Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A phenomenological study of urban African American males who aspire to attend a four-year university
by Steppes, Allison Victoria, Ed.D., Pepperdine University, 2011, 156; 3473385
Abstract (Summary)

In the United States, less than 30% of African American males between the ages of 18 and 24 are enrolled in a 4-year university. More African American females are enrolled in colleges than their male counterparts. Focusing on the positive aspects of some African American males‘ educational experiences, this research was conducted to learn how some young Black men have prepared themselves to attend college. It is this researcher‘s hope that the results of this study will help to inform educators about how to help more African American males achieve academic success.

This phenomenological study was conducted to explore the factors that led to African American males being academically prepared to attend college directly from an urban public high school. This research focused on students who were attending a public school in an urban area.

The research questions in this study were designed to understand the level of parental involvement, the educational experiences, and any additional factors that enabled participants to become prepared for college admittance. This study utilized qualitative methodology to analyze data gathered from 12 participants who shared their experiences in an audio recorded semi-structured personal interview. Participants‘ academic records were analyzed in addition to their responses. The study revealed 16 common themes among the data gathered from participants.

The study found that parental involvement and supportive educators were prevalent in participant‘s lives. Participants were active in college outreach programs. Many had access to and participated in academically rigorous coursework. The socioeconomic status of participants‘ families did not preclude them from pursuing a college education and being academically prepared to attend 4-year universities after high school.

The results of this study indicate that a school culture that embraces African American male students and helps them navigate modern public educational structures will result in more African American males being eligible to attend four-year universities. Participants in this study revealed that even when college access seemed elusive they were able to persevere as a result of encouragement from their community of educators.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Barner, Robert R.
Commitee: Garrett, L. Gail, Martinez, Tomas
School: Pepperdine University
Department: Education
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 72/12, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: African American Studies, Black studies, School counseling
Keywords: African-American, Black males, College, College preparation, Males, Urban education
Publication Number: 3473385
ISBN: 978-1-124-87709-9
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