Counterstory methodology in a university-high school collaboration to center and humanize Latina/o voices

Danielle Macias, Maura Shramko, Alexandria Pech, Andrea Romero, Veronica Encinias

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Educational environments can often feel hostile and inequitable for Latina/o students and teachers, with limited resources and support to humanize their experiences. Counterstorytelling methodologies can be used by students and teachers to center lived experiences, contest deficit narratives, and uncover community cultural wealth (CCW). Drawing on a CCW lens, situated in critical race theory and Latina/o critical theory, we examine a university-high school service learning collaboration in an urban setting that focused on educational equity and counterstorytelling (5 high school classes, 80 students, and 1 teacher; 1 university class, 29 undergraduates, 1 graduate student, and 1 university professor) using ethnographic observations and reflections. In a context of relationship building and discussions of educational equity across the university-high school partnership, we engaged in a counterstorytelling process that uncovered existing CCW and helped to cultivate positive relational pedagogy (social capital) and college going culture (aspirational and navigational capital) and fostered critical reflection and hope (resistant capital). Centering the unique knowledge of students can allow the teacher to facilitate a more equitable learning environment that acknowledges students' resilience.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1436-1456
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Community Psychology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jul 2021


  • Latina/o youth
  • Latino critical theory
  • community cultural wealth
  • counterstory
  • hope

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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