Research Example 6

Literte, Patricia E. “Revising Race: How Biracial Students Are Changing and Challenging Student Services.” Journal of College Student Development, vol. 51, no. 2, 2010, pp. 115–134., doi:10.1353/csd.0.0122.

This research investigates the relationship between biracial college students and race-oriented student services (e.g., Office of Black Student Services). These services are organized around conventional understandings of race that assume there are five, discrete racial categories, namely, Black/African American, Latino/a, White, Asian American, and Native American. Drawing on interviews (n = 60) with students and administrators at two universities, this article examines the problems that arise when students’ racial identities are incongruent with universities’ views of race. This study can assist practitioners in the development of services on campuses that are characterized by increasingly fluid racial terrains in the post–Civil Rights era.

The article’s topic is how racial identity of college students affect student services on college campuses and how this may also affect the identity of the individual. As quoted from the article, “This study brings to light (a) students’ efforts to construct meaningful biracial identities within institutions of higher education that reify monoracialism and (b) universities’ negotiation of the complex terrain of race and ability to respond to the needs of rapidly changing student bodies”. The research question is how is an individual’s racial identity influential in student services, both shaping these services and shaping their identity?

For this research project, the author needs to collect shallow and deeply held opinions and attitudes, as well as reports of acts, behaviors, and events. The author used interviews to collect this data, as well as collecting archival documents and informal observation. The method of data analysis was categorical. The author used data coding and analysis, but mentions that codes codes were established after data was collected and preliminarily reviewed sentence by sentence.

I think this is an interesting source. I chose this article because I think it will be interesting to see how racial differences may affect our research project regarding how student services can be improved at University of Redlands. I think that in order to have more credibility, the author should have surveyed more individuals (or at least get a sample size from more than just two schools). But overall, an interesting topic and insight on how racial identity may affect the services offered on campus.

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