In this exploratory study, the goal was to examine patterns of perceived ethnic discrimination, stereotype confirmation, and acculturation within the context of a diverse, inclusive university. It was predicted that reported rates of perceived ethnic discrimination would be low, but the majority of students would still experience some type of discrimination at least once. The second hypothesis for this study was that higher levels of discrimination, acculturation and stereotype confirmation would result in lower levels of college self-efficacy and GPA. These factors were also predicted to be positively associated with each other as well. The personality trait, conscientiousness was predicted to positively associated with acculturation, college self-efficacy, and GPA. The study surveyed 50 undergraduate students from the University of Central Florida taking psychology courses through the online SONA participation system. 86.4% of participants perceived at least one instance of ethnic discrimination. Perceived ethnic discrimination was also associated with lower levels of college self-efficacy, but not GPA. Acculturation and stereotype confirmation had no significant relationships with neither college self-efficacy or GPA. High rates of acculturation to the dominant American society was associated with lower rates of perceived discrimination and stereotype confirmation, opposite of the original hypothesis. The personality trait conscientiousness was also not captured in this study, but agreeableness and openness revealed significant relationships between all ethnicity-related factors and GPA. Acculturation’s role in perceptions of discrimination and stereotype concerns is discussed in detail. Limitations and future directions are addressed in the context of sample size, race and ethnicity statistics, and the complexities of discrimination and acculturation.
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
College of Sciences
Orlando (Main) Campus
Miller, Alexis N., "The American Dream Short-Lived: The Decline of Academic Achievement and College Confidence through Acculturation, Perceptions of Ethnic Discrimination, and Concerns with Confirming Stereotypes" (2018). Honors Undergraduate Theses. 394.