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Title:Affirmative action attitudes in higher education: A multiethnic extension of a three-factor model
Author(s):Smith, William A.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Trent, William T.
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Sociology of
Education, Educational Psychology
Education, Higher
Abstract:Building on recent social psychological theory and research, this study investigates growing opposition to traditional race-targeted affirmative action policies in higher education. Analysis of panel data from a multi-ethnic sample of 296 college students examined race/ethnic differences in affirmative action attitudes and the role of Self-Interest, Stratification Beliefs, Racial Affect, and ethnic/cultural orientations. First, racial differences were found in opposition to affirmative action with Whites being the most oppositional and Blacks being the most supportive. Second, several cross-ethnic differences emerged on the race-related predictors. Third, hierarchial regression of the Three-Factor Model found Stratification Beliefs to be the strongest predictor of affirmative action attitudes among European- and Asian-Americans while symbolic racism was the strongest predictor for Latinos and African-Americans. Finally, with the exception of language preference among Latinos, other ethnic and cultural orientations failed to account for significant variance in affirmative action attitudes among non-Whites. Findings go beyond existing theoretical and empirical literature which has focused primarily on European-American affirmative action attitudes for a comparative analysis with African-American and other non-White student groups. This study supports the growing need to clarify the social context and cross-ethnic dynamics of emerging debates over affirmative action policies in higher education. Understanding affirmative action attitudes is critical as America's institutions becomes more ethnically, culturally, and socially diverse.
Issue Date:1996
Rights Information:Copyright 1996 Smith, William A.
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog:AAI9625196
OCLC Identifier:(UMI)AAI9625196

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