The Role of Discriminatory Experiences on Hispanic Students’ College Choice Decisions

Amanda Taggart, Utah State University
Gloria Crisp, University of Texas


This study examined the impact of discriminatory experiences on Hispanic students’ decisions concerning postsecondary enrollment. Logistic regression was used to identify variables associated with Hispanic students’ decisions to attend either a 2- or a 4-year institution within the context of theory concerning college choice/success. Data were drawn from a nationally representative sample ( n = 2,210) of Hispanic students from the ELS:2002 data set. Results indicated that Hispanic students were less likely to attend a 4-year institution if they personally experienced or perceived others being discriminated against during high school. Findings suggest that discriminatory high school experiences may contribute to “tracking” Hispanic students to the community college level.