Title

Mexican-American Students and Pursuit of the Doctorate

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Location

SURC Ballroom A

Start Date

17-5-2012

End Date

17-5-2012

Abstract

Providing greater opportunities and support for Mexican-American students pursuing advanced education is an important educational goal. Despite progress in the rate of college attendance, Mexican-American students continue to be significantly underrepresented among doctoral recipients and college faculty (Oseguera, Locks, & Vega, 2009). In order to increase the number of Mexican-American faculty members, an important first step is to increase the number of students pursing doctoral degrees. In the current study we explored whether perceptions of the university environment and mentoring would predict more of the variance in intention to pursue a doctorate for Mexican-American students than white students. Because Mexican-American students often face additional barriers to the pursuit of education, we thought that a supportive university environment and mentoring would be especially important. A total of 162 undergraduate students (106 white: 41 men, 65 women; 56 Mexican-American: 31 men, 25 women) at a mid-sized public university in the western United States participated in the study. Separate multiple regressions for white and Mexican-American students were computed with Perceptions of the University Environment and Mentoring as predictor variables and intention to pursue a doctoral degree as the criterion variable. The regression equation for white students was not significant. However, for Mexican American students, the regression equation was significant (F = 5.76, p < .05, R squared = .19). As predicted, these variables were more important for Mexican-American than white students, although not in the predicted directions for each variable.

Poster Number

24

Faculty Mentor(s)

Heath Marrs

Additional Mentoring Department

Psychology

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May 17th, 2:00 PM May 17th, 4:30 PM

Mexican-American Students and Pursuit of the Doctorate

SURC Ballroom A

Providing greater opportunities and support for Mexican-American students pursuing advanced education is an important educational goal. Despite progress in the rate of college attendance, Mexican-American students continue to be significantly underrepresented among doctoral recipients and college faculty (Oseguera, Locks, & Vega, 2009). In order to increase the number of Mexican-American faculty members, an important first step is to increase the number of students pursing doctoral degrees. In the current study we explored whether perceptions of the university environment and mentoring would predict more of the variance in intention to pursue a doctorate for Mexican-American students than white students. Because Mexican-American students often face additional barriers to the pursuit of education, we thought that a supportive university environment and mentoring would be especially important. A total of 162 undergraduate students (106 white: 41 men, 65 women; 56 Mexican-American: 31 men, 25 women) at a mid-sized public university in the western United States participated in the study. Separate multiple regressions for white and Mexican-American students were computed with Perceptions of the University Environment and Mentoring as predictor variables and intention to pursue a doctoral degree as the criterion variable. The regression equation for white students was not significant. However, for Mexican American students, the regression equation was significant (F = 5.76, p < .05, R squared = .19). As predicted, these variables were more important for Mexican-American than white students, although not in the predicted directions for each variable.