Planning, developing, and designing a role model educational program for African-American students

Richard Barnett, Fordham University


The purpose of this study was to plan, develop, and design a role model intervention strategy for African-American students, particularly the black male. This approach was built on the theoretical foundations of social learning theory, observational learning, and symbolic modeling. The achievement and performance level for many African-American students has been poor; therefore, in planning, developing, and designing a Role Model Educational Program for African-American students, many strategies were used to maximize the effectiveness of a workable model. Among these strategies were committee meetings, observations, interviews, and questionnaire procedures.^ To encourage and foster cooperation and the elements of inclusion, many participants in the educational process were included. Administrators, teachers, students, private sector executives, and professionas formed committees to discuss, make proposals, suggest recommendations, and formulate a Role Model Educational Program.^ The major focus in the development of this model is the participation of black professional athletes and other positive role models as motivators and change facilitators. With the increased use of symbolic modeling, parents, teachers, and other traditional role models may occupy less prominent roles in social learning.^ The Role Model Educational Program was designed to offer another intervention strategy to meet and assist in alleviating the failure of many African-American males by activating the most admired popular hero in the African-American community, the black professional athlete and other positive role models. Out of this process many recommendations emerged: (1) Construct a philosophy that all children can learn; (2) Focus on historical references; (3) Develop instructional strategies to take advantage of the characteristics that black children bring to the classroom; (4) Utilize different modalities of learning; (5) Make prominent use of books, materials, and technology; (6) Expand teachers' staff development; (7) Create an inclusive process; (8) Make use of professional athletes and other role models; and (9) Use the Concern-Based Adoption Model (CBAM) for change adaptation. ^

Subject Area

Black studies|Educational administration|Elementary education|Educational psychology

Recommended Citation

Barnett, Richard, "Planning, developing, and designing a role model educational program for African-American students" (1991). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9226427.