American Sociological Association

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  1. Great Equalizer or Great Selector? Reconsidering Education as a Moderator of Intergenerational Transmissions

    A long-standing consensus among sociologists holds that educational attainment has an equalizing effect that increases mobility by moderating other avenues of intergenerational status transmission. This study argues that the evidence supporting this consensus may be distorted by two problems: measurement error in parents’ socioeconomic standing and the educational system’s tendency to progressively select people predisposed for mobility rather than to actually affect mobility.

  2. Soldiers to Scientists: Military Service, Gender, and STEM Degree Earning

    The authors use 2014–2018 data from the American Community Survey to answer two questions: To what extent is military service associated with higher rates of earning a bachelor’s degree in a science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) field (vs. a non-STEM field)? To what extent is this relationship gendered? The findings suggest that military service is associated with higher odds of completing a STEM degree and that this association is particularly strong for female veterans.

  3. Biracial Identity Development at Historically White and Historically Black Colleges and Universities

    This study explores the relationship between biracial identity development and college context. I draw on interviews with 49 black-white biracial first- and second-year students attending historically black colleges/universities (HBCUs) or historically white colleges/universities (HWCUs) and follow-up interviews with the same students at the end of college to explore how and why their racial identities changed over time.
  4. What Is Title IX? Toward a Campus-Based Pedagogy to Study Inequality

    In this article, we propose a campus-based pedagogy to teach sociology. We offer the example of a project designed to critically assess university Title IX policy and situate it within existing sociological research on gender-based inequalities and violence. Students engage in sociological research regarding issues such as sexual harassment and assault, intimate partner violence, consent, and rape culture, among others, and develop a tool to create greater awareness among the student body of university policy in these areas.

  5. Health Lifestyles and the Transition to Adulthood

    Prior research has shown the theoretical importance and empirical feasibility of health lifestyles but has not examined their patterns over the life course or their dynamic associations with socioeconomic status (SES) and adult roles. The authors develop and apply a life-course approach to understanding individuals’ health lifestyles across the transition to adulthood, using U.S. data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (n = 6,863).

  6. The Right Fit? Classroom Mismatch in Middle School and Its Inconsistent Effect on Student Learning

    Research on college admissions shows that all students tend to benefit from overmatching, but high-status students are most likely to be overmatched, and low-status students are most likely to be undermatched. This study examines whether mismatching takes place when students are sorted into classrooms in middle school. Given prior research on effectively maintained inequality, we theorize that classroom sorting acts as an opportunity for privileged parents to obtain a qualitative advantage for their children.

  7. Learning Inequality in Francophone Africa: School Quality and the Educational Achievement of Rich and Poor Children

    Influential reports about the “learning crisis” in the global South generally pay insufficient attention to social inequalities in learning. In this study, we explore the association between family socioeconomic status and learning outcomes in 10 francophone African countries using data from the Programme for the Analysis of Education Systems, a standardized assessment of pupils’ mathematics and reading competence at the end of primary school. We start by showing that learning outcomes among grade 6 pupils are both poor and highly stratified.

  8. Are Feminine Body Weight Norms Different for Black Students or in Black Schools? Girls’ Weight-Related Peer Acceptance across Racialized School Contexts

    Adolescent girls with overweight or obesity are less socially integrated than their thinner peers. We examine racial-ethnic differences in girls’ weight-related friendship patterns, especially noting Black–white distinctions given their different norms about the ideal feminine form. We also test whether schools with more Black students see diminished weight-related differences in peer integration for all girls and/or for Black girls.

  9. Transcending the Profession: Psychiatric Patients’ Experiences of Trust in Clinicians

    Classical medical sociological theory argues patients trust doctors in part because they are professionals. Yet in the past half-century, medicine has seen a crisis of trust as well as fundamental changes to the nature of professionalism. To probe the relationship between professionalism and trust today, we analyzed interviews with 50 psychiatric patients receiving care in diverse clinical settings. We found patients experience trust when they perceive clinicians transcending the formal bounds of professionalism.

  10. Beyond Net Worth: Racial Differences in Wealth Portfolios and Black–White Health Inequality across the Life Course

    A large body of research links wealth and health, but most previous work focuses on net worth. However, the assets and debts that comprise wealth likely relate to health in different and meaningful ways. Furthermore, racial differences in wealth portfolios may contribute to racial health gaps. Using longitudinal data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) and mixed effects growth curve models, we examined the associations between various wealth components and multiple health outcomes.