Foster’s research focuses on the historical, social, cultural, and linguistic contexts of African Americans. Using a variety of qualitative approaches—ethnography, discourse analysis, ethnography of communication, life history and narrative research— she has studied African American teachers, African American English, and effective learning contexts and pedagogical practices for African American students. Her research crosses disciplinary lines, so in addition to being known among education researchers, her scholarship is recognized in African American studies, women’s studies, anthropology, linguistics, and history. She established the University of Louisville/Jefferson County Public School Research Practice Partnership and currently serves as its co-director.
In the News
Examines the trajectory of a research programme focused on Black women’s language through the lived experiences of the investigator. Using rivers as a metaphor to structure the account, the article mines key incidents in the researcher’s life that have shaped her understanding of and approach to analysing Black women’s discourse.
Describes the development of the Heuristic for thinking about Culturally Responsive Teaching and introduces the four realms that make up the heuristic. Describes the use of the heuristic as a lesson planning and analysis tool in a teacher preparation course.
Includes two case studies of food cooperatives, one in Minneapolis, and one in Oakland. Uses the case studies to illustrate the challenges and opportunities involved with two different approaches to opening community grocery stores. Oserves how these case studies were initially conducted in support of the Louisville Association of Community Economics.
Drawing on African American historical and contemporary insights about education and reinserting the mechanisms that African American administrators, teachers, and communities used to educate their children into ongoing education discussions, this article advances the idea of African American pedagogical excellence and illustrates its potential to aid in recruiting, preparing, developing, and organizing an effective teaching force.
The problems of urban schools will not be ameliorated without improving the quality of the teachers who staff them. This article describes a program that was designed and implemented to simultaneously improve the competence of teachers and the schooling outcomes of their pupils.
Discusses the educational reform efforts that took place in Hamilton County.
Examines teacher preparation programs arguing that the approaches adopted by many teacher preparation programs not only fail to prepare white teacher candidates to work successfully with children of color, but also impede the recruitment of teachers of color.
Responds to the hysteria that followed the Oakland Unified School District issue of the Ebonics Resolution. Addresses some of the linguistics, education and political realities of the decision.