ERIC Number: ED437864
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Class-Based Affirmative Action Admissions Policies: A Viable Alternative to Race-Based Programs? ASHE Annual Meeting Paper.
Bernal, Elena M.; Cabrera, Alberto F.; Terenzini, Patrick T.
This study examined whether replacing race-based affirmative action admissions programs with class-based programs would continue to meet the racial/ethnic diversity goals of higher education, with the added benefit of helping poor and working class white students. Data from three National Center for Education Statistics databases were analyzed to: (1) determine the degree of association between race and socioeconomic status among high school and postsecondary students; and (2) project potential enrollment trends if a shift from race to socioeconomic status were implemented. The study concluded that a class-based affirmative action policy would not assist or improve college participation rates among minorities. A statistically significant, although weak and declining, association was noted between race and socioeconomic status. This would disproportionately benefit low socioeconomic white students compared to low socioeconomic minority peers because of sheer numbers and overrepresentation of whites. It was concluded that race-based and class-based programs are separate issues and thus not likely to be resolved by a single policy. (Contains 46 references.) (CH)
Descriptors: Access to Education, Admission Criteria, Affirmative Action, Attendance Patterns, College Applicants, College Attendance, Desegregation Methods, Diversity (Student), Educational Discrimination, Educational Opportunities, Educational Status Comparison, Enrollment Trends, Higher Education, Minority Groups, Racial Balance, Racial Bias, Socioeconomic Influences, Socioeconomic Status, Student Recruitment, Whites, Working Class
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: College Board, New York, NY.; Association for Institutional Research.
Authoring Institution: N/A