Chevron Left
Back to Race and Cultural Diversity in American Life and History

Learner Reviews & Feedback for Race and Cultural Diversity in American Life and History by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

273 ratings
126 reviews

About the Course

Learners will deepen their understanding and appreciation of ways in which race, ethnicity and cultural diversity have shaped American institutions, ideology, law, and social relationships from the colonial era to the present. Race and ethnicity are ideological and cultural categories that include all groups and individuals. Hence, this course is designed in significant part to take a broad look at the ideology of race and cultural diversity in America’s past and present. The primary focus is on the historical and social relationships among European Americans, Native Americans, African Americans, Latino/as, and Asian/Pacific Americans. Issues of race and ethnicity are examined across different ethno-cultural traditions in order to interweave diverse experiences into a larger synthesis of the meaning of race and ethnicity in American life. In this course, we conceive of “race” and “diversity” as references to the entire American population, even as we recognize that different groups have unique historical experiences resulting in distinctive and even fundamental cultural differences. We treat race and ethnicity as dynamic, complex ideological and cultural processes that shape all social institutions, belief systems, inter-group relationships, and individual experiences....

Top reviews

Dec 1, 2020

This course was outstanding. The video presentaions, additonal readings, and peer reviews allowing insight into other students perspectives was a definite plus. Will recommend to other co-workers.

Nov 18, 2020

I felt Dr Anderson did an excellent job and I enjoyed hearing from the other resources and speakers as well. I would be interested in other similar courses and also other classes from dr Anderson.

Filter by:

1 - 25 of 128 Reviews for Race and Cultural Diversity in American Life and History

By Deleted A

Jul 24, 2020

The content was good. It addressed some topics to understand. I am more upset with the surprise 10 page research proposal required for the course. I would have NEVER taken the course and PAID money if I new that requirement for just a certificate.

By Adriene J

Jul 21, 2020

Good course. Dr. Anderson is clearly a prominent scholar and expert on the issues. Glad Coursera added the recent video of him produced these last few weeks [July 2020]. It made the course more current than its 2017 production date.

To enhance the course, I’d invite Coursera to consider 1. Updating the Resource Lists including articles, videos and research data. Some of our readings are dated. In light of all the information relevant to this topic coming out since George Floyd’s death, it is vetted and available. 2. Give us TWO weeks to complete our final project. One week didn't seem like enough time to properly explore and write about the suggested topics. I am recommending the course to several people. I think it’s that good. It simply needs a tweak of attention to updates. Other than that, the bulk of the resources were enlightening.

By James R

Jun 7, 2020

This course is an excellent source of education! I learned so much, and feel so proud of myself for completing it, and getting grades that I never thought I could! Thank you, Coursera! :)

By Krista H

Aug 13, 2019

Great content! the peer graded assignments were a little too vague. loved the lecture/videos and additional reading/resources

By James R B

Aug 23, 2019

Peer review for this course is dysfunctional. Grades appeared to be given randomly. The lectures were informative, but the platform has issues.

By Blaise L

Feb 2, 2019

Outstanding course that will be as rewarding as how much effort you put into it. There is plenty to learn and it is challenging to complete everything in 4 weeks, particularly if it's a busy time of year. Keep this in mind as you pace yourself through assignments.

By Amy P

Jul 12, 2020

This course was very informative and provided a variety of resources and facts, both historical and current that I am looking forward to teaching my own children.

By Carter E L

Dec 2, 2020

This course was outstanding. The video presentaions, additonal readings, and peer reviews allowing insight into other students perspectives was a definite plus. Will recommend to other co-workers.

By Kayla J

Jul 6, 2020

Very much enjoyed the lectures, I wish the coursework wasn't as intensive. Would have preferred quizzes/reflection papers on the topics introduced during the video lectures.

By Avi M

Jul 31, 2020

While I enjoyed the lectures and information, I had a few gripes with this course. I was not interested in workload that felt like busy work, graded by random people on the web. There are other courses who have used small quizzes showing that we learned what the lecture went over, without me doing my own research and finding sources and hoping some random person likes what I wrote in a paper. The first peer review assignment was interesting, but the rest felt like a complete waste of time. I decided to just watch the lectures, as I'm here to learn things from someone who knows more about the subject than me. Thus I had to unenroll in the course after the lectures because I wasn't interested in doing an essay on some random topic.

Also, another slight negative, the lectures were at times difficult to follow, since the instructor slows down and breaks up his sentences often, as he appeared to be coming up with the sentences on the fly, with only small notes of certain dates or study names instead of a full script to read/memorize. I had to speed up the video to almost 2x, and just read the manuscript to truly follow the sentences he was saying.

Again, great subject... I wish there were more lecture information here, but the busy-work turned me off from this course. Please tell us the things related to the subject. Sure if we were in a university in class setting, the research and peer review makes sense, but an online course will sit better to a wider audience without an extensive research essay, especially peer-reviewed.

By Anna C R

Jan 24, 2020

This class isn't hard but just feels like busy work.

