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Dimensions and Categories Underlying Thinking About College Student Types1


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    The authors thank the many Rutgers undergraduates who have been members of the Self Perception Lab.

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Richard D. Ashmore, 641 Brouilly Drive, Kenner, LA 70065. E-mail:


Previous work on implicit personality theory and the college student culture suggests that thinking about college student types should include academic involvement and social involvement dimensions. Further, positive and negative social, positive academic, and oppositional clusters of types were predicted based on studies of high school crowds. Using 85 college student type labels as stimuli, a free-sorting method coupled with multidimensional scaling and hierarchical clustering analyses provided support for these hypotheses. Also, the results suggest convergence in the cognitive structure underlying perception of college student types across major demographic categories.