Ethnic-Related Curricula and Intergroup Attitudes in College: Movement Toward and Away From the In-Group1


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    This research was supported by grants from the Russell Sage Foundation, the UCLA Office of the Chancellor, and the National Science Foundation (Award No. BCS-9808686). The authors thank David Sears, Marilynn Brewer, and Stacey Sinclair for their collaboration on this joint research project; and Michael Greenwell for his efforts in data collection.

Colette van Laar, Social and Organizational Psychology, Department of Psychology, Faculty of Social Sciences, Leiden University, PO Box 9555, 2300 RB, Leiden, The Netherlands. E-mail:


Using a 5-year longitudinal study, we investigated the long-term effects of courses with ethnic studies content and courses with Latino or Black professors on university students' intergroup attitudes. We found that these curricular variables significantly affected the intergroup attitudes of students beyond pre-existing differences in attitudes and beyond other curriculum variables. As expected, we found differences between ethnic groups: White students showed movement toward other groups as a result of these curricular factors, whereas Latino and African American students showed both increased tolerance toward other groups and movement toward the in-group. The results are discussed in terms of group status differences between the dominant White majority and the stigmatized Latino and Black minority groups.