Kafi D. Kumasi Ph.D. (ak4901)

University information

Title: Professor
Unit: School of Library & Information Sci
Department: University Libraries

Contact information

5244 Gullen Mall
Library & Information Science
University Library
Detroit, 48202

School of Information Sciences

Phone: 888-497-8754 ext. 714

Kafi D. Kumasi

Kafi D. Kumasi (she/her/hers) is a professor in the School of Information Sciences (SIS). She is a leader in research on critical race theory and equity in education. Her scholarship engages critical theoretical explorations of race, power and privilege as means to explore culturally sustained learning to help prepare future and practicing library and information science (LIS) professionals to meet the needs of all learners. Her work has been funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services for an equity literacy project aimed at restoring school library services to students in under resourced urban public schools. Kumasi’s work has been recognized by the National Center for Institutional Diversity (NCID) with an Exemplary Diversity Scholar Citation. She helped create and amplify the Future Librarians for Inclusivity and Diversity (FLID) student organization in SIS, which she has served as faculty advisor for since its inception for over a decade. In her service roles at Wayne State, Kumasi has brought awareness and research knowledge to the implicit biases occurring during leadership assessment and hiring. She also developed a popular elective course in SIS on Culture Matters: Decolonizing Information and has published research on infusing DEI across the core LIS curriculum. She has delivered national and international talks and workshops on DEI spanning LIS, Education and interdisciplinary audiences. Kumasi received her bachelor's degree in education from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, her MLIS degree from Wayne State University and her PhD from Indiana University, Bloomington.




Youtube Videos: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KMtcTUEyJ1U
Degrees and Certifications:
B.S, (1998) Education, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
M.L.I.S (2003) Library Science, Wayne State University
Ph.D. (2008) Curriculum Studies, Indiana University, Bloomington

Michigan Teacher’s Certificate, 1998
BX Secondary English, 1998
CC Secondary History, 1998
ND Library Media Endorsement, 2003


Title: Professor
Awards and Honors:

1. President’s Award, Michigan Association for Media in Education, 2021
2. President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching Nominee, Wayne State University, 2021
3. Provost’s Office Academic Leadership Academy Award, Wayne State University, 2019
4. Provost’s Office, Tenured Faculty Professional Development Award Wayne State University, 2019
5. Trends Impacting YA Services, Midwinter Paper Award, Young Adult Library Services Association, 2018
6. Research Fellow, Children’s Book Center, iSchool at University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, 2016-2018
7. Exemplary Diversity Scholar Citation University of Michigan, National Center for Institutional Diversity (NCID), 2013
8. Best Conference Paper Award, Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE), 2011
9. Exemplary Dissertation Award, University of Michigan, National Center for Institutional Diversity (NCID), 2009
10. Mentoring Fellowship Award-National Council of Teachers of English Cultivating New Voices Among Scholars of Color, (NCTE-CNV), 2006-2008


Homepage URL: https://sites.google.com/view/ kafi-kumasi
Academic Interests:

School Library Media; Urban Libraries and Education; Multicultural Education; Issues and Trends in Children's and Young Adult Literature; Social and Cultural approaches to Adolescent Literacy Development.


Office Hours:

Tusdays at 10:30 a.m.

Pronouns: she/her
Office Location: 3rd Floor Kresge Library
Recent Publications:


Kumasi, K. & Brock, A. (2022). The Global Drumbeat: Permeations of Hip Hop Across Diverse Information Worlds. International Journal for Information, Diversity & Inclusion, 6 (1/2), 1 -10.

Kumasi, K. (2021). Getting InFLOmation: A Critical Race Theory Tale from the School Library. In (Ed.) Leung,S. & López-Mcknight, J. Knowledge Justice: Disrupting library and information studies through Critical Race Theory (pp.299-315) Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press
DOI: https://doi.org/10.7551/mitpress/11969.001.0001

Kumasi, K. & Marchesano, G. (2021). Adulting 201: Michigan teachers transitioning to school librarianship. School Library Connection, 20-22.

Kumasi, K.D., Jimes, C. Godwin, A. E., Petrides, L.A., & Karaglani, A.(2020). A preliminary study interrogating the cataloging and classification schemes of a K-12 book discovery platform through a critical race theory lens. Open Information Science, 4(1), 106-121.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1515/opis-2020-009.

Kumasi, K. & Hill, R. (2020). What Does Cultural Competence Mean to Preservice School Librarians? A Critical Discourse Analysis. In Mardis, M. & Oberg, D. (Eds) Social Justice and Cultural Competency: Essential Readings for School Librarians. Libraries Unlimited: CA,

Charbonneau, D.H., Walster, D., and Kumasi, K.D. (2019). Search strategies for finding reports of research: How academic librarians can support student success. Qualitative and Quantitative Methods in Libraries (QQML), 6(2), 283-287.

Power-Carter, S., Zakeri, B. & Kumasi, K. (2019). Theorizing and Languaging Blackness: Using the African Philosophy of Ubuntu and the Concept of Sawubona. In Beach, R., & Bloome, D. (Eds.) Languaging Relations for Transforming the Literacy and Language Arts Classroom(pp.195-215). Routledge: New York.

