ERIC Number: ED394467
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Student Attitudes toward Affirmative Action in Higher Education: Findings from a National Study.
Sax, Linda J.; Arredondo, Marisol
This report examines the affirmative action attitudes of 204,103 college freshmen from 473 colleges and universities nationwide and from four racial/ethnic groups: Whites, African Americans, Asian Americans, and Mexican Americans. The study addresses how and why student support for affirmative action in higher education admissions depends on how the issue is framed and on how college students of different races and ethnicities, backgrounds, and ideologies differ in their attitudes toward affirmative action. Data were obtained from the Cooperative Institutional Research Program's 1995 Freshman Survey. The dependent variable was students' attitudes toward affirmative action in college admissions. Independent variables were gender; self-interest as expressed by socioeconomic status, academic preparation, and college choice; and ideology expressed as political view. No direct measure of prejudice or racism was included in the study. Results indicate that freshmen attitudes toward affirmative action vary depending on student characteristics and opinions such as race/ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status, academic preparation, political ideology, and beliefs about discrimination. Variations within ethnic/racial groups were also investigated. Findings suggest that students may not clearly understand what affirmative action means or what it is intended to do. (Contains 40 references.) (NAV)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners; Policymakers
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Cooperative Institutional Research Program
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New York, NY, April 8-13, 1996).