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Becoming an Equity-Minded Instructor


Anchored in the Austin Community College (ACC) Faculty Values and developed by Dr. Lydia A. CdeBaca-Cruz, the Becoming an Equity-Minded Instructor course is designed to decrease equity gaps across our institution. Faculty members will go on a journey of self-examination and critical reflection in order to implement evidence-based equitable teaching and learning strategies.

If you have any questions, please contact Aimee Finney,

Overviewstudent holding acc is for believers sign

This six-week course is offered in a hybrid online format, with 5 asynchronous learning modules and 2-hour synchronous weekly meetings. The meetings are dedicated to faculty sharing, learning, reflecting, and collaborating with each other about course material and the collective application of equity-minded teaching principles. The final synchronous meeting will consist of a digital story showcase in which participants will present narratives of their journey toward equity-mindedness.

This course is a 30-hour commitment for faculty participants. Only 15 spots are available for each cohort on a first come first served. The deadline to register has passed.

Please Note: There will be two fall cohorts. One will meet on Wednesdays and one will meet on Fridays. All synchronous meetings are held via Zoom. Wednesday meetings are from 6 to 8pm and Friday meetings are from 1 to 3pm.


Taught at ACC for a minimum of any 2 semesters


$300 for successful completion

Dates for 2023

Fall Wed. Cohort: 8/30-11/15

Fall Fri. Cohort: 9/1-11/17


The deadline to register has passed.

Course Topics & Meetings

Week & Module  

Meeting Topics

All synchronous meetings held via Zoom on Wednesdays or Fridays of each week (see WEDNESDAY syllabus or FRIDAY syllabus for details).

Kick off meeting to orient you to the course

Synchronous Meeting: Kick-off Meeting: Introduction, Norm-setting, Blackboard Course Orientation, and Goal-Setting

1: Self-Awareness and Teaching as an Equity-Minded Instructor Synchronous Week: Exploring Personal, Social, and Instructor Identities Through Double-Loop Learning
2: Interpersonal Understanding: Becoming Authentic as an Equity-Minded Instructor Synchronous Week: Overcoming Identity Threat through Respect, Authentic Care, and High Expectations
3: Managing Community: Demonstrating Respect in the Classroom as an Equity Minded Instructor Synchronous Week: Centering Cultural Wealth in the Learning Environment
4: Closing Equity Gaps Through Alternative and Inclusive Assessment Design Synchronous Week:  Alternative Assessments and Equitable Measurements of Learning + Digital Story Circle, Part I + II
5: Composing the Digital Story or Revising a Course through an Equity Minded Lens Synchronous Meeting: Digital Story Circle, Part II + Capstone Project FAQs
6: Capstone Project Showcase

Meeting: Capstone Project Showcase

Lead Course Facilitator: Aimee Irene Finney

Professor Aimee Irene Finney wants everyone at Austin Community College to be comfortable and confident in themselves as life-long learners with an emphasis on diversity, equity, and inclusion. Aimee received her Master’s Degree in Communication and Leadership from Gonzaga University and a B.A. in Psychology and Communications with a secondary education certificate from Texas State University. Currently, she serves on the Adjunct Faculty Association Executive Council, as well as an Ascender Mentor. Aimee is an adjunct professor in the Communication Studies department at Austin Community College where she teaches Public Speaking and Introduction to Speech Communications. Aimee spent three years creating a specific section of Introduction to Speech Communications featuring The Autobiography of Malcolm X as told to Alex Haley with the Great Questions Faculty Fellowship. Aimee has been teaching high school communications for 25 years and recently received her five-year pin from ACC. Aimee serves her community through her Sustaining Membership with the Junior League of Austin and Leadership Austin.

Course Developer: Dr. Lydia CdeBaca

Photo of Dr. Lydia CdeBaca standing in front of a banner that reads "ACC is for EVERYONE!".Lydia CdeBaca-Cruz is committed to closing persistent equity gaps in higher education through decolonial curricular reform and engaging faculty development. CdeBaca-Cruz currently serves as the Program Coordinator for the Interdisciplinary Studies Department’s Mexican American Studies program at Austin Community College, where she also teaches courses in English Composition, Integrated College Reading and Writing, Humanities, and Mexican American Studies. Since fall 2020, she has served as the faculty leader for a Teaching and Learning Excellence Division faculty development course in Becoming an Equity-Minded Instructor and Serving Men of Color Students. In addition, she is pleased to have returned to her alma mater at the University of Texas at Austin as a Lecturer in the English Department, teaching courses in Contemporary Latinx Literature and Culture, American Literature, and Mexican American Literature and Culture.

Prior to joining ACC, CdeBaca-Cruz served as Operations Manager and Director of Peer Mentoring for Catch the Next, Inc., a college readiness and completion organization focused on increasing the success of Latinx students. She continues to teach and mentor for ACC’s Ascender program, the student success arm of Catch the Next. This work built on her experience at Houston Community College, where she served as Associate Chair of the English Department, Program Coordinator for Humanities/Interdisciplinary Cultural Studies, Director of the HCC Puente Project, and Director of the Mexican American/Latino Studies Program from 2012-2016. CdeBaca-Cruz’s leadership experience in various diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives continues to ground her equity-based faculty and institutional coaching practice today.

CdeBaca-Cruz received her doctorate and master of arts degrees in English, with graduate certificates in Mexican American Studies and Native American/Indigenous Studies, at the University of Texas at Austin. She received her bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Texas at Arlington, where, as a working-class Chicana and first-generation college graduate, the McNair Scholars Program set her on a course to fulfill her goals of becoming an activist scholar.

Becoming an Equity-Minded Educator © 2022 by Lydia CdeBaca-Cruz is licensed under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International