ERIC Number: ED453736
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
Studying Latinos in a "Virtual" University: Reframing Diversity and Academic Culture Change. Occasional Paper No. 68. Latino Studies Series.
Ibarra, Robert A.
The impact of "virtual" universities on higher education and on Latino students was studied through interviews with Latino students and faculty at Walden University, an accredited distributed learning graduate school. Attracting career-bound practitioner scholars, Walden achieves high minority enrollments (around 37%) and significant diversity in doctoral production, unaided by either minority recruitment or retention programs. Previous studies of Latinos in graduate education had indicated that they were not entering academia in significant numbers. Despite the current state of Low Context (limited personal contact) learning technology, Walden generates a High Context (student-oriented, multimedia) learning centered culture that fosters a very active Internet community that is reshaping traditional methods of graduate education. Findings from an informal group of seven Latino students comparing Walden with traditional resident institutions suggest that differences in organizational cultures and context hold important clues for explaining patterns of attraction and rejection among ethnic groups in academia. These cultural patterns offer new strategies for reframing the current model for enhancing diversity and attracting Latinos to higher education. (Contains 1 table and 35 references.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Michigan State Univ., East Lansing. Julian Samora Research Inst.