Research Brief, Issue #1 The National Study on Latino Male Achievement in Higher Education
Author: David Perez II, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Miami University of Ohio.
This Project MALES Research Brief focuses on highlighting a set of qualitative studies that integrate two asset-based theories—Yosso’s (2005) community cultural wealth framework and Schreiner’s (2010) thriving quotient, to understand how 100 Latino males employed different forms of capital to thrive academically, intrapersonally, and interpersonally at 20 selective universities. TNSLMA represents the first national and largest qualitative study to focus on how Latino males conceptualize and embody success in higher education.
Research Brief, Issue #2 Experiences of Latino Male Students Enrolled in History Black Colleges and Universities
Author: Taryn O. Allen, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, University of Texas, at Arlington.
This Project MALES Research Brief focuses on understanding how the learning environment of Historically Black College and Universities (HBCUs) could counter the achievement gaps confronting Latino male students. The qualitative, phenomenological study referenced in this brief, explored the lived experiences (Creswell, 2014) of ten Latino male undergraduate students enrolled in to two, four-year HBCUs in Texas. The guiding research questions for this study were: (1) What individuals, relationships, and experiences, if any, promote sense of belonging? (2) What individuals, relationships, and experiences, if any, hinder sense of belonging?;; and (3) What do Latino males suggest to promote their sense of belonging at HBCUs? Sense of belonging was measured using Strayhorn’s (2012) concept of sense of belonging in college.
Research Brief, Issue #3 An Intersectionality Analysis of Latino Men in Higher Education and their Help-Seeking Behaviors
Author: Nolan Cabrera, Ph.D., Assistant Professor University of Arizona.
This Project MALES Research Brief focuses on exploring the intersection of being Latino and being male and its relationship to educational achievement, within the context of Arizona and anti-Latina/o policies. The qualitative study referenced in this brief is from eight semi-structured interviews with Latino male undergraduates at the University of Arizona. Exploring (1) The academic and racial stresses do Latino men face during their undergraduate experiences, (2) The help-seeking behaviors do Latino men engage in to manage the stresses in their lives, and (3) The relationship between help-seeking behaviors and Latino masculinity. The narratives of these Latino male students were illuminating. They tended to experience stresses in their lives stemming from both racism and academic struggles; however, they seldom engaged in help-seeking behaviors. Part of this avoidance stemmed from fear of vulnerability.
Research Brief, Issue #4 How Latino Male Cope with Academic and Social Obstacles During College
Author: Sarah Rodriguez, Ph.D., Assistant Professor Iowa State University.
This Project MALES Research Brief explored the academic and social obstacles that first and second generation Latino male college students encountered within a predominantly White, research intensive, and highly selective institution and examined how these students coped with those obstacles. Using a qualitative, phenomenological approach, their work explored the following research questions: (1) How do Latino men experience and make meaning of the academic and social obstacles that they encounter during college? (2) How do Latino men utilize coping responses to overcome academic and social obstacles? The study referenced in this brief is from ten semi-structured interviews with Latino male undergraduates at the University of Texas at Austin.
Research Brief, Issue #5 Finding Los Científicos Within: Latino Male Science Identity Development in the First College Semester
Author: Charles Lu, Ph.D., Executive Director, Gateway Scholars and Summer Bridge Programs, UT-Austin
This Project MALES Research Brief focuses on examining science experiences of Latino males majoring in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines. The qualitative, phenomenological study referenced in this brief examined their first semester science experiences using a science identity framework. The two main research questions guiding this research study were: (1) How do Latino males majoring in STEM disciplines ascribe meaning to their science experiences in the first semester of college? (2) How do Latino males’ science identities develop in their first college semester? The findings from this study bring attention to the ways Latino males’ science identities are deconstructed, challenged, and shaped in their first semester of college. Many of the men enjoyed the prestige and exclusivity that they associated with STEM, and this affected the way they constructed their reality within and outside the scientific world.
Research Brief, Issue #6 English, Español, and “Academia”: The crossover socialization of multilingual Latino male faculty in education
Author Cristobal Salinas Jr., Ph.D.,Assistant Professor, Florida Atlantic University
This Project MALES Research Brief explored the lived experiences of how Latino male faculty members make meaning of their socialization into the academia and how socialization impacts their decisions to pursue full-time and tenure-track positions in the field of education. As such, the following research questions guided this study: 1.) How do tenure-track and full-time tenured Latino male faculty members enter the field of education? 2.) How do tenure-track and full-time tenured Latino male faculty members make meaning of their socialization into the academy? Findings from this study suggest that through their socialization, Latino male faculty are crossing intellectual, emotional, psychological, and geographical borders. .
Research Brief, Issue #7 Latino Male High School Math Achievement: The Influential Role of Psychosocial Factors
Author Ismael Fajardo, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Research Associate. University of Washington Seattle
This Project MALES Research Brief focuses on understanding and investigating the psychological, social, and cultural factors that influence standardized math achievement for Latina/o students in a high school context, as it is conducive to completing a high school and college degree. The following research questions are what guided this study: 1) What are the direct effects of psychological, social, and cultural factors on eleventh-grade math achievement for Latino students? 2) Does the PSC model vary across gender? Findings from this study show that Latino male high school students’ math achievement is significantly influenced by psychological, social, and cultural factors.
