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ERIC Number: EJ851416
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 24
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 39
ISSN: ISSN-0022-1546
Attitudes and Advocacy: Understanding Faculty Views on Racial/Ethnic Diversity
Park, Julie J.; Denson, Nida
Journal of Higher Education, v80 n4 p415-438 Jul-Aug 2009
In order to better understand faculty attitudes towards diversity, specifically racial/ethnic diversity, the authors created a composite variable that taps into a variety of faculty attitudes towards diversity including their commitments to promoting racial understanding and their views on the role of diversity in undergraduate education. The authors refer to this variable throughout the study as "Diversity Advocacy." The purpose of the study is to examine how Diversity Advocacy varies within subsets of faculty, as well as to identify predictors of faculty attitudes regarding diversity. The data for this study were collected as part of a triennial national survey of college and university faculty conducted in 2004-05 by the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) at the University of California, Los Angeles. Of the 172,051 questionnaires mailed out to faculty at 511 two- and four-year colleges and universities across the country, 65,124 usable faculty surveys were returned, reflecting a 38% response rate. The final analytic sample used for this study consisted of 38,580 faculty members from 414 colleges and universities, which is a normative subset of the overall sample that included full-time undergraduate teaching faculty from institutions with a representative number of respondents. Their analysis indicates that Diversity Advocacy is related to a number of traits, including race/ethnicity, academic discipline, incorporation of readings related to race/ethnicity and gender, and civic values, among other attributes. Their findings suggest three recommendations to promote diversity advocacy among faculty. First, it is essential for institutions of higher education to continue to recruit and retain a diverse professoriate. Secondly, the authors suggest that universities create innovative initiatives to encourage STEM faculty to become more involved in campus diversity efforts. Their findings indicate that STEM faculty are less likely to score high on Diversity Advocacy, possibly in part because of the low number of students of color in these subject areas. Lastly, the authors recommend that universities support and promote civic values among their faculty, which was the strongest predictor of Diversity Advocacy in the final model. (Contains 3 tables and 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A