The factors that black college freshmen perceive as contributing to their social and academic integration within a predominantly white university

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Higher Education


James Collins


black students, social integration

Subject Categories

Bilingual, Multilingual, and Multicultural Education


This was a descriptive study of the sense of fulfillment that black students experienced with their social and academic life on a predominantly white university campus. One hundred and fifty-five black freshmen were invited to participate in the study. A total of 122 students, representing a response rate of 78.7%, elected to participate in this study. Three methods of data gathering--the review of admissions records, interviews, and a written survey administered to subjects--were used to collect precollege background data, college experience data, and academic performance data. An initial exploratory survey of 50 black sophomores preceded the written survey; 15 of the respondents were randomly selected and interviewed. Their responses to the follow-up interviews aided in the development of the study's questionnaire instrument, the Miller College Experience Questionnaire (MCEQ). Percentages, mean scores, frequency distributions, correlations, and t-tests were used to analyze the data. The factors that black freshmen identified as most important to their social integration, and with which they were most satisfied were: (a) relationships with black students, their roommates, and non-black students; and (b) their participation in non-membership, campus-wide student activities. While females were slightly more involved than males in the social life of the campus, males appeared slightly more satisfied with the factors contributing to their social life.

The factors black freshmen identified as most important to their academic integration and with which they were most satisfied were: (a) regular classroom attendance; (b) coursework completion; and (c) discussions of their academic performance with their instructors. Black females were more satisfied with and more actively involved in the factors contributing to their academic integration, than were males.


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