Research Brief, Issue #8 Caught in-between: AfroLatino Males in Higher Education
Author Claudia García-Louis, Ph.D., Visiting Assistant Professor, University of Texas San Antonio
This Project MALES Research Brief focuses on highlighting the lived experiences of six self-identified undergraduate AfroLatino males attending a small, urban, commuter campus in the northeastern United States. Semi-structured individual interviews were conducted with the participants (Patton, 2002). The guiding research questions for the study were: (1) How do AfroLatino males view their themselves in relation to Latina/os and African-Americans on campus? (2) How do AfroLatino males mold their racial, ethnic, and cultural identity? Findings from this study show that AfroLatino males are forced to traverse socially constructed categories, that in effect, thrust them into (in)visibility through the social investment of African American and Latinx nomenclature. Based on the findings, AfroLatino males feel overlooked on campus. Despite campus being located in a very diverse city and neighborhood, not one participant could identify a single program, service, club, activity, or class that was dedicated to AfroLatinxs. Moreover, in addition to navigating campus culture and academics, they were also forced to make daily decisions about whether to disclose their ethnic, cultural, and/or racial identity.
Research Brief, Issue #9 Catching them Early: An Examination of Chicano/Latino Middle School Boys’ Early Career Aspirations
Author Eligio Martinez Jr., Visiting Assistant Professor, California State Polytechnic University-Pomona
This Project MALES research brief focuses on acknowledging the unique experiences of Chicano/Latino boys and examining the formulation of their post-secondary aspirations. This study uses four interrelated theoretical perspectives to guide the understanding of how Chicano/Latino middle school boys may formulate their post-secondary aspirations: Bandura’s (1977 social cognitive theory, Bourdieu’s (1983) social and cultural capital theory, and Yosso’s (2005) community cultural wealth model. Taken together, these theoretical perspectives describe the multi-faceted nature of Chicano/Latino middle school boy’s post-secondary aspirations development. The qualitative study referenced in this brief takes place at Dolores Middle School (DMS, pseudonym), located in a historically white community with a recent influx of Latino immigrants in the Pacific Northwest. The study examined the aspirational development of 11 Chicano/Latino boys derived from a representative sample of DMS 8th grade Chicano/Latino students who participated in a larger year and a half ethnographic study regarding their socialization. The following research questions are what guided this study: 1) How do Latino middle school students formulate their college and career aspirations? What obstacles or resources, if any, do they perceive as potentially limiting or supporting their success? 2) What individuals and experiences influence their early aspirations? How do these individuals shape students’ aspirations?
Findings from this paper highlight the need to focus on how students formulate their career plans in earlier stages of the pipeline and the significance that having sources of information can have on the development of future aspirations. In examining these early career decisions and factors that relate to choice can provide insight for school counselors who seek to promote the academic and career development of all students (Akos, Lambie, Milsom & Gilbert, 2007). As practitioners continue to search for ways to keep students engaged through different segments, exposing students to college culture and providing them with information can make the path to college and careers more clear and allow them to remain hopeful about their futures. Providing students with information about college and different careers early, can allow students to see the feasibility of pursuing certain careers and allow them to maintain high aspirations for the future.
Research Brief, Issue #10 Latino Men in Two-Year Public Colleges: State-Level Enrollment Changes and Equity Trends over the Last Decade.
Author Deryl K. Hatch-Tocaimaza, Assistant Professor, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
This Project MALES research brief utilizes the most recent available data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), and the U.S. Census Bureau’s Community Population Survey (CPS) to establish trends over the last decade in overall enrollment numbers and, through the use of equity indices (Bensimon, Hao, & Bustillos, 2006), gains and losses in equitable representation in relation to relative local demographic changes. IPEDS provided enrollment numbers for all U.S.-based and Title IV-participating institutions in the 2-year public sector, while CPS provided yearly estimates of population characteristics at the state level. The research questions guiding this study were: 1) How have enrollment patterns for Latino males developed over time in two-year public colleges in different parts of the country? 2) How do these changes in proportional representation in the study body reflect gains or losses in terms of equity in relation to local demographic changes?
While trends in national enrollment, particularly within public 2-year colleges, shows that participation of Latino males have increased overall, results of this study provide a more nuanced look into the uneven distribution of enrollment and equity trends across geographical areas. Parsing out and examining the variation in Latino college student enrollment and equity by geography matters for a few reasons. Rather than rely on statistics that reflect national trends which may substantially differ by state context, the results of this study provides practitioners and policymakers a clearer picture of the status of Latino equity within their own state and the extent to which public 2-year institutions are effectively recruiting and enrolling Latino students. Results of this study provide evidence that equity gains and losses that have taken place over time may be gendered, perhaps due to different family and migration patterns in established vs. “new” Latino destinations. This finding entails different policy emphases to better serve Latino males who face different kinds of barriers that are in many ways a function of geography (Hatch, Mardock-Uman, and Garcia, 2016). It is imperative for states to critically examine how educational opportunities are afforded to men throughout the education pipeline. As shown in these findings, the results that some states have within the same region can be drastically different, begging the question of what some are doing relatively better or worse than their neighbors to serve Latino men in either place.