within the learning community.
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