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The face of achievement : influences on teacher decision making about aboriginal students Riley, Tasha Anastasia

Abstract

In British Columbia, the issue of low graduation rates among Aboriginal students has been addressed often. Some researchers have claimed that racism is a factor that impedes the progress of Aboriginal students. Since teachers' decisions potentially have a profound impact upon students, this study investigated whether teachers discriminate when they make decisions about students. Fifty pre-service teachers recommended 24 fictional students for remedial, average or advanced programs based upon the program eligibility criteria. Results indicated that students whom teachers were led to believe were of Aboriginal ancestry and students whom they were led to believe were students for whom English was a second language were consistently under-rated in comparison to their non-Aboriginal counterparts regardless of the students' prior academic record.

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