teacher with students sitting at table

Asian American Studies Center to Develop Free Curriculum on AAPI Experience

The UCLA Asian American Studies Center has received $10 million in state funding to propel the development of a free multimedia learning experience that will help teachers around the country fill a curricular gap about the histories, struggles, cultures and contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. The AAPI Multimedia Textbook will feature an open-access, online platform with customizable chapters using visual, audio and archival artifacts that bring history to life. “The textbook will be the most comprehensive, scholar-informed, online history of AAPIs that redefines the American narrative and opens unlimited possibilities for building a just, multiracial and democratic future,” said Karen Umemoto, professor of urban planning and director of the Asian American Studies Center. The curriculum will support educators at a time when California and other states have made ethnic studies a graduation requirement for some public high schools and colleges. Umemoto was part of an academic advisory committee for the 2022 Social Tracking of Asian Americans in the U.S. Index that found the contributions of Asian Americans continue to be invisible to much of the American public. Fifty-eight percent of Americans were unable to name a prominent Asian American and 42% were unable to name a significant Asian American historical moment more recent than the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II. The AAPI Multimedia Textbook Project will help improve understanding of how AAPIs have influenced and shaped the United States, as well as foster a sense of belonging and acceptance of Asian Americans.

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