Abstract Title

Minority College Students and Philosophy

Abstract

What barriers do minority college students identify with respect to becoming philosophically educated? “Minority College Students and Philosophy” addresses the problem that philosophy is largely directed by white males; the majority populations responsible for the vast majority of philosophical ideas predominantly do not represent minority populations. As a result, philosophy risks—without input from minority populations—becoming stagnant in a world in which diversity is becoming increasingly important. This study examines the barriers that undergraduate minority students—women, ethnic minorities, and the LGBTQ population—at a mid-sized midwestern university in the United States identify in pursuit of philosophical education. The goal of this study is to better understand what barriers exist and why these barriers exist, so we may learn how to make philosophy more diverse and inclusive. When given a survey comprised of multiple-choice and short answer questions, 16 out of 21 students identified one or more barriers between themselves and philosophical education. Based off of these results, I anticipate that students from minority populations will identify cultural barriers, linguistic barriers, social barriers, and financial barriers more frequently than students from majority populations. This study pinpoints several concrete obstacles with respect to philosophical education, identified by students themselves, which future research may utilize to better understand how to make philosophy more inclusive. Two areas for future research are how these findings may be implemented concretely, and why the obstacles that minority students identify differ from those that students from majority populations identify.

Modified Abstract

What barriers do minority college students identify with respect to becoming philosophically educated? This study addresses the problem that philosophy is largely directed by white males; the majority populations responsible for the vast majority of philosophical ideas predominantly do not represent minority populations. As a result, philosophy risks becoming stagnant in a world in which diversity is becoming increasingly important. This study examines the barriers that undergraduate minority students—women, ethnic minorities, and the LGBTQ population—at a midsized midwestern university in the United States identify in pursuit of philosophical education. When given a survey comprised of multiple-choice and short answer questions, 16 out of 21 students identified one or more barriers—cultural, linguistic, social, and financial—between themselves and philosophical education. This study pinpoints concrete obstacles with respect to philosophical education, identified by students themselves, which future research may utilize to better understand how to make philosophy more inclusive.

Research Category

Political Sciences/Philosophy/History

Author Information

Alyssa FernandezFollow

Primary Author's Major

Philosophy

Mentor #1 Information

Dr. Andreea Smaranda

Aldea

Start Date

April 2019

Research Area

Other Philosophy

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Apr 9th, 1:00 PM

Minority College Students and Philosophy

What barriers do minority college students identify with respect to becoming philosophically educated? “Minority College Students and Philosophy” addresses the problem that philosophy is largely directed by white males; the majority populations responsible for the vast majority of philosophical ideas predominantly do not represent minority populations. As a result, philosophy risks—without input from minority populations—becoming stagnant in a world in which diversity is becoming increasingly important. This study examines the barriers that undergraduate minority students—women, ethnic minorities, and the LGBTQ population—at a mid-sized midwestern university in the United States identify in pursuit of philosophical education. The goal of this study is to better understand what barriers exist and why these barriers exist, so we may learn how to make philosophy more diverse and inclusive. When given a survey comprised of multiple-choice and short answer questions, 16 out of 21 students identified one or more barriers between themselves and philosophical education. Based off of these results, I anticipate that students from minority populations will identify cultural barriers, linguistic barriers, social barriers, and financial barriers more frequently than students from majority populations. This study pinpoints several concrete obstacles with respect to philosophical education, identified by students themselves, which future research may utilize to better understand how to make philosophy more inclusive. Two areas for future research are how these findings may be implemented concretely, and why the obstacles that minority students identify differ from those that students from majority populations identify.