By Wayne S

Jul 7, 2020

This was a great course! Thank you for the opportunity to take this course. I am also an two time alumnus from the University of Illinois' College of Education. I don't know how I managed to graduate and not take this course. I am very glad I did. I learned a lot from this course. My only complaint would be that I wasn't expecting to do a research paper. Luckily, I am a professional researcher and a teacher (Thanks Illinois), but many of the general population may have struggled with this assignment. And the paper may have scared some people away. I would suggest keeping the paper, but giving more time to write, and also prepare a module to help newcomers learn how to write academically- especially in the social sciences. I will say though, I did get to read some pretty good papers, even the ones that were not the "best academically" it was still great to read other's work and their styles of reporting.

By Mahesh L

May 26, 2020

History is often painted from the conquror's perspective, and the racial or any form of discrimination is taught in biased way.

The course was very informative and helped me improve my understanding of the subject.

By Eddie W J

Nov 19, 2020

I felt Dr Anderson did an excellent job and I enjoyed hearing from the other resources and speakers as well. I would be interested in other similar courses and also other classes from dr Anderson.

By Bryan W

Jul 13, 2020

The topics were good, and the professor clearly knows his subject. The final paper took more time than expected, but overall I felt like I came away with more knowledge on the subject.

By Victoria M

Jul 10, 2020

Excellent beginning with loads of sources to recognize diversity on America. Many cogent topics to consider, too many to be in-depth but a great place to start.

By Christina T

Sep 24, 2019

An eye opening and well thought out course. I learned a lot and it gave me a lot to think about...

By Anne M W

Jul 12, 2020

I learned so much in this course, however, I have one complaint. For 2 separate assignments one person, anonymous, gave me significantly lower ratings than the other 2 reviewers. Shouldn't that person HAVE to give feedback so I can defend my work? Getting 3/5 from that person on most categories upset me, when the other reviewers gave me all 5/5s. I worked SO hard on my final paper, I think I should be able to see why that reviewer graded me down so significantly, and I should be allowed a rebuttal.

By Mark E

Apr 16, 2019

I learned a lot from this course. I thought I had a decent understanding of Race and it's effect on people in America and found that what I knew wasn't true (the worst kind of knowledge). There was plenty of good material in the presentations and the supplemental material and videos were very good. My eyes have been opened and I will seek out more information about these issues.

By Joy S

Apr 8, 2019

excellent course on the subject

By Anne E S

Jul 9, 2020

I'm giving it three stars because I didn't feel like there was a professor at the helm or a teacher assistant. If they were involved at all, they didn't make their presence known. If this is implied in the course description, it should be made explicit. That said, I really appreciated the videos and readings. The assignments need to be more clear and streamlined in terms of requirements. For instance, the final paper is mentioned and part of the final 3 assignments. Each assignment shares the ultimate goal of writing this thesis paper but each time it is mentioned, the assignment sounds slightly different and the information isn't complete. APA formatting isn't mentioned until the end but that would be good to know for the 3rd week assignment of building the references. The criteria for grading is also not in the spirit of this course. It is said from the beginning that as a peer reviewer we should not focus so much on the writing ability but the criteria covers technical things (like APA) that distract from the point of taking the course. This may be carried over from a letter grade course at U of I but carries less relevance to its current use. I hope this constructive criticism is read and addressed by someone leading this course.

By Vivian C

Jan 17, 2020

Great subject matter and content; but poorly managed by Admin behind the scenes. poor follow-up to inqu

By Margaret H G

Aug 24, 2020

One of the gifts of Covid19 is that with few opportunities to socialize and travel I have more time to educate myself in topics I care deeply about. I enrolled in this course on the suggestion of a friend to learn more about systemic racism. As an asynchronous, online course I must admit I did not have really high expectations. I knew I would learn something, however, I did not anticipate the depth, quality and amount of work the course would entail. The video lectures by Dr. James Anderson were captivating and organized into bite-sized chunks making the weekly coursework very accessible for the busy professional. What I didn't expect was the time it would take to write the Final Paper, but I must admit the time I invested in the assignment brought both depth and breadth to my learning. I highly recommend this course!

By Donna D

Sep 26, 2020

I had to extend my deadlines a couple of times because I struggled a bit, probably mostly because I had not thought a lot about some of the concepts of identity and how my identity is perceived by others. I learned so much in this class, not just US History that isn't taught in grade school, but how it relates to the current situations across the nation with questioning the methods of law enforcement and criminal justice. This is an eye-opener and I am so grateful to have had this opportunity to take the time to study this and highly recommend it for anyone that struggles with these issues. I fully expect that I will return to these resources and know now that I will continue to learn about these issues for the rest of my life.

By Mercedes V

Jul 1, 2020

This course has been a very positive experience for me. The lectures were informative, precise, and helpful in navigating race in my very own life and in the world, as it is today, especially. It has also been very uplifting to read and grade my classmates' work, learning from them and reflecting on their findings and resources. Thankful to have taken this course as it has been an enriching addition in my educational background and know I will continue to use the knowledge as I learn to make sense of the world around me, especially as an educator in the 21st century. Thank you for enabling us all to continue learning and educating ourselves, even while working from home during a pandemic!