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DOES DIVERSITY MATTER? THE IMPACT OF SCHOOL RACIAL COMPOSITION ON THE ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT OF ELEMENTARY SCHOOL STUDENTS IN AN ETHNICALLY DIVERSE LOW-INCOME SAMPLE

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dc.contributor.advisor Winsler, Adam
dc.contributor.author Conway-Turner, Jameela
dc.creator Conway-Turner, Jameela
dc.date.accessioned 2016-09-28T10:20:48Z
dc.date.available 2016-09-28T10:20:48Z
dc.date.issued 2016
dc.identifier.uri https://hdl.handle.net/1920/10405
dc.description.abstract Since 1954 when segregation of schools became illegal, educators and parents have wondered how diversity impacts children’s outcomes. While some research studies have shown that schools with more equal representation of racial groups have more positive academic outcomes for students, other studies show that as minority concentration increases within a school, students tend to perform worse academically. The different bodies of literature use different methods of measuring diversity within schools and no one has yet looked at comparing multiple methods within one study. Additionally, much of the research compares only Black and White students, and the experiences of Hispanic students are often left out. The goal of this dissertation is to examine how the racial diversity schools affects ethnically diverse student outcomes by combining multiple methods of measuring school racial composition. Data came from 3rd graders, N = 33,857 (51.8% male; 57.2% Latino, 32.6% Black, 5.3% White, 4.9% other) in 278 schools from the Miami School Readiness Project (MSRP). Using multi-level models (HLM; Raudenbush & Bryk, 2002), I examined 1) the association between school racial composition and academic outcomes? 2) whether different methods of measuring the diversity of schools (e.g., Simpson’s index of diversity indicating more equal representation of racial groups vs. a continuous measure of minority concentration) predict students’ academic outcomes differently, 3) whether the percentage of same-race peers (percent like me) was associated with students’ academic achievement, 4) whether the effect of same-race peers depended on school racial diversity, 5) whether there was a non-linear relationship between diversity and academic performance? and 6) whether the association between school racial diversity and academic outcomes depended on child ethnicity (Black, White, and Latino). Results showed that, overall, the Simpson Index was negatively related to academic achievement, but this association was moderated by race such that for White students, more equal representation of groups was positively related to academic achievement, but this association was negative for Black and Hispanic students. Additionally, overall, minority concentration was not related to academic achievement, but there was a significant interaction with ethnicity. For Black students, there was a positive association between minority concentration and academic achievement, but for White students, there was a negative association.
dc.format.extent 102 pages
dc.language.iso en
dc.rights Copyright 2016 Jameela Conway-Turner
dc.subject Psychology en_US
dc.subject Education policy en_US
dc.title DOES DIVERSITY MATTER? THE IMPACT OF SCHOOL RACIAL COMPOSITION ON THE ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT OF ELEMENTARY SCHOOL STUDENTS IN AN ETHNICALLY DIVERSE LOW-INCOME SAMPLE
dc.type Dissertation
thesis.degree.level Ph.D.
thesis.degree.discipline Psychology
thesis.degree.grantor George Mason University


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