Recent Award

Doctoral Dissertation Research: Race, Achievement and Trust in Student-Teacher Relationships

Racial inequality in education has a long history in the United States. The most persistent manifestation of this history is the racial achievement gap. This project will address the racial achievement gap from the vantage point of black students in racially segregated, high-poverty schools. More specifically, this study examines how trust shapes the quality of their relationships with teachers and their educational outcomes. This research is guided by the premise that trust can be a lever for improving the schooling experiences and academic performance of disadvantaged students. Prior studies demonstrate that trust is a salient component of effective and cohesive school communities. However, much of the existing research on this topic fails to consider trust from the perspective of students. Trust should be a topic of concern for researchers interested in racial inequality in education and youth inequality more broadly, since research suggests that pervasive feelings of distrust can cement disadvantage initiated by larger meso-and marco-level forces. Recognizing the power of trust in shaping one's life chances, a study of black young people's propensity to trust their teachers (i.e., student-teacher trust) is warranted as a potentially significant determinant of their educational outcomes and future well-being.

Principal Investigator: 

Thomas DiPrete

Giddings Professor of Sociology and Co-Director of ISERP

Home Department: 

Date: 

Monday, May 1, 2017 to Monday, April 30, 2018

Research Category: 

Amount: 

$11,786

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