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Evidence about the Potential Role for Affirmative Action in Higher Education

  • Braz Camargo
  • Todd Stinebrickner
  • Ralph Stinebrickner

In two recent cases involving the University of Michigan (Gratz v. Bollinger and Gruttinger v. Bollinger), the Supreme Court examined whether race should be allowed to play an explicit role in the admission decisions of schools. The arguments made in support of affirmative action admission policies in these cases and others raise two fundamental questions. First, do students actually have incorrect beliefs about individuals from different races at the time of college entrance? Second, if students do have incorrect beliefs at the time of college entrance, can diversity on a college campus change these beliefs? While a small literature has recently shed some light on the second question, no previous work has been able to provide direct evidence about the first one. In this paper we examine the first question by taking advantage of unique data collected specifically for this purpose.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 13342.

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Date of creation: Aug 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:13342
Note: ED LS
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  1. Todd Stinebrickner & Ralph Stinebrickner, 2001. "Time Use and College Outcomes," University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity Working Papers 20012, University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity.
  2. Mayer, Adalbert & Puller, Steven L., 2008. "The old boy (and girl) network: Social network formation on university campuses," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(1-2), pages 329-347, February.
  3. David Marmaros & Bruce Sacerdote, 2006. "How Do Friendships Form?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(1), pages 79-119, 02.
  4. Cornell, Bradford & Welch, Ivo, 1996. "Culture, Information, and Screening Discrimination," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(3), pages 542-71, June.
  5. Arcidiacono, Peter & Khan, Shakeeb & Vigdor, Jacob L., 2011. "Representation versus assimilation: How do preferences in college admissions affect social interactions?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(1), pages 1-15.
  6. Dan Levy & Greg Duncan & Jacque Eccles & Johanne Boisjoly & Michael Kremer, 2004. "Empathy or antipathy? The impact of diversity," Natural Field Experiments 00220, The Field Experiments Website.
  7. Stinebrickner, Ralph & Stinebrickner, Todd R., 2006. "What can be learned about peer effects using college roommates? Evidence from new survey data and students from disadvantaged backgrounds," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(8-9), pages 1435-1454, September.
  8. Todd R. Stinebrickner & Ralph Stinebrickner, 2000. "Working During School and Academic Performance," UWO Department of Economics Working Papers 20009, University of Western Ontario, Department of Economics.
  9. Roland G. Fryer, Jr. & Paul Torelli, 2005. "An Empirical Analysis of 'Acting White'," NBER Working Papers 11334, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Stinebrickner Ralph & Stinebrickner Todd R., 2008. "The Causal Effect of Studying on Academic Performance," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-55, June.
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