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Author Topic: Why Affirmative Action is Justified  (Read 91351 times)

PNym

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified
« Reply #570 on: September 04, 2007, 12:50:35 PM »
Same to you, Miss P.

I don't think many people who read our respective posts would imagine that I'm the one who hasn't read the scholarly work on the subject, but suit yourself.

I would say the same.   :)

My apologies, by "scholarly," I didn't mean Walt Williams' column and that one Amy Wax piece.

The Wax piece alleged a pretty severe flaw in the study that established the existence of the "stereotype threat." If her criticism is valid, then the case for the existence of such a threat is weakened.

eastend

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified
« Reply #571 on: September 04, 2007, 04:17:00 PM »
Same to you, Miss P.

I don't think many people who read our respective posts would imagine that I'm the one who hasn't read the scholarly work on the subject, but suit yourself.

I would say the same.   :)



My apologies, by "scholarly," I didn't mean Walt Williams' column and that one Amy Wax piece.

The Wax piece alleged a pretty severe flaw in the study that established the existence of the "stereotype threat." If her criticism is valid, then the case for the existence of such a threat is weakened.

'Stereotype threat' is the funniest thing they've come up with so far.   :D   

Miss P

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified
« Reply #572 on: September 05, 2007, 03:31:05 AM »
The Wax piece alleged a pretty severe flaw in the study that established the existence of the "stereotype threat." If her criticism is valid, then the case for the existence of such a threat is weakened.

Did you even read her piece?  She acknowledges the existence of stereotype threat.  All she says, based on decent, peer reviewed research (Sackett et al. 2004), is that stereotype threat alone does not account for the difference between black and white test scores.  All agree that stereotype threat does depress black (and other targeted group) test scores -- the disputes are matters of degree and pervasiveness.  In response, Steele and Aronsen 2004 acknowledged that stereotype threat does not account for all inter-group differences in test scores and described this as a misreading of their original 1995 article.  They went on to demonstrate, inter alia, that real-life testtaking conditions were most often tainted by stereotype threat, and that these conditions produce larger group differences than you would see under no-threat conditions.  There are, in fact, no credible researchers I've encountered on the subject (including right-wingers like Wax) who fail to acknowledge the existence of stereotype threat at all.
That's cool how you referenced a case.

Quote from: archival
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1654134681665465

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified
« Reply #573 on: September 05, 2007, 10:50:09 AM »
  Whether stereo-type threat exists or not, it is still a lame justification for AA.  Just because everyone else thinks that you are going to do badly on a test, you do badly on a test?  So how do you "adjust" test scores or rewrite a test to eliminate this so-called threat?  You can't, because you don't even know how much (if at all) it comes into play. 

Stop looking for excuses to explain under performance and start taking education more seriously.  Anyone who has ever been to an inner city school knows that most kids there aren't complaining about the lack of funding.  Instead you can see the few who actually want to be there in order to get an education and the rest who are there because they have to be.

Miss P

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified
« Reply #574 on: September 05, 2007, 11:24:57 AM »
  Whether stereo-type threat exists or not, it is still a lame justification for AA.  Just because everyone else thinks that you are going to do badly on a test, you do badly on a test?  So how do you "adjust" test scores or rewrite a test to eliminate this so-called threat?  You can't, because you don't even know how much (if at all) it comes into play. 

While I would quibble with your characterization of stereotype threat, I agree with you that it is not, alone, a justification for affirmative action.  I don't believe a specific "adjustment" is necessarily the right path.  The best approach for law schools would be to diminish the weight of the LSAT, specifically with respect to African American and Latino admissions, since it is not an accurate measure of their likelihood to pass the bar.  I also think additional support and mentorship opportunities in law school would go a long way toward reducing the interracial bar-passage gap.  (You will note that this is what the elite California public law schools have done following 209.)
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.

Miss P

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified
« Reply #575 on: September 05, 2007, 11:26:43 AM »
Stop looking for excuses to explain under performance and start taking education more seriously.  Anyone who has ever been to an inner city school knows that most kids there aren't complaining about the lack of funding.  Instead you can see the few who actually want to be there in order to get an education and the rest who are there because they have to be.

I agree with you that everyone -- from students to policymakers -- needs to take education more seriously.  You have vastly oversimplified the difficulties students in poor urban public schools face, however.
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.

1654134681665465

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified
« Reply #576 on: September 05, 2007, 12:09:04 PM »
Quote
The best approach for law schools would be to diminish the weight of the LSAT, specifically with respect to African American and Latino admissions, since it is not an accurate measure of their likelihood to pass the bar.   

I'm too lazy to look it up right now, but is there any significant gap in the bar passage rates of minorities compared to whites? 

Miss P

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified
« Reply #577 on: September 05, 2007, 12:12:41 PM »
I'm too lazy to look it up right now, but is there any significant gap in the bar passage rates of minorities compared to whites? 

Yes, actually.  It depends on whether you analyze eventual passage or first-time passage and whether you look at bar-takers or all people who matriculated at law schools, but any way you slice it, there's a big gap.  The LSAT tends to overpredict black performance when it is not entirely stochastic.  The best solution is to evaluate applicants according to better metrics and to do the things we know help people pass the bar (like special mentoring and academic support programs).
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.

1654134681665465

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified
« Reply #578 on: September 05, 2007, 12:19:33 PM »

Miss P

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Re: Why Affirmative Action is Justified
« Reply #579 on: September 05, 2007, 09:25:25 PM »
The best approach for law schools would be to diminish the weight of the LSAT, specifically with respect to African American and Latino admissions, since it is not an accurate measure of their likelihood to pass the bar.

Best approach in order to achieve what?  The LSAT doesn't have anything to do with predicting bar passage rates; I don't think anyone at LSAC would purport that it did. 

Huh?  I thought the whole point was to try to make lawyers out of us.  In any case, one of the chief conclusions of the National Longitudinal Bar Passage Study (one affirmative action opponents cite frequently) is that LSAT score tends to predict both LGPA and bar passage.  The relationship is not as strong as opponents claim, particularly with respect to URM applicants/students/graduates.
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.