Loyola University Chicago

School of Education

He works to promote social justice

He works to promote social justice

“I hope that students in my class ... ultimately release their imagination in order to create different communities and to create communities differently,” says Seungho Moon, EdD.

Seungho Moon, EdD, is an assistant professor in the School of Education’s Teaching and Learning program. Before coming to Loyola in 2015, he taught at Oklahoma State University for four years.

He’s done extensive research on how to promote social justice through curriculum studies, and he’s a firm believer that cross-cultural conversation helps students see the world from a different perspective.

Here, he talks about his research, the people who inspire him, and the importance of imagination.

Talk a little about your research and areas of expertise.

My research promotes social justice and equity through curriculum studies. I use art and the aesthetic experience to break the cycle of ignorance toward social inequity. Curriculum studies is the foundation of my research, and I have implemented university-school-community partnerships in historically under-resourced neighborhoods in order to support communities’ effort to advance quality of life through education.

How did you become passionate about these topics? What or who inspired you?

My passion for cross-cultural conversation in education was highly influenced by my mentors—Maxine Greene and Janet Miller at Teachers College, Columbia University. Dr. Greene taught me the value of incompleteness in education by reminding me of “I am what I am not yet.” Dr. Miller opened my eyes to view curriculum not as fixed documents, but as a process always “in-the-making.”

Why are diversity and multicultural issues in curriculum so important in education now?

The current “Black Lives Matter” movement reflects the importance of diversity and justice issues in education. Institutionalized racism, sexism, classism, ableism, and heterosexism, to list some, are not taught properly in education. By exploring diversity and equity issues in curriculum, students will be able to learn the importance of the proper recognition and the frames of (un)recognition of all human beings. 

What is one concept you want your students to learn from your courses?

Imagination. My mentor, Maxine Greene, highlights the importance of “look at things as if they could be otherwise.” I hope that students in my class learn heteroglossia­—namely multiple voices in understanding human nature and society, and I hope they ultimately release their imagination in order to create different communities and to create communities differently.  

What advice do you have for people working toward a career in higher education?

Find work that you’re passionate about and love to do continuously, joyfully, and even “painfully.” Collaborate with other colleagues and find critical friends. Connect the research with teaching and vice versa. Service is a channel to learn from the community in addition to sharing professionalism. Most importantly, trust your capacity and just be yourself.

Name: Seungho Moon
Title: Assistant professor, Teaching and Learning program
Hometown: Grew up in Seoul, South Korea; now lives in Chicago, two blocks from the Water Tower Campus
Courses taught: This fall, he’s teaching two graduate courses: Curriculum and Instruction (CIEP 440) and Curriculum Theory and Research (CIEP 521).