Kafi Kumasi, Ph.D.

Kafi Kumasi, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

888-497-8754 ext. 714


313-577-7563 (fax)

Kafi Kumasi, Ph.D.


Kafi D. Kumasi is an associate professor of library and information science (LIS) at Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, where she teaches in the areas of school library media, urban librarianship, multicultural services and resources and research methods. A Laura Bush 21st century scholar, she holds a PhD from Indiana University, Bloomington and a master's degree in LIS from Wayne State. Her research interests revolve around issues of literacy, equity and diversity, particularly in urban educational environments spanning K12 and graduate school contexts. Her publications include book chapters, and journal articles in (among others) Journal of Education for Library and Information ScienceThe Journal of Research on Libraries and Young AdultsSchool Libraries WorldwideSchool Library Media Research, and Urban Library Journal.



Youtube Videos


Degrees and Certifications

  • B.S. in Education from the University of Michigan, 1999
  • M.L.I.S from Wayne State University, 2003
  • Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from Indiana University, 2008

Awards and Honors


2020 Academic Leadership Academy Award Office of the Provost, Wayne State University (WSU)

2019 Tenured Faculty Professional Development Award for participation in the NCFDD Faculty Success Program, Office of the Provost, WSU

2017 Research Fellow, iSchool at University of Illinois at Urbana Champagne

2013 Exemplary Diversity Scholar Citation University of Michigan, National Center for Institutional Diversity (NCID)

2011 Best Conference Paper Award Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE)

2009 Exemplary Dissertation Award University of Michigan, National Center for Institutional Diversity (NCID)

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.

Office Location

3rd Floor Kresge Library

Recent Publications


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.


Power-Carter, S., Zakeri, B., & Kumasi, K. (2019). Theorizing and languaging Blackness: Using the African philosophy of Ubuntu and the concept of Sawubona. Languaging relations for transforming the literacy and language arts classroom, 195-215.


Kumasi, K. D., & Hill, R. F. (2019). What does cultural competence mean to preservice school librarians? A critical discourse analysis. In M. A. Mardis & D. Oberg (Eds.), Social justice and cultural competency: Essential readings for school librarians (pp. 64-75). Santa Barbara, CA: Libraries Unlimited.


Kumasi, K. D. (2018). INFLO-mation: A model for exploring information behavior through hip hop. The Journal of Research on Libraries and Young Adults, 9(1). Retrieved from https://www.yalsa.ala.org/jrlya/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/INFLO-mation_Kumasi.pdf., 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.

Walster, D., Charbonneau, D., & Kumasi, K. (2016). Finding and reading reports of research:How academic librarians can help students be more successful. The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 42(6), 732-738. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.acalib.2016.06.017

Kumasi, K. D. (2015). Critical Race Theory and Education. Beyond Critique: Exploring Critical Social Theories and Education, 196.

Kumasi, K. (2014). Connected learning: Linking academics, popular culture, and digital literacy in a young urban scholars book club. Teacher Librarian, 41(3), 8.

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), 175-180.

Research Project

This pilot study was conducted to examine library and information science (LIS) students' perceptions of their level of preparation for becoming culturally competent LIS professionals. Aproximately 130 LIS students participated in an electronic survey, which contained a Likert scale measuring three areas of cultural competence: self-awareness, education, and interaction. A gap analysis technique was employed to detect discrepancies between students' prior knowledge and actual learning relative to cultural competence. Students indicated that all of the concepts introduced in this section were important to learn but their level of knowledge gained varied from no or low levels to moderate levels of actual learning. The results of this study were published in the Journal of Education for Library and Information Science, 52 (4). 251-264. This paper also received the 2011 ALISE Best Conference Paper Award.

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