ERIC Number: ED218367
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Mar-22
Reference Count: 0
Assessing Measures of Contact Theory.
Brown, William R.; Patchen, Martin
This paper consolidates findings from two related studies: William Brown's research on the predictive ability of measures of early and non-high school interracial contact/opportunities that appear to affect interracial attitudes and behaviors in high school; and Martin Patchen's investigation in Indianapolis, Indiana high schools analyzing the interrelationships among variables that are thought to influence high school interracial attitudes and behaviors. Brown's study identified the following variables to be significant predictors of interracial attitudes and behaviors in high school: family attitudes toward other races; the combined effect of the amount and nature of contact with other races; physical proximity to other races in school settings; age when children became well acquainted with other races; sex; parents' education; and pre-high school opinions of other races. Patchen's analysis indicated that racial relations among high school students were significantly predicted by parents' racial attitudes, early cross-racial contact, the degree of students' aggressiveness, and participation in school activities. In both studies, opportunities for contact figured as a weaker measure of future cross-racial relationships than the amount and nature of actual contact. It was suggested that further studies consider such measures of contact as classroom racial composition; students' physical proximity in classes or other school groups; and age of initial interracial contact. (Author/MJL)
Publication Type: Reports - General; Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Contact Hypothesis; Indiana (Indianapolis)
Note: Paper presented at the Symposium on "Contact-Theory Based Research on Desegregation" at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New York, NY, March 22, 1982). Some tables marginally legible.