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Author Topic: Why Affirmative Action is Justified  (Read 88045 times)

redemption

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified (by red.)
« Reply #40 on: June 08, 2006, 05:34:29 PM »

Maybe Im just confused as to definition of "stereotype threat." Can somebody explain it concisely?


No. Read up on it for yourself.

dun

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified (by red.)
« Reply #41 on: June 08, 2006, 05:35:36 PM »
And that wasn't flame.  Are they just in worse school districts in general or something?  Less family educational history?  Idk.  Not flame though.

H4CS

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified (by red.)
« Reply #42 on: June 08, 2006, 05:38:10 PM »
I take issue only with point #3. It is not obvious to everyone that "if there's a performance gap by race on the LSAT after reasonable controlling for other variables, of course corrective action needs to be taken, regardless of the reason for the gap".

Some/many (perhaps most) people believe that the reasons for the performance gap are genetic, or due to some cultural fault of URMs. This line of reasoning leads to the conclusion that URMs are therefore "mismatched" at he law schools that they attend, and that they are "unqualified", and "lesser".

Goodness, you're actually trying to convince people who believe this stuff?  Oh wow, forget my comments, we're really talking about apples and oranges here.  Tennis against a wall, my dear, tennis against a wall.  People like this are good for one thing on bulliten boards and one thing alone: making fun of Stan because they are also heading to CLS.

redemption

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified (by red.)
« Reply #43 on: June 08, 2006, 05:39:30 PM »
And that wasn't flame.  Are they just in worse school districts in general or something?  Less family educational history?  Idk.  Not flame though.

Here's the short version:

URMs score lower on standardized tests than the majority (white) population for a host of social, economic and psychological reasons.  The combination of reasons will vary according to which group you're talking about and at what level of standardized testing.

At the level of the LSAT, and for URMs with a good GPA, the single largest problem seems to be that, aware of societal stereotypes that blacks don't do well on it, their test-taking strategy (being extra-careful, second-guessing answers that seem "too simple", etc) reflects both their desire to perform well and their fear that they may "let the side down" and confirm societal stereotypes.

This effect is subconscious pervasive, especially among URMs who are bright and accomplished.

The phenomenon itself (it is called "stereotype threat" by psychologists) is not just a URM thing: it depends on the context. For example:

Tell a group of white students who are great at math that you're giving them a test to figure out why Asians are better at math, and the white students will do worse, much worse, on that test than if you hadn't said anything. And here's the kicker -- they're not even aware of why they've bombed the test.

In our society, if we're honest, blacks and Mexicans and such are seen as less bright than whites and Asians. Because of this, on tests such as the LSAT, IQ, SAT and so on, the stereotype threat affects them most, and whites least.

I hope that's a little bit clear

chidochido

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified (by red.)
« Reply #44 on: June 08, 2006, 05:48:20 PM »
Bumper...
Boalt 1L

redemption

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified (by red.)
« Reply #45 on: June 08, 2006, 06:42:34 PM »
Okay -- I'm out for a bit. Feel free to post germane and thoughtful ideas after having read the first 2 posts -- just please don't hijack; there are plenty of other threads.

I'll get back to it later tonight.

dun

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified (by red.)
« Reply #46 on: June 08, 2006, 07:24:19 PM »
Thanks red, I've heard something about that before, in like freshman year. 

Miss P

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified (by red.)
« Reply #47 on: June 08, 2006, 09:18:25 PM »
I remember reading the 1998 Atlantic article by Steele.  I feel old.  (tag)

You and me both, gorgeous.  (tag)
That's cool how you referenced a case.

Quote from: archival
I'm so far from the end of my tether right now that I reckon I could knit myself some socks with the slack.

Lurking Third Year

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified (by red.)
« Reply #48 on: June 08, 2006, 10:28:20 PM »
But, according to Sanders' study, the LSAT does accurately reflect african americans' performance in law school.  If the LSAT was not accurately reflecting african american applicants' potential to do well in law school, wouldn't we expect african americans to perform, as a group, at a higher level than their scores would indicate? 

redemption

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified (by red.)
« Reply #49 on: June 08, 2006, 10:38:32 PM »
But, according to Sanders' study, the LSAT does accurately reflect african americans' performance in law school.  If the LSAT was not accurately reflecting african american applicants' potential to do well in law school, wouldn't we expect african americans to perform, as a group, at a higher level than their scores would indicate? 

Okay, a fair question that deserves a full answer. I'm a bit tipsy at the moment, and I'll attempt to do some justice to the answer tomorrow morning.