Date of Award

2020

Access Restriction

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctorate in Education

Department

Education

School or College

School of Education

First Advisor

Karen Huchting, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Rebecca Herr Stephenson, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Elizabeth Stoddard, Ph.D.

Abstract

Multiracial individuals have been largely overlooked by the government (Nagai, 2016) and in the education sector (Botts, 2016). The lack of social network and community resources (Miville et al., 2005) have contributed to the challenges that Multiracial individuals face when finding a sense of belonging and positive sense of identity. During the transition into college, unique opportunities are presented to Multiracial individuals as they experience detachment from one culture group and have the chance to begin interacting and affiliating with other cultural groups (Houston & Hogan, 2009). Most students have a natural desire to associate themselves with others (Beck & Malley, 1998), but Multiracial individuals struggle to find racially and culturally aligned groups. Campus involvement is important because it leads to higher rates of academic performance and growth, retention, and academic satisfaction (Gardner & Barnes, 2007).

This dissertation seeks to examine the phenomenon of the Multiracial student experience on a college campus situated in a diverse Californian city. Using a phenomenological qualitative methodology, this study explored the identity patterns that Multiracial individuals experienced from Renn’s (2000) patterns among Multiracial college students. In addition to the most frequent patterns that individuals experience, resources and networks that provided on campus support were also investigated.

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