Kumasi, K. (2018). INFLO-mation: A Model for Exploring Information Behavior through Hip Hop. Journal of Research on Libraries and Young Adults, 9(1). https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/164/

Kumasi, K. (2017). Teaching about Race in Cyberspace: Lessons from the “Virtual Privilege Walk” Exercise. In Cooke, N. & Sweeney, M. (Eds). Teaching for Justice: Implementing Social Justice in the LIS Classroom. Library Juice Press. https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/150/

Kumasi, K. & Hughes-Hassell, S. (2017). Shifting Lenses on Youth Literacy and Identity. Knowledge Quest, 45 (3), 12-21.

Kumasi, K. & Hughes-Hassell, S. (2017). Their Eyes are Watching Us: Serving Racialized Youth in an Era of Protest. Knowledge Quest, 45 (3), 6-8.

Kumasi, K. D., & Manlove, N. L. (2015). Finding "Diversity Levers" in the Core Library and Information Science Curriculum: A Social Justice Imperative. Library Trends, 64 (2), 415-443. https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/143/

Kumasi, K. (2015). A Liminal Space: Navigating K12 Schools and the Academy as a Parent. In Theoharis & Dotger, S. (Eds). In On the High Wire: Professors Walk Between Work and Home. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.

Kumasi, K. (2014). Connected learning: Linking academics, popular culture, and digital literacy in a young urban scholars book club. Teacher Librarian, 41 (3), 8-15. https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/114/

Braun, L., Hartman, M., Hughes-Hassell, S., & Kumasi, K. (2014). The Future of Library Services for and with Teens: a
Call to Action. A report of the Young Adult Library ServicesAssociation. http://www.ala.org/yaforum/project-report

Kumasi, K.D., Charbonneau, D.H., Walster, D. (2013). Theory talk in the library science scholarly literature: An exploratory analysis, Library & Information Science Research, 35 (3), 175-18. https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/149/

Kumasi, K. & Hill, R.F. (2013). Examining the hidden ideologies within cultural competence discourses
among library and information science students: Implications for school library pedagogy. School Libraries Worldwide,19 (1), 128-139.

Kumasi, K. (2013). “The Library is Like Her House”: Reimagining youth of color in LIS discourses. In Bernier, A. (Ed) Transforming Young Adult Services: A reader for our age (pp.103-113). Chicago, Il: Neal Schuman.https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/94/

Kumasi, K. (2012).Roses in the concrete. A critical race perspective on urban youth and libraries.Knowledge Quest, 40(5), pp. 32-37.

Franklin Hill, R. & Kumasi, K. (2012). Bridging the gaps: Measuring cultural competence among future school library and youth services professionals [electronic resource]. School Library Research, 14, 16 pp print. https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/70/

Kumasi, K. (2012).Double consciousness:The context and consequences of Black identity in the Obama Era. In Thomas, E.E. &
Tatum S.R. (Eds.).Reading African American Experiences in the Obama era: Theory, advocacy, and action (pp 51-67) New York: Peter Lang; Black Studies and Critical Thinking Imprint.

Hughes, Hassell, S., Kumasi, K. Rawson, C. Hitson, A.(2012). Building a bridge to literacy for African American male youth: A call to action for the library community. [Federal Grant Report ] Retrieved from http://sils.unc.edu/ sites/default/files/news/ Sandra%20hughes- hassel%20projectFinal.pdf

Kumasi, K. & Franklin Hill, R. (2011). Are we there yet? Results of a gap analysis to measure LIS students' prior knowledge and actual learning of cultural competence concepts. Journal of Education for Library and Information Science, 52(4). 251-264. https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/61/

Kumasi, K. (2011). The impact of libraries on young adults: Toward a critical research agenda [electronic resource].
The Journal of Research on Libraries and Young Adults, 2 (1) https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/69/

Kumasi, K. (2011). Critical race theory and education: Mapping a legacy of scholarship and activism. In Levinson, B. A.U. (Ed). Beyond Critique: Critical Social Theories and Education (pp 196- 219). Boulder, CO: Paradigm Publishers. https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/40/

Carter, S. & Kumasi, K. (2011). Double Reading: Young Black Scholars Responding to Whiteness in a Community Literacy Program. In Kinloch,V. (Ed). Urban Literacies: Critical Perspectives on Language, Learning, and Community (pp 72- 90). New York: Teacher’s College Press.

Kumasi, K. (2010). Cultural inquiry: A framework for engaging youth of color in the library [electronic resource]. The Journal of Research on Libraries and Young Adults, 1(1). 8 pp print https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/2/

Kumasi, K. (2010). Urban public school libraries and educational reform: The case of the Detroit Public Schools [electronic resource].
Urban Library Journal,16 (1). 15pp print https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/slisfrp/3/

Recent Grants:

 Federal grant RE-246399-OLS-20 -“Project RUSL-Restoring Urban School Libraries”. Laura Bush 21st Century Libraries Program, Institute of Museum and Library Services, $247,152

Kafi D. Kumasi Ph.D.

Courses taught by Kafi D. Kumasi Ph.D.

Fall Term 2024 (future)

Winter Term 2024

Winter Term 2023

Fall Term 2022

Spring-Summer Term 2022

Winter Term 2022

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