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Does Perceived Ethnicity-match Influence Students’ Help-seeking Behaviors and Academic Choices? Guo, Yingchi; Peng, Tianqi 2020-04

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Department of PsychologyDoes Perceived Ethnicity-match Influence Students’ Help-seeking Behaviors and Academic Choices?Yingchi Guo, Tianqi PengBackground● Efforts to promote minority instructors in academic status require a clearer understanding of students’ expectations toward instructors. ● Faculty demographics also significantly influence student evaluations of teaching-unfavourable evaluation on Rate My Professor (Johnson, 2015).● Little research has examined how perceived ethnic similarity of students and instructors impacts students’ academic help-seeking behaviour, and ultimately their choice of instructor, from the student’s perspective. Result(con`t)EXAMPLE: PROFILE OF INSTRUCTORASIAN AND WHITE STUDENTS CHOICE OF INSTRUCTORSMethodsThis study adopted a correlational design. ● The predictor variables:○ The congruence between student’s and instructor’s ethnicity○ Instructors’ gender ● Criterion variable:○ Students’ choice of instructor○ Students’ intention to engage in help-seeking behaviour and the tendency to avoid seeking help.○ The grade students expect to get from the instructor.• Participants were recruited via Human Subject Pool system in University of British Columbia.○ 150 White, 220 East Asian• Participants completed the survey online on their own equipment (laptops, tablets, etc).Result STUDENTS’ EXPECTED GRADES FROM DIFFERENT INSTRUCTORSExpected help avoidance towards instructorsNote: Significance codes: ‘***’ 0.001; ‘**’ 0.01; ‘*’ 0.05 ;Expected help-seeking behaviour towards instructors● In contrast to H1, student’s ethnicity does not predict in their choice of instructors.● Consistent with H2, students prefer male instructor over female instructor, especially, Asian male instructor (50%).● In contrast to H3, students’ ethnicity does not  predict their expected grades and help-seeking/help-avoidance behaviours. Rather, students expected highest grades from Asian male instructor. In addition, students showed highest expected help-seeking and lowest expected help-avoidance towards Asian male instructor.Hypothesis:H1: Students will prefer to choose instructors of the same ethnicity over instructor of different ethnicity as themselves.H2: The effect in H1 will be moderated by instructor gender – both male and female students will prefer male (over female) instructors of their congruent ethnicity.H3: Students will expect a higher grade and show  higher level of help-seeking & lower level of help-avoidance toward ethnicity-congruent instructors.DiscussionLimitation: The external validity of this study is not satisfying. Students won`t only rely on instructors’ profile to choose class. Other resources (e.g. peer recommendation; Rate My Professor etc) will play a role in instructor choosing process.Future direction: A possible explanation for the popularity of the Asian male instructor represent a balance of communion and agency. Future study is needed to explore the role of perceived communion and agency in academic setting.Acknowledgement We wish to express our deepest gratitude to our research supervisors: Audrey Aday and Dr. Toni Schmader. ReferenceJohnson, M. D., Narayanan, A., & Sawaya, W. J. (2013). Effects of course and instructor characteristics on student evaluation of teaching across a college of engineering. Journal of Engineering Education, 102(2), 289-318.Note: This model is a theoretical one and has no  been tested in this study.Fake Instructor Profile● Four biographies were created with counterbalanced  position, research background, and educational experience.● Each participant got a random combination of each face and each biography. This process is totally counterbalanced